Lac de Gafsa: A Mysterious Lake in Tunisian Desert

We all know Sahara is the largest desert on our planet which is on the continent of Africa. Tunisia is a northern African country that has forty-five percent area of this desert.

The dry climate of the Sahara desert prevails over most of the country. Gafsa is a very famous city in Tunisia. This northern African country has a reputation as a chemical exporter in North Africa.

Lac de Gafsa in Sahara Desert
Photo by Greg Keelen on Unsplash

A mysterious lake appeared alongside Om Laryes Road. This road is 25 kilometers from the town of Gafsa in Tunisia. The name of this mysterious lake is Lac de Gafsa.

The origin or formation of Gafsa lake is still not clear. The most likely explanation is that a big earthquake had ruptured the rock above the water table. It sends millions of cubic meters of water up to the surface.

Mystery of the Lac de Gafsa

An incident happened about 25 km away from the city in the gray wilderness of the desert. Some say it is miraculous, some say it is supernatural, and some say it is a change in geography.

Whatever anyone says, its origin is still unknown. Some isolated villages have developed in the middle of the desert. Areas experience temperatures above 40 degrees Celsius during summer days.

The people here spend their days very hard in the heat and crying for clean water. Even a drop of water brings a lot of peace to the people in the heat.

You can say that there is no farming in the village. In the incident of July 2014, one day at noon, some shepherds came out with some lambs.

Everything was going well. But when one of the party screamed, everyone was shocked. The rest of the people became shocked to see what was going on. What are they looking for in a nervous mood?

They cannot even believe their eyes. At the same time, they had spent much time at this place the day before. They have not seen anything like that! They have been living in this area for many years.

There was never anything like that here. All became surprised and started asking each other. A lake full of water has grown overnight across a wilderness of the gray desert!

The existence of the lake they did not know about until the previous day. Mountains srounded the place where a new lake formed. Seeing such a thing, many people become so astonished.

In a short time, the news reached all around. Hearing the name of the water, everyone rushes to see that lake. Many people came to see this miracle that was happening in the desert.

Anyone cannot believe such a miracle without seeing it with one’s own eyes. All the dignitaries of the village visited the place and were so surprised.

This place is very familiar to everyone. Many people stay away from this lake that grows overnight, thinking it is the activity of any ghost. According to some, this is the blessing of the creator.

Lac de Gafsa has created the thinking about the suffering in such a gray desert. Many people forget the dilemma and jump into the water with joy. They pushed away all the doubts in their minds.

It started to float around with immense pleasure. It was like rain without asking for clouds. Many rocky hills surrounded the lake. Many people start to jump from the mountains to scuba dive by guessing the depth.

The villagers are overwhelmed with the joy of getting the Eid moon in their hands. Thousands of mouths echoed with pleasure. Later it became known as ‘Lac de Gafsa’ or ‘Gafsa Beach’.

News began to spread. People from different media come and interview the locals. Likewise, a working Tunisian journalist told France 24 television that many locals call it a miracle, but some see it as a curse.

Although the water was clear for the first few days, it started to become dirty due to the growth of algae, which is irreversible. It has created some fear among the people.

In the interview with a local named Mehdi Bilal, people found a scary story about Lac de Gafsa. He was returning home after the wedding ceremony.

He felt like he was seeing a mirage when he saw the large lake in the heart of the desert after walking non-stop for a long time. At first, he didn’t want to believe it, because he had passed the same road on the wedding day.

He did not see anything like that then. In his opinion, it is something beyond science. The local authorities came to the spot to investigate after hearing this news.

They can not bring to any conclusion even after examining the surrounding area. But, they suspect that there may be some radioactivity in this water, which may cause cancer. So locals are warned not to bathe in that water.

According to locals, Gafsa lake is about eighteen meters deep and covers an area of ​​one hectare. According to local geologists, earthquakes can cause rocks to move and create this water flows.

According to many, the accumulation of rainwater in deep ditches can form this lake. But there is no strong evidence for either theory. It’s all speculative reasoning.

The Water in Gafsa Lake is Not Safe

Since the discovery of phosphate in southern Tunisia in 1886, Gafsa became the center of the country’s mineral trade. Tunisia is currently one of the world’s leading phosphate exporters.

A local newspaper cited this information as stating that many phosphate mines remain scattered in the local area. Exposure to toxic chemicals can make lake water toxic.

So this water is not safe at all. For the first few days, the water is quite clear. But after algae grow in it, the color of the water becomes gray-green.

So the question arises again about the purity of this water. Two weeks after the discovery of the lake, Gafsa’s ‘Official for Public Safety’ warned people not to bathe in the lake’s water.

Bathing in this lake is quite dangerous, according to them. But very few people heed this warning. Many people still visit and bathe in this lake.

Thousands of people from the country and abroad flock to see this immense wonder of nature, the source of which is still unknown to all. So far, no one has complained about the water of this lake.


Many people know Tunisia for its natural beauty and cultural richness. The country is home to ancient architecture and a contemporary society that respects tradition.

We all know Tunisia is a beautiful country. Lac de Gafsa has given a unique position to the nature of Tunisia. The mysterious lake has become a point of attraction for many people from all over the world.