Largest States in Nigeria 2023 - Top 10 Updated List

Explorethe largest states in Nigeria 2023, and gain valuable insights into the geographical diversity and economic potential of Nigeria's largest states.

by Krishika M

Updated Jun 29, 2023

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Largest States in Nigeria 2023 - Top 10 Updated List
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Largest States in Nigeria 2023

In 2023, Nigeria, a country located in West Africa, is home to several states, each varying in size and significance. These states play a crucial role in the overall landscape and development of the nation. Here is the list of the top 10 largest statest in Nigeria as of 2023:

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S.no.

States

Land Size by km²

1

Niger

76,363 

2

Borno 

70,898 

3

Taraba 

54,473 

4

Kaduna 

46,053 

5

Bauchi 

45,837 

6

Yobe 

45,502 

7

Zamfara 

39,762 

8

Adamawa 

36,917 

9

Kwara 

36,825 

10

Kebbi 

36,800 

Top 10 Largest States in Nigeria 2023

From vast expanses of land to diverse cultural heritage, these states contribute to the rich tapestry that is Nigeria. Understanding the largest states in Nigeria provides valuable insight into the country's geographical diversity, economic potential, cultural diversity, and overall significance within the region.

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In this article, we will explore the largest states in Nigeria in terms of their land area, highlighting their unique features, economic activities, cultural heritage, and challenges they face. Join us as we delve into the intriguing world of Nigeria's largest states and discover what makes each of them a remarkable piece of the Nigerian puzzle.

1. Niger (76,363 km²)

Niger state, situated in Nigeria, stands out as one of the largest states in terms of land size, covering approximately 76,363 square kilometers. This vast expanse of land presents numerous opportunities and challenges for the state's development and governance.

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Located in the central region of Nigeria, Niger state shares borders with several other states, including Kebbi, Zamfara, Katsina, Kaduna, and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja. Its strategic geographical position gives Niger state a unique advantage in terms of transportation and trade routes, as it serves as a link between the northern and southern regions of Nigeria.

Niger state's diverse landscape showcases a mix of different ecological zones, including the Sahel, Sudan Savannah, and Guinea Savannah. The state is characterized by an array of natural resources, including fertile farmlands, mineral deposits (such as limestone, gypsum, and gold), and potential reserves of oil and gas. These resources hold great economic potential, attracting investment and contributing to the state's overall development.

The people of Niger state are predominantly engaged in agriculture, which serves as the mainstay of the state's economy. The fertile soils and favorable climate support the cultivation of various crops, including millet, sorghum, maize, rice, yam, and vegetables. Livestock farming, particularly cattle rearing, is also a significant economic activity in the state.

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2. Borno (70,898 km²) 

Borno state, located in Nigeria, is recognized as one of the largest states in terms of land area, encompassing approximately 70,898 square kilometers. This significant expanse of land makes Borno a prominent and expansive region within the country.

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Situated in the northeastern part of Nigeria, Borno state shares borders with Chad, Cameroon, and Niger, which further adds to its strategic importance. The state is known for its diverse landscapes, including the Sahel Savannah, the Chad Basin, and the Mandara Mountains. These varied ecological zones contribute to the state's rich biodiversity and provide habitats for a wide range of flora and fauna.

Borno state holds historical and cultural significance, as it was once the center of the Kanem-Borno Empire, a medieval kingdom that thrived in the region. The state's capital, Maiduguri, serves as a major hub for trade, commerce, and administrative activities.

The people of Borno state are predominantly engaged in agriculture, which plays a vital role in the state's economy. The fertile soils and favorable climate support the cultivation of crops such as millet, sorghum, maize, rice, and cowpeas. Livestock rearing, including cattle, sheep, and goats, is also a significant economic activity in the state.

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3. Taraba (54,473 km²) 

Taraba state, located in Nigeria, is recognized as a sizable state in terms of land area, covering approximately 54,473 square kilometers. This substantial expanse of land positions Taraba as a significant region within the country.

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Situated in the northeastern part of Nigeria, Taraba state shares borders with several states, including Benue, Plateau, Gombe, Adamawa, and Bauchi. Its geographical location places it within the middle belt region of Nigeria, where it serves as a transition zone between the northern and southern parts of the country.

Taraba state is known for its diverse topography and rich natural resources. The state encompasses a mix of landscapes, including plateaus, valleys, plains, and mountains. The Mambilla Plateau, one of the prominent features of the state, stands as one of the highest plateaus in Nigeria, offering breathtaking views and unique climatic conditions.

The state is endowed with various natural resources, including mineral deposits such as coal, bauxite, kaolin, and granite. Agricultural activities are also significant in Taraba state, with fertile soils and favorable climatic conditions supporting the cultivation of crops like rice, maize, yam, sorghum, millet, and vegetables. Livestock farming, particularly cattle rearing, is another vital economic activity in the state.

Taraba state is home to a diverse range of ethnic groups, each with its unique cultural heritage and traditions. The major ethnic groups include the Jukun, Tiv, Kuteb, Chamba, and Mumuye. These groups contribute to the state's rich cultural tapestry, which is manifested in various aspects such as music, dance, art, and festivals.

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4. Kaduna (46,053 km²) 

Kaduna state, located in Nigeria, stands out as a substantial state in terms of land area, covering approximately 46,053 square kilometers. This significant expanse of land places Kaduna as a notable region within the country.

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Situated in the northwestern part of Nigeria, Kaduna state is strategically positioned and shares borders with several states, including Zamfara, Katsina, Kano, Bauchi, Plateau, Niger, and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja. Its central location makes Kaduna state a vital transportation and economic hub, connecting different regions of Nigeria.

Kaduna state showcases diverse geographical features, including the Sudan Savannah, the Guinea Savannah, and the highlands of the Kagoro and Jaba hills. The state's varied landscape supports a range of economic activities and natural resources. It boasts fertile soils suitable for agriculture and is known for its production of crops such as maize, millet, sorghum, groundnut, and citrus fruits.

Furthermore, Kaduna state has significant mineral deposits, including tin, columbite, limestone, granite, and gold. These resources contribute to the state's mining and quarrying industry, attracting investment and generating employment opportunities.

The state's capital, also named Kaduna, serves as a major urban center with a bustling economy. It is home to various industries, including manufacturing, textiles, food processing, and automotive assembly plants. The city accommodates educational institutions, healthcare facilities, government offices, and commercial centers, making it a focal point for economic and social activities in the state.

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5. Bauchi (45,837 km²)

Bauchi state, located in Nigeria, is recognized as a sizable state in terms of land area, covering approximately 45,837 square kilometers. This substantial expanse of land places Bauchi as a prominent region within the country.

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Situated in the northeastern part of Nigeria, Bauchi state shares borders with several states, including Plateau, Kaduna, Gombe, Yobe, and Jigawa. Its geographical location contributes to its strategic significance as a transit point between the northern and southern parts of the country.

Bauchi state showcases diverse landscapes, including savannah grasslands, hills, and mountainous regions. It is characterized by the presence of the Jos Plateau to the west and the Yobe Basin to the northeast. The state is rich in natural resources, including mineral deposits such as limestone, marble, gypsum, clay, and coal. These resources present opportunities for mining and industrial development.

The people of Bauchi state engage in various economic activities, with agriculture playing a significant role. The fertile soils and favorable climatic conditions support the cultivation of crops such as millet, sorghum, maize, rice, yam, and beans. Livestock rearing, particularly cattle, sheep, and goats, is also a major economic activity in the state.

Bauchi state is home to several ethnic groups, each contributing to the state's cultural diversity. The major ethnic groups include the Hausa, Fulani, Sayawa, Kanuri, and Jarawa, among others. These groups have distinct cultural traditions, languages, and artistic expressions that enrich the cultural heritage of the state.

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6. Yobe (45,502 km²) 

Yobe state, located in Nigeria, is renowned for its significant land area, covering approximately 45,502 square kilometers. This extensive expanse of land establishes Yobe as a notable region within the country.

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Situated in the northeastern part of Nigeria, Yobe state shares borders with several states, including Borno, Gombe, Bauchi, Jigawa, and the Republic of Niger. Its strategic geographical location contributes to its importance as a transit point and trade route between Nigeria and neighboring countries.

Yobe state exhibits diverse landscapes, characterized by the Sahel Savannah, semi-arid plains, and sand dunes. The state is known for its desert-like features, including the extensive dune fields of the Yusufari and Gashua areas. The state's unique environment supports various economic activities and provides habitat for a range of flora and fauna.

Agriculture plays a crucial role in the economy of Yobe state. The fertile floodplains along the Komadugu Yobe River support the cultivation of crops such as millet, sorghum, cowpeas, maize, rice, and vegetables. Livestock farming, particularly cattle, sheep, goats, and camels, is also a significant economic activity in the state.

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Yobe state is home to diverse ethnic groups, each with its distinct cultural heritage. The major ethnic groups in the state include the Kanuri, Bade, Ngizim, Ngamo, and Fulani, among others. These groups contribute to the cultural diversity of Yobe, showcasing unique traditions, languages, music, dance, and craftsmanship.

The state capital, Damaturu, serves as the administrative and commercial center of Yobe state. The city hosts government institutions, markets, educational facilities, healthcare centers, and other essential services. It is a hub of economic activities and serves as a catalyst for the state's development.

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7. Zamfara (39,762 km²)

Zamfara state, located in Nigeria, is recognized for its notable land area, covering approximately 39,762 square kilometers. This substantial expanse of land establishes Zamfara as a significant region within the country.

Situated in the northwestern part of Nigeria, Zamfara state shares borders with several states, including Sokoto, Niger, Kebbi, Kaduna, and Katsina. Its geographical location places it within the Sahel region, characterized by a transition zone between the Sahara Desert to the north and the Sudan Savannah to the south.

Zamfara state is known for its diverse landscapes, ranging from semi-arid plains to rocky hills and plateaus. The state's terrain is rich in mineral resources, particularly gold deposits, which have contributed to the growth of informal mining activities. Other mineral resources found in Zamfara include gypsum, kaolin, limestone, and granite.

Agriculture plays a vital role in the economy of Zamfara state. The state's fertile soils and favorable climatic conditions support the cultivation of crops such as millet, sorghum, maize, cowpeas, groundnuts, and cotton. Livestock rearing, including cattle, sheep, goats, and poultry, is also a significant economic activity in the state.

Zamfara state is home to various ethnic groups, each contributing to its cultural diversity. The major ethnic groups include the Hausa, Fulani, Tukur, Gwari, and Kamuku, among others. These groups have distinct cultural traditions, languages, and artistic expressions that enrich the cultural fabric of the state.

The state capital, Gusau, serves as the administrative and commercial center of Zamfara state. It is a hub for economic activities, hosting markets, government institutions, educational facilities, healthcare centers, and other essential services. The city's development and infrastructure contribute to the overall progress of the state.

Zamfara state faces certain challenges, including inadequate infrastructure, limited access to quality education and healthcare services, and occasional conflicts arising from factors such as farmer-herder clashes and mining activities. The government and stakeholders are working to address these challenges, promote peace, and ensure inclusive development in the state.

8. Adamawa (36,917 km²)

Adamawa state, located in Nigeria, is distinguished by its significant land area, covering approximately 36,917 square kilometers. This expansive expanse of land establishes Adamawa as a prominent region within the country.

Situated in the northeastern part of Nigeria, Adamawa state shares borders with several states, including Borno, Gombe, Taraba, and the Republic of Cameroon. Its strategic geographical location positions it as a gateway between Nigeria and neighboring countries.

Adamawa state is characterized by diverse landscapes, including the rugged Mandara Mountains in the east, the Adamawa Plateau in the central region, and the valleys of the Benue and Gongola rivers. The state's topography supports various economic activities and is home to a rich array of flora and fauna.

Agriculture is a vital sector in the economy of Adamawa state. The fertile soils and favorable climatic conditions make it suitable for the cultivation of crops such as maize, millet, sorghum, rice, yam, cassava, and vegetables. Livestock farming, including cattle, sheep, goats, and poultry, is also a significant economic activity in the state.

Adamawa state is home to diverse ethnic groups, each contributing to its cultural tapestry. The major ethnic groups include the Fulani, Gude, Mumuye, Chamba, Bachama, and Bata, among others. These groups have unique cultural traditions, languages, and artistic expressions that enrich the cultural heritage of the state.

The state capital, Yola, serves as the administrative and commercial center of Adamawa state. It houses government institutions, markets, educational facilities, healthcare centers, and other essential services. Yola's strategic location and infrastructure contribute to the overall development and progress of the state.

9. Kwara (36,825 km²)

Kwara state, located in Nigeria, is known for its notable land area, covering approximately 36,825 square kilometers. This substantial expanse of land establishes Kwara as a significant region within the country.

Situated in the north-central part of Nigeria, Kwara state shares borders with several states, including Niger, Kogi, Osun, Oyo, and Ekiti. Its geographical location places it at the crossroads between the northern and southern regions of Nigeria.

Agriculture plays a vital role in the economy of Kwara state. The fertile lands support the cultivation of various crops, including maize, sorghum, yam, cassava, rice, and vegetables. The state also engages in livestock farming, particularly cattle, sheep, goats, and poultry.

Kwara state is home to a mix of ethnic groups, each contributing to its cultural diversity. The major ethnic groups include the Yoruba, Nupe, Bariba, Fulani, and Hausa, among others. These groups have distinct cultural traditions, languages, music, dance, and festivals that enrich the cultural fabric of the state.

The state capital, Ilorin, serves as the administrative and commercial center of Kwara state. It houses government institutions, markets, educational facilities, healthcare centers, and other essential services. Ilorin's development as an urban center contributes to the overall progress and economic growth of the state.

Kwara state possesses tourism potential, with attractions such as the Esie Museum, known for its collection of stone figures and artifacts, and the Owu Falls, a scenic waterfall located in the hilly regions of the state. These natural and cultural attractions provide opportunities for tourism development and economic growth.

10. Kebbi (36,800 km²)

Kebbi state, located in Nigeria, is renowned for its substantial land area, covering approximately 36,800 square kilometers. This extensive expanse of land establishes Kebbi as a significant region within the country.

Situated in the northwestern part of Nigeria, Kebbi state shares borders with several states, including Sokoto, Niger, Zamfara, and the Republic of Niger. Its geographical location places it within the Sahel region, characterized by a transition zone between the Sahara Desert to the north and the Sudan Savannah to the south.

Kebbi state showcases diverse landscapes, including the Sahel Savannah, river plains, and floodplains along the Sokoto River and its tributaries. The state's topography supports various economic activities and offers a range of natural resources.

Agriculture is the backbone of Kebbi state's economy. The fertile soils and favorable climate make it suitable for the cultivation of crops such as rice, millet, sorghum, maize, cowpeas, groundnuts, and vegetables. The state is often referred to as the "Rice Bowl" of Nigeria due to its significant rice production.

Kebbi state is home to diverse ethnic groups, each with its distinct cultural heritage. The major ethnic groups include the Hausa, Fulani, Dakarkari, Kambari, and Zuru, among others. These groups have unique cultural traditions, languages, music, dance, and craftsmanship, which contribute to the cultural richness of the state.

Biggest Nigerian States 

In summary, the article discusses the top 10 largest states in Nigeria based on their land area in 2023. It provides insights into the unique features, economic activities, cultural heritage, and challenges faced by each state. The largest state is Niger, followed by Borno, Taraba, Kaduna, Bauchi, Yobe, Zamfara, Adamawa, Kwara, and Kebbi.

These states exhibit diverse landscapes, ranging from Sahel Savannah to plateaus, valleys, plains, and mountains. They are rich in natural resources such as fertile farmlands, mineral deposits, and potential reserves of oil and gas. Agriculture and livestock farming are significant economic activities in these states, supported by favorable climate and fertile soils.

Each state is home to various ethnic groups, contributing to the cultural diversity and showcasing unique traditions, languages, music, dance, and festivals.

The strategic geographical locations of these states make them important transportation and trade hubs, connecting different regions of Nigeria. They also face challenges such as inadequate infrastructure, limited access to quality education and healthcare services, and occasional conflicts arising from factors like farmer-herder clashes and mining activities.

Overall, the largest states in Nigeria play a crucial role in the country's geographical diversity, economic potential, cultural heritage, and overall development. Their unique features, natural resources, and strategic locations contribute to Nigeria's progress and make them remarkable pieces of the Nigerian puzzle.



Disclaimer: The above information is for general informational purposes only. All information on the Site is provided in good faith, however we make no representation or warranty of any kind, express or implied, regarding the accuracy, adequacy, validity, reliability, availability or completeness of any information on the Site.

Largest States in Nigeria 2023 - FAQs

1. Which state is the largest in Nigeria in terms of land area in 2023?

The largest state in Nigeria in terms of land area in 2023 is Niger state.

2. What are the top three largest states in Nigeria in 2023?

The top three largest states in Nigeria in 2023, based on land area, are Niger, Borno, and Taraba.

3. What are some of the economic activities in these largest states?

The largest states in Nigeria engage in various economic activities such as agriculture, livestock farming, mining, and trading. They have fertile farmlands, mineral deposits, and serve as transportation and trade hubs.

4. What are the challenges faced by these largest states?

Some common challenges faced by the largest states include inadequate infrastructure, limited access to quality education and healthcare services, occasional conflicts (such as farmer-herder clashes), and issues related to mining activities.

5. How does the cultural diversity of these states contribute to Nigeria?

The cultural diversity in these states, represented by different ethnic groups, contributes to Nigeria's rich cultural heritage. It showcases unique traditions, languages, music, dance, and festivals, adding to the cultural tapestry of the country.

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