Blogs from Malawi, Africa - page 9


Africa » Malawi » Lake Malawi » Chitimba Beach August 17th 2012

Today we had a relaxing day around lake Malawi in Chitimba. We spent some time reading in the hammocks, walking down by the beach area, and then we went with some of the group over to the neighbouring campsite which had a large bar area. Lake Malawi is very interesting to see as it is so big you can’t see the end of it, also it has sand around it so you think it is actually the ocean. When we went over to the other campsite it didn’t take long for Chris and I to hear the familiar sounds of home. We heard some people with the Northern Irish accent. Chris took the opportunity to go and speak to them and found out that it was an elderly couple over to visit their son and daughter-in-law ... read more

Africa » Malawi » Lake Malawi » Chitimba Beach August 16th 2012

Today was another driving day as we headed towards the border of Malawi. We got up early and were ready to depart for 6am. Due to unpredictable border entries we packed our lunch in the morning and set off for another long day. The drives really are part of the overlanding experience, they can be very long but really to be able to see so many countries in such a short space of time it really is the best option. Again,everybody slept for a while on the truck, played some card games, read a little, for some reason my travel sickness hasn’t bothered me too much on the truck which is a positive as it would be a very long journey if I wasn’t able to do anything other than sit looking out the window. When ... read more

Africa » Malawi » Central » Lilongwe August 15th 2012

7/27 Sorry it’s taken me so long to write this next entry. We’ve had frequent all day power outages which can make things a little difficult around here! These past 3 weeks have definitely had their fair share of highs and lows with time moving fast and yes, even slow. I’ve had some kind of cold symptoms for about two of them but really I think it’s all the red clay-colored dust and exhaust in the air. Anyway, it’s left me totally wiped, sleeping away half my evenings right after work. Not much writing has gotten done so I’ll summarize my days as they come to me. Our busy times at work have included meetings with DFID (MEJN’s funder), AICC, a policy symposium on agriculture production and an all day Saturday meeting in the Mchinji ... read more

Africa » Malawi » Southern » Cape Maclear August 10th 2012

Cape Maclear was the original location for the mission of Livingstonia. But, it turned out to be malarial, and andthus Livingstonia was relocated further north on Lake Nyassa (Lake Malawi). It's now a backpacker heaven with the usual banana pancakes for breakfast, myriad water activities, souvenir shopping and hammocks at most guest houses with a vibe to match. Oh yes .. Bob Marley and Reggae everywhere too. Tomorrow, we plan to head to Mozambique and head towards the Indian Ocean at Mozambique Island. It's going to be at least 2 days of travel.... read more
Cape Maclear Beach
Baobob Tree

Africa » Malawi » Southern » Cape Maclear August 9th 2012

Since the travel to Senga Bay was tough, we splurged and paid for a speed boat direct to Cape Maclear. The speed boat was an adventure in itself. Much better than paying for a zip line across Batoka Gorge at Victoria Falls. Longer than the 3 minute zip line too. When we first inquired about the speed boat, we were told it takes about 25 minutes from Senga Bay to Cape Maclear. Then someone else said it's more like 40 minutes. When we asked Captain Magic (Yes, that's his name, and the name of his boat was "Bad News"), he said it would be about an hour. We thought the lake was calm and the ride would be quite smoothe. Guess again! the beach areas were relatively calm, but the middle of the lake was windy ... read more
N.. and W.. Speeding
E.. and 1st Mate
Guest House Reception


Africa » Malawi » Central » Senga Bay August 7th 2012

Lilongwe is not the typical African capital city. It's laid back and low key. We decided to stay an extra day to catch our breath and also because we liked our hotel room so much. But, it turned out our room was already reserved. So, we went to the bus station around 11:00 and caught a half bus to Monkey Bay on Lake Malawi (Lake Nyassa). We were told it was a 4-5 hour trip. From Monkey Bay, it's a short hop to Cape Maclear, our actual destination. A half bus is a bus that seats less than 40 people and are older and less comfortable than full size buses. Only one full size bus goes each day to Monkey Bay, but it leaves early. The half buses leave whenever they are full. Full means really ... read more
Travel on Motola
Sunrise at Senga Bay
Boat Remnant

Africa » Malawi » Central » Lilongwe August 6th 2012

Following the Game Walk, we hired a taxi to take us to the Malawi border. The "taxi driver" was an off duty police officer. Civil servants are generally not paid a living wage. Most survive by charging bribes for the smallest of tasks. Others moonlight. As a bonus, the police officer was a good driver. The first hour of travel was on unpaved road, and was rough on the small car. The final leg was on fresh tarmac. After immigration formalities of stamping exit and entry visas, we got lucky when a Zambia-Malawi bus showed up at the border crossing heading to Lilongwe. Since it was Sunday, we'd considered staying at the border overnight, to give ourselves better choices at traversing the last hour and a half from the border to Lilongwe. This bus goes only ... read more

Africa » Malawi » Lake Malawi » Chitimba Beach July 20th 2012

After an interesting boarder crossing where we were almost ripped off by money changers we entered the very friendly country of Malawi. Malawi is a noticeably poorer country than both Kenya and Tanzania however the people are extremely warm and welcoming. After driving across the boarder and through numerous straw built villages we made out first stop, Chitimba on Lake Malawi where we stayed for three nights. We spent a lot of time in the local villages where we enjoyed visiting the students and teachers at the primary school and had a tour around the community health centre. The village had just had a water pumping system put in and were proud to show it off. I spent one afternoon learning to wood carve, I carved a giraffe with a little help from my 13 year ... read more
Dancing with the children
Beautiful Chitimba
Chitimba Village

Africa » Malawi » Central » Lilongwe July 16th 2012

7/2 - 7/5 Alex and I officially started our first week of work with Fletcher at Malawi Economic Justice Network (MEJN). Fletcher himself is a well known international development research fellow at the Overseas Development Institute (ODI) in the U.K. and has worked all over the world. He is also native to Malawi and good friends/neighbors with our host mother, Sally, which is convenient for rides into Old Town where the office is located. Once in his office, Fletcher outlines the projects we'll be working on this summer. Some of which include case studies centered on Malawian access to justice, water, service provisions and human rights. We get to choose out of 10 projects that our focus will be placed on the Phalombe (Pa-lome-be) District in Malawi's southern region. This research will double for our Applied ... read more

Africa » Malawi » Lake Malawi July 10th 2012

6/28 Yesterday we received good news that our bags finally arrived in Malawi so Sally was kind enough to drive us once again. And she FINALLY explained all about last night. Apparently, her neighbor a few weeks ago overheard that we were coming for the summer and really pushed Sally to have us stay with her instead. Foreigners = $. So the woman, who locals call other women "mama", did a sneak attack move on Sally and dropped by for "some tea" but really she just wanted to see if we had arrived at her house yet. Many apologies and laughs later it was just another funny story to add to the collection of my summer in Malawi. With bags finally with us we thank Sally by paying for her petrol (gas), which until recently was ... read more

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