Tailored from £4,000 per person excl. flights
13 days Blantyre, Majete, Liwonde, Cape Maclear, Lilongwe
13 days Blantyre, Majete, Liwonde, Cape Maclear, Lilongwe
Take the road less travelled in Malawi, filled with luxury hidden gems, rustic character and warm smiles.
Begin your trip in style by staying in one of Malawi’s most iconic hotels, Protea Hotel Ryalls by Marriott in Blantyre. Steeped in grand history and with first-class service, you’ll have a chance to acclimatise to Malawi’s warmth by lounging next to the pool with a cold gin and tonic.
Head straight into the bush on your second day, arriving into Mkulumadzi Lodge along a suspended rope bridge. Mkulumadzi is Malawi’s most luxury safari lodge, located deep within the ‘Big Five’ Majete Wildlife Reserve. You’ll stay in one of just eight lavish chalets for three nights, with outdoor rain showers, sunken baths and earthy linens.
Next, you’ll head to Liwonde, one of the best boat-safari destinations in Africa, where you’ll float down the Shire River on the lookout for black rhinos, lions, elephants and more. You’ll delve deep into the African bush at Kuthengo Camp, in one of just four contemporary en-suite safari tents.
End your luxury holiday with four nights at Pumulani Lodge, Cape Maclear’s finest lodge. You’ll have endless views across Malawi’s ‘Lake of Stars’ from your expansive lakeside villa. Enjoy a final stay in the stylish Latitude 13° before your international flight home from Lilongwe.
After arriving in Chileka International Airport in Blantyre, you’ll be met by your private driver for the 30-minute drive to Protea Hotel Ryalls by Marriott, your hotel for the night.
Protea Hotel Ryalls is one of Malawi’s oldest hotels with an abundance of history and regale. After checking in, be sure to read about the hotel’s history and see the old pictures adorning the walls, as you walk to your elegantly furnished room. Take a dip in the pool and lounge on the sunbeds with an ice-cold Malawian gin and tonic, to refresh after your long journey.
This evening book a table at Grill 21, the award-winning on-site restaurant, which serves grilled meats and local delicacies. There's also a second on-site restaurant, Ryalls, which serves fusion cuisine with a traditional and cosmopolitan menu.
After a restful sleep, enjoy a hearty hot breakfast at Ryalls restaurant before being picked up for your private transfer to Majete Wildlife Reserve, which is a 2-hour drive from Blantyre.
Situated within a private concession, Majete sits at the base of Africa’s Great Rift Valley. Despite its thriving wildlife populations, following an extensive conservation project, the reserve remains an off-grid destination with untouched wilderness and excellent local guiding.
You’ll drive to the Mkulumadzi River, where you’ll finish your journey on foot over a suspended rope bridge, to arrive at Mkulumadzi Lodge. You’ll be greeted for check in before enjoying a delicious lunch overlooking the Shire River.
Afterwards, grab your binoculars and embark on your first safari by boat 4x4 vehicle. This evening relax with a glass of vintage wine overlooking the Shire River and enjoy your 3-course alfresco dinner under Malawi’s blanket of twinkling stars.
Located on the confluence of the Shire and Mkulumadzi Rivers, just a few kilometres from the cascading Kapichira Falls, Mkulumadzi is Majete’s only luxury lodge with just eight spacious chalets. The lodge has air conditioning, a pool, lounge and bar all overlooking the Shire river. You’ll stay here for three nights in a secluded chalet with a private veranda overlooking the river.
You have two full days on safari in Majete. Rise early this morning to the sound of Majete waking up, before sipping on some warm Malawian coffee and heading out into the bush on your morning safari. This a brilliant time for spotting big cats in action.
Following poaching and habitat destruction, Majete has bounced back to the wildlife haven it once was with over 12,000 animals including the ‘Big Five’, zebra, eland, hippo and birds such as Boehm’s bee eater and the elusive African finfoot.
Return to your lodge for a hot breakfast, and a few hours to relax and take in your tranquil surroundings next to the pool. Afternoon tea is served on the veranda before your evening activity boat safari or game drive. You’ll return to the lodge for a three-course dinner, then sit around the fire with your guide, hearing their stories from the wild and looking out for bush babies in the trees.
There is an optional ‘sky bed sleep out’ included for one night of your stay, where you’ll sleep out in the bush under twinkling galaxies and watch for wildlife roaming below your platform.
After breakfast and a morning game drive, you’ll meet your private driver for your 3.5-hour drive to Kuthengo Camp in Liwonde National Park. You’ll arrive into the camp by boat across the Shire River, and you’ll stay here for the next three nights.
Nestled among Fever trees and Baobabs, Kuthengo Camp is an intimate and exclusive camp with no barriers to nature. There are just four contemporary en-suite safari tents at Kuthengo, with panoramic views on a private deck, king-size beds with air conditioning and a bath with views onto the Shire river.
You’ll often have elephants, antelope, warthogs and more milling around your veranda, along with hippos in the Shire beyond your tent. With near 360 views from your veranda, take a quiet moment with a cold drink and take it all in, before heading out on your first boat safari.
After your evening safari, return to camp for a freshly prepared dinner inspired by traditional Malawian cooking, and finish the night with a cocktail and stories around the campfire.
Wake early today for your morning safari walk through the bush in Liwonde National Park. If you’re lucky you might spot the elusive big cats that have recently been reintroduced into the park, including lion and cheetah.
You’ll learn about animal tracks, behaviour and species identification and you’ll be accompanied by a knowledgeable local guide and armed scout. Here, you’ll get the chance to walk where vehicles cannot go, giving you the chance to have some unique and exciting sightings.
You have three full days to immerse yourself in Liwonde’s wilderness. Activities here centre around nature, with morning and evening game drives in open top vehicles, boat safaris on the Shire and walking safaris to occupy your days. The guiding in Liwonde is first-class and completely tailored to you. This means you can decide whether you would like to do a 4x4, boat or walking safari and your local guide is happy to oblige.
In between activities, lounge around the pool or in your airy safari tent. In the evenings, relax in the snug lounge and bar with a glass of vintage wine and soak up this serene corner of the world.
After your morning safari and breakfast, you will meet your private driver for your 3.5-hour transfer to Cape Maclear. You'll stay at the exquisite Pumulani Lodge, with just ten exclusive and spacious villas overlooking Lake Malawi’s crystal-clear waters.
Set on the lakeshore of Cape Maclear with a private sandy beach, Pumulani Lodge is enveloped in lush hills amongst trees and craggy outcrops. Cape Maclear is set in Lake Malawi National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the world’s first freshwater national park. After checking into your hotel, you can recover from your drive by lazing in a hammock under the baobabs, with a view of the glittering Lake Malawi shoreline.
You’ll spend four nights at Pumulani Lodge in Cape Maclear. Activities include snorkelling, paddle boarding, kayaking, morning and afternoon cruises on their private 40ft dhow, and a stylish infinity pool with sun loungers and water sports.
On land, take a guided tour up to the hills behind the lodge to spot endemic birds and revel in the beautiful vistas. You can also cycle from the lodge to the local village where you will be met with warm smiles as you learn about their local traditions.
Whether you want to lounge on the beach and finish your book or enjoy being active and getting to know the local culture, there is something here to satiate every traveller.
In the evenings, you can learn about astronomy with Godfrey, with the only ‘Stargazer’ telescope in the whole of Malawi. The telescope has a remarkable 200x zoom, so you can see the brightest colours on Saturn and Jupiter.
After a leisurely morning, you’ll meet your driver at reception for your private 3-hour transfer to Lilongwe, where you’ll spend one night at Latitude 13°.
Located in the leafy suburbs of Lilongwe just 20-minutes from Kamazu International Airport, the stylish Latitude 13° offers chic décor and a cutting-edge restaurant. With elegant monochrome rooms decorated with furnishings curated by local artisans using sustainable materials, you won’t find anything like it in Malawi. It’s the perfect spot to relax by the pool and enjoy the last of the Malawian sunshine before your flight home.
To celebrate the last night of your trip, book a table at Latitude 13° restaurant to experience the eclectic menu created by award nominated chefs, Richard Greenhall and Andrew O’Hallaran. The a la carte menu of African, Asian and Mediterranean flavours is perfectly complimented with the list of fifty fine wines from South Africa.
Enjoy a full breakfast this morning, before checking and meeting your private driver for your transfer to Kamazu International Airport. At the airport, you will be assisted to check-in with your bags, before boarding your return flight home.