Accommodations | Southern Malawi
SUNBIRD KU CHAWE
Situated within a plateau forest, Sunbird Ku Chawe boasts of 37 rooms; Superior, Deluxe, Hillside Deluxe, Hillside Suite all offering panoramic views of the valley. The rooms are spacious and comfortable each with a spectacular view. Open all year round and ideal for 1 or 2 nights. The Plateau is simply beautiful, with some of the most gorgeous views Malawi has to offer. Exploring the plateau on foot is perfect, with guides that can take you out on guided walks. They are recommended as they do know the area very well. The forest is serene and peaceful. If you are a mountain biker then this could be your paradise too. The place is very rich in history having been part of the country’s old capital city. The restaurant offers an extensive menu to suit all palates, serving local and international cuisine. The breakfast buffet is a favourite with a wide selection of food to choose from. The bar offers a delicious wine list too which compliments some of the dishes on the dinner menu perfectly. A home away from home!
ZOMBA FOREST LODGE
Zomba Forest Lodge is an old family-owned colonial cottage made of 4 en-suite rooms. An intimate and cozy relaxed environment that opens all year round and perfect for 2 nights. You are treated like family and friends by the owners when staying at this place. Go on a hike and enjoy sightings of birds, monkeys and the gorgeous forest surroundings that are around you which has a unique flora and fauna. Zomba Forest Lodge rooms are solar powered with paraffin lamps and candles in the lounge and dining room. They have limited charging capacity with their office solar panel so it’s best if you try to ensure devices are fully charged before arrival. Petal and Tom are incredibly accommodating owners and want you to feel right at home. The small dining area is beautifully touched and offers delicious dishes. This destination is suitable for outdoor walks and no contact to the outside world, perfect for digital detoxing.
Ryalls Hotel is located in the central business district of Blantyre and is just a few minutes from the airport. It is located within the CBD proximity and easily accessible to the town centre. The hotel is made up of about 120 comfortable and spacious rooms with TVs, aircon and WiFi offering you a perfect place where you can unwind and relax before the start or end of a trip. It is a pure definition of luxury and relaxation! With a Sports Club just down the road with so much to offer and keep you busy, it is the perfect sleepover for outdoor lovers and active bodies. At Ryall's the staff are professional, courteous, friendly and extremely accommodating. Each greets you with a warm smile and are happy to assist and help at any point during your stay. Open all year round and ideal for 1 or 2 nights!
Mkulumadzi is one of only 2 lodges in Majete Wildlife Reserve, Malawi’s first big 5 National Park. It is a stunning wilderness area with thick bushes and the lower Shire River, which descends into rapids in front of the lodge. Majete is the first of Malawi’s National Parks that African Parks took over and re-introduced the Big 5. The lodge consists of 8 en-suite luxury bush chalets with huge rooms which offer rustic luxury. It is open throughout the year. There is so much to enjoy when on a game drive, gorgeous landscapes, stunning views over the river and there is no shortage of antelope, especially Nyala and Waterbuck. It is very exciting to get to the lodge itself using the “Swinging Bridge. The rapids are right under your feet as you head across the Mkulumadzi River using this bridge. It is a spectacular and very memorable sighting. As this is the only way back into the park for your game drives, you will need to cross over a few times if staying at Mkulumadzi for a few nights of course with support from your guide. All ages are allowed and 2 nights is an ideal stay.
Located on the edge of the beautiful Majete Wildlife Reserve in the lower Shire Valley, Thawale is a rustic haven that offers guests the opportunity to experience the Big 5. The accommodation is comfortable and spacious and you can enjoy the views over the watering hole from the comfort of your private veranda. Thawale has 4 twin tented chalets, 2 double tented chalets and 1 family chalet. The lodge is open all year round and child friendly. Activities include night drives, game drives, bush walks, bird walks, boat trips and hill hikes. They can tailor your trip to suit your wishes and will do what they can to pair you up with the the best guide depending on your interests. Thawale is one of only two lodges within the reserve premises and the surrounding is made up of beautiful woodland, granite hills and a picturesque river. The common wildlife here are Eland, Sable, Lichtenstein’s Hartebeest, Zebra and an impressive population of birdlife.
Mvuu Lodge was Liwonde National Park’s first in the park and is in a key location for wildlife viewing. It consists of 8 twin luxury chalets and 1 family unit. Only children above 6 years are allowed to the lodge and it is good for a stay of 3 to 4 nights. Hippos, crocs, antelope and elephants can easily be spotted on the front lawn. The guides here are very friendly and extremely know their calling. Mvuu Lodge is set in a prime location in the park. Situated on the Shire River it has a wealth of water-based animals, and birds and is generally a hub of activity. Hippos, warthogs, bushbuck, crocs, mongoose, monkeys and waterbuck can easily be spotted right outside the deck of my chalet. Morning or evening game drives and water safaris are the order of the day.
Situated inside of Liwonde National Park and is based on the banks of the Shire River as a haven for wildlife. It has 9 twin chalets and 5 family chalets. It is a home of Malawian wildlife and conservation. It is open all year round and suitable for 3 to 4 nights stay. It is best featured on any itinerary or tour done in Southern Malawi. The guides here are superb, from incredible birding experts to top trackers. Most of them have been based at Mvuu for years and so can tell you the parks incredible history from being on the brink of depletion from poaching to the success story it is today with many species reintroduced and thriving! Here you can partake in a range of activities such as game drives, water safaris, tracking the animals on foot. The Safaris on the river is a really great way to spend the day with some excellent birding and the chance to see the animals from a different angle up close. Each activity is an excellent opportunity to see the park’s wildlife up close and personal.
Kuthengo is situated on a huge open land in the Liwonde National Park, tucked away in the trees are 4 safari tents and 1 family tent each with its own great view, overlooking the mighty Shire River. Game drives, water safaris and walking safaris are among some popular activities to get immersed in while staying at this simple yet stylish and comfortable Kuthengo. Each tent has its own en-suite bathroom with a big bath and outdoor shower that looks out onto the river. With your own balcony facing the river, it’s the perfect spot for a sundowner. The birdlife on the river is also exciting with elephants and buffalos frequenting the river banks regularly. The guides are passionate about the bush and conservation and know their duties. Kuthengo is open from March to January. All ages are allowed and 2 to 3 nights is an ideal length of stay.
Situated in Cape-Maclear the Island is a 40-minute boat ride from the mainland. It consists of 5 en-suite water-facing eco-friendly safari tents and 1 family unit in the forest. It is usually open from end-February to mid-January and children of all ages are welcome. Ideal stay is between 2-3 days. Lake Malawi has a very healthy population of fish which make for unique snorkelling with Mumbo’s rocky realms give you an exceptional experience. The lodge is rustic with no electricity and cell signal, a very good place to digitally detox! Eat dinner under bright stars and candlelight, watch fish eagles as they swoop in to catch fish, while you spend quality time with your loved ones away from modern distractions.
CHEMBE EAGLES NEST
Situated along the Cape Maclear beaches with its own private beach, the lodge has 11 rustic chalets fitted with mosquito nets, and aircon and is friendly to children. It is ideal for a 2-night stay and is open all year round. Each of the chalets also faces the lake so you can enjoy those gorgeous African sunsets from the comfort of your very own veranda. The food and culinary experience are great and you are guaranteed to fill your bellies with spectacular meals. If you want to enjoy a BBQ then this too can be arranged. Organize with the lodge to take you to Domwe island and have lunch on Domwe island during a snorkelling trip.
Situated at Cape Maclear, Domwe Island is the largest unpopulated island on Lake Malawi and is separated from the mainland by a narrow gap. It is exclusive and even boasts of its very own private beach surrounded by natural rock formations. It is self-catered and a great place for those wanting a real African experience. There are 3 fully furnished safari tents, as well as 2 tent sites and a dining area with a bar. It opens from mid-February till mid-January. Friendly to children and ideal for a stay of 2 days. Hidden in the woods and your very own private beach, this is a great little find at the lake for a rustic experience. If you have the energy, then get into one of the kayaks and head to the gorgeous Thumbi Island across the way in the same vicinity.
Mgoza Lodge is located within Cape Maclear and offers basic accommodation. There are a a number of activities on offer to those wishing to keep busy. It is one of the few budget-friendly lodges with a private pool to cool off. You can also order a few cool drinks from your sun lounger by the pool which is a nice way to spend a great afternoon. The rustic lodge boats of classy wooden A-frame rooms and a healthy meal-stocked restaurant.
Situated in Mangochi the retreat has 69 rooms in the categories of; Lake Suites, Sunset Villa, Lake Villa, Beach Room and Family Room. It is surrounded by palm trees on the beautiful shores of Lake Malawi. Its golden beaches, calm waters and a number of activities on offer make this place worth your stop over. There are local traditions and culture always for you to sample out, especially through the crafts and decor. Besides the friendly staff being a family-owned business, the owners have hands on in running daily errands in order to make sure guests are well treated for memorable experiences. There is a 9-hole golf course which is situated in a beautiful baobab tree setting. The food is delicious and please don’t forget to order a fish meal from their exclusive menu since Mangochi is famous for the Chambo fish itself! Open all year round and worth your 4 nights stay period.
Pumulani is a piece of lake paradise located at Lake Malawi National Park. The glamorous 10 en-suite rooms are built on the side of a hill to give you the most spectacular views in the bay. The lodge itself has two pools, one on the beach and an infinity pool at the top of the hill overlooking the bay. Pumulani has a large hand-built dhow sailboat that sails at a perfect gentle pace across the lake. Watch as fish eagles swoop as they hunt over the lake and see the people from local surrounding villages go about their daily life fishing in the dug-out canoes. The dhow is included in your nightly rate and is well worth more than one excursion!
Located on Satemwa Tea Estates in Thyolo, this old colonial family house has 5 unique suites decorated in old colonial charm and is open to guests all year round. Each room in the house is completely unique, with great views of the gardens and the converted chapel which you could get lost in. The beds are big and so comfortable, the bathrooms are even much bigger! It has a rose garden and a cosy lounge with bookcases where you can sit with a book in front of the fireplace. They offer delicious foods from huge roast dinners to a hearty burger or a fresh salad, and an excellent array of cakes and sandwiches for their indulgent afternoon tea, served in the gardens. The tea estates and their 25 tea cocktails make this place famously unique and worth your visit. The picnic area is worth your hike too. Last but not least the place is a mountain bike paradise!
Game Haven Lodge which opens all year round is situated at Bvumbwe in Thyolo district which is just 25km from Blantyre – Malawi’s commercial city. The beautifully designed lodge consists of 5 Luxury Cottages, 10 executive rooms, 10 family rooms and 3 self-catering guest houses and is open all year round! Their 28 rooms make the place suitable for a group tour. It’s the perfect spot to spend a few days to relax and unwind, enjoy a game drive in their own Chimwenya private game park, head out to the lake for a BBQ, take the family on a mountain bike tour or play some golf in their 9-hole golf course. The beautifully manicured loan and garden also make the place stand out! Antelopes and Zebras are a common sighting when you are sitting outside the lodge.