Fun & Interesting Facts About Angola (Africa)

Luanda from above
Luanda from above | Source

Angola is booming!

The oil and diamond-rich country is currently rebuilding at full swing after suffering from civil war for 27 years since independence from Portugal in 1975. Now the country of 19 million is finally at peace and is going through a dramatic rebirth.

The capital, Luanda is located on the coast of the Atlantic Ocean and has a population of over 5 million inhabitants. The city's streets are now being paved and widened, lots of new businesses are opening up and there is a lot of construction going on all around. Foreigners are flocking to the country.

Keep reading for a set of fun and interesting facts about Angola.

The stunning harbor at Luanda
The stunning harbor at Luanda | Source
Construction of beautiful government buildings
Construction of beautiful government buildings | Source
Roads are being paved and widened in Luanda
Roads are being paved and widened in Luanda | Source
Cute kids on the streets of Luanda
Cute kids on the streets of Luanda | Source
A street market in Luanda
A street market in Luanda | Source

Here Are Some Interesting Facts About Angola You May Not Know

  • Luanda, Angola's capitol is the world’s most expensive city for expats
  • Angola's economy is one of the world's fastest growing - Between 1994 and 2004, Angola had one of the world's fastest-growing economies. Economic growth in 2012 is expected to exceed 7%
  • Angola is very rich in natural resources - The country is the 2nd largest oil and diamond producer in sub-Saharan Africa
  • Luanda is known as the " Paris of Africa" - This title is apparently due to the city's sophisticated culture and atmosphere
  • Portuguese is the official language - Other spoken languages include Umbundu, Kimbundu, Kikongo, and Tchokwe
  • Angola gained independence in 1975 - The country got independence from Portugal on November 11, 1975. It is the last country in Africa to gain independence from Portugal
  • Civil war lasted from independence (1975) to 2002 - After Angola gained independence, the country went through a long period of civil war, causing millions of lives to be lost
  • Angola has a very young population - Interestingly, nearly 70% of the population in Angola is under the age of 24
  • Life expectancy for both men and women is 54.59 years, according to the CIA Factbook (2012 est.)
  • Angola has the highest death rate (mortality) in the world - According to the CIA Factbook, for every 1000 people, there are 23.4 deaths a year (2011 statistics)
  • The name of the country is derived from the Kimbundu word N'gola, meaning King - N'gola (King) Kiluange was the king of the Ndongo Kingdom at the time of the Portuguese arrival in what is now Angola
  • Angola is twice the size of Texas - The country spans 481,354 square miles, making it the world's 23rd largest country. It's the seventh largest country in Africa
  • The local currency is called the Kwanza (AOA) - 1 USD is about 95 Kwanza
  • The Angolan flag is red, black and gold - The red part of the flag represents the blood of Angolans killed in conflicts, the black represents the Angolan people, and as for the gold parts - the cogwheel represents industry, the gold machete represents peasantry, and the gold star is modeled after the star on the flag of the former Soviet Union

The imbondeiro trees can be seen all around Luanda
The imbondeiro trees can be seen all around Luanda | Source

More Fun Facts About Angola

  • The current Miss Universe is Angolan - Leila Luliana da Costa Vieira Lopes, known simply as "Leila Lopes" holds the title of Miss Universe
  • Angola's traditional music is the semba - Brazilian samba is believed to have originated in Angola, where it's known as "semba". The two are very similar. Angolan semba was danced to celebrate different occasions and is known as the music of the sea
  • Angola's national tree is the majestic imbondeiro - There is one tree that is special to Angolan, it's called "imbondeiro". There was a popular belief that God planted this tree, also known as "Boabob" upside down. The unusual looking imbondeiro tree can be found growing all over the country and on local artwork
  • Angola is the birthplace of the dreadlocks hair style
  • Growing Portuguese diaspora - in 2010, the number of visas issued to Portuguese was at 23,787
  • Shortage of men - After 27 years of civil war, there's a shortage of men in the country. So it's not unusual for a man to have several "non-official" wives

Angola on the map

A markerAngola -
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Comments 17 comments

roxanne459 profile image

roxanne459 4 years ago from Washington

Very interesting and well written! I definitely feel smarter for reading it. ;)

Global-Chica profile image

Global-Chica 4 years ago from New York, NY Author

I'm glad to hear that you found this interesting, Roxanne! I am now in Angola and will be staying here for another 2 months so I thought I'd put together a collection of all the things I've learned about this place that I find interesting and share some photos.

thumbi7 profile image

thumbi7 4 years ago from India

You have a spectacular view in your first photograph.

Good to know more about Angola.

Was wondering what could be the reason for this high death rates?

Thanks for SHARING:)

Global-Chica profile image

Global-Chica 4 years ago from New York, NY Author

Thanks for stopping by, thumbi! I would assume that the reason for the high mortality rate is due to the effects of decades of war. According to UNICEF, some major reasons for the high rate include malaria, poor nutrition, poverty, and undernourishment.

donnaisabella profile image

donnaisabella 4 years ago from Fort Myers

Interesting article Global Chica. I like this hub because I also wanted to see how Angola is progressing along with my many brothers and sisters that had been refugees in my country for many years; some are still there. Thanks for taking the time to fill us in on the statistics and for the beautiful pictures. If you do not mind, I just wish to correct a few things. The black in most of the flags of African countries stands for the people of the country not so much the continent as a whole. People from Africa do not really are about being called Africans because they consider themselves as belonging to sovereign states i.e. I would be called a Zambian and I am proud of my country (not that I am not proud of the continent as a whole, we are just very diverse people). Angola was not the last colony to gain independence in Africa, there was Zimbabwe in 1980, Namibia in 1990 and South Africa as late as 1994. Thanks, I too have learned a lot from this hub. I look forward to more.

Global-Chica profile image

Global-Chica 4 years ago from New York, NY Author

Thanks for stopping by donnaisabella and your feedback! I've updated the article based on your comments.

extended-stay profile image

extended-stay 4 years ago from Norfolk, Virginia

I have been here when I was a kid. That was a long time but the memories are still vivid in my mind. The place is really beautiful and I really like the weather. Great hub. Really interesting. Voted up and beautiful.

Global-Chica profile image

Global-Chica 4 years ago from New York, NY Author

Extended-stay, it's interesting that you came to Angola as a kid. The country has been going through so many positive changes in the past couple of years. It would be interesting to hear your take on the differences. Thanks for stopping by and voting!

Vellur profile image

Vellur 4 years ago from Dubai

Great hub on Angola. Interesting and informative, got to know more about the place. Voted up.

reni34 3 years ago

This is good information what would we do without people like you

tastiger04 profile image

tastiger04 3 years ago

Interesting hub! I didn't know dreadlocks came from Angola, or that it was twice the size of Texas....great trivia. Voted up and interesting :)

anonymous 3 years ago

interesting facts

traveleze profile image

traveleze 21 months ago from Preston

Great facts and interesting hub! I would love to visit this part of Africa one day

Thanks Again


YassieG 7 months ago

I had a research report and this was SO helpful! Thank you, Global-Chica!

GlobalChico 3 months ago

Seems like you learned a lot in your short stint living in Angola. Even though you got to stay in one of the finest and most expensive hotels in the world. The problems you mentioned in your previous article are problems every developing countries face but I guess its more prevalent in countries in Asia and Africa instead of North America, South America or Europe. I ma glad you had a good time in Angola and thank you for sharing such a wonderful article.

thguthgh9iyuiu 5 weeks ago


Keta 10 days ago

Thank you for sharing, my family and I just recently found out that our ancestors were from Angola Africa, which has peaked my interest of reading and learning more about Angola.

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