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## The History of Exploration on the East Coast of Africa

The east coast of Africa has been a crossroads of trade and exploration for centuries. From the early days of Arab and Persian traders to the European explorers of the 15th and 16th centuries, the region has been a major center of commerce and cultural exchange.

### Arab and Persian Traders

The first known explorers to reach the east coast of Africa were Arab and Persian traders. They began sailing to the region in the 7th century in search of gold, ivory, and slaves. Over time, they established trading posts along the coast, and their influence spread inland.

Arab and Persian traders played a major role in the development of East African culture. They introduced Islam to the region, and their language, Swahili, became the lingua franca of the coast. They also brought new technologies, such as the dhow, a type of sailing ship that is still used today.

### European Explorers

In the 15th and 16th centuries, European explorers began to arrive on the east coast of Africa. The Portuguese were the first to arrive, and they quickly established a monopoly on trade in the region. They built forts and trading posts along the coast, and they controlled the flow of goods between Africa and Europe.

The Portuguese were followed by the Dutch, the British, and the French. These countries competed with each other for control of the east coast of Africa, and their rivalries often led to conflict.

### The Scramble for Africa

In the late 19th century, the European powers began to scramble for control of Africa. This period of colonization saw the European powers divide the continent into colonies, and the east coast of Africa was no exception.

The British took control of Kenya, Uganda, and Tanzania. The Germans took control of Tanganyika (now Tanzania). The Portuguese retained control of Mozambique. And the French took control of Madagascar.

### Independence and the Modern Era

The east coast of Africa gained independence from European rule in the mid-20th century. Since then, the region has faced a number of challenges, including poverty, disease, and conflict. However, it has also made significant progress in areas such as education, healthcare, and economic development.

Today, the east coast of Africa is a vibrant and diverse region. It is home to a number of different cultures and languages, and it is a major center of trade and commerce. The region faces a number of challenges, but it also has a lot of potential.

## Famous Explorers

Some of the most famous explorers who traveled to the east coast of Africa include:

* Vasco da Gama (Portugal) – The first European to reach India by sailing around Africa.
* Pedro Álvares Cabral (Portugal) – The first European to discover Brazil.
* Vasco Núñez de Balboa (Spain) – The first European to cross the Isthmus of Panama.
* Ferdinand Magellan (Portugal) – The first European to circumnavigate the globe.
* James Cook (Great Britain) – The first European to explore the east coast of Australia.

## List of Countries on the East Coast of Africa

The following is a list of countries on the east coast of Africa:

* Djibouti
* Eritrea
* Ethiopia
* Kenya
* Madagascar
* Mozambique
* Somalia
* South Africa
* Tanzania

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