Zomba plateau Malawi

Zomba plateau Malawi

Zomba plateau Malawi

Zomba Plateau is an isolated syenite protrusion that extends over around 130km² and reaches an altitude of 2,087m at Malumbe Peak in the southwest. The plateau’s northwest rim forms the southern escarpment of the Upper Shire Valley and is characterized by sheer drops of up to 1,200m, offering spectacular views over the plains below.

Zomba’s scenery is undoubtedly its main attraction, but the mountain also supports a rich birdlife, while mammal species present include elusive populations of leopard, Serval cat, and mongooses. Antelope present on the mountain includes bushbuck, klipspringer and red duiker, vervet monkey and yellow baboon are reasonably common, and the lovely samango monkey is seen in indigenous forests, particularly around Chingwe’s Hole and Zomba Forest Lodge.

Why go

The main attraction is, of course, the plateau; here you can partake in a range of activities including walking & trekking, cycling & mountain biking, fishing, and horse riding. The plateau top is crisscrossed by streams and there are tumbling waterfalls and still lakes. The views from the top were described in colonial times as “the best in the British Empire” so it is well worth the hike to the top. If you don’t feel like hiking there are a number of drivable tracks to the peak.

NB: We recommend Horse riding on the plateau, Stand under a waterfall, hiking to the summit

Zomba plateau is home to a variety of wildlife including, leopard – although sightings are rare -, baboons, and giant butterflies. Birdlife includes the long-crested eagle and the augur buzzard.

Where to stay

Accommodation on the plateau includes a luxury hotel, the famous Sunbird Ku Chawe, set at the very edge of the mountain; and a large camping site. Slightly lower down the plateau slopes, the cozy Zomba forest Lodge offers an alternative ‘off the grid’ stay, complete with fantastic food. Off the plateau.

Zomba Forest Lodge

Zomba Forest Lodge is a colonial cottage nestled into Zomba Mountain. If you want intimacy and a cozy relaxed atmosphere, then here is the perfect destination for you.

Ku Chawe Inn

Situated within a forest, Ku Chawe Inn is a wonderful retreat that sits on the edge of the Zomba Plateau with panoramic views of the valley.


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