Birdsnests on a tree alongside the Guinas lake

Lake Guinas Namibia

Lake Guinas is a permanent natural lake which is located on the D3031 gravel road between Otavi and Tsumeb. The lake was formed many years ago after a Karst cave collapsed and filled up with water.

Guinas offers wonderful scenery with Aloe Vera plants growing around it on cliffs that stretch down vertically to form the round shape of the lake.

It is believed, but not proven, that the lake is connected to Lake Otjikoto via an underground cave system.

Disclaimer: This is not an official website for Lake Guinas. This website is only for educational purposes and is not in any way affilliated with the owners of Lake Guinas. See our imprint for more information

What makes Lake Guinas special?

Lake Guinas has a width of 59m, and a length of 120m which makes it the largest permanent lake in Namibia. The center of the lake has a depth of more than 130m depending on the water level.

It’s a lovely spot for swimming or to relax for a couple of hours and enjoy the beautiful view of the clear water. The lake also offers a great scenery for photos.

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Tilapia guinasana

Tilapia guinasana (also referred to as “Otjikoto Tilapia” is a critically endangered species of cichlid fish that is naturally only found in Lake Guinas.

The fish can reach a length of 14cm and mainly feed on algae as well as Aloe Vera plants which occasionally fall into the water.

To conserve the species, it has since been introduced in the Otjikoto Lake as well as some fish reservoirs in various regions of Namibia.

Fish swimming in between legs of a man at Guinas
Wide angle view of Lake Guinas from the deck
Tilapia fish swimming near the surface of Lake Guinas
Entrance fees & Parking

There is no entrance fee to enter the lake. Cars can be parked at the top of the lake.

Swimming with the fish

There’s a big amount of fish (mainly Tilapia species) found in the lake. When resting still in the water, the fish may occasionally come closer to nibble on your feet to feed on dead skin. In other words: a free foot massage!

Water level

The water level of Lake Guinas depends on a variety of factors including rainfall and the amount of water extracted from the lake for agricultural purposes.


Frequently asked questions

Lake Guinas is located on the D3031 gravel road between Tsumeb and Otavi in the northern part of Namibia.

Lake Guinas is situated on private farmland. The lake is frequently visited by locals from the surroundings. There is no office or reception to check in, though, permission may be required from the owner.

Lake Guinas is home to a species of cichlid fish – the ‘Tilapia guinasana’, which are critically endangered since they are only naturally found in this lake.

The lake has very steep cliffs around it which are almost vertical. This makes it very dangerous for young kids as well as pets which should be supervised at all times at the lake.

Swimming is a popular activity at Lake Guinas. It’s not recommended to enter the lake if you are not comfortable swimming since it is more than 130 meters deep in the center. Be aware that swimming in freshwater in Namibia poses a risk for Billharzia.

No, fishing is strictly prohibited at Lake Guinas. Furthermore, lake visitors should refrain from catching the fish as one species is critically endangered.

No, public toilets are not available at Lake Guinas.

No, there are no barbecue facilities available.

Yes, it is a very secluded area and generally safe to visit during the day. Avoid going to the lake after sunset as it is not considered safe.

Directions to Lake Guinas

Directions to Lake Guinas from Otavi

Drive through the town of Otavi, over the railway, and past Namib Mills before turning right onto the C39. After 800m turn left onto the D3031 and continue to drive for approximately 40km. Lake Guinas will be on the right side of the road where you will see a roadsign.

Directions to Lake Guinas from Tsumeb

Drive on the B1 towards Etosha/Oshakati for 28km before turning left onto the D3043 road. Now continue straight for 21 kilometers before turning right onto the D3031 road. Guinas Lake will be on the left side of the road after driving 4km on the D3031.

Accommodation near Lake Guinas

Explore accommodation options at the Gabus Safari Lodge near Otavi, approximately 44km from Lake Guinas:

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