Destination: Lake Malawi

Lake Malawi is the jewel in the crown of the country’s tourist attractions. This is the ‘inland sea’ of the otherwise land-locked Malawi. This vast body of crystal clear freshwater fringed by beaches of golden sand is not only a scenic wonderland but it provides water sport opportunities for those looking for something beyond sun, sand and swimming. As one of the first Europeans to set eyes on the Lake Malawi over 150 years ago, the missionary-explorer Dr David Livingstone christened it the ‘Lake of Stars’.

Its approximate dimensions are 365 miles north to south and 52 miles broad, hence another nickname: ‘Calendar Lake”. In the north, Lake Malawi is quite extraordinarily deep: 2300 ft/700 m, plunging well below sea level. This reflects the enormity of the natural faulting of the Great Rift Valley, which is the origin of the Lake. The width of the lake’s shorelands vary from nothing to over 25 kilometres (16 miles), the edge of the Rift Valley rising steeply in places and more gently in others.

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