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Home » Malawi: The Ultimate Travel Guide to the Warm Heart of Africa » Best Time to Visit Malawi in 2024 for Wildlife, Hiking, and Cultural Tours. Malawi Weather Guide

Best Time to Visit Malawi in 2024 for Wildlife, Hiking, and Cultural Tours. Malawi Weather Guide

Best Time to Visit Malawi

  • Optimal: Late May to early August (cooler temperatures, less rainfall).
  • For wildlife: June to October for the best wildlife viewing experiences.
  • Other favorable months: April, May, September, and October.

Geography facts

  • Location: Southeastern Africa.
  • Area: 118,484 km².
  • Borders: Tanzania, Mozambique, and Zambia.
  • Landscape: Defined by the Great Rift Valley, highlands, and large Lake Malawi.

Despite its small size, Malawi’s diverse landscapes range from stunning highlands to the vast expanse of Lake Malawi. The lake itself is a major draw, renowned for its clear waters and colorful cichlid fish, making it a paradise for snorkelers and divers.

Climate

Malawi enjoys a sub-tropical climate, generally characterized by a wet and a dry season. The wet season spans from November to April, while the dry season covers May to October, offering cooler temperatures and minimal rainfall.

The daily average high (red line) and low (blue line) temperature, with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands. The thin dotted lines are the corresponding average perceived temperatures. (c) weatherspark.com

Monthly Weather Snapshot

January

  • Wet season in full swing: Heavy rainfall across the country.
  • Temperatures: Warm, averaging 25°C (77°F) to 30°C (86°F).
  • Recommendation: Ideal for enjoying the lush greenery and bird watching, though travel can be challenging due to muddy roads.

February

  • Continued rains: High humidity and persistent rainfall.
  • Average temperatures: Remain around 25°C (77°F) to 30°C (86°F).
  • Note: Great for photographers seeking dramatic landscapes and vibrant local life scenes.
Sunset in Malawi (c) wallpapercosmos.com

March

  • Easing rainfall: Transition towards the end of the wet season.
  • Temperatures: Start to cool slightly, particularly at night.
  • Outdoor activities: Improved conditions for hiking, especially in the highlands.

April

  • End of the rainy season: Reducing rainfall, clearer skies.
  • Temperatures: Daytime around 20°C (68°F) to 25°C (77°F).
  • Cultural tours: Visit local villages and markets to experience Malawi’s vibrant culture without the intense heat.

May

  • Start of the dry season: Cool and dry weather begins.
  • Temperature: Mild, ranging from 15°C (59°F) to 20°C (68°F).
  • Best for: Lake Malawi becomes ideal for snorkeling and diving as the water clears up.

June

  • Peak wildlife viewing: Animals congregate around water sources.
  • Cooler weather: Ideal for safaris and hiking, with temperatures around 13°C (55°F) to 18°C (64°F).
  • Visit: Liwonde National Park for excellent elephant sightings and birdwatching.
The average hourly temperature, color coded into bands. The shaded overlays indicate night and civil twilight. (c) weatherspark.com

July

  • Cool and dry: One of the coldest months, especially in the highlands.
  • Temperatures: Nighttime can drop to 10°C (50°F), daytime around 17°C (63°F).
  • Hiking: Explore Mount Mulanje for breathtaking views and challenging climbs.

August

  • Continued dry conditions: Excellent for outdoor activities.
  • Temperatures: Begin to warm slightly; very comfortable climate.
  • Cultural events: Engage with local festivals and traditional dances.

September

  • Warm up begins: Slightly hotter, still little to no rain.
  • Temperatures: Rising, making early morning wildlife sightings more comfortable.
  • Road trips: Ideal time for exploring the scenic routes around Lake Malawi.

October

  • Heat intensifies: Before the rains, temperatures soar.
  • Average temperatures: Between 25°C (77°F) and 30°C (86°F).
  • Advice: Last chance for optimal wildlife viewing as animals are easier to spot.
Malawi (c) wildsafariguide.com

November

  • Start of the wet season: Rainfall increases, refreshing the landscape.
  • Temperatures: Warm, humid, around 25°C (77°F) to 30°C (86°F).
  • Birdwatching: Arrival of migratory birds, a treat for ornithologists.

December

  • Rainy and lush: The environment is vibrant but travel might be harder.
  • Temperatures: Consistently warm, between 20°C (68°F) and 25°C (77°F).
  • Indoor activities: Explore Malawi’s museums and cultural sites in cities like Lilongwe.

Malawi offers a rich tapestry of experiences across different times of the year. From the vibrant wildlife safaris in the cooler dry months to the lush, scenic landscapes following the rains, each season holds unique charms. For those seeking a blend of outdoor adventure, cultural immersion, and relaxation by Lake Malawi, planning your visit from May to October will provide the most rewarding experiences.

Back to Malawi’s Travel Guide

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