Lake Malawi

Although officially Lake Malawi is said to be a part of Mozambique and the Republic of Malawi, formerly known as Nyasaland, there is currently a dispute among several African countries on ownership. These countries are Tanzania, South Africa, Malawi, and Mozambique. Why? Aside from being one of the most beautiful lakes in the world, Lake Malawi was found to have oil reserves.

Fortunately, all concerned are willing to discuss the situation amicably so while the discussion are ongoing tourists continue to enjoy the lake without fear of being caught in the middle.

Lake Malawi is a fantastic tourist destination because it is the 2nd deepest freshwater lake in the African region and the 9th largest in the world. There are more fish species here than in any other freshwater lake. It is protected by a 2011 mandate from the Mozambique government declaring it a safe zone for marine life.

The first European to see the lake was a Portuguese trader in 1846. He was followed by the same man who first saw Victoria Falls from an island nearby, David Livingstone, in 1859. It was Livingstone though who have it its name of Lake Nyasa. The lake was also the scene of a naval battle between the Germans and the British and considered as the first victory of England in WWI.

The lake is still known by 2 names: Lake Nyasa and Lake Malawi. Tanzania uses the Lake Nyasa while Malawi has adopted Lake Malawi. Between the 2 countries there is an ongoing conflict not just from the name of this lake but also because Malawi recognized South Africa during the Apartheid period while Tanzania, along with other African countries, didn’t. Thus in some maps, it is called Lake Nyasa.

Things To Do In Lake Malawi

From the names it has been given like Lake of Stars and Lake of Storms, you can tell that the lake goes through period of extreme weather. Nonetheless, this fact does not stop tourists from visiting the lake.

There is a national park with accommodations and beaches that are idyllic as a few days getaway trip. The time spent in Lake Malawi is simple with a few fishing villages and nothing fancy for miles.

It’s a favorite spot for hikers and backpackers because it isn’t a commercial and expensive spot. Some of the activities that are available are swimming, snorkeling, sunbathing, hiking, and diving. There are also boating trips that will take you to the other side of the lake or through the smaller islets.

Of course, one can also go fishing and discover the richness of the lake where there are more than 4 species of the cichlid, catfish, and chambo. Not too long ago, the painted hunting dog was discovered near the lake, a species that was once declared to be extinct. Also recently, new sports have been introduced like water skiing, football, sailing, and camping.