THE WARM HEART OF AFRICA
Lake Malawi, the third largest lake in Africa, is the dominant feature of the country, and is about 365 miles long and 52 miles wide (11,500 square miles) and forms the eastern boundary with Tanzania and Mozambique. The lake is one of the world’s living treasures, an underwater paradise containing more species of fish than any other in the world! A number of lovely resorts and lodges are dotted around the lake, providing excellent bases from which to enjoy watersports, snorkelling and scuba diving and to relax and the perfect spot to enjoy the warm and temperate climate.
The capital is Lilongwe, a modern, spacious city and the gateway for most travel into the country. A number of National Parks protect and preserve the country’s diverse natural splendours including Nyika National Park, Kasungu National Park, Liwonde National Park and Lake Malawi National Park. The parks offer the visitor a variety of eco-systems, scenic diversity and a good variety of wildlife and birdlife.
By African standards Malawi is a small country, but nevertheless it does offer the visitor an amazing kaleidoscope of opportunities and extremely friendly and courteous people who have resulted in Malawi being fittingly known as “The Warm Heart of Africa”.
Malawi is easily combined with other destinations and in particular Zambia. It is a great destination for families seeking a good safari and beach destination and honeymooners will find wonderful romantic resorts around the lake.
The climate varies from cool in the highlands to warm around Lake Malawi. Winter is from May to July and is dry, although nights can be chilly, particularly in the highlands. Around Lake Malawi, in winter, the climate is particularly dry with pleasant cooling breezes. The rainy season runs from November to March.
BEST TIME TO TRAVEL
Malawi can be visited year round and the best time will depend on whether you are going for a beach stay or a safari or a combination of both. In summary, April to August is the beginning of the dry season with a great climate and it is a great time for staying on Lake Malawi but it can get very cold up in the highlands; September to November is the best period for wildlife viewing with parks like Liwonde and Majete offering excellent photographic opportunities but temperatures do rise and it can get very hot during the day; The rainy season runs from November to March and the weather is characterised by short sharp showers, which often fall during the night around the Lake.
Health & Vaccinations
We recommend that you are up to date with all of the usual vaccinations – Typhoid, Polio, Hepatitis A & B, Tetanus and Rabies. In addition a course of malaria prophylaxis is required. Please contact your local GP for full advice at least 3-4 weeks before travel.
Passport & Visa
British passport holders must be in possession of a full 10-year passport and must have at least 6 months validity beyond the date of the return journey. In addition you will need to have a minimum of 2 consecutive blank pages in your passport if travelling to Malawi via South Africa. Visas are not required for British passport holders. Parents travelling with children into or out of South Africa may be asked to show the child’s unabridged (full) birth certificate, and where only one parent is accompanying, parental or legal consent for the child to travel (eg an affidavit from the other parent, a court order or – if applicable – a death certificate). You should travel with these documents in case you’re asked to provide them. British passport holders do not need a visa to enter Malawi.
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