What is Tankwa? Tankwa is the name of the most attractive, traditional and impressive vessel boat that made from syprus papyrus plant that serves water transportation only on Lake Tana. It was believed to be first used Tankwa by Egyptian people about 4000 BC and became Egypt’s major export transport. Egyptians pioneered the development of river craft and there were many different types built and used for Agricultural produce, troops, cattle, stone and funeral processions were all carried on the Nile River.
According to some legends and literature this civilization has been transferred from Egypt through Ethiopia and shared their excellent experience to Ethiopian monks and priests who are living around the Lake, but it is more practiced by the Negede Waytoh community.
Tankwa boats even today provide traditional water transportation for monks and fishermen over Lake Tana and it serves an adventure activity like a modern kayak. Travelers love to see the Tankwa boats while they visit Lake Tana as they witness this small traditional boat being used to catch fish and transporting goods. It’s an essential need for the local fisherman’s day to day life. You can fish on Lake Tana with local fishermans.