Lake Chala - Features, Wildlife, History and More

Lake Chala – Features, Wildlife, History and More

Overview of The Enchanting Lake Chala in the East African Coastal Region

Located on Kenya’s border with Tanzania, Lake Chala is one of the country’s least-visited bodies of water.

You can find this intriguing crater lake on Kilimanjaro’s eastern slopes.

Lake Chala is located in Kenya, five miles north of Taveta and 34 miles east of Moshi, Tanzania.

Mount Kilimanjaro is 30 kilometers southeast of this superb spot.

The Unique Features of the Crater Lake Chala

A volcanic eruption on Mount Kilimanjaro 250,000 years ago created Lake Chala, one of Tanzania’s most geriatric volcanic lakes.

The rims of the craters are 560 feet tall. Groundwater from the mountain‘s montane forest is the primary source of the lake’s water.

Four square kilometers in area and 98 meters deep,  Lake Chala is larger than Lake Victoria.

As a result of the existence of freshwater springs, Lake Chala’s color ranges from turquoise; green to deep blue.

Water from Lake Jipe, 30 kilometers away, is pumped through underground aqueducts.

Lake Jipe
Lake Jipe

The lake’s capacity is increased by about 20% because of rainwater gathered in the crater.

Due to climate change, the lake’s evaporation rates are growing, putting the lake’s volume and biodiversity at risk. This is a concern.

The Fauna of Lake Chala

Over 200 different species of birds and other critters can be found in and around Lake Chala, including the following:

  • There are baboons and peregrine falcons, and Dik-dik in the area.
  • There are three kinds of monkeys: blue, vervet, and the Colobus Monkeys.
  • Kudus, Monitor Lizards, and Bush-Bucks are among the many species found.

The Amboseli and Tsavo national parks are frequented by elephants.

Additionally, Oreochromis hunteri, a critically recherche tilapia species, can be found in Lake Chala.

Aloe Penduliflora Baker and thorny bushes predominate in the lake area.

Lake Chala History

An American adventurer named May French Sheldon investigated Lake Chala and wrote a report on her findings, and British soldiers helped build a trail leading to the lake in 1964.

In addition, the lake’s surroundings were the focus of attention in 2002.

When Amy Nicholls, a British college student, was mauled and slain while swimming, her death attracted worldwide media attention.

As a result of the media attention, locals and visitors alike became frightened of the waters.

A common superstition held by the residents was that the souls of the Maasai people who had lived there in the past were still trapped in the area’s rivers and neighboring wildlife.

The death of the Briton heightened their fears, and the hamlet held prayers and sacrifices at  Lake Chala as a result of this.

Under the guidance of the Njama, a council of elders, the community established the Chala lake as a sacred site.

The Area Around Chala Lake

A route called the Chala-Rombo goes around the lake named Taveta.

Crater lake trails are lined with sharp wild plants, and they’re a long way from enlightenment.

Even though the Chala region may appear rough at first glance, the lake transforms it into a tranquil setting.

The lake is surrounded by a seasonal river. The beautiful vista along the river’s banks is made possible by the natural erosion of the earth.

It’s very reminiscent of the one in Hells Gate Park.

Lake Chala Available Activities

Canoeing, swimming, and fishing are all popular sports in the region.

Lake Chala’s beautiful blue waters are captivating.

Additionally, there are selected swimming beaches to guarantee visitors have a safe and enjoyable time there.

Mount Kilimanjaro’s view is particularly stunning when the sun is shining.

Community Surrounding Lake Chala

The Mnene, Zirai, Suya, Ruttu, and Ndingiri clans live in the Chala region.

According to an old folk tale, the lake has claimed the lives of an entire Maasai hamlet.

The Taveta avoid the “haunted lake” as a result.

The people have avoided murdering the region’s animals because of the natural fear of spirits hanging over Lake Chala.

Maasai warriors
Maasai warriors

Lake Chala Tourism

Tourists visiting southern Kenya will find a pleasant diversion in the lake’s increasing popularity.

Lake Chala has risen to the top of many travelers’ must-see places in Kenya lists as they strive to uncover the country’s best-kept secrets.

The resources of Kenya are yet to be fully explored.

However, if you go with the right tour company, you may see one of East Africa’s most stunning crater lakes.

Take a trip to Lake Chala with Zunguka Africa Safaris and see it in all its glory.

For more articles related to Lakes in Tanzania, click here!