The Secret Life of Lakes 10x52' by Alexis de Favitski, Stéphane Bégoin, Pascal Cuissot, Christophe Cousin & Yanick Rose


Our planet’s lakes make up a huge and precious freshwater reserve from which mankind has drawn for tens of thousands of years. Created by a wide range of climatic and geological conditions, these lakes are maintained through the delicate balance between the water that feeds them and the rivers into which they drain.

Although all lakes may seem alike, they are, however, extremely diverse. Some are as deep as oceans. Others can be crossed almost without getting one’s feet wet. Certain lakes seem like they will be here for an eternity while others come and go with the seasons. But they all have one thing in common: they are all home to rich and varied life forms in their depths and on their banks.

Unlike the tumultuous waters of the oceans and mighty rivers, lake water seems immutable and at peace. But beneath this tranquility hides a aquatic heart that beats at a gentle natural pace. It is this secret life of lakes that we will attempt to capture during the five episodes in this series. We will follow the life cycles of those remarkable lakes we have chosen to present.

We will discover how people and nature have existed together for so long, in harmony with this natural rhythm. We will observe these lakes and try to understand them. But more than that, we will admire them because the changing face they present is one of striking beauty.


Production: ZED (Valérie Abita), Nova Média, ARTE France and TV5 Canada

Directed by: Alexis de Favitski, Stéphane Bégoin, Pascal Cuissot, Christophe Cousin & Yanick Rose

Genre: Nature

Available versions: French, English


Season 1:

  • Lake Baïkal, ice and water (Siberia)
  • Lençois Maranhenses, the lakes of sand (Brazil)
  • Lake Nasser, water at the heart of the desert (Egypt)
  • The Great Salt Lake, the dead sea of North America (USA)
  • Tonlé Sap, beating heart of Cambodia (Cambodia)

Season 2:

  • Chilika Lake (India)
  • Skadar Lake (Albania-Montenegro)
  • Rift Valley Lakes (Tanzania)
  • Saimaa Lake (Finland)
  • General Carrera Lake (Argentina-Chile)