Lake Malawi is an African Great Lake in the Great Rift Valley system. It is around 570km long and 75km wide at its widest point, with a total surface area of about 29 600km2.
It is the third largest and second deepest lake in Africa, and covers about a fifth of Malawi’s land space. The lake, with its clear tropical waters, is one of the most densely populated with fish species on Earth.
Bordering the lake is Lake Malawi National Park, the world’s first freshwater national park and a World Heritage Site. Mbuna fish are more abundant and varied here than anywhere else in the world. Away from the lake, there are baboons, antelope and hyrax, as well as spectacular birdlife.
The lake offers great opportunities for sporting activities like kayaking, snorkelling and scuba diving.
Although Lake Malawi is a major tourist attraction, the authorities have guarded against over-commercialisation, and so visitors can enjoy long stretches of uninhabited golden lakeshore. While there are settlements, hotels, campsites and historical sites along the southern shore, the northern shore has remained largely untouched.
The best time to travel to Lake Malawi is in the dry season, from April to November – which gives you ample opportunity to visit this fascinating place.