All the facts you need to know about the country itself.
Full Country Name: Republic of Malawi
Area: 118,000 sq km
Population: 15.4 million (2011)
Borders: Mozambique, Zambia and Tanzania
Religion: Christian is the main religion of Malawi followed by other indigenous religions
Time Zone: Standard time is two hours in advance of Greenwich Mean Time
Languages: Official language is English but the National language is Chewa
Country Dialling Code: +265
When to Travel
When to Travel
Malawi’s climate is hot in the low-lying areas in the south of the country and temperate in the northern highlands. The altitude moderates what would be an otherwise equatorial climate. Between November and April the temperature is warm with equatorial rains and thunderstorms, with the storms reaching their peak severity in late March. After March, the rainfall rapidly diminishes and from May to September wet mists float from the highlands into the plateaus, with almost no rainfall during these months.
The unit of currency in Malawi is the Malawian Kwacha (MK), which is made up of 100 tambala (cents). Banking services are available in all the main towns although a commission is normally charged. US Dollars are the common currency used. It is recommended to carry some cash in small denominations.
Although electricity in Africa is a lot more reliable than it used to be, here’s what you need to be aware of.
In Malawi the general voltage is 220-240 and the frequency is 50 Hz. The British three rectangular blade plugs are common. Electricity in most camps is provided by generators. Batteries may be recharged in the camp during the day but it is wise to double check with the camp manager.
As the sockets can vary a ‘Travellers Adaptor Set’ is recommended. Voltage sometimes fluctuates and whilst power cuts are rare, they are not unknown. It is useful to carry a torch.
It is vital that you visit your doctor at least 6 weeks prior to travel.
Health requirements vary from country to country. We recommend you speak to your local Travel Doctor for up-to-date information and advice. The following information is to be used as a guide only.
Malaria: It is recommended that precautions against malaria are taken for travel to most regions in Africa. We suggest you contact your doctor for advice on which prophylactic is recommended.
Travelling by road in Africa may seem daunting to some so we have put together some information so that you know what you can expect.
Please note that road surfaces vary from tarmac, gravel, sand and occasionally vehicles may travel “off road”. Additionally, if visiting remote areas or National Parks and Reserves, the roads may well be rough, bumpy and in a poor condition and may be affected by adverse weather conditions.
Here is the “need to know” information about visas for Botswana.
At the time of writing, no visa for Malawi is required for travellers on Australian Passports. However effective 01 July 2015 the Government of Malawai has announced the introduction of a USD 75 “Entry Fee” which is applicable to Australian citizens and is payable on arrival. Please double check this with your travel agent as this may change at any time. You must hold return or onward flight tickets.