Taita–Taveta County

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The Taita Taveta County
Taita–Taveta County
Salt Lick Safari.jpg
Flag of The Taita Taveta County
Coat of arms of The Taita Taveta County
The County of Hidden Treasure
Interactive map of Taita-Taveta County
Coordinates: 3°27′S 38°24′E / 3.450°S 38.400°E / -3.450; 38.400Coordinates: 3°27′S 38°24′E / 3.450°S 38.400°E / -3.450; 38.400
Country Kenya
Formed4 March 2013
 • GovernorAndrew Mwadime
 • Deputy GovernorChristine Saru Kilalo
 • SenatorJohnes Mwaruma
 • Women RepresentativeLydia Haika
 • Total17,083.9 km2 (6,596.1 sq mi)
2,228 m (7,310 ft)
 • Total340,671
 • Density20/km2 (52/sq mi)
Demonym(s)Taitan/Mdawida and Tavetas/watuveta
Time zoneUTC+3 (EAT)
WebsiteOfficial County Site

Taita–Taveta County[1] previously known as Taita Taveta District is a county of Kenya. It lies approximately 140 km northwest of Mombasa and 380 km southeast of Nairobi. Taita Taveta County is located approximately 360 km southeast of Nairobi and 200 km northwest of Mombasa, and is a port and major gateway to the United Republic of Tanzania through Taveta town. The County headquarters are located in Mwatate sub county, which is one of the six counties in the Jumuiya ya Kaunti za Pwani[2] regional economic bloc. Major towns include Voi, Taveta, Mwatate and Wundanyi

The population[3] of the county was 340,671 persons according to the 2019 national census,[4] with population densities ranging from 14 persons per km2 to more than 117 persons per km2. This is due to the varied rainfall and terrain with the lower zones receiving an average 440 mm of rain per annum and the highland areas receiving up to 1,900 mm of rain. The county ranges in altitude from 500 m above sea level to 2,228 m at Vuria[5] Peak, which is the county's highest point.

Land Use[6][edit]

The county covers an area of 17,083.9 km2, of which 62% or 11,100 km2, is within Tsavo East and Tsavo West National Parks. The remaining 5,876 km2 consists of small scale farms, ranches, sisal estates, water bodies (such as Lakes Chala and Jipe in Taveta and Mzima springs), and the hilltop forests.

The lowland areas of the county outside the national parks[7] are farms, ranches, estates, and wildlife sanctuaries which receive an average of 440 mm of rain per annum whereas the highlands receive up to 1900 mm. Altitudes range from 500 meters above sea level to almost 2300 m at the highest point in the county Vuria[8] Peak. The county has approximately 25 ranches in cattle grazing. The three operating sisal estates in the county are Teita Sisal Estate, Voi Sisal Estate and Taveta Sisal Estate. Many ranches have ventured into wildlife tourism and conservation. The Taita Hills and Saltlick Lodges sanctuary are among the well known tourism attractions in Taita Taveta.

There are 48 forests which have survived on hill tops in Taita Taveta county[9] of which 28 are gazetted and are under government protection and management. They range in size from small 500 square metre patches with a few remnant trees to modestly vast 2 square kilometer indigenous and exotic forest mountains. These forests are part of the unique Eastern Arc range of forests found mostly in eastern Tanzania with the Taita Hills forming the only Kenyan portion of that forest type.

Taita Hills forest[10] hold a unique biodiversity[11] with 13 taxa of plants and 9 taxa of animals found only in the Taita Hills and nowhere else in the world. In addition, 22 plant species found in the Taita Hills forests are typical of the Eastern Arc forests. Within these beautiful indigenous forests, bubbles clean water flowing to the lowland areas catering for both human economic activities and wildlife.

Human – Wildlife Conflict[edit]

At Tsavo National Park[12] covers approximately two-thirds of the land area of Taita Taveta County, growth in human population causes conflict with wildlife.  

The national population census[13] carried out in 1969 put the number of persons in Taita Taveta district at 110,742.[14] The Kenya Population and Housing Census of August 2019 found that the number of people in Taita -Taveta county was 340,671[4] representing an increase of 207.6% in fifty years. The growth of the human population means that the land close to the park boundaries is converted from bush land into settlements. Consequently, people have been killed by wildlife, as others lose crops and livestock.

The national government[15] has a mechanism for financially compensating families for wildlife-related deaths and destruction of property, but residents of Taita Taveta say the process of claiming compensation is too tedious. A television news report broadcast in September 2018 revealed that only ten out of more than 1,500 claims for compensation in the county had been paid out in the previous five years.[16]

Tourist Attractions[edit]

Lake Jipe , Lake Chala, Kisigau Montain [1],Taita hills[17] ,Shomoto Hill, Aruba Dam, Mudanda Rock, Yatta Plateau[18], Lugard Falls[19], Tsavo National Reserve, Shetani Lava Flow[20], Mzima Springs [2]


Historical population
1969 110,742—    
1979 147,597+33.3%
1989 207,273+40.4%
1999 246,671+19.0%
2009 284,657+15.4%
2019 340,671+19.7%
Kenya Administrative Divisions:[21] 2019 Census:[22]


Religion in Taita–Taveta County[23]

  Christianity (91%)
  Islam (7.4%)
  Other religions (0.6%)
  Atheism (1%)


The seat of the county government of Taita Taveta is at the small town of Wundanyi, and the largest town being Voi county.

Sub-counties of Taita Taveta
Subcounty Population[4]
Mwatate 81,659
Taveta 91,222
Voi 111,831
Wundanyi 55,959
Total 340,671


The county has four constituencies:

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Taita Taveta County". Kenya National Bureau of Statistics. 1 July 2017.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  2. ^ "Jumuiya ya Kaunti za Pwani – Just another WordPress site". Retrieved 15 October 2022.
  3. ^ "Population Definition in Statistics and How to Measure It". Investopedia. Retrieved 26 October 2022.
  4. ^ a b c "2019 Kenya Population and Housing Census Volume I: Population by County and Sub-County". Kenya National Bureau of Statistics. Retrieved 4 November 2019.
  5. ^ admin (16 November 2021). "Vuria Hill". Visit Nyali. Retrieved 26 October 2022.
  6. ^ Assessment of Land Tenure, Land Use and Land Cover Changes in Taita Hills Forest Fragments: A Case Study of Ngerenyi Forest Fragments in Taita Taveta County, Kenya
  7. ^ "National Parks | Kenya Wildlife Service". kws.go.ke. Retrieved 15 October 2022.
  8. ^ Buffalo, Built by. "Vuria". Sheldrick Wildlife Trust. Retrieved 15 October 2022.
  9. ^ "Taita–Taveta County", Wikipedia, 22 November 2022, retrieved 25 November 2022
  10. ^ "BirdLife Data Zone". datazone.birdlife.org. Retrieved 15 October 2022.
  11. ^ "Biodiversity | National Geographic Society". education.nationalgeographic.org. Retrieved 26 October 2022.
  12. ^ "Tsavo National Park | Tsavo east national park | Tsavo west national park". Tsavo National Park. Retrieved 15 October 2022.
  13. ^ "Census". United Nations Population Fund. Retrieved 15 October 2022.
  14. ^ Taita Hills and Kenya, 2004 : seminars, reports and journal of a field expedition to Kenya. Pellikka, Petri., Ylhäisi, Jussi., Clark, Barnaby., Helsingin yliopisto. Maantieteen laitos. Helsinki: University of Helsinki, Department of Geography. 2004. ISBN 9521020776. OCLC 76844200.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: others (link)
  15. ^ "National Government | AHADI toolkit". countytoolkit.devolution.go.ke. Retrieved 15 October 2022.
  16. ^ NTV Kenya, Victims of animal attacks in Taita Taveta say compensation takes too long, archived from the original on 17 December 2021, retrieved 1 February 2019
  17. ^ "Taita Hills", Wikipedia, 24 November 2022, retrieved 25 November 2022
  18. ^ "Yatta Plateau in Tsavo National park | Yatta Plateau | Kenya Safaris". Tsavo National Park. 7 January 2022. Retrieved 25 November 2022.
  19. ^ "Lugard Falls in Tsavo National Park | Lugard Falls | Tsavo East Park". Tsavo National Park. 13 January 2022. Retrieved 25 November 2022.
  20. ^ polly (22 November 2022). "Shetani Lava flow | Tsavo National Park | Kenya Safaris Tours | Kenya". Wildlife Kenya Safari. Retrieved 25 November 2022.
  21. ^ Kenya: Administrative Division population statistics
  22. ^ 2019 Kenya Population and Housing Census Volume I: Population by County and Sub-County
  23. ^ "2019 Kenya Population and Housing Census Volume IV: Distribution of Population by Socio-Economic Characteristics" (PDF). Kenya National Bureau of Statistics. Retrieved 2 May 2021.

External links[edit]