Although only 220 sq miles (580 sq km), Liwonde is perhaps the most popular of all the game parks. It is about 100 miles (160 km) north of Blantyre and only rather more than half that distance from the hotels on the southern Lakeshore. Additionally, game viewing is enhanced because the River Shire flows along its western border, allowing boat safaris as well as the usual ones on foot or in 4x4s.
Wildlife includes quite large numbers of elephants and the river attracts countless hippos and crocodiles. Antelope include kudu, sable and bushbuck. There are leopards and hyeana and the occassional visiting lion. Black rhino has been re-introduced. Birdlife is exceptionally varied. The river attracts fish eagles and weaver birds build their nests in the thin woodland. Pel’s fishing owl is often seen at dusk along the river’s edge.
Accommodation is first-class with the luxury Mvuu Lodge and nearby Mvuu Camp as well as a camp site, all along the Shire’s bank and well inside the park. To reach the riverside lodge, visitors can approach by road and then be ferried across the river, they can drive through the park or they can use a pre-arranged boat from Liwonde town. There is also an airstrip near the lodge, served by charter flights.