Kenya Population, People, Languages and Religions

By | January 21, 2022

Kenya Country Overview

Where is Kenya located? The state of Kenya is located in East Africa and borders the Indian Ocean. On the time zone map, which divides the world into world time zones along the lines of longitude, Kenya is in a time zone called “East Africa Time” (EAT). This time zone has a standard difference of 3 hours from Coordinated Universal Time (UTC). The regional clocks are then 3 hours ahead of the world clock. This time shift is referred to as UTC+3. As in most African countries, there is no changeover to daylight saving time in summer.

Bordering Countries of Kenya

According to abbreviationfinder, Kenya is a country in East Africa, bordered by four countries: Ethiopia to the north, Somalia to the east, Tanzania to the south, and Uganda to the west. Kenya has a total land boundary of 2,104 km which includes 814 km with Ethiopia, 682 km with Somalia, 769 km with Tanzania and 749 km with Uganda.

Kenya borders Ethiopia to its north; this border is formed by a line drawn between Kenya’s Marsabit County and Ethiopia’s Somali Region. The two countries have had close ties since 1963 when they signed a peace treaty and have since worked towards strengthening their relationship through joint initiatives such as infrastructure projects within their shared boundaries.

To Kenya’s east lies Somalia; this border is formed by a line drawn between Kenya’s Garissa County and Somalia’s Lower Juba region. The two countries have had friendly relations since 1960 when they became independent states but have since worked towards improving their ties through joint projects such as security cooperation within their shared boundaries.

Kenya also shares land borders with Tanzania to its south; this border is formed by a line drawn between Kenya’s Taita Taveta County and Tanzania’s Kilimanjaro Region. The two countries have had strong diplomatic ties for many years now and are working together on issues such as trade agreements within their shared boundaries.

Finally, Kenya shares land borders with Uganda to its west; this border is formed by a line drawn between Kenya’s Kisumu County and Uganda’s West Nile region. Despite having tense relations at times due to conflicts over cross-border cattle rustling within their shared boundaries, both countries have been working together for years now on issues such as refugee aid projects within their shared borders.

Kenya National Flag

Population Distribution

As of 2023, the latest population of Kenya is 53,527,936, based on our calculation of the current data from UN (United Nations).

Total population 53,527,936
Population growth rate 2.20%
Birth rate 23.90 births per 1,000 people
Life expectancy
Overall 63.29 years
Men 61.84 years
Women 64.77 years
Age structure
0-14 years 39.03%
15-64 years 57.88%
65 years and above 3.08%
Median age 19.30 years
Gender ratio (Male to Female) 1.00
Population density 92.23 residents per km²
Urbanization 39.40%
approx. 40 ethnic groups: over 60% Bantu (including 17% Kikuyu, 14% Luhya, 10% Kamba, 6% Kisii, 5% Mijikenda, 4% Meru), 13% Kalenjin, 10% Luo, 2% Maasai and others
Protestants 45%, Catholics (Roman Catholic) 33%, Indigenous Religions 10%, Muslims 10%, Others 2% Note: A large number of Kenyans are Christians: but estimates of the number of followers of Islam or traditional religions vary widely.
Human Development Index (HDI) 0.579
HDI ranking 147th out of 194

People in Kenya

More than 40 ethnic groups live in Kenya, all of whom speak their own languages. Most people, 67 out of 100, belong to a Bantu people. 30 out of 100 belong to a people of the Nilots. This distinction is made primarily according to the language of a people. Bantu people speak a Bantu language, Nilots speak a Nilotic language. A small part of the Kenyan population speaks a Kushitic language, such as the Somali and the Oromo. They live in the northeast of the country.

The largest group are the Kikuyu, a fifth of Kenyans belong to this Bantu tribe. The second largest group, the Luhya, are also a Bantu people. The third largest group are the Kalendjin, a Nile people. The Luo, also Nilots, live to a large extent on Lake Victoria. Their livelihood is fishing.

Nilots are also the Maasai. These are certainly the best known group in Kenya, although only a very small part of the Kenyans are Maasai. The Turkana, who also belong to the Nilots, live on Lake Turkana. Like the Maasai, they keep animals, namely camels, cattle, sheep and goats.

The population is growing

More than 50 million people live in Kenya and the number is steadily increasing. The north with the desert is very sparsely populated. Most people live on a third of the country’s surface. And that is in the fertile highlands, on the coast and in the three largest cities in the country, which are called Nairobi, Mombasa and Kisumu.

Although more and more people are settling in the cities, most of them earn their living from agriculture. They live in small villages and run small farms. There are also large farms that primarily cultivate tea and coffee for export.

Why do Kenyans want so many children?

It is believed that Kenya’s population could double over the next 20 years. This is a big problem because the country cannot feed so many people. There is also no work for everyone. In a country where there is no pension or health insurance, however, children are an important insurance for old age. Because the young take care of the old, so dictate the tribal laws. More and more people have to live on the little land on which they can farm.

Languages in Kenya

The official languages ​​in Kenya are Swahili and English. There are also around 30 other African languages. Like the ethnic groups, these are divided into Bantu languages, Nilotic languages ​​and Cushitic languages. Kikuyu is the most widely spoken Bantu language as the Kikuyu are the largest ethnic group in the country.

English is still a legacy of colonial times. In schools, too, teachers mostly teach in English. However, Swahili is mostly spoken in the country. Swahili is an important language for people to understand throughout East Africa.

Religions in Kenya

82 out of 100 people in Kenya are Christians. They are predominantly Protestants and here mainly belong to the Anglican Church. Catholics make up around a quarter of Christians. Muslims also live along the coast. But they only make up one percent of the population. Officially, fewer and fewer people still live their traditional African faith. But Kenyans of Christian faith also mix these old traditions.

Many people believe that the spirits of the dead continue to have a great influence on the living. They worship them with offerings. This is not unusual in any of Africa. In this way, the old faith traditions are still preserved despite other religions. This is especially true for people in rural areas.