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Malawi Travel Services
Information on Malawi Travel
Capital : Lilongwe
Largest city: Blantyre
History: Malawi is a landlocked country about the size of Pennsylvania. Located in southeast Africa, it is surrounded by Mozambique, Zambia, and Tanzania. Lake Malawi, formerly Lake Nyasa, occupies most of the country's eastern border. The north-south Rift Valley is flanked by mountain ranges and high plateau areas. Malawi is a landlocked country about the size of Pennsylvania. Located in southeast Africa, it is surrounded by Mozambique, Zambia, and Tanzania. Lake Malawi, formerly Lake Nyasa, occupies most of the country's eastern border. The north-south Rift Valley is flanked by mountain ranges and high plateau areas.
PLACES OF INTEREST
Lake Malawi (South): Lake Malawi is a beautiful freshwater lake that takes up a good chunk of landlocked Malawi. It is blessed with golden beaches and an incredible colorful variety of fish, that makes snorkeling and diving here extremely rewarding. The southern end of the lakeshore is very popular due to its proximity to the commercial capital, Blantyre.
Mulanje Mountain : is a huge granite massif in southern Malawi. Its highest peak Sapitwa reaches just over 3000m. There are plenty of hiking routes to choose from to enjoy this mountain, with simple huts at the end of each one. This is a wonderful hike for families, (I spent my youth hiking here) with lots of streams and peaks to explore.
Likoma Island: It's home to a huge cathedral built in the early 1900's. Likoma Island has several lovely beaches with two excellent eco-friendly resorts including Kaya Mawa, and some budget accommodation (check out Mango Drift) as well. Likoma is a very peaceful spot and there are just a few cars on the island
Liwonde National Park: is Malawi's premier wildlife park. It's setting is lovely along the banks of the Shire river, where you can view pods of hippo in the water and large herds of elephant on the side enjoying a drink and a splash. The bird life is fantastic and you're very likely to see African fish eagles displaying their skills as well as the rare Pel's fishing owl. Most people who visit will stay at the luxurious Mvuu Lodge. The best time to visit is during the cooler dry season from June - August as Liwonde can get very hot and humid during the rains
Cruising on the MV Ilala: The Ilala is a large ferry that crosses the lake every week (about a 300 mile trip). There are 5 double cabins in first class with exclusive use of the top deck, and the captain' cabin (with AC -- if you're lucky you can book it). The Ilala makes regular stops for passengers and freight along the way, including the lovely Likoma island (see below). You can get off at any point, or sail the whole route back to the starting point of Monkey Bay (southern lakeshore). This is not a luxury cruise and you'll be sharing the boat with hundreds of passengers and freight, but it's a classic African adventure.
Zomba Plateau: Zomba plateau offers incredible views, waterfalls, dams filled with trout and a lovely respite from the heat. The 900m plateau is located in the lively old capital of Malawi, Zomba. Most visitors to Zomba plateau will spend a day or perhaps a couple of nights and enjoy hikes along wooded paths. My favorite view is the "Queen's View". You can take horse rides down lovely trails from the long established Plateau Stables. The best way to get up to the plateau is by car or taxi, it's a long steep walk otherwise, and the rewarding hikes are really at the top of the mountain anyway. The nicest place to stay is the Ku Chawe Inn.
Lake Malawi (North): Malawi's northern lake shore is much less developed than the southern shore. Less populated in general, the North is also chillier during the dry season (June - August), but perfect when it's hot.
Nyika Plateau: which also so unknown to the British (who were in charge at the time), that they sent explorer Laurens van Der Post to report on it. Laurens turned his mission to this vast escarpment into a best selling book "Venture to the Interior". He described the beautiful high rolling hills of grasslands dotted with zebra, antelope, orchids and butterflies that make Malawi's largest national park well worth visiting. Hiking, mountain biking and horse riding are the principal activities here. You can rent cottages at Chelinda Camp. More »
Tobacco Auctions - Lilongwe/Limbe: Malawi is the world's largest producer of burley tobacco. The tobacco auctions are held in huge warehouses (floors) in Lilongwe (the capital) and Limbe (near Blantyre the commercial capital) during the months of May - September. It's a very fast, highly skilled, and totally incomprehensible business, which is what makes it so fun to watch.
Lilongwe: Lilongwe is Malawi's capital, a pleasant enough city where you'll find embassies and government departments. It's a planned capital, and the population is smaller than Blantyre, at around 1 million.