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World's Second Largest Freshwater Lake
Most intrepid travellers who journey to Lake Tanganyika head for Gombe Stream and Mahale Mountains National Parks in search of chimps. The lake’s dark waters form the word’s largest and second-deepest freshwater lake, and the area is a regional centre for building dhow fishing boats that sail through its rugged waters. The first known Westerners to reach the lake were the British explorers Richard Burton and John Speke, in 1858. They came across it while searching for the source of the Nile River. John Speke then continued and found the actual source, Lake Victoria.
At 32,900 square kilometres, the lake naturally has an abundance of wildlife to spot while visiting. There are over 300 colourful species of fish with 98% endemic to the lake and new species are being discovered frequently, most of which are cichlids. However, there are also crabs, mollusks, crustaceans, incredible hippos and crocodiles to be seen. The nearby mountains offer superb views of the lake.
For a real insight into Lake Tanganyika and its varied wildlife try your hand at snorkelling or diving in the lake’s crystal clear waters or just go swimming off the shoreline from one of the lakeside lodges. Trek into heavily forested mountains which afford awe-inspiring views and a different perspective on the lake and venture into the Gombe Stream National Park or Mahale Mountains to spend time with chimpanzees.
Highlights of Lake Tanganyika