Malawi named one of Lonely Planet's Best in Travel Top Countries for 2022! Find out more.
Malawi named one of Lonely Planet's Best in Travel Top Countries for 2022! Find out more.
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Music & Arts

Malawi has a wide range of performance arts to show off to its visitors, from traditional dance to up-and-coming hip hop artists. There are many opportunities to see local artists, from small performances to the internationally renowned Lake of Stars music festival. Individual performances will be easiest found in the main cities of Lilongwe and Blantyre, but the festivals favour Lake Malawi. See also the Events page for details of Malawi’s main festivals.


Modern Malawian music is eclectic and tends to take its influence from many styles, genres and countries – from Jamaican Reggae to Swedish Electro. Reggae is extremely popular with The Black Missionaries gaining international recognition along with The Makambale Brothers who mix Reggae with traditional music played on their homemade instruments. Hip Hop is another popular genre with up and coming artists such as 3rdEye and Biriwiri performing alongside more established artists such as Tay Grin. Malawi is also not without its well established more traditional musicians such as Giddes Chalamanga, Lucius Banda and Joseph Tembo. Click here for more information on Malawian Music


There are many theatre projects, groups and productions across Malawi ranging from Shakespeare to AIDS education drama groups. The Nanzikambe Theatre Arts Project, based in Blantyre (Southern Malawi), aims to create diverse theatrical forms of expression rooted in African Culture by working with the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture to develop a flourishing theatre industry. The Project puts on adaptations of of classic dramas such as ‘African Hamlet’ as well as plays based on current affairs such as ‘Accidental Death of Democracy’.

There are also many charity projects that use theatre in community education of issues such as HIV/AIDS prevention and the environment. Story Workshop is based in Blantyre and works with local people to bring about social change by combining communication and creative entertainment. Many local charities also have drama groups, such as the Malawi Home Based Care Drama Group who perform free plays to large audiences on issues relating to HIV/AIDS. Theatre for a Change is another project that uses theatre in education and teacher training.


Dance is an essential part of the Malawian lifestyle; a child dancing to a boom box powered by car battery is a regular sight in towns, cities and the countryside. The Malawian national dance troupe ‘Aka Kwatcha’ has performed all over the world leading to other dance troupes being set up across the country. The Blantyre based Elements Dance Crew have drawn much attention with their spectacular routines. Another, more unexpected, form of dance performance are the Shaolin Displays by the Amitofo Care Centre.

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Blantyre & Limbe

The largest urban area in Malawi, the conurbation of Blantyre & Limbe, is the country’s commercial capital.


Lilongwe is Malawi’s capital. The Old Town is distinct and has the appearance of a traditional African settlement, whilst the City has much in common with other twentieth century urban developments around the world.

Similar Activities

Village Visits

Malawi’s people are its greatest asset - friendly, welcoming, colourful and vibrant. As well as the natural daily encounters with Malawians, there are widespread opportunities to visit real villages.

Tea Tasting

Tea is Malawi's second largest export, with acres of tea plantations in the south of the country. The Satemwa Tea Estate at Thyolo is a tourist hotspot for those wishing to take part in tea tasting.

Museums & Historical Sites

There is much to see of Malawi’s history, beginning with the pre-history remains of the Karonga district and the Stone Age rock paintings near Dedza. Elsewhere, the colonial period is preserved in buildings dating from the David Livingstone era.

Market Visits

Malawi's bustling and colourful local markets sell everything from fruit and vegetables to arts & crafts, meat and traditional dress.

Community Volunteer Projects

Becoming a volunteer in Malawi's communities goes along way to provide a better future for Malawian people.