Lake Baringo

Lake Baringo

Location: Map

Area: 50 mi² (130 km²)


Lake Baringo is a freshwater lake situated in a Rift Valley in Kenya. Lake Baringo covers an area of 50 mi² (130 km²).


The lake is located entirely in Baringo County in the former province of the Rift Valley, about 285 km north-northwest of the national capital Nairobi. The lake is part of the East African Rift system. The Tugen Heights, a high fault block of volcanic and metamorphic rocks, is located west of the lake and the Laikipia escarpment is east. Water flows to the lake from the Mau hills and the Tugen hills.

The lake has several small islands, the largest being the island Kokwe Ol. Kokwe Ol, an extinct volcanic center related to the Korosi volcano, located north of the lake, has several hot springs and fumaroles, some with precipitated sulfur deposits. There is a group of hot springs along the coast in Soro, near the northeast corner of the island.

The main city near the lake is Marigat, in addition to some smaller settlements such as Kampi and Samaki and Loruk. The area is increasingly visited by tourists and is located at the southern end of a Kenyan region inhabited mainly by shepherds of ethnic groups such as il chamus, rendille, turkana and kalenjin. Accommodation (hotels, cottages with kitchen and camping), as well as boating services are available in, and near, Kampi-Ya-Samaki, on the western shore, as well as on several of the islands on the lake.

The evaporation rates of the lake are 1,650 to 2,300 mm / year and the precipitation rates are 450 to 900 mm / year, so, like all lakes in the East African Rift, the hydrological balance is extremely negative. The precipitation deficit, however, is similar to that of the Naivasha basin, and is offset by the influx of water from the precipitation of a large area of ​​influence (6820 km²), with areas of rainfall ranging from 1,100 to 2,700 mm / year. Thus, Lake Baringo, like Lake Naivasha, is a freshwater lake where many fish are produced that serve as food for many birds.