Lake Malawi.

Lake Malawi, also known as Lake Nyasa in Tanzania and Lago Niassa in Mozambique, is an African Great Lake and the southernmost lake in the East African Rift system, located between Malawi, Mozambique and Tanzania

Lake Malawi view from space

Lake Malawi is nicknamed the calendar lake when measured in miles. Its total length is 365miles and its with is 52miles. Some of the major lakeshore towns in Malawi are Karonga, Mangochi, Salima, Nkhata bay, Monkey bay, just to mention a few. The lake is a major source of income for fishermen’s and tourism players.Lake Malawi has the world’s highest number of fish species, and fishing is a major economic activity around the lake. However, the fish population is threatened by pollution and overfishing. Popular fish species include the chambos, Lake Malawi sardine, and kampango catfish. The majority of the fish in the lake are cichlids, numbering 700-1,000 species, all of which are endemic except four species; eastern river bream, redbreast tilapia, largemouth, and Oreochromis shiranus. The cichlids are divided into haplochromines and tilapia. The non-cichlids include airbreathing catfish, cyprinids, mochokid catfish, and the spotted killifish. Invertebrates in the lake include 28 freshwater snail species, 9 bivalves, blue crabs, glassworms, and atyid shrimp, among other species.

Cichlids in Lake Malawi

Likoma Island. Not only does it have some beautiful beaches, and accommodation, but also a missionary-built cathedral the size of Winchester’s. A nearby stretch of the Mozambique shoreline, Manda Wilderness, is a 120,000 hectare community reserve of unspoilt wilderness and white sand beaches

Lake Malawi National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a veritable aquarium of tropical fish. In recent years, a number of high quality lodges have been built in this area. Located at the southern end of the great expanse of Lake Malawi, with its deep, clear waters and mountain backdrop, the national park is home to many hundreds of fish species, nearly all endemic. Its is the world’s first fresh water national park.

The Marelli Islands group consists of three islands: Maleri, the largest, is 168 ha, Nankoma, 65 ha and Nakantenga, 18 ha. They are located opposite Senga Bay, 3 km from the shore in the remarkably clear waters of Lake Malawi

Built in 1949, the mv Ilala is a 400 tonne passenger vessel which has traditionally sailed the full length of the lake. It has a total capacity of 450 passenger and offers cabin class, first class, second class and economy class facilities as well as bars and restaurants. The Ilala’s weekly travels along Lake Malawi, have, for years, provided passengers with spectacular views of constantly changing scenery

Ilala ship

Accommodation in Lake Malawi ranges from beachside resorts to private island getaways – enough to suit all tastes, budgets and trip types. Whether you’re looking for a luxury honeymoon on your own island or an activity-based holiday on the lake shores, Lake Malawi accommodation is sure to inspire you and will make planning your holiday so much simpler.

one can snorkel, dive, sail, and do pretty much any sort of fun recreational activity that can be done on any major beach.

Parts of the Tanzania-Malawi and Malawi-Mozambique border and the tripoint is located in the lake. While Tanzania claims its boundary with Malawi lies in the middle of the lake, Malawi insists the whole of the lake’s portion not in Mozambique is part of its territory. The conflict resulted from the 1890 Heligoland Treaty between the British and Germans, with the British placing the waters of the entire lake in Nyasaland. The Malawi-Mozambique border, defined in 1954 by the Portuguese and British, is a line passing through the middle of the lake. This boundary is undisputed.

The disputed border claims by Tanzania and Malawi.

In conclusion Lake Malawi has experienced a ton of historical legacies, ranging from being the host of a naval battle between the British and the Germans, to being the evolutionary site of an eclectic range of over 450 species of freshwater tropic fish. Its sheer size alone is enough to suggest that it still holds its fair share of untold mysteries that have yet to be discovered.

Lake Malawi fast facts

  • Lake Malawi National Park has been designated as a UNESCO world Heritage site in 1984.
  • The total volume of this lake is 8,400 cubic kilometers which makes it the world’s fifth largest lake.
  • David Livingstone visited the lake in 1859 and he gave another name to it, Lake Nyasa.
  • On August 16, 1914, it was the scene of a naval battle of World War I.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s