Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania all border the lake with only 5% of it being Kenyan territory. Trade is carried out across the water, often in traditional dhows - which don't always look seaworthy! However, these craft have carried people and commodities up and down this lake for hundreds of years.
Visiting one of the offshore islands is a truly wonderful way to relax in between game-watching safaris. A light breeze keeps most biting insects away and blows gently through the simple stone or wooden waterfront cottages.
Rusinga Island and Mfangano Island have enchanting peaceful camps right on the water's edge and both are most often accessed by a half-hour light aircraft flight from the Masai Mara.
Many people come here for some relaxing fishing, but it can become quite a fight when you have a Giant Nile Perch on the end of your rod. Casting from the shore at dusk for much smaller Tilapia is a more composed affair. Both can be cooked for a delicious dinner by your lodge chef. Locals fish at night with lanterns to attract the tiny silver Kapenta sardines, which are brought back early in the morning and laid out in the hot sun to dry.
For the ornithologist or anyone who loves to hear the distinctive cry of Fish Eagles, Lake Victoria's birdlife is staggering. There are huge nesting colonies of egrets, gannets and cormorants, and pairs of vocal Fish Eagle who patrol their territories every 100 metres.
A visit to Lake Victoria is highly recommended towards the end of a Masai Mara safari. It will refresh you and give you the energy you need for more early morning game drives.
Lodges of Lake Victoria
Rusinga Island Lodge
Mfangano Island Lodge