Discovering Djibouti: 12 Fascinating Fun Facts

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Officially called the Republic of Djibouti, Djibouti is the third smallest country in Africa in terms of land area. It boasts bizarre desolate landscapes that will remind you of Mars!

Are you intrigued by this not-so-popular destination? If you like exploring off-beaten places, plan a trip to Djibouti!

Check out these interesting and weird Djibouti facts.

1. The Lowest Point In African Land Is Lake Assal 

If the Dead Sea is where you want to go to float on water, also consider Lac Assal in Djibouti. This crater lake is one of the saltiest lakes in the world outside Antarctica.


Lake Assal, which is 155 meters below sea level, is the lowest point in Africa. Situated in the Afar basin, it has salt-crammed shores with dormant volcanoes in its periphery.

This destination will let you snap the dreamiest pictures with pristine white salt beaches and blue waters.

2. The Only US Military Base In Africa Is In Djibouti 

Camp Lemonnier in Djibouti, built-in 2003, is the only permanent US military base in Africa. This partnership ensures regional security, stability, and humanity.

Djibouti is situated in the Horn of Africa, a strategic economic location near the Suez Canal. The formal agreement with the United States gives them access to Djibouti’s port and airport facilities.

3. Djibouti Has Earned One Bronze Medal Since the 1984 Summer Olympics

Hussein Ahmed Salah brought Djibouti its only Olympic Medal in 1988 in the marathon. Hussein is a long-distance runner and has won medals in world championships.

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Djibouti has been participating in the summer Olympics since 1984.

4. Lake Abbe Has a Mars-Like Landscape 

Lake Abbe will feel like another planet with its surreal and arid landscape. The unearthly scenery of the blue lake engulfed with gigantic limestone chimneys will leave you astonished.


Lake Abbe is a geologist’s spot of interest, located on the Ethiopia and Djibouti border in the Afar Triangle.

Are you curious to visit this natural wonder?

5. Photography Of Infrastructure is Prohibited in Djibouti!

If the architecture in Djibouti intrigues you to take pictures, take our advice. Taking pictures of public buildings, ports, and airports is strictly prohibited.

You could be arrested and your gadget confiscated if you’re caught doing so. So know the rules before you click!

6. Djibouti Does Not Have Permanent Rivers Or Streams

One of the most water-deficit nations, Djibouti has no rivers and streams flowing throughout the year.

Even worse is the scorching temperature that causes the freshwater to evaporate. It leaves this desert country dry with fewer natural resources.

The geological phenomena of Djibouti have given picturesque landscapes and breathtaking attractions to the country. But it has also made it vulnerable to earthquakes, floods, and drought.

7. Djibouti Francolin Is Only Found Here!

The critically endangered species of the pheasant family, Djibouti Francolin, is a native Djiboutian bird. With a population of less than 500, these birds mainly inhabit mountainous areas such as the Mabla and Goda mountains.


Efforts are ongoing to manage these hen-like birds through some conservation programs.

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8. Djibouti Ranks High In Unemployment

According to reports, Djibouti has the highest unemployment rate in the world after South Africa. The nation is highly dependent on other nations for funding support.

The country, devoid of natural resources and susceptible to natural calamities, lacks opportunities for economic growth. The country is 90% desert with limited agricultural scope and fewer industries in town, and so Djiboutians are exposed to the least job openings.

9. You Can Visit Devil’s Island In Djibouti 

Ghoubbet-Al-Kharab, also known as Devil’s Island, is a curious place to visit. It connects the Arabian peninsula with the African continent in the Gulf of Tadjoura.

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It is one of the unique specimens of nature in Africa, where a part is shallow and rich in magnificent coral reefs and species of fish. The deep waters let you dive and swim with the largest fish — the whale sharks.

This incredible place shouldn’t be missed.

10. Discover The French Architecture While You Roam In The City 

Djibouti was a French colony called French Somaliland and earned its independence in 1977. When you visit the country, you’ll see that the infrastructure still has the essence of the French style in its construction. 

The Cathedral Of Our Lady Of The Good Shepherd and Place Menelik are some structures built during French rule.

The official currency of Djibouti is Djiboutian Franc, and the official languages are French and Arabic.

11. The Day Forest National Park Provides An Amazing Camping Experience

It is a fascinating forest with desert terrains on the Goda mountains, with species of East African junipers growing as tall as 950m. A conserved site destructed over centuries houses Djibouti spurfowls and sunbirds native to the country.

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You can camp here at this natural location to enjoy Djiboutian hospitality and food while learning about this country.

12. Djiboutian Loves Consuming Khat

Khat is a drug derived from Khat flowering plants that cause stimulation when consumed. It is legal to chew this narcotic substance in Djibouti, and it is considered a community practice.

Khat consumption causes certain health issues, such as increased blood pressure and cardiovascular illness. The use is a threat to health and the economy because the people spend a huge part of their income on its purchase.


Since discovering how much fun and learning are to be had traveling, Alex has made it a point to tour his home country and continent while still in his heydays. His ultimate desire is to travel farther afield to see the wonders of Europe, the Americas, Australia, and Asia. When he isn’t traveling, he takes his time to write about various places to share his experiences with other global citizens.

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