Majete Wildlife Reserve, Malawi
At a Glance
Explore the fascinating Majete Reserve, newly opened to visitors
Bush walks with your expert guide are a highlight - discover the hidden Majete
Game drives take you deep into the park to explore uncharted territory
Mkulamadzi villas are designed to take advantage of the breathtaking views
Combines beautifully with its sister-camp Pumulani, on the shores of Lake Malawi
Best time to Visit
Good time to visit
Average time to visit
Malawi has a moderate to sub-tropical climate with three distinct seasons: from November to March is the rainy season, April to July is Malawi's winter, when the weather is cool and dry, and August to October is summer, when the weather is hot and dry. In terms of game-viewing, the dryer months, meaning a higher concentration of game at the permanent water sources, are a superb time to visit. Alternatively come for some superb bird-watching at the end of the rains.
To start planning your holiday to Mkulumadzi
The newest lodge from the stable of Robin Pope Safaris, Mkulumadzi occupies a beautiful position on the banks of the tumbling Shire River as it passes through Majete Reserve. Top class guiding and some rare species make this a superb safari in Malawi.
The Majete Wildlife Reserve, in southern Malawi, is rapidly becoming one of Malawi’s top game parks; recently the park has seen its ranks swell with rhino, elephant, buffalo, eland, nyala, zebra, sable, waterbuck and hartebeest all being relocated there. We’re delighted that these animals are now flourishing – with a few rhino babies recently adding to the numbers!
High up on the banks of the perennial Shire River, Mkulumadzi, the newest lodge from Robin Pope Safaris, can be found. The lodge is one of the most luxurious in Malawi and has just eight beautiful, spacious chalets, each with a wonderful view over the river and the bush beyond it. These views are given centre stage, with one side of the rooms being completely open, with a large veranda on which to relax and watch game. Inside, each room has a king size bed shrouded in walk-in mosquito net, and each chalet is air-conditioned for those hot October days. The bathrooms are nothing short of spectacular with a bathtub with a view!
Mkulumadzi prides itself on its green credentials – not only is the over bed air conditioning so efficient that it can be run purely on solar power, but all but one of the chalets have roofs which have been planted with endemic grasses, which helps to keep them very cool during the heat of the day. There are also two family chalets, conveniently close to the main area, and each with a lounge area between the two chalets. The honeymoon suite is beautiful, with incredible views and a high, sloping thatched roof.
The activities at Mkulumadzi, as you would expect from Robin Pope Safaris, are very flexible – day and night game drives and walking safaris are always on offer, as well as trips along the river in the lodge’s boat on the calmer stretches of river. The guiding is absolutely top-notch and the camp can combine perfectly either with Pumulani on Malawi’s lake shore, or for real safari-enthusiasts, combine it with Robin Pope Safaris’ camps in Zambia – Nkwali, Nsefu or Tena Tena.
Mkulamadzi has eight large and very comfortable thatched villas. This includes two family villas which are found closest to the main area and have with two identical ensuite bedrooms so would work for a family or two couples who are travelling together. The bedrooms share a sitting room.
The lodge has a good sized swimming pool with views of the Shire River, perfect to cool off in or watch the hippos wallowing in the river below.
Louisa Verney (Staff)
Mkulamadzi is a stunning lodge, whose main area over looks the rapids on the Shire River and the 8 open fronted rooms look out over the Mkulamadzi river. The lodge is very well designed, well thought out and stylish and you can certainly see parallels with it's sister lodge on the shores of Lake Malawi, Pumalani.
The rooms have the new easy breeze over bed air conditioning units, which were an essential treat in the mid October heat, I also loved their outdoor showers with views of the river and falling asleep to the tranquil sound of the rapids in the distance.
Indiana, get back in your box: at the northernmost tip of the Majete in a cosy pocket of the Warm Heart of Africa, a slightly swaying suspension bridge crosses the Mkulumadzi River. At the far side lies not a Temple of Doom, but a cluster of eight swanky rooms overlooking tussling rapids all gloriously smart bush chic, with windows that look down onto a pod of hippos. The reserve, rather like Malawi itself, has been rehab-ed, and the wildlife list now reads like a rather sweet antelope version of Whos Who: iron-grey nyala, noble sable bulls and aristocratic Lichtensteins hartebeest clop happily over the plains. This is the latest from Robin Pope Safaris, and the guiding is superb, with 17,300 acres to explore. For more floaty pleasures, boat along and watch elephants grazing on little islands. Or walk to the edge of the Mpatamanga Rapids and gape at the raging cataracts that defied David Livingstone.
Location & directions
Majete Wildlife Reserve, Malawi
Mkulumadzi is located in a private concession area within the Majete Wildlife Reserve, southwest of Blantyre in Southern Malawi.
How to get there
Mkulumadzi is about 70km southwest of Malawi's second city, Blantyre – which is linked to Lilongwe and Johannesburg by direct scheduled flights. It is about a 2-hour transfer from Blantyre to Majete, on a good tarred road; this is quite a varied and spectacular trip down the escarpment, and a great way to arrive.
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