Have you ever thought, if travellers never travelled, explorer never explored, adventurers never ventured, nomads never existed and free-spirited never roamed then the world  never existed for us because we all would have been “frogs in the well”  only observed and experienced the life from the perspective of a humble abode we lived our whole life.

Hats off to all those brave hearts, who stepped out of their comfort zone and ventured out to explore the unbeaten paths, those thrill seeking hedonists who traveled to satisfy their insatiable need for the exciting and the exotic.

Yes, God forbid, if these people ceased to exist than I wouldn’t be here alluring you to pack your bags to explore one more fascinating destination in Zambia and you wouldn’t be here once again ready to immerse in one of my many travel experiences. You know this constant urge to explore, curiosity to appreciate and experience to the understated beauty of natural and cultural environment makes this life worth living.

Remember my lovelies…if you have time to talk about others, to worry, to drown in sad and dark pits.. this means you are not travelling enough and if you have means and will power,  there is a world awaits to be travelled over and admired.

So, my fellow travellers , have you packed your travel bags once again? As I am gonna take you on a whirlwind ride to the fascinating Lake Tanganyika. Tighten your life jackets because this is worlds’ longest, second deepest and largest freshwater lake and can give you jitters like sea, and those ferocious surface storms, driving waves  rise six meters high (20foot), not only amaze but could knock you off balance…consider yourself warned.

REACHING LAKE TANGANYIKA 

Mpulungu is the harbor town on Tanganyika in Zambia. This sleepy town will remind you a typical small old school town dependent on fishing, from where your bumpy ride on the beast will start. There are no beaches in the Town, so to get the real feel of this mini sea you will have to book yourself in any of the beach lodges and your voyage will be arranged by your lodge. The nearest airport is Kasama and is 200 Km from Mpulungu having direct flight of 2 hours 40 minutes from Lusaka. Ask your lodge for a pick up from the Kasama airport for the onward journey.

If you are a driving freak, it is an 1100 Kms journey from Lusaka to Mpulungu. There is plenty to explore on the way and some beautiful place for night halts.

TO DO LIST ON LAKE TANGANYIKA 

Lake Tanganyika is a hub of activities but these are localized and always conducted under professional supervision. Please keep in mind it’s not advisable to explore the Lake on your own without a proper guidance because of its precarious nature and its infested with crocodiles and hippos in some areas. The lodge or hotel that you would choose to stay would provide you with all needed information and even conduct the activities you would be willing to do. So here are some of the activities…

REJUVENATE 

Being a bit of escapist, I search for worry-free and secure travel where I can totally disconnect and just “get away from it all”. All I want to do is relax, recharge and renew but kids always have other things on their mind.. they want to spend their energies exploring and something exciting to do, fortunately Lake Tanganyika has something to offer to everyone…the silky stillness of warm, clear, salt free water gives you a sense of serenity and then it changes to high waves for a great body surf, imparting an aura of adventure .

SWIMMING AND KAYAKING

The warm water of the lake is so soothing that you cannot resist swimming but not all areas are safe for swimming since we booked the lodge on one of the beaches, we spent most of the day swimming and kayaking near the shores.

SPORT FISHING

With more than 350 different species of fish in lake, it’s a popular site among angling enthusiasts where they can enjoy the thrill of catching Goliath, Tiger Fish to Nile Perch. The Tanganyika Angling challenge is held every year in March in Nsumbu National Park. You can enjoy fishing but advised to “catch and release” or take in small number as there are conservation law in place.

SCUBA DIVING AND SNORKELING

The ideal water temperature  (24-25 deg c) and the clear water (visibility is around 49 ft)and species of fish make the lake ideal for these activities but these activities are lodge specific so check before you book.

TREKKING

Trekking is dependent on the location of your lodge and ranges from trekking to some of the unexplored waterfalls and mountains.

LAKE GAME VIEWING

Game viewing boats are available for game viewing since most of the Nsumbu National Park is not accessible by land. Hippos, types of antelope like puke, Bush back, blue duiker and sometimes elephants can be spotted.

BEST TIME TO VISIT LAKE TANGANYIKA 

June to September is the best time to set out on a trip to lake, being the dry season makes it easy to explore the lake which is calmer and less windy, maximizing your time on the beach and lake and if your into trekking this is most suitable time.

FUN FACTS ABOUT LAKE TANGANYIKA ..”plain like lake”

  • Lake Tanganyika..the world’s longest freshwater lake (673 km)

It’s the second oldest freshwater lake in the world, the second largest by volume, and the second deepest (max depth 1,470m), in all cases after Lake Baikal in Siberia.

  • An Inland Sea…divided among four countries 

Trust my words once you are in the lake firmly secured in your boat of course, this gigantic god created lake won’t fail you to give those sea feels hence can aptly called the African inland sea, divided among four countries Tanzania, DR Congo, Burundi and Zambia.. beautiful islands, amazing flora and fauna, high and low tides, swaying with the winds, crystal clear water would give the authentic experience of a sea.

  • An AncIent lake holding 16 percent of all fresh water on earth

It’s one of the 20 ancient lakes on earth, and its age is estimated between 9 to 12 million years.

  • An evolution showcase

The combination of its extremely old age and ecological isolation, its home to an exceptional number of endemic (only found here not elsewhere) fish. The lake boasts over 350 species of fish 95 percent of them are endemic.

  • Home to several forest reserves and national parksRusizi Nature Reserve and Kigwena Forest Reserve in Burundi
    • Gombe Stream, Katavi and Mahale Mountains National Park in Tanzania
      • Nsumbu National Park in Zambia
      • Accommodates a million people on its shore and a busy port
    • Lake Tanganyika is major source of fish consumption and trade, and serves as vital transport and communication link between the countries bordering it.
    • This enormous lake has so many discovered and undiscovered gems that each time you visit this place, you would feel that you have seen and done something different from last time. I bet the scenic beauty of Lake Tanganyika, those mountains crowned with clouds of white and grey colors, its translucent water which gets illuminated with the Sun rays and sparkles with moon light and its sometimes placid, sometimes agitated nature fueling a fire of curiosity, would take your breath away. Africa is the hub of many undiscovered enchanting natural wonders, those can render you speechless.
    • Ciao, my lovelies until next time, we travel and explore another exotic and enthralling destination in beautiful Zambia.

passionate for travelling, absolute foodie, mother of two beautiful angels and living the best life in AFRICA.

Written by

Jyoti Rathore

passionate for travelling, absolute foodie, mother of two beautiful angels and living the best life in AFRICA.