Malawi and Zambia
Best of Malawi and Zambia Tour

Malawi and Zambia – Best of Malawi and Zambia Tour – a 16 day Small Group Tour.

Some countries are just made for each other. Malawi and Zambia are good examples. Offering superlative game viewing, exceptional guides and great lodges, Zambia’s South Luangwa National Park is a headline destination.

The subtler appeal of Malawi includes dramatic mountains, one of Africa’s greatest lakes, resurgent wildlife, and some of the world’s most genuinely hospitable people. A first visit to Malawi is never a last visit.

This tour succeeds in creating a rich cocktail of experiences, mixing people, culture, wildlife and relaxation in just the right proportions.

This tour combines many of Malawi’s unique and attractive areas and the strong community involvement and interaction is a key aspect to the tour.

Game viewing in South Luangwa National Park, Zambia, one of Africa’s best National Parks is an added attraction. There are opportunities for walking and hiking for more active travellers, and this a well balanced tour, suitable for families and individuals alike.

Tour ratings.

  • Fitness
  • Off the beaten track 
  • Culture
  • History
  • Wildlife

Tour Pace


Tour style


Relaxed Pace

Relaxed tours are easy paced with plenty of leisure time built in. The tour will in all probability still be off the beaten track, with the occasional early start and there may still be occasional long drives. In general on a relaxed pace tour you can enjoy easy-going activities and experiences with opportunities to absorb the sights and immerse yourself in the local surroundings.

Moderate Pace

Moderate pace tours are ideal if you want a tour experience that combines activities and experiences with some time to relax. Typically you will be active and busy for part of the day but then also have time to rest and recharge your batteries. In general on a moderate paced tour there may be some long journeys involved but the tour is not an expedition or a road trip. On a moderate paced tour it will be necessary to have some early starts.

Busy Pace

A busy paced tour means that you can expect to be doing, seeing or experiencing something new almost every day, and moving on from place to place to pack in as much as possible. There may be early starts, long journeys and tiring days along the way, but you’ll return home feeling you’ve really experienced as much as you possibly could.

Pioneer Class Tours

On our Pioneer tours, you will be amongst an elite group of intrepid travellers and some of the first to explore a country that few have been privileged enough to discover. Of course, exploring such areas of the world will come with its challenges; it may mean several nights camping, long journeys by 4WD and the need to maintain a degree of flexibility for when carefully laid plans change. These are challenging tours in countries and areas that may have poor infrastructure, high levels of poverty and illiteracy. This can translate in to low standards in hotels, bad roads and poor driving standards among other issues. We try and smooth out as much of these issues as we can but you should be prepared to experience the bad with the good.

Traveller Class Tours

Our Traveller itineraries are at the core of our programme. These journeys are designed for travellers who still want to discover a land away from the tourist crowds but expect minimum standards. Accommodation will be primarily hotel based, although you could still find yourself camping, or the guest of a local family. Depending on the destination and itinerary, you’ll likely be travelling in a private vehicle, with occasional use of public transport. This is adventure travel with some of the rough edges smoothed out.


Arrive in Blantyre where you will be met and transferred from the airport to the lodge. Your guide will meet everyone at the lodge for introductions. Overnight at Leslie Lodge or similar. (D)

(approx. driving time 3-4 hours)

After breakfast depart south to Majete Park, arriving just before lunch. This afternoon choose to take a walk along the river, or simply spend the afternoon at leisure. Overnight Ngona Lodge or similar (BD)

Spend the day in Majete National Park, returning to the lodge mid-afternoon. Overnight Ngona Lodge or similar (BLD)

Today we leave Majete back towards Blantyre and on to Thyolo and Game Haven Lodge. We have lunch at the historical Mandela house and arrive at the lodge early afternoon. Overnight Game Haven Lodge (BLD)

After breakfast we explore the area. A highlight will be a walking tour of the world recognized Satemwa Tea estate, followed by a tea tasting workshop. They produce a variety of white, black, gold and flavoured teas. After the tasting, return to the luxurious Huntingdon House where we will have a superb lunch. After lunch it’s a short drive and walk up into the estate to Thyolo Mountain – a wonderful site with excellent views of the lower Shire Valley. For keen birders the forest surrounding this picnic site is home to the rare and endemic Thyolo Alethe.  Mid-afternoon, return to Game Haven to relax around the pool, or go walking, mountain biking or even enjoy a round of golf. Overnight at Game Haven Lodge (BLD)

Today we head north to the old capital Zomba. En route we stop at the post office museum before continuing to Zomba. On arrival we take a brief tour then head to Ku Chawe Inn, where we will take a guided walk in the hills. Overnight Ku Chawe Inn or similar (BLD)

After an early breakfast we travel to Llwonde towm where we take a boat safari into Liwonde Park. After lunch we continue to Cape Maclear where we arrive in the afternoon. Overnight Chembe Eagle’s Nest or similar (BLD)

Today is at leisure to enjoy the beach, including non-motorised watersports. Alternatively explore the local village, walk into the surrounding mountains, or visit historical graves. Overnight at Chembe Eagles Nest or similar (BD)

Depart for the drive to Mua Mission; Mua is the site of the KuNgoni Centre of Culture and Art. It provides insights into the history and culture of Malawi through the Chamare Museum, the Carving Centre and the new Research Centre/Library. The museum describes the Chewa, Ngoni and Yao cultures, their rites of passage, their interaction with one another and their encounters with Islam and Christianity. It also holds a unique display of Gule Wamkulu masks, texts and images and dances can be arranged. It is home to a thriving community, including an arts and crafts centre whose students create Malawi’s finest wood carvings and who go on to make a living from their own handiwork throughout Malawi. After this, it’s a one-hour drive to our overnight stop. Overnight at Blue Waters. (B, Picnic Lunch, D)

(210 kms, approx. 4 hours total driving time)

After breakfast, depart for Dzalanyama Forest. We turn off and head South East before Lilongwe and drive towards Mozambique. Arrival is mid-afternoon. After checking into our chalets, a short walk into the surrounding forest and up Mtsongololo mountain is offered. The track takes us through the endemic forests where there is a profusion of miombo birdlife. Return back to the lodge as it gets dark. Please note that the number of en-suite rooms is limited and you may be allocated a room with shared bathroom facilities. Overnight at Forest House, Dzalanyama Forest or similar. (B, Picnic Lunch, D)

(230 kms, approx. 5 hrs total driving time)

Today is a community visit day. We visit the community that live just outside the reserve – you have the opportunity to walk through the village, visit a local school, meet the locals and learn how to pound maize, we will eat some local food, drink some local brews and get a glimpse life as a rural Malawian. The Malawian people are known for their friendliness and this will certainly reaffirm this view – this visit is non-staged and as authentic as living in the country is. Return to the house in the evening for sundowners followed by dinner.  Overnight at Forest House, Dzalanyama Forest. (BLD)

After breakfast we transfer to the border where we complete immigration formalities and continue into Zambia. From the border it is another 2.5hrs to Luangwa Valley – Mfuwe sector. A picnic lunch is enjoyed en route and we expect to reach our lodge in the mid-afternoon. We use one of 3 lodges in Luangwa, namely, Marula Lodge, Wildlife Camp or Thornicroft Lodge – all lodges are of a similar standard and offer a good 2 star experience. Each chalet is en-suite with comfortable beds, mattresses and bedding ensuring you have the best nights rest possible, whilst being safely tucked inside your large walk in mosquito net. The restaurants serve good wholesome meals, whilst tea and coffee is available throughout the day. The bar serves a selection of drinks. and you can enjoy the swimming pool. Game drives are undertaken in specially modified 4X4 open safari vehicles led by a qualified guide with an intimate knowledge of the park and its fauna and flora. Overnight at Marula Lodge, Wildlife Camp or Thornicroft Lodge. (B, Picnic Lunch, D)

Morning and afternoon game drives. All lodges have open game drive vehicles, en suite accommodation, good food and a pool to relax by during the midday break. Optional game walks can be arranged locally. Overnight at Marula Lodge, Wildlife Camp or Thornicroft Lodge. (BLD)

(Approximate driving time: four hours)

Today transfer to the airport for a flight to Lusaka or Lilongwe for your international flight (B)

Mapped itinerary.

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Download the full tour dossier for this trip here.

Tour Notes

Please note that the 17 May 2023 departure is a slightly different itinerary and is only 15 days in length. Please contact us for more details.

For this tour we require an initial deposit of 20% of the value of the tour in order to confirm the booking due to limited availability at lodges.

This group tour operates subject to a minimum group size of 2 travellers. You may be joined by travellers from companies other than Undiscovered Destinations.

Single Supplement from £415 – £445.

Return flights from London to Lilongwe start from around £530. Please contact us for a quotation.

Airport transfers are included in the tour price if you are arriving on the first and departing on the last day of the tour, or if you stay before or after the tour at the same hotel being used by the group.

Please contact us for prices for pre and post tour accommodation.

If you do not wish to be part of a group tour then you can do the same tour on a private basis. Please contact us for prices.

Kindly note that we can also tailor a similar or totally different itinerary to meet your requirements.

For expert advice get in touch now with our passionate,
well-travelled team.

+44(0) 191 296 2674 from THE UK
1-800-614-2967 from THE US & CANADA
1-300-956-415 from AUSTRALIA

Tour inclusions.

  • Arrival and departure transfers
  • All accommodation
  • Transport in private vehicles
  • Services of an English speaking guide
  • National park fees
  • Meals as listed (B – Breakfast, L – Lunch, D – Dinner)
  • Entrance fees listed as part of the itinerary

Tour exclusions.

  • International flights
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Any airport taxes
  • Travel Insurance
  • Visas (Double entry for Malawi – $150 and single entry for Zambia – $50)
  • Drinks
  • Tips (discretionary)

We had a fantastic time. The lodges were all as good as we had expected and the guides superb. The wildlife was above and beyond what we had hoped for. Thank you for a great holiday.


Laura Hermitage, UK