Kilimanjaro Region

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Kilimanjaro Region
Mkoa wa Kilimanjaro  (Swahili)
An elephant passing by Mt. Kilimanjaro
An elephant passing by Mt. Kilimanjaro
Location in Tanzania
Location in Tanzania
Country Tanzania
Zone Northern
Capital Moshi
 • Regional Commissioner Leonidas Gama
 • Total 13,250 km2 (5,120 sq mi)
Population (2012)
 • Total 1,640,087
 • Density 120/km2 (320/sq mi)
Time zone EAT (UTC+3)
Postcode 25xxx
Area code(s) 027

Kilimanjaro Region, known as Kilimandscharo during the German colonial rule, is one of Tanzania's 30 administrative regions. The regional capital is the municipality of Moshi. According to the 2012 national census, the region had a population of 1,640,087, which was lower than the pre-census projection of 1,702,207.[1]:page 2 For 2002-2012, the region's 1.8 percent average annual population growth rate was the 24th highest in the country.[1]:page 4 It was also the eighth most densely populated region with 124 people per square kilometer.[1]:page 6

The region is home to a portion of Kilimanjaro National Park. The region is bordered to the north and east by Kenya, to the south by the Tanga Region, to the southwest by the Manyara Region, and to the west by the Arusha Region.


The region is administratively divided into six districts:

Districts of Kilimanjaro Region
Map District Population (2012)
Districts of Kilimanjaro
Hai 210,533
Moshi 651,029
Mwanga 131,442
Rombo 260,963
Same 269,807
Siha 116,313
Total 1,640,087


The Kilimanjaro Region borrowed its name from the tallest mountain in Africa, Mount Kilimanjaro.

Of the region's seven districts, five traditionally had Chagga settlements, which are Hai District Council, Moshi Municipal Council, Moshi District Council, Rombo District Council and Siha District Council. The other two, Mwanga District Council and Same District Council, have historically included Pare settlements. However, during colonial rule in the late 19th century to the middle of the 20th century, the region was divided into two main districts: Moshi district, which was composed of all the areas settled by the Chagga people on the slopes of the mountain, and Pare district, which was a Pare tribe settlement. The region, from earlier times, had been settled by the people collectively called the Chagga, the Maasai, Wakwavi and Waarush (in the lower parts of Mount Kilimanjaro), and the Pare on the Pare mountains. These have been intermingling, trading, and even fighting from time to time for various socio-political reasons. Later, other tribes also migrated to the land.


The snowcapped Uhuru Peak
The unofficial national beer of Tanzania

Mount Kilimanjaro lies on a tectonic line intersection 80 kilometres (50 mi) east of the tectonically active Rift Valley. The activity that created this stratovolcano dates back less than a million years, and the central ash pit on Kibo, the highest volcanic centre, may be only several hundred years old. Steam and sulphur fumaroles here are indicative of residual activity.

Shira and Mawenzi were two other areas of volcanic activity. Both became inactive before Kibo. The Shira volcanic cone collapsed leaving the Shira Ridge as part of its Caldera Rim. Mawenzi has been heavily eroded to leave a mass of steep-sided ridges and summits, particularly dramatic on the infrequently-seen eastern side. Kibo is the best preserved centre; it has three concentric craters and the outer crater rim rises to Uhuru Point – the chief summit. The middle, Reusch crater contains the main fumaroles and in its centre the 130 metres (430 ft) deep and 400 metres (1,300 ft) wide Ash Pit. The outer crater has been breached by lava flows in several places, the most dramatic of these being the Western Breach.

The ash and lava covered slopes of Kibo are mainly gentle-angled from the steep, glaciated precipices which defend its southern and south-western flanks. The impressive rock walls on Kilimanjaro and Mawenzi are generally composed of lavas and ashes. Deep gorges (barrancos) have been carved into the soft rocks and ashes of Kilimanjaro. The most impressive of these is the Great Barranco below the Western Breach and the two Barrancos on the east side of Mawenzi.

Numerous parasitic cones extend east-west across Kilimanjaro; some are located near the Mandara Hut (Maundi Crater offers a fine view point), while others lie just north of the Shira Route. At one stage most of the summit of Kilimanjaro was covered by an ice cap, probably more than 100 metres (330 ft) deep. Glaciers extended well down the mountain forming moraine ridges, clearly visible now on the southern flanks down to about 4,000 metres (13,000 ft). At present only a small fraction of the glacial cover remains. The remnants of the ice cap can be seen as the spectacular ice cliffs of the Northern and Eastern Icefields, and the longest glaciers are found on the precipitous southern and south-western flanks. If the present rate of recession continues the majority of the glaciers on Kilimanjaro could vanish altogether in the next 20 years.[2]

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