Lake Jipe straddling Tanzania and Kenya
So unknown is this treasure of Lake Jipe not many Tanzanians know of its existence or location. Sandwiched between the Pare mountains and Kilimanjaro this small lake [30 km sq] straddles the border between Kenya and Tanzania. This lake has a many water birds and is one of the few places in East Africa that the Lesser Jacana and Purple Gallinule are common. Also Madagascar Squacco Herron, Black Herron, African Darter and African Skimmer are often seen here.
Other wildlife seen here are Hippopotamus, Otters, crocodiles, waterbucks and elephants. The northern half of the lake is in Kenya in the Tsavo West National Park. Tsavo West is famed for its huge elephant population - you stand a good chance of spotting an elephant in this unusual and very off the beaten track excursion.
The best way to experience the lake and the wildlife is to take a local canoe. These wooden canoes sit three people and a young Chaga man will sit at the rear and paddle you around the lake. A good portion of the lake has become chocked with papyrus which looks nice and is also used by the local people use for thatching their houses - but has reduced the fishing on the lake to negligible levels.
This district is famous for its dam which is named "Nyumba ya Mungu" House of God
If you are climbing Kilmanjaro and have a day to spare this lake is worth a trip to interact with the local community and see something not many tourists get to see. You also get a small excision into Kenya.
Bethel adventures - http://www.betheladventure.co.uk is a nonprofit organization. We are using tourism to improve lives. We are at present focusing all our initiatives in northern Tanzania
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