Malawi, “The Warm Heart of Africa” is a welcoming country that offers beautiful scenery, wildlife parks, outdoor activities, and some of the friendliest people in Africa. This long and narrow country is also home to Lake Malawi, Africa’s third largest body of fresh water, which is famed for its abundant and diverse fish life.

Though Malawi is a small country – only 118 844 square kilometres, including 1/5th  covered by Lake Malawi – it encompasses 5 national parks, each of them offering a diverse experiences, landscapes, and wildlife. In addition to these national parks, Malawi also hosts 4 less known wildlife reserves. These reserves show the natural beauty of Malawi and are a perfect way to experience Malawian wilderness.

Through recent conservation efforts, wildlife is now making a strong comeback in Malawi, and it is possible to see the Big Five in certain wildlife reserves, plus hundreds of species of birds, zebra, antelope, hippo, and crocodile.

A holiday in Malawi is a great option for active travelers, with kayaking, bicycling, hiking, scuba diving, and classic safari activities on offer. Malawi offers great value for money, and combines well with Zambia.

Regions of Malawi

The parks in Malawi are picturesque as well as diverse in wildlife, with a feeling of exclusivity and very few lodges in each area.

Lake Malawi National Park

Home to hundreds of fish species, including the colourful cichlids, the clarity of the (not salty!) water and the great abundance of marine life make it ideal for snorkeling and diving, while the absence of currents ensures it is wonderful for swimming, sailing, kayaking and watersports. Inside Lake Malawi National Park, the scenery is striking, with steep hills sloping down to the lake’s deep blue waters, and islands, bays, and boulders dot the shoreline.

Majete Wildlife Reserve

Close to the city of Blantyre in the south of Malawi, Majete reserve is made up of mature miombo woodlands and granite topped hills that contrast with picturesque river valleys and lush riverine forest. One of Africa’s success stories, through dedicated conservation efforts, this area has been returned to an official Big 5 Game Park. Now previously-endangered species live and breed there and you can look forward to amazing encounters.

Nyika National Park

Nyika National Park is the largest in Malawi, extending across a great plateau like no other in Africa. The park is composed by a succession of hills with breath-taking views, valleys of Miombo woodland and evergreen forest.  Nyika means “where the water comes from”, which is evident by its numerous rivers and waterfalls. Thanks to these sources the plant life is abundant with more than 3000 plant species and 200 different types of orchids! Nyika National Park can be explored on foot, on bicycle, and also by vehicle. In addition to the wide variety of plant life, this park is also excellent for birding and is home to leopard.

Liwonde National Park

Liwonde National Park is one of the most beautiful parks in the country! Founded in 1973, the park is situated north of Blantyre, along the Shire River in southern Lake Malawi.

Liwonde National Park offers densely concentrated populations of wildlife – with a high number of elephants – around 900! Apart from elephants, the park is inhabited by hundreds of crocs and hippos, antelope, zebra and buffalo. Liwonde National Park is also a birder’s paradise with more than 300 different species. Liwonde National park includes a sanctuary for black rhino – now hosting 16 of them.

Thinking about taking a trip to Malawi?

Explore our itineraries for inspiration!

Each of our trips is individually tailor-made to give you the perfect Africa adventure!

South Luangwa & Lake Malawi

Zambia and Malawi

11 Days in Africa