Very few places on earth hold a variety of lifelike Lake Tanganyika which harbors different species of flora and fauna in and along its basins, of which more than half are found nowhere else. The biological diversity is remarkable. More than 1,300 animal or plant species, from microalgae to more than 300 fish species, and also crocodiles live together. Some of the fish species are endemic species. Due to the age of the lake, possibly over 20 million years old, and the ecological isolation, Lake Tanganyika boasts over 350 species of fish and scientists are continually discovering new species.
The benefits are nonetheless enormous, providing direct employment to a high number of people and a livelihood to many who live cross to the lake and even beyond. The lake furthermore provides direct access to clean drinking water and is an important route for trade between and beyond the countries that lie along its shores. The surrounding forests are used for firewood, charcoal and many non-timber products. The lake is vital to the estimated 10 million people living in the basin. Fishing is a major occupation for most villagers as well as a tropical fish industry that exports endemic fishes all over the world.
There are some protected areas bordering Lake Tanganyika that boast of the white sandy shores of the huge lake. Some waters in this lake are known to harbor crocodiles and swimming in these waters can be risky hence it is not advisable to swim or hold beach activities in such locations of the lake. However, the beautiful beaches here are a great point to watch wild inhabitants of the protected parks along the shores; bird watching is also thrilling as the area is home to a wide range of exotic birds. Most commonly spotted are the hippos that are always lazing in the waters.
Secluded hotels, bays, and resorts along the shores of Lake Tanganyika offer various accommodation rentals ranging from exclusive private lodges to uniquely designed hotels that cater for travelers who travel as individuals, couples, families or even groups. It is here that you may choose to enjoy fishing, boating, canoeing, hiking, photography safaris, and many more water excursions or simply enjoy the peacefulness that comes with relaxing in some of the most breathtaking inland beaches of this amazing lake.
The question that mostly arises in the mind of eco-travelers is how long the lake will remain the source of life for its species and people if good maintenance is not put into place. Though all travelers seek relaxation or adventure in every destination they choose, they also have a role to play in ensuring that the ecosystem of any destination is not tampered with. For the sake of the habitats; both people and animals who depend on Lake Tanganyika and its basins for their everyday survival and for the sake of future travelers, it is the duty of every visitor who comes into contact with Lake Tanganyika to conserve, preserve and if possible improve what the lake has to offer.
Although the area along Lake Tanganyika is noted for its numerous continuous scientific research, it is also world-renowned for its beauty, natural habitats, and untouched wilderness. For those who have been searching for an extraordinary destination, choose Lake Tanganyika, it will be a beautiful and memorable adventure.