Tharaka District is one of the seventy-one districts of Kenya located in that country's Eastern Province. The district has an area of 1570 km² and a population of 365,330 (2009 census) In 1998, it was split from the Tharaka Nithi District, itself formerly part of the larger Meru District.
Tharaka District is the home of the Ameru (Meru) tribe, which is related to other Bantu tribes living around the Mount Kenya region: the Kikuyu and the Embu people. The Ameru are generally called "Bantu" people who have been native to the Mt. Kenya area — well before colonization of Kenya by Britain in the 19th Century. The people of Tharaka District are now predominantly Christian — Methodist, Presbyterian, Roman Catholic, and other denominations, reflecting the work of missionaries — with also minorities of Indian descent, who are mainly Hindus, and African/Arab descent, who are Muslims. Tharaka also has some resident Europeans predominantly British in ancestry. Tharaka itself one of the several sub-tribes of greater Meru tribe. They have some different tribal and clan systems and rituals that are not common in the other sub-tribes. The Tharaka are farmers but also rely a lot on pastoralism; the rearing of cattle, goats, sheep and also poultry. The Tharaka are very proud people and have risen from being sidelined by other Meru sub-tribes and command a number of professional and official government positions.
The Tharaka tribe had been marginalized for years but their hard work enabled them to thrive in excellence. They are believed to have special fighting skills that repel enemies who attack them from their borders and it is believed the Tharaka Tribe and some other Meru sub-tribes are related to the historical Israelite tribe, hence their special war tactics.
The district headquarters is at Tharaka (Marimanti). Tharaka district has only one local authority, the Tharaka County Council, and one constituency: Tharaka. The district is divided into three administrative divisions: