African Great Lakes
The African Great Lakes are a series of lakes and the Rift Valley lakes in and around the geographic Great Rift Valley formed by the action of the tectonic East African Rift on the continent of Africa...
. The lake was named for Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom, by John Hanning Speke
John Hanning Speke
John Hanning Speke was an officer in the British Indian Army who made three exploratory expeditions to Africa and who is most associated with the search for the source of the Nile.-Life:...
, the first European to discover this lake.
With a surface area of 68800 square kilometres (26,563.8 sq mi), Lake Victoria is Africa’s largest lake by area, and it is the largest tropical
The tropics is a region of the Earth surrounding the Equator. It is limited in latitude by the Tropic of Cancer in the northern hemisphere at approximately N and the Tropic of Capricorn in the southern hemisphere at S; these latitudes correspond to the axial tilt of the Earth...
lake in the world. Lake Victoria is the world's second largest freshwater
Fresh water is naturally occurring water on the Earth's surface in ice sheets, ice caps, glaciers, bogs, ponds, lakes, rivers and streams, and underground as groundwater in aquifers and underground streams. Fresh water is generally characterized by having low concentrations of dissolved salts and...
lake by surface area (only Lake Superior
Lake Superior is the largest of the five traditionally-demarcated Great Lakes of North America. It is bounded to the north by the Canadian province of Ontario and the U.S. state of Minnesota, and to the south by the U.S. states of Wisconsin and Michigan. It is the largest freshwater lake in the...
in North America is larger).