Uganda, which covers an area of 240,000 km2, is a land-locked country in the central part of Africa, lying between Tanzania and Kenya to the east, Zaire to the west and the Sudan to the north. Much of the country lies at an altitude of about 1,100 m, declining northward. Lake Victoria, the largest in Africa, straddles its southeastern border, and drains northwestwards into Lake Albert and the headwaters of the Nile. There are extensive marshlands around some of the lakes. The altitude moderates the equatorial climate. The main rainfall is in the south, leaving barren near-desert conditions in the north.