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Southern Sky Adventures: Malawi

Formerly called Nyasaland, the name Malawi comes from “Maravi,” the old name of its
Nyanja inhabitants. But given the warmth and friendliness of its people, Malawi is
more popularly referred to as the “warm heart of Africa.” A landlocked country in
southeast Africa, about the size of Pennsylvania, the Republic of Malawi lies within
the Great African Rift Valley system and is bordered by Zambia to the northwest,
Tanzania to the northeast and Mozambique to the south, southwest and southeast.

It would be nigh impossible to travel to Malawi without a visit to the country’s
centerpiece and most prominent physical feature, Lake Malawi , a freshwater, inland
sea that stands about 1,500 feet of elevation and occupies one-fifth of Malawi’s
total land mass. Its crystal-clear water surrounded by spectacular scenery, with
miles of endless, golden, palm-fringed beaches lining its shores, Lake Malawi is
a tropical paradise that has become a playground for visitors from around the

Lake Malawi is sometimes called the “Calendar Lake” given its measurements —
about 365 miles long and 52 miles wide — and it provides a picturesque canvas
for both water sports or just relaxing in the sun. Lake Malawi boasts excellent
visibility and more than 500 species of tropical fish, some of which are not found
anywhere else in the world, making not only fishing, but also snorkeling and scuba
diving both safe and very popular in area. In addition, Lake Malawi offers ideal
sailing conditions, as it has next to no tides or currents and a fairly
consistent southeasterly wind from February to October

And Lake Malawi is not nearly all the country has to offer. Liwonde National Park,
Lengwe National Park and Cape Maclear are three of Malawi’s additional tourist
attractions. Malawi’s highland areas offer picturesque opportunities for those
wanting to explore the country on foot. Rising up to 9,000 feet, Mount Mulanje
is one of Malawi’s most spectacular sights, and along with the Zomba Plateau,
offer jaw-dropping challenges for hikers and mountain climbers alike, while
some of the game parks, particularly the Nyika National Park, offer walking
safaris under the protection of a game guard.


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