Backpacking Malawi

Explore Malawi


  • The Funky Cichlid
  • Mabuya Camp
  • Mango Drift

Places of interest

  • Dedza Pottery
  • Mua Mission
  • Satemwa Tea Estate

Travel Malawi

Malawi (translated to fire/flames, represented in our flag by the rising sun over the Lake of Stars) is a mystery to many: one of those countries that people struggle to point out on a map and often tend to place as a city in South Africa. Yet, with it’s diverse landscapes including 4 National Parks (Lengwe, Liwonde, Kasungu, Lake Malawi, Nyika) and 5 Wildlife Reserves (Mwabvi, Majete, Nkhotakota, Vwasa), it’s no wander Malawi is becoming Africa’s new hotspot! Aside from publicity through a few A-list celebrities, thanks are due to Lonley Planet & CNN for their 2014 rankings which finally put Malawi ‘on the map’, finally bringing our then-undiscovered county to the word’s attention and into existence for the tourism industry.

#5 in Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2014 – top 10 countries, highlighting The Big Five and beach life without the crowds

CNN 5 reasons Malawi should be on your African travel list (although written in 2014, all still completely true)

Malawi is divided into Southern, Central & Northern Regions. There are must-visit destinations throughout, but if you’re on a tight schedule you’ll easily get the best of it all in the South. Of course, a trip to the lake is essential and without pretending not to be bias, Cape Maclear should be #1 on your Malawi-Travel-List (more on Cape Maclear here )

Explore Southern Malawi

In order to really experience The Warm Heart of Africa, we highly recommend adding a few of the following stop-overs.

Check-List (in no particular order):

  • Summiting Sapitwa
  • Enjoy a refreshing MoTEAto at Satemwa Tea Estate
  • Sundowner Safari on the Shire River
  • Liwonde and Majete National Parks
  • Chasing waterfalls & hiking Zomba Plateau
  • Island escapes to Domwe & Mumbo

A few highlights of Central & Northern Malawi:

*Travel Tip: if flying into Lilongwe, take the scenic route to Cape Maclear through Dedza Escarpment, stopping off at Dedza Pottery and UNESCO World Heritage Site Chongoni Rock Art. On the way back try Salima route with a stop-over at Mau Mission followed by lunch or a night at Kuti Wildlife Reserve.

If you have time to head north, catch the Ilala ferry from Monkey Bay (only a 20min motorbike taxi from Cape Maclear):

Make the most of Malawi, combining an authentic Beach, Bush, Forest & Island experience. Contact us for more information.

backpacking malawi Ilala-Timetable-2017

Interested in a tailor-made tour, with an expert guide and few more up-market accommodation options than our Backpacker routes? Contact travel experts: