Top island getaways in Malawi for barefoot luxury and water-sporting adventure.
Malawi has numerous wonderful freshwater islands to visit. On the southern route – the closest, Mumbo island is a barefooted luxury island hideaway choice with Domwe island being the neighbouring island for the more adventurous, both offering unpopulated, deserted lakeside relaxation. Enjoy walks, hikes and activities such as swimming, snorkelling and kayaking in the cleansing lake waters. Further up north, Likoma and Nankoma Island provide further isolated and pristine island seclusions for barefoot luxury and water-sporting adventure.
KAYA MAWA LODGE – Likoma Island
Kaya Mawa Lodge is at the head of a crescent-shaped bay on Likoma Island, surrounded by mango trees and ancient baobabs. With no machinery available, Kaya Mawa Lodge was built entirely by hand, in partnership with the local community.
How to get there
One hour flight from Lilongwe – 15min boat ride or road transfer from airstrip to lodge, It is an intimate, beautifully designed lodge on a lovely beach and deemed to be one of the most isolated and unique destinations in Malawi, perfect for families or honeymooners!
7 stone and teak framed thatched cottages (of which 2 are family units) set into granite headland.
1 honeymoon island accessed by a raised walkway. Power supply: 220v generator power – battery recharging limited, 3 pin square plugs. Paraffin lamps at night.
• Scuba diving,
• Kite surfing,
• Kayaking, boat trips/ sailing,
• Mountain & quad biking
• Excursions to local villages and Likoma’s cathedral
MUMBO ISLAND CAMP – Lake Malawi National Park
Mumbo Island is a pristine and deserted tropical island, and the undisputed jewel of the Lake Malawi National Park with clean and calm waters around. The Island has never been populated, and is still in its natural state with a thick covering of Miombo woodland and ancient fig and baobab trees. The camp is built of reeds, timber, thatch and canvas. It is perched on high rocks overlooking the water and blends in with the African bush to create a Robinson Crusoe atmosphere of rustic charm
How to get there.
4-5 hours drive from Lilongwe, 3-4 hours drive from Blantyre, 45mins to 1 hour from The Makokola Retreat airstrip. 45min boat transfer from mainland to Mumbo or a 2 hour kayak trip.
Season: Closed mid January to end February.
5 Twin en-suite tents, 1 family unit (2 bedrooms with shared bathroom). All with shaded decks and hammocks. Bathrooms consist of buckets showers and eco loos! Mumbo Island Camp is managed by Kayak Africa. Power supply: No electricity. Paraffin lamps at night only.
• Sea kayaking
• Beach walks
• Scuba diving available at extra cost
BLUE ZEBRA LODGE – Nankoma Island
The Blue Zebra Island Lodge is located on Nankoma Island that is situated in the Lake Malawi National Park. One of three, the island of Nankoma forms part of the Marelli Island archipelago. Offering pristine seclusion and some of the finest snorkeling in Malawi. With over 300 bird species and a diverse range of cichlids species. The islands is a haven for birdwatchers and freshwater divers.
How to get there.
A 20 minute boat ride away from Whistlers collection point, located 5km from Senga Bay. Approximately 2 hours from Lilongwe.
1 Superior Family Cottage : Private facing lake chalet with 2 separate en suite bedrooms. 4 Lake facing chalets, 2 of which are family chalets. 5 Lake Safari Tents and five additional budget safari tents. Power supply: 220v generator power – battery recharging limited, 3 pin square plugs. Paraffin lamps at night.
• Nature trails
• Sunset cruises
• Wakeboarding & water skiing.
Book one of these island getaways on your next cycle tour and get 10% discount off!