Malawi 2011 - Northern Lakeshore Resorts

Before we travelled to Malawi we'd been told that there were fuel shortages so while travelling around we filled up at every opportunity and, in the southern half of the country didn't have any problems. However once we got north of Kasungu we found it much harder. Mzuzu is the third largest town in Malawi with several fuel stations but there was no diesel and were told that they hadn't had any for a couple of weeks! Later we stopped at Rumphi and, again, no fuel. As we still had plenty in our tanks we carried on with our visit to Nyika and Vzawa but bore in mind that we might need to return to Kasungu or even Lilongwe however on our return to Rumphi we were relieved to discover that they had diesel available - and we didn't have to queue for too long either!

We then travelled to Chinthche passing a rubber plantation on the way - quite a surprise as we didn't know that there were any in Malawi.

Rubber balls being sold at the roadside.

Sap being collected from rubber trees.

Nkhwazi Lodge, Chinthechi.

This lodge had a beautiful location (S11 53.624 E34 10.008) beside Lake Malawi with a couple of small, private inlets. We stayed for several days and had the place to ourselves - the fuel shortages have affected tourism in the north of the country. It was warm enough to swim at 8am in the morning and I found that it was often the time that the water was at its calmest and clearest for snorkelling.

The owner's 2 dogs spent most of the day with us but only one of them would go into the water.

We saw lots of birds around the lodge.


Pied wagtail.

Sunrise over Lake Malawi. The sun rose just before 6am so it was no hardship to get up and sit and watch it rise over the lake.

Another sunrise with a couple of fishermen in canoes returning after a nights fishing.

We were lucky enough to see a full moon rising over the Lake.

Hakuna Matata Lodge & Sangilo Lodge, Mkondwe.

We spent a night at each of these nearby lodges before and after our visit to Livingstonia.

Sunrise from the campsite at Hakuna Matata (S10 35.132 E34 10.506).

The very comfortable bar and lounge area at Sangilo Sanctuary Lodge (S10 31.060 E34 13.045) which overlooked a small private cove.

As at the other northern lodges Mark, the owner, said he'd been badly affected by the fuel shortages which had made people wary of travelling in case they were unable to buy fuel.

We found the northern lakeshore much quieter than in the south. There were still people fishing and bathing in the lake but nothing like the numbers we'd seen in the south.

Our final sunrise over the lake.

After 6 weeks in Malawi we headed for the northern border post with Zambia. We managed to fill up with fuel in Karonga and then drove to Chitipa where we spent the night at a motel as there was nowhere to camp.

The only time that we used our gas stove on our trip through Zambia and Malawi.

We stopped to use the internet at this shop - only to be told that they had no internet access!!

We had some good views of the Nyika Plateau to the south.

Dedza Pottery & Mphunzi Mountain.

Southern Lakeside - Monkey Bay, Cape Maclear & Senga Bay.

Zomba Plateau & Mulanje Massif.

Majete Wildlife Reserve.

Kasungu National Park.

Viphya Forest Reserve.

Nyika National Park & Vzawa Marsh Wildlife Reserve.

Northern Lakeside - Chintheche & Mkondowe.


Diary (Word document).

The road from the coast to the border was said to be one of the worst in the country but we found that it had recently been upgraded although some of the bridges hadn't been completed.


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