Learn about Angola in southern Africa - a land of lush rainforests, rugged highlands and a spectacular coastline. But against this backdrop, Angola is also living with the legacy of 27 years of civil war. Our printable activities below are the perfect way to test your knowledge.
Winding road in the mountains of Angola
A Little Geography…
- Angola borders Namibia, Zambia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and the Atlantic Ocean (to the west). It has an area of about 1.25 million square kilometres.
- The country has a varied landscape, with deserts, rainforests, mountains and beaches. Part of the Namib Desert is found in southern Angola, and the highest peak is Mount Moco at 2,620 metres.
- Angola has a population of around 28 million people. Nearly a third of the population lives in or around the capital city, Luanda. The official language is Portuguese.
- Angola has a wealth of natural resources, particularly oil and diamonds. Other important exports include coffee, fish, timber and cotton.
A Little History…
- In 1482, a Portuguese explorer named Diogo Cao arrived in what is now northern Angola and began to colonise the area. During this time, Angola became one of the biggest exporters for the slave trade – slaves were captured and sent to work in Brazil and in the Americas.
- After nearly 400 years of Portuguese rule, rebel groups began demanding better conditions for the Angolan people, and started fighting for independence in the 1960s. The country gained independence in 1975, but the rebel groups couldn’t agree on how Angola should be ruled.
- A bitter civil war broke out, which lasted until 2002. Over 500,000 people lost their lives in the conflict and around 3.5 million were forced to leave their homes.
- Although the civil war destroyed much of Angola’s economy and infrastructure, the country now has a democratic government and is working to rebuild itself.
And Some Interesting Facts…
- Luanda is one of the most expensive cities in the world to visit. Angola’s oil industry has created a lot of wealth in some areas, making apartment rentals, restaurants and shops very expensive. Luanda has been called the ‘Paris of Africa’ because of its sophisticated culture.
- Angola’s flag was designed when the country gained independence in 1975. The red background is said to symbolise the blood lost in the struggle for independence, while the black represents the country of Africa. The symbols in the middle represent the country’s industrial and agricultural workers. They also resemble the hammer, sickle and star of the old Soviet flag – the Soviet Union gave support to some of the rebel groups fighting for independence.
The Angolan Flag
The Angolan flag was adopted in 1975 when the country became independent. The red stripe was chosen to represent the blood spilt by the Angolan people as they struggled for independence, while the black stripe is for Africa. The central design consists of a cog wheel (industry and workers in industry) and a machete (workers on the land). The country had a Marxist government when the flag was adopted and the design was intended to resemble the "hammer and sickle" of the former Soviet Union and Communism.
Our Angola Resources
Here you can download four different sets of bookmarks for Angola. Two show just the flag - in colour or black and white. And two show the flag and country name, also in colour and black and white.
Print out our little jigsaw, cut using our jigsaw cutting guides and tailored to the age of your child, then put it back together again!
Print out the flag of Angola in four different sizes, from full size (pictured below) to tiny! This is a 4-page pdf file.
Can the kids use their geographical knowledge of Africa to find Angola on this location worksheet? The guided version with all the surrounding African countries is easier, but we have a blank version for a really tricky challenge. Do the children know the capital city of Angola too?
Here's a useful notebooking page to use for your Angola studies. Version 1 has space for a map or illustration, version 2 is lined throughout.