The capital of Malawi, Lilongwe is the entertainment and commerce centre of Malawi. Lilongwe was created between the 1960s and 1970s to become the country’s capital in 1975.
Lilongwe is divided into two areas, the Old Town and the New Town both in the north and south respectively, with Nature Sanctuary lying in between; a planned capital with an estimated population of about a million inhabitants.
The Old Town is more compelling for visitors to explore as it houses bustling markets, bars, cafes, restaurants and crafts shop.
The New Town of Lilongwe emanated over 20 years and is termed a business destination. It consists of embassies, government buildings and headquarters of Reserve bank.
Visitors to Lilongwe find it friendly and welcoming, with excellent roads.
Acclaimed as the Garden City, Malawi’s capital Lilongwe is split into the old town and the new. Lilongwe Nature Sanctuary lies in between and it is a place to visit. Within it is the Lilongwe Wildlife Centre, the first PAW (People and Wildlife) center in the world. Other ‘Must See’ in the city include: the Kamuzu Mausoleum where the country’s first president is interred, the Parliament Building, the Tobacco Auction Floors, Kumbali Cultural Village, Tindoz d’Afrique, and the food market.
Day to day menu in most Malawian homes is very traditional and you may want to acquaint your palate with the local dishes like Nsima. Fish plays a prominent part in the menu as well. Lilongwe with a rich community of expats, expect to find a potpourri of cuisine like Indian, Chinese, Italian, Korean, etc.
Tea is drunk regularly and with gusto, and Malawian tea is regarded as one of the best in the world. Carlsberg is the country’s only brewed beer and it comes in different variants. It is possible to get other brews from some bars and clubs although that is usually more expensive. Interestingly, Malawi has its own spirits: like vodka, gin, brandy, and rum which are quite good. They are worth a try and you can play it safe like the locals and mix ‘em with Fanta. Aside from these, you can also get foreign wines and spirits, although they will certainly cost more.