Lake Malawi National Park


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This piece of paradise comes with a health warning

Written on: January 09, 2014   |   I visited in August 2011 Lake Malawi should be right up there on any traveller’s bucket list. It is, without a doubt, one of the most beautiful places in Africa - as close to a beach holiday as you can get without actually travelling to the ocean. I’m talking sandy beaches, remarkably clear water; gorgeous scenery, balmy nights and romance by the bucket loads.

For those who don’t know – you won’t see the Big Five at the Lake Malawi National Park. There are a few mellow hippos and some chilled crocodiles in stretches of the park. Lake Malawi has the largest number of fish species of any lake in the world. This is one of the reasons why it has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. There are loads of activities but after about two weeks of backpacking, I was ready to bliss out for a couple of days. I think I went canoeing once and did some flopping around in the water, pretending to look at fish. But was I relaxing? You betcha.

Visitors should know that there is a risk of contracting bilharzia or schistosomiasis in Lake Malawi. This infectious disease lurks in especially the shallow waters around the reeds and can result in flu-like symptoms developing about six weeks after exposure. A dose of fast-acting antibiotics will take care of it. I have to say I swam in the water. A lot. I didn’t get bilharzia. Maybe I would feel differently about the lake if I had. But I still think it is a magical place. A slice of heaven. With a wee bit of a bite.
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(4/5 stars) Written on: May 28, 2013   |   Visited: Dec 2010.
A great place to relax on the southern end of the lake.
We came by steamboat down the lake, which I will tell you grows wearisome. Pay the extra for the cabin, and expect many long, slow days with various delays. A good time for rum and writing.
At the park, there are elephants galore. Best elephants I can recall in Africa during my two long visits. There's some ... read more

I saw

Elephant
Dik dik
Warthog
Hippopotamus
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(5/5 stars) Written on: Apr 22, 2013   |   Visited: May 1996.
Though it looks thin and small on a map, this lake is large and magnificent. Staying at the south end for 10 days was the most luxurious stay one could have hoped for! There are islands out in the water, and storms can rage without notice from one side to another - - filling the skies with multi-color thunderclouds. Most of the weather was lovely, however, and t... read more
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Lake Malawi National Park
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Once in Malawi, buy praziquantel from any pharmacy and start taking them after swimming in the lake. Just to be safe.

Andrea saw these animals

Hippopotamus
Hippopotamus
Nile crocodile
Nile crocodile
Vervet monkey
Vervet monkey
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Andrea did these activities

Bird watching
Bird watching
Boating / canoeing
Boating / canoeing
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