Kigoma is one of the busiest ports on north eastern Lake Tanganyika, since historically it was the only one that had a functioning railway connection (the one at Kalemie in The Democratic Republic of the Congo is not operational at the moment), a direct link to the ocean port at Dar es Salaam. Kigoma Port in the Kigoma Bay has a wharf of two hundred metres and several cranes and is equipped to handle shipping containers. However, the bay is suffering from silting up as a result of soil erosion from surrounding hills, and the water depths at wharfside has diminished from 6 m to 1.8 m. This may threaten the economic growth of the port. In May 2007 the Tanzanian Government announced a plan to create an economic zone at the port to stimulate trade and to ensure stable economic growth of the Port for the government in Power in 2015 and 2020.
The MV Liemba sails every week from Kigoma to Mpulungu in Zambia at the southern tip of Lake Tanganyika, stopping at a number of other lakeside towns in Tanzania on the way. The MV Mwongozo sails from Kigoma to Baraka, Uvira and Bujumbura at the northern tip of the lake.
Kigoma town is situated on the shores of the world’s longest and second deepest lake, Lake Tanganyika. Only 10 km from Ujiji where journalist Henry Morton Stanley found the ailing Dr. David Livingstone and greeted him with the immortal words “ Dr. Livingstone, I Presume “, Kigoma town is the main gateway to the remote Gombe Stream and the Mahale Mountains National Parks in western Tanzania.