Lilongwe is Malawi’s Capital City, named after the great Lilongwe River that flows into Lake Malawi. It is an exceptionally green city with trees and patches of grassland covering a great deal of the city.
For centuries Lilongwe was a small fishing village on the banks of the River Lilongwe. It is at the centre of the country near the borders of Mozambique and Zambia and was used as an administrative centre by Colonial Britain.
The city is divided into New and Old. The Old Town to the South is based around the centuries old fishing village while New Town or Capital City grew up after President Banda moved the capital here from Zomba. New Town is where the government ministries, offices, Lilongwe accommodation and embassies are,and the Old Town is full of cafes, restaurants, bus stations and markets.
In the city centre there are lots of banks and Capital Hill where there are over a dozen government ministries.
The wet season in Lilongwe is from December to March and the average temperatures are in the 20s sometimes reaching into the 30s. From April to September daily temperatures can drop into the teens and nights can be into single numbers during these months.
Things to do in Lilongwe
- The Lilongwe Wildlife Centre rescues orphaned animals and gives them shelter until they can be rehabilitated wherever possible.
- There is a wide variety of international cuisine to be enjoyed and any traveller will be spoilt for choice.
- Visit the Kumbali Cultural Village to see traditional Malawian dancing and drumming, live acoustic music and a traditional Malawian dinner.
- Explore the second hand clothing market to pick up some cheap deals
Visit our Malawi Tourism page to find out more about things to see and do in Malawi.
There is also the ‘Lilongwe Chat’ Yahoo Group that has classified ads and often good offers on products and services in the area. This is a great place to start if you have recently moved into a house and are looking to furnish it without spending a fortune. Due to the transient nature of the ex-pat community in Lilongwe there are always people looking to buy and sell household items, cars and even pets!
For more information you can sign up here: https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/lilongwe-chat/info
Lilongwe Airport (also known as Kamuzu International Airport) is located about 30km north of the city. Kumbali Lodge offer airport collection and drop off services, which take between 40 minutes – 1 hour, depending on the traffic. The airport has one run-way and has a great outside deck area with restaurant and bar, which makes a great place to relax before your departure. Please contact us if you would like more information on our airport services.