Geography of Djibouti


Terrain shapes and bedrock

According to COUNTRYAAH, Djibouti is located in the eastern part of the large tectonic lowering area known as the Afar sink and mainly comprising eastern Ethiopia. The Afarsenk is a direct continuation of the Red Sea bottom, which is a northern continuation of the East African rift system, which is bounded on Ethiopia’s highlands by a marked north-south fault slope. In Djibouti, a Mittoceanic crack line goes up on the land surface, as is the case in Iceland. The bedrock in Djibouti consists predominantly of young volcanic rocks, which are penetrated by numerous cracks and faults in the northwest-southeast direction.

Three landform regions can be distinguished in the Djibouti Coastal plain is a belt of varying width within the coastline. It is less than 200 meters above sea level. and reaches in line with the Tadjouraviken, which cuts 100 km into the country, far west. Plateaus made up of lava beds are another landform type that occurs in the country’s southern and central parts, reaching 300 to 1,500 m above sea level. The plateaus are mostly surrounded by lowered portions, which form a distinctive tomb topography but also plains and lakes. Some of the lakes are deep depressions, e.g. Lake Assal (155 m uh) and Lake Abbé, which is on the border with Ethiopia. In the northern part of the country there is a third region, a mountain country that in Moussa Ali reaches 2,021 m above sea level.

The land surface of Djibouti is marked by the of large hot sandfields, but also rock cliffs and deep ravines. A number of streams with sandy bottom are found in the mountain region; some are temporary or have underground races. They constitute important water resources in the hot and rain-poor country.


Djibouti has a desert climate with extreme heat, averaging 30 °C; daily maximum is 29 °C in January and 43 °C in July.

Passage and monsoon winds blow in over the country but cause very little rainfall, generally 100–200 mm per year, 500 mm in the mountain area. From the Arabian Peninsula the wind comes parallel to the coast, sometimes as a hot and dry wind, chamsin. The southwest wind that enters Ethiopia and gives rain to the highlands during the rainy season also does not cause much rainfall, as Djibouti lies in the rain shadow.

The Earth Moon is predominantly desert soil.

Plant-and animal life

Nine tenths of the land is covered by desert with very sparse vegetation, mainly consisting of low-growing, thorny shrubs and some grassy grasses.

The animals are adapted to a great extent without water. Here, for example, beisa (Oʹryx gazeʹlla beisa), a subspecies of antelope species oryx with long, spear-shaped horns, gazelle (Gazeʹlla soemmerriʹngi), caracal (desert), golden shawl, striped hyena and spotted hyena. Among the birds are African ostrich, ear-owl, Arabian staircase (Ardeoʹtis aʹrabs) and several species of avian.

In the mountains there are smaller tree-lined areas with, among other things. a tree-shaped one, Juniʹperus proceʹra. Along the coast there are rich coral reefs and rich bird life.

Nature conservation

In 2010 Djibouti had a national park, Forêt du Day, with among other things. an endemic frankolin. In practice, however, the park has no greater protection, which is why the forest area is shrinking.