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Mulanje Massif 
Zomba Plateau and environs. 

Malawi Rock Climbing 

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Elevation: 3,200'
Location: -13.5819, 33.9258 View Map  Incorrect?
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Administrator: Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: John Bradford on Jun 30, 2013
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Climbing in Malawi, Zomba Plateau



Not exactly a climbing destination, but there is a small climbing community mostly located in and around Zomba and Mt Mulanje. Mike Dalious, who operated an NGO in Zomba for several years developed several small crags in the area, and though he has departed, it is possible to find local expats who are familiar with the area. There are also small climbing pockets around Dedza, and Ntcheu. The best option is to locate the ex pat community and ask about climbers.
There is no sport climbing..the rock is mostly granite and is very hard and weathered. The lack of temperature extremes does not permit any cracking, and the rock is covered with lichens and exfoliation. That said, Mulanje Massif and the Zomba Plateau are two of the most impressive formations in East Africa, if not all of Africa. There are numerous, run out mountaineering routes on Mulanje, and several very old guidebooks are out there. The best is Frank Eastwood's Guide o the Mulanje Massif, still available through Amazon (used copies) Zomba Plateau is a great setting, with a few good places to climb. This is adventure doubt about it.
Malawi is one of the poorest countries in the world, with one of the densest populations per square mile. Transportation is challenging, accomadations as well. Food and fuel shortages are common. But the people are some of the friendliest in Africa, and though petty crime is common, Malawi is much safer than most African countries. It is still prudent to take all the usual precautions, but this is not Kenya, or West Africa, or South Africa. Travelers in general will fare better here in this regard.

Getting There 

Is not easy. there are two airports with international flights: Lilongwe (LLW) and Blantyre(BLT) LLW has flights from Nairobi, Addis Ababa and johannesburg. BLT from Joburg. Car rentals are possible, either in the major cities or at the airports....but fuel is an on again off again problem, with shortages and long queues common. Public transport includes the ubiquitous mini buses (I wouldn't go there for long distances) and several long haul buses services of varying quality. Blantyre is a more progressive city, but both it and lilongwe have all the usual African services and prices. Zomba is a smaller community in the shadow of the plateau, with a larger ex pat community. It is a shade cooler, and a quieter refuge from the rest of Malawi.
Trips to the lake, and safaris to Liwonde or Luangwa in Zambia are easily arranged as well.

Climbing Season

Weather station 3.8 miles from here

10 Total Climbing Routes

['4 Stars',0],['3 Stars',0],['2 Stars',2],['1 Star',2],['Bomb',0]

Featured Route For Malawi

Big Mac 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a  Africa : Malawi : ... : Chinamwali Hill
Another fun climb here. More sustained climbing with good holds, and also possible to start higher or lower here.. Stay just left of a crack running up the face....[more]   Browse More Classics in International

Photos of Malawi Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Mary Kuhlke on End of Days, Zomba environs....
Mary Kuhlke on End of Days, Zomba environs....
Rock Climbing Photo: Kids
Rock Climbing Photo: Always entertaining
Always entertaining
Rock Climbing Photo: Always a crowd when the expats climb.  What passes...
Always a crowd when the expats climb. What passes...
Rock Climbing Photo: Zomba Plateau
Zomba Plateau

Comments on Malawi Add Comment
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By tenesmus
Aug 24, 2014
There is rock all over the place but I wouldn't call it a climbing destination. These photos are between Blantyre and Mulanji. To be clear, I know nothing about the climbing here.

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