Mkulumadzi is an exclusive luxury lodge built at the confluence of two mighty rivers, in a private concession area within the Majete Wildlife Reserve in south-west Malawi
If you were to visit Majete 15 years ago, you would have found a poacher’s paradise. Rhinos had been decimated, lions locally extinct and swathes of land deforested. However, thanks to local conservation efforts, Majete today is a very different picture.
Since 2003 more than 2,500 animals including black rhino, lions, elephant, buffalo and leopards have been reintroduced. As a result, Majete has blossomed back to the thriving wildlife haven it once was, with over 12,000 animals flourishing within its boundaries including the Big Five.
Not only are the animals thriving, but the local communities have prospered with improved infrastructure and schooling for local families. Majete is a beacon of hope for the restoration of wildlife reserves under threat from poaching.
Situated only a 1.5-hour drive from Blantyre at the base of Africa’s Great Rift Valley, Majete offers a diverse vastness of miombo woodlands in the west and dry savannahs in the east.
Despite its prospering wildlife and endless forests, Majete remains an off-the-beaten track, unspoiled wilderness, with visitors drawn by its tranquility. You’ll likely spot large carnivores like lions and leopards and herbivores such as hippo, buffalo, zebra and eland.
With flocks of migratory birds arriving in the wet season of November to April each year, Majete transforms into an ornithologist’s paradise. Over 300 bird species have been recorded, including the beautiful bateleur eagle, American fish eagle, Boehm’s bee eater and the elusive African finfoot.
As a largely unknown destination, Majete offers a true wilderness that you can explore by safari 4x4, boat or by foot with experienced local guides. Two rivers run through Majete with just two bush lodges situated on the shaded banks. After a day of adventure, you can relax and rejuvenate in the perfect balance of luxury and isolation with a sundowner, listening to the grunts of hippos in the river below.
In terms of wildlife viewing, the dry season of July to October are best as vegetation is dry, allowing for a longer sight path in Majete’s woodland landscape. You’ll experience the best weather from April to August, with comfortable temperatures and very little rainfall.
November to March experiences the hottest temperatures and the most rainfall which makes for lush vistas, migratory birds and lower visitor numbers. If you visit Majete in green season, be prepared for high temperatures, more challenging wildlife sightings and high-water levels along with flooded roads.
You’ll experience exclusive bush living in just two camps within the entirety of Majete Wildlife Reserve. To experience undisturbed paradise in Malawi, stay in one of just eight opulent chalets on the banks of the Shire River at Mkulumadzi, the perfect place for honeymooners. Or for the more adventurous traveler seeking an authentic bush living experience, choose Thawale Lodge, an unfenced camp where you can wake up to wildlife on your doorstep.