This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Learn more

Skip to main content

Talk to an expert 1-800-242-2434 Lines open now

User menu
FROM US$3,400-US$4,500

Red Zebra Cichlid Safari

Explore two of Malawi's highlights, with a safari in rugged, remote Majete Wildlife Reserve before some beach time: relaxing, snorkelling and sailing in Lake Malawi National Park.

Red Zebra Cichlid Safari: Summary

Red Zebra Cichlid Safari in a nutshell

Malawi doesn’t often come top of traveller lists, but for those after a great-value adventure where you’ll get to know some of the most welcoming people in the world, support some inspiring conservation work and explore some real wilderness, this trip is a great introduction to the "warm heart of Africa".

Begin with a safari in Majete Wildlife Reserve, 700km² of forested hills flanking the fast-flowing Shire River in the south of the country. By the late 1990s, much of the wildlife here had been poached but thanks to efforts supported by NGO African Parks, including ambitious reintroduction of black rhino and lion, Majete is now Malawi’s only "big five" park – and is a thriving model of sustainable development. Retaining a truly wild atmosphere, it still receives only a few thousand visitors a year, and by spending time here you’ll be supporting the ongoing restoration of the park.

Within the reserve, Mkulumadzi Lodge, run by the venerable Robin Pope Safaris, is a stylish set up which hosts a great mix of activities including game drives, walking safaris, boat trips on the river, visits to a nearby village, time in the photographic hide and even a night out on the star deck. Wildlife viewing here is getting better by the year and the birding is fantastic.

From Majete, following the Shire River to Lake Malawi by road, you'll pass through rural areas and towns, giving you a view of the "real" Malawi . There’s always the chance for the occasional stop – for an interesting market or even just a cold beer at a local shop.

Your second lodge is the luxury Pumulani, also run by Robin Pope Safaris, and overlooking the blue waters of Lake Malawi. Relax on the beach or in your villa, with ample opportunity for kayaking, snorkelling, diving, sailing and water-skiing. On land, head out on birdwatching walks or cycle to the neighbouring village for an insight into local traditions. Watching the sun set over the lake’s waters as the stars appear overhead from a dhow is an unforgettable way to round off your week.

At a glance

Starts: Blantyre International Airport
3 nights Mkulumadzi - Majete Wildlife Reserve, Malawi Full Board
4 nights Pumulani - Shore of Lake Malawi, Malawi Full Board
Ends: Lilongwe International Airport

Mkulumadzi Lodge

Days 1-4

Overlooking tumbling rapids at the confluence of the Shire and Mkulumadzi (sometimes written 'Mukulumadzi' or even 'Mkurumadzi') rivers, is the smart and solidly built Mkulumadzi Lodge. Opened in 2011, it is owned by Robin Pope Safaris and incorporates some innovative 'eco' ideas. The lodge is located in a 70km² private concession, within the newly revitalised Majete Wildlife Reserve.

View full itinerary

Pumulani

Days 4-8

Pumulani is a luxury beach lodge located high on a hill on the west side of Nankumba Peninsula, towards the southern end of Lake Malawi. It is within the Lake Malawi National Park so is a great spot for walking, snorkeling or simply relaxing.

View full itinerary
Mkulumadzi Lodge

Mkulumadzi

Majete Wildlife Reserve, Malawi

Pumulani

Pumulani

Shore of Lake Malawi, Malawi

About image

Highlights

Our thoughts on five of the top experiences of this Red Zebra Cichlid Safari.

  • Majete’s off-the-beaten-track wilderness
  • Play a part in an incredible conservation success story
  • Snorkel with clouds of cichlids in Lake Malawi
  • Watch the sun set and stars come out over the lake
  • Gain an insight into Malawi’s welcoming culture

Activities

Some activities which can be included in the Red Zebra Cichlid Safari: talk to us about those which interest you.

  • 4WD Safari

  • Birdwatching

  • Boat trip

  • Cultural excursion

  • Fishing

  • Guided walking safari

  • Night drive

  • Scuba-diving

  • Snorkelling

  • Watersports

About image
PUMULANI in LAKESHORE

Key species to see on the Red Zebra Cichlid Safari

Based on our travellers' observations, we’ve estimated the likelihood of seeing these species during the Red Zebra Cichlid Safari. Click on the animals and our wildlife surveys page for more info.


Eland

100% chance

Elephant

100% chance

Hippo

100% chance

Sable antelope

82% chance

Zebra

69% chance

Buffalo

57% chance

Cheetah

45% chance

Giraffe

45% chance

Roan antelope

27% chance

Black Rhino

20% chance

Lion

18% chance

Leopard

18% chance

Spotted Hyena

18% chance

Aardvark

0% chance

Pangolin

0% chance

Let us help you customise your trip

All of our holidays on this site are just ideas; none are fixed. All of our trips are tailor-made, so we'll always adapt them to suit you. Talk to an Expert and let us help you to work out your perfect trip.


Talk to an Expert

Call us now! We’ll match you with the Specialist in our team who is best suited to help you. Then together we can start planning your trip.

Set up your itinerary

Based on our experience and your ideas, your specialist will create a detailed, costed itinerary. We’ll refine it together, until we have a trip that you’re perfectly happy with.

Prepare for your trip

The same Specialist will make the seamless arrangements for your trip, send you detailed travel documents, and be available to answer any questions before you depart.

Travel with peace of mind

After you set off, you’ll be cared for by our partners in Africa, most of whom have worked with Expert Africa for decades. And if you ever need us urgently, we’re available 24/7.

When you return

We love to learn about your trip, and so will always be grateful if you’ve the time to give feedback to your Specialist when you return.

Inspire me

Need inspiration?

Let our trip chooser narrow down the options for you

Inspire me

Other ideas for Malawi trips

Look at these ideas in Malawi: then talk to us. Will will design a trip that's perfect for you.


Map

Utaka Cichlid Safari

10 days • 3 locations • 1 country
BLANTYRE AIRPORT TO LILONGWE AIRPORT

Explore two of Malawi's safari parks - Majete Wildlife Reserve and Liwonde National Park - before finishing your trip with some beach time: relaxing, snorkelling and sailing in Lake Malawi National Park.

Visiting Lakeshore, Majete and 1 other area

US$4,340 - US$5,700 per person

Read more about the Utaka Cichlid Safari

Map

Peacock Cichlid Safari

4 days • 1 location • 1 country
LILONGWE AIRPORT TO LILONGWE AIRPORT

Snorkel in Lake Malawi’s famously clear fresh water, relax on the beach and explore Likoma Island from the award-winning Kaya Mawa. A chilled luxury add-on to end your safari.

Visiting Likoma Island

US$3,430 - US$4,480 per person

Read more about the Peacock Cichlid Safari

Map

Utaka Cichlid Safari

10 days • 3 locations • 1 country
BLANTYRE AIRPORT TO LILONGWE AIRPORT

Explore two of Malawi's safari parks - Majete Wildlife Reserve and Liwonde National Park - before finishing your trip with some beach time: relaxing, snorkelling and sailing in Lake Malawi National Park.

Visiting Lakeshore, Majete and 1 other area

US$4,340 - US$5,700 per person

Read more about the Utaka Cichlid Safari

Map

Side-striped Jackal Safari

6 days • 2 locations • 1 country
VICTORIA FALLS AIRPORT TO VICTORIA FALLS AIRPORT

Get an in-depth experience of Zimbabwe’s colossal Hwange National Park, staying at two experience-focused camps with excellent guiding in contrasting areas. An adventurous safari for the real enthusiast.

Visiting Hwange

US$3,480 - US$5,460 per person

Read more about the Side-striped Jackal Safari

Map

Golden Weaver Fly-In Safari

6 days • 2 locations • 1 country
NAIROBI AIRPORT TO NAIROBI AIRPORT

A rustic, adventurous week on safari with great community involvement that offers incredible value for money in two very different locations – the Amboseli and Maasai Mara ecosystems.

Visiting Amboseli & Chyulu Hills, Mara Conservancies

US$3,280 - US$3,440 per person

Read more about the Golden Weaver Fly-In Safari

Map

Lovebird Fly-in Safari

5 days • 2 locations • 1 country
KILIMANJARO AIRPORT TO KILIMANJARO AIRPORT

Visit two consistently impressive wildlife destinations during this excellent-value safari in northern Tanzania. Enjoy a range of walks and cultural visits from sister camps at the Ngorongoro Crater and in the heart of the Serengeti.

Visiting Ngorongoro Crater, Serengeti

US$3,820 - US$5,960 per person

Read more about the Lovebird Fly-in Safari

Map

Klipspringer Safari

8 days • 3 locations • 1 country
VICTORIA FALLS AIRPORT TO BULAWAYO AIRPORT

An outstanding-value Zimbabwe safari exploring Victoria Falls and two contrasting locations in western Zimbabwe – Hwange and the Matobo Hills – giving you a real feel for Zimbabwe, its people and wildlife.

Visiting Matobo, Hwange and 1 other area

US$2,890 - US$3,570 per person

Read more about the Klipspringer Safari

Map

Dwarf Mongoose Fly-in Safari

6 days • 2 locations • 1 country
DAR ES SALAAM AIRPORT TO DAR ES SALAAM AIRPORT

Stay in two eco-friendly, rustic bush camps in Nyerere National Park and Ruaha National Park. Remote wilderness, a diversity of habitats and a good range of activities are available in these two wildlife havens.

Visiting Ruaha, Nyerere

US$4,110 - US$5,060 per person

Read more about the Dwarf Mongoose Fly-in Safari

Map

Nile Monitor Safari

6 days • 2 locations • 1 country
LUSAKA AIRPORT TO LUSAKA AIRPORT

Great-value South Luangwa safari to two sister camps: a classic safari camp for 4WD safaris by day and night and its simpler sibling: a remote, seasonal bushcamp for expert-guided walking safaris.

Visiting South Luangwa

US$4,110 - US$4,660 per person

Read more about the Nile Monitor Safari

Map

Kwandwe Self-drive Safari

3 days • 1 location • 1 country
PORT ELIZABETH AIRPORT TO PORT ELIZABETH AIRPORT

An elegantly stylish lodge that is well suited to families, Kwandwe offers a range of safari activities and the chance to sight all of the "Big 5" during exploration of the Eastern Cape.

Visiting Kwandwe

US$2,450 - US$4,040 per person

Read more about the Kwandwe Self-drive Safari

Other trip ideas across Africa

Talk to us: help us to understand what you like and we can create a trip that will really suit you.


Itinerary image

Hartebeest Self-drive Safari

16 days • 8 locations
WINDHOEK AIRPORT TO WINDHOEK AIRPORT

This self-drive safari focuses on the best cultural experiences in Namibia. Visit a Himba village and enjoy three days living with the San Bushmen interspersed with some excellent wildlife watching.

US$3,420 - US$4,200 per person

Itinerary image

Cape Mountain Zebra Self-drive Safari

12 days • 4 locations
CAPE TOWN AIRPORT TO CAPE TOWN AIRPORT

Fine dining, luxurious accommodation and a wide of range of leisurely activities make this a superbly comfortable self-driven safari. Visit the cosmopolitan Cape Town, tranquil coastal retreats, stylish wine farms and spectacularly peaceful nature reserves.

US$3,570 - US$6,630 per person

Itinerary image

Black Wildebeest Self-drive Safari

19 days • 10 locations
CAPE TOWN AIRPORT TO WINDHOEK AIRPORT

Journey from South Africa’s cosmopolitan Cape Town to central Namibia’s Okonjima Nature Reserve during this self-driven safari. The route passes through a stunning variety of landscapes, offering access to this beautiful continent’s rich diversity.

US$3,210 - US$3,690 per person

Itinerary image

Cape Grysbok Self-drive Safari

20 days • 8 locations
CAPE TOWN AIRPORT TO CAPE TOWN AIRPORT

Explore Cape Town, Hermanus, Franschhoek and Namaqualand, amongst other memorable destinations, during this leisurely self-driven safari. Fine dining, varied activities and impressively comfortable lodges, estates and country houses await.

US$3,800 - US$6,290 per person

Itinerary image

Cape Genet Self-drive Safari

20 days • 8 locations
CAPE TOWN AIRPORT TO CAPE TOWN AIRPORT

Enjoy fine-dining in Cape Town, whale-watching in Hermanus, and a range of walking and water-based activities throughout De Hoop’s Nature Reserve, the Klein Karoo and Plettenberg. This relaxed self-driven safari concludes with stays in The Winelands and Namaqualand.

US$2,880 - US$3,800 per person

Itinerary image

Namaqua Chameleon Self-drive

12 days • 7 locations
WINDHOEK AIRPORT TO WINDHOEK AIRPORT

A classic 12-night self-drive adventure around the highlights of eastern and northern Namibia taking in Sossusvlei, Swakopmund, Damaraland, Etosha and a final stop at Okonjima. Comfortable lodges and great value.

US$2,790 - US$4,460 per person

Itinerary image

Dune Lark Fly & Drive Safari

14 days • 8 locations
WINDHOEK AIRPORT TO WINDHOEK AIRPORT

A combination fly-in self-drive exploration of Namibia, with quick, easy and scenic flights in and out of Sossusvlei before a classic road trip adventure of the country’s rugged north.

US$4,410 - US$5,660 per person

Itinerary image

Waterbuck self-drive

12 days • 6 locations
CAPE TOWN AIRPORT TO PORT ELIZABETH AIRPORT

A classic Cape and Garden Route self-drive taken at a leisurely pace and staying in charming boutique hotels. Great food and wine paired with spectacular scenery and an exciting array of activities.

US$2,360 - US$2,930 per person

Itinerary image

Caracal Self-drive Safari

14 days • 8 locations
WINDHOEK AIRPORT TO WINDHOEK AIRPORT

The quintessential Namibian self-drive adventure exploring the highlights from Sossusvlei and the Namib Desert to Damaraland’s wilderness and a safari in Etosha. A great mix of accommodation and excellent value.

US$2,330 - US$3,930 per person

Itinerary image

Quiver Tree Self-drive Safari

14 days • 7 locations
WINDHOEK AIRPORT TO WINDHOEK AIRPORT

An offbeat Namibian self-drive adventure exploring the epic Fish River Canyon and fascinating Kolmanskop ghost town in the south, before turning north via the classic highlights of Sossusvlei, Swakopmund and Damaraland.

US$2,310 - US$3,190 per person

Login to Expert Africa

Sign in with password

Sign in with email link


New to Expert Africa? Create an account

Forgotten your details?

It's free & quick to set up

  • Save your wish-list
  • Send us an enquiry
  • Pay online for your trip
  • Subscribe to our newsletter
  • Give us feedback on your trip
  • Full site benefits of the site

Need some help? Talk to our team

Africa