Lake Chilwa gives you a peak into rural life but it’s is not for the lighthearted. 30 km off the main road, a dirt track will bring you to this little visited lake.
Although it is the second largest lake of Malawi, the villagers and fishermen do not see a lot of tourists. It makes you feel very uncomfortable taking pictures and the villagers desperately want you to support them, buy stuff or take a (leaking!) boat onto the lake.
There are good reasons to take a boat out though. The inhabited islands in the lake, Chisi and Thongwe, must be one of the most remote communities in all Malawi. Thongwe is towards the northern limits of the lake and the people live in much the same way as their forebears did. Unfortunately, diseases like cholera mean that not a lot of visitors go there. But that’s what vaccinations are for, right? 😉
Malawi lies in sub-Saharan Africa, nestled between Zambia and Mozambique. It's one of the poorest countries in the world. But! It is safe. And with safari parks, mountain treks, tea estates and a lake of fresh water which covers one-third of the country, Malawi has plenty to offer when you want to venture off the beaten track.