Eritrea Population, Main Cities and Geography

By | January 27, 2023

Eritrea: population and cities



According to Countryaah website, Eritrea has about 9 million residents.

Ethnic composition

The population of Eritrea consists of nine ethnic groups. These include Tigrinya (approx. 48%), Tigré (35%), Afar (4%), Kunama (3%), Saho (3%), Bilen (2%), Hedareb (2%), Nara (2%) and Rashaida (1%).

Religious affiliation

About 50% of the country’s residents are Christians (predominantly Eritrean Orthodox Church; furthermore Catholics, Protestants and Orthodox) and about 50% are Sunni Muslims. There are also followers of native natural religions.

National language

The country’s official languages are Arabic and Tigrinya. The languages Afar, Bilen, Kunama, Nara, Saho and Tigre are used as colloquial languages, and English as the language of education and business.

Capital and other cities


The capital of Eritrea is Asmara, with a population of approx. 805,000. According to Abbreviation Finder, ERI stands for Eritrea in English. Click to see other meanings of this 3-letter acronym. Other cities are:

  • Aseb with around 60,000 residents
  • Keren with around 40,000 residents and
  • Mitsiwa with around 31,000 residents.

Eritrea: Map and Geography

Area and boundaries

Eritrea covers a total area of 121,144 km². Check topmbadirectory for politics, flags, famous people, animals and plants of Eritrea. Thereof:

  • ForestAround 10% of the country is forested.
  • Meadow and pasture landAround 60% of the land is used as meadow or pasture land.
  • Fields and fieldsAround 15% of the land is used as arable land or fields, especially for growing maize, wheat and sorghum (sweet millet), as well as coffee, cotton, cane sugar, fruit and vegetables.

Eritrea has a common border with a total of three countries:

– Ethiopia with a length of 912 km,

– Djibouti with a length of 109 km and

– Sudan with a length of 605 km.


Eritrea has a coast to the Red Sea with a total length of 2,235 km. Of this, 1,150 km are mainland coast and 1,085 km are island coast.

Tidal range

In Eritrea the mean tidal range is between 0.6 and 0.9 m. For detailed explanations of ebb and flow, see Tides, Ebb and Flow.


The world’s highest tidal range can be found in the Bay of Fundy in Canada, where it is up to 16 m, and at spring tide even over 20 m. The Bay of Fundy is located on the Atlantic between the Canadian provinces of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, which is called Nova Scotia in German and whose capital is Halifax. On the German North Sea coast it varies between 1 m and 3 m. In the western Baltic Sea, on the other hand, the tidal range is only 0.3 m, while it is barely noticeable in the eastern Baltic Sea.

Longitude and latitude

Eritrea extends over the following geographical latitude (abbreviation Δφ) and geographical longitude (abbreviation Δλ):

Δφ = from 12 ° 20 ‘to 17 ° 56’ north latitude Δλ = from 036 ° 27 ‘to 043 ° 18’ east longitude

You can find detailed information on this subject under Longitude and Latitude.


For Eritrea, the following value applies to Central European Time (CET), i.e. the time (without summer time) in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. A minus sign means that it is earlier there, a plus sign that it is later than CET:

Δt (CET) = + 2 h

Further and detailed explanations of the time can be found under Time zones, time.

The highest point of the sun in Asmara

Asmara lies at a northern latitude of around φ = 15.5 ° (= 15 ° 30 ‘). If the declination of the sun has a value of around 15 ° 30 ‘N, and thus the image point of the sun is above Asmara, the sun is perpendicular there. This happens exactly twice a year, roughly 1 month before June 21st and 1 month after June 21st (for details see position of the sun).


If the image point of the sun and thus the declination δ is north of the latitude of Asmara, the sun is not in the south at noon, as in our latitudes, but in the north. In this case, the sun moves from east to north to west, where, like us, it sets.


The highest mountain in the country is the Soira with a height of 3,018 m. More high mountains are

  • Ira with a height of 2,817 m
  • Suara with a height of 2,603 m
  • Fangaga with a height of 2,589 m
  • Enghershatu with a height of 2,576 m


The main smaller rivers in the country are

  • Anseba
  • Shet
  • Baraka
  • Falkat
  • Gash
  • Med-Ere
  • Mereb
  • Tekezé

Lakes, islands

There are no larger lakes in Eritrea. The Dahlak Archipelago is located off the coast of Eritrea in the Red Sea. It consists of approx. 350 islands with a total area of 754.9 km². The largest of the islands is Dahlak Kebir with an area of 643 km².

Red Sea

The east coast of Eritrea lies on the Red Sea up to the beginning of the Gulf of Aden with a length of 1,150 km. The Red Sea is usually blue. But the blue-green alga lays a red carpet on its water surface during the flowering period. It is probably thanks to the blue-green algae that the strait between northeast Africa and the Arabian Peninsulas was once called the “Red Sea”. A detailed description of the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden under the following links:

– Red Sea

– Gulf of Aden

Eritrea Population