Summary: Malawi is in the southern third of Africa to the north of, and partially enclosed by, Mozambique, and is mostly a narrow plateau with rolling plains and hills and mountains landlocked against the entire length of Lake Nyasa. Known as Nyasaland from 1891 until its independence from Britain in 1964, Malawi has an economy based primarily on agriculture, despite undeveloped lands, and international financial assistance, while the country works with the UN to combat AIDS.
Time Zone: UTC+2
Languages: English, Chichewa
Power: 230V, 50 Hz
Currency: Malawian Kwacha
- Currently 1 MWK = 0.0029 USD $
Climate: Malawi has a sub-tropical climate with a rainy season from November to April and a dry season from May to October.
- Currently 68º, Lilongwe Weather Forecas
Malawi: AIDS Deaths Drop by 75% - New York Times - Aug 25 7:49 PM
Malawi to begin irrigation farming to boost food: president - AFP via Yahoo! News - Aug 26 12:44 PM
Drugs 'slash' Malawi Aids deaths - BBC News - Aug 26 3:29 AM
Free AIDS drugs reduce Malawi death rates - Reuters via Yahoo! News - Aug 25 9:27 AM
Celebrated author looks back at life through travel - CNN.com - Aug 20 12:55 PM
| Lilongwe: Split into the New City and Old Town sections, Lilongwe also makes a good jumping point to the rest of the country. The Old Town has a wide ramshackle African marketplace and unique shops, while the New City has modern buildings the Capital City Shopping Center, a close collection of mini-malls, and between the two sits the Nature Sanctuary, 370 acres of woodland reserve with birds, crocodiles and leopards. Nearby are two large parklands, the Kasunga National Park 60 miles northwest, and the Nkhotakota Game Reserve 60 miles northeast.|
| Nkhata Bay: Travel about 170 miles north from Lilongwe and you’ll come to Nkhata Bay, one of the best stops along the shores of Lake Nyasa, usually called Lake Malawi since the country’s independence. The feel of the town is strongly African, offering a market for brass and textiles, and diving off the shores of the nearby lake. Take a boat trip and stop by the peaceful Likoma Island, becoming popular for its beaches, or head 60 miles north to the Nyika National Park, with an altitude of around 6560 feet and home to zebras, monkeys and birds.|
| Mount Mulanje: The south of Malawi attracts ecotourists who come to see the environmental treasures. Mount Mulanje is a grouping of mountains in the south of the country that dominate the flat landscape with heights up to 9840 feet and plenty of paths and even huts to camp out overnight. Liwonde National Park, 70 miles to the north and considered the best in the country with a lodge and camp area and a range of terrain split by the Shire River and inhabited by rhinos, elephants and crocodiles.|
Local Dress: Malawi locals are friendly and open, with half of waiting staff gratuities collected going to the Ministry of Tourism. To fit in while you travel, men with long hair should keep it tied back, and women should dress more conservatively, covering shoulders and arms to the elbow.
Security: Avoid demonstrations and be aware of your surroundings, particularly in the evening and at night, otherwise, the country is relatively safe.
Banking: Banks, which are open weekdays until 1pm, will cash traveller’s checks and may provide cash advances on credit cards, both of which are accepted at most major hotels and stores in the largest cities.
When To Visit: The dry season, from May to October, is generally the most comfortable time of year to visit, with September and October good times to safari and see water holes turn into animal gathering spots. July 6th is Independence Day, where the country celebrates the country’s birth as a republic with dancing and ceremonies.
Tipping: A 10% service charge is included in most bills, however, you should add an extra 5% or more for good service. A small tip of 100 Kwacha should be given to other park and help staff.
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