Lake Challa is a crater lake that lies east of Mount Kilimanjaro straddling the border between Kenya and Tanzania. The lake formed approximately 250,000 years ago. The lake is, 8 kilometers (5.0 mi) north of Taveta, Kenya, and 55 kilometers (34 mi) east of Moshi, Tanzania. The lake is surrounded by a steep crater rim with a maximum height of 170 meters (560 ft.).
Approximately 80 percent of the lake's inflow comes from groundwater, which is derived mostly from rainfall in the montane forest zone of Mount Kilimanjaro. The Lake Chala tilapia (Oreochromis hunteri) is endemic to Lake Chala and listed by the International Union for Conservation of Nature as a threatened species.
The lake is fed by groundwater flows, which come from Mount Kilimanjaro, fed and drained underground. The lake’s colour changes between deep blue to turquoise and green in different seasons.
Chala has a huge variety of amazing trees, grasses and plants; some are unique to the area. According to the time of year there are hundreds of species of butterflies and birds, including spectacular birds of prey. The African Fish Eagle, with its haunting techniques, Verreaux’s Eagle, Augur Buzzards and many other species of birds can be seen around the crater walls. Wild mammals do vary including Blue Monkeys, Colobus Monkeys, baboons, dik-dik, kudu and elephant. Chala is an untouched part of a truly ancient land and a must visit place.
While visiting the lake visitors can engage in various activities include walking safaris, canoeing, swimming and fishing.