Eastern African Place Names

Eastern African names include those from Burundi, Comoros, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Madagascar, Mozambique, Rwanda, Somalia, South Sudan, Tanzania, and Uganda. See also about African names.
Buganda (Region & Political Subdivision) Ganda
The name of a region within Uganda and also the root of the country's name (see Uganda).
Ityoppya (Country) Amharic
Amharic form of Ethiopia.
Kenya (Country & Mountain) English, Kikuyu, Swahili, French, Italian, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Romanian, Greek, Turkish
The country is named for Mount Kenya, which in the Kikuyu language is called Kĩrĩnyaga meaning "the one having stripes".
Kĩrĩnyaga (Mountain) Kikuyu
Kikuyu form of Kenya (the mountain).
Komori (Country) Comorian, Slovene, Croatian, Serbian, Bosnian, Macedonian
Comorian form of Comoros, as well as the form in several other languages.
Libya (Country & Region) Berber, English, Norwegian, Finnish, Turkish, Hausa, Swahili, Indonesian, Malay, Tagalog, Ancient Roman
From Λιβύη (Libye), the Ancient Greek name for North Africa. It was derived from the Berber tribe of the Libu, attested as rbw in Ancient Egyptian. This name was revived in 1934 when the Italian colonies of Tripolitania and Cyrenaica were merged, carrying forward when the country gained independence in 1951. It is called ليبيا (Libiya) in Arabic.
Malawi (Country) Chewa, English, Swahili, French, Italian, Portuguese, Catalan, German, Dutch, Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, Finnish, Estonian, Polish, Czech, Slovak, Hungarian, Romanian, Turkmen, Arabic
Possibly from Chewa malawi meaning "flame, fire". This is the name of a landlocked country in Southern Africa. It was renamed from Nyasaland when the country gained independence from Britain in 1964. Hastings Banda, the country's first president and the man who chose the name, claimed to have seen it on an old map in the form Maravi, referring to a lake.
Msumbiji (Island & Country) Swahili
Swahili form of Mozambique.
Nairobi (Settlement) English, Swahili, Kikuyu, French, Italian, Spanish, German, Dutch, Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, Finnish, Hungarian, Romanian, Polish, Czech, Slovak, Slovene, Turkish, Japanese, Korean
From Maasai enkare nyrobi meaning "cold water", referencing a nearby river. This is the name of the capital city of Kenya. It was founded in 1899 by the British colonial authorities.
Namibia (Country) English, German, Swedish, Danish, Norwegian, Finnish, Polish, Italian, Spanish, Romanian, Albanian, Georgian, Armenian, Swahili, Indonesian, Malay, Japanese, Korean
From the name of the Namib Desert, meaning "desert, vast place" in Khoekhoe. This is a country in southwestern Africa.
Rwanda (Country) Rwandan, English, French, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Polish, Czech, Slovak, Swahili
Of Kinyarwanda origin, of uncertain meaning. This is the name of a small landlocked country in central Africa.
Soomaaliya (Country) Somali
Somali form of Somalia.
Tanganyika (Region & Country) Swahili, English
From Swahili tanga "sail" and nyika "wilderness". This is the name of a region in East Africa. It was a German then British colony until 1961 when it gained independence. In 1964 it united with the island of Zanzibar to create the new country of Tanzania.
Tanzania (Country) Swahili, English, Italian, Spanish, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Polish, Romanian, Greek, Armenian, Georgian, Indonesian, Malay
From a combination of Tanganyika and Zanzibar, the names of the two countries that were united to create the East African country of Tanzania in 1964.
Uganda (Country) English, Ganda, Swahili, German, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Catalan, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Finnish, Estonian, Latvian, Lithuanian, Hungarian, Romanian, Russian, Polish, Czech, Slovak, Slovene, Croatian, Serbian, Bulgarian, Macedonian, Turkish, Georgian, Armenian, Hebrew, Persian, Indonesian, Japanese, Korean, Malay
From Buganda, the name of a kingdom within Uganda, which means "land of the Ganda" in the Luganda language. The Ganda are an ethnic group, their name possibly deriving from a Bantu word meaning "family". Uganda is a landlocked country in East Africa.
Yuganda (Country) Ganda
Luganda variant form of Uganda.
Zanzibar (Island) Swahili, English
From Arabic زنجبار (Zanjibar), from Persian زنگبار (Zangibar), derived from زنگی (zangi) meaning "black, dark-skinned" and بار (bar) meaning "shore, coast". This is the name of an island, part of Tanzania.