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Best things to do in Lilongwe

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Where in the world: Africa  /  Malawi  /  Central Region  /  Lilongwe

Top 15 things to do in Lilongwe

1. Lilongwe Wildlife Centre

See the rehabilitation center for Malawi’s injured, orphaned, and rescued wildlife at Lilongwe Wildlife Centre. Malawi’s only accredited wildlife sanctuary, the complex provides a home for around 200 wild animals annually. Encounter reptiles, primates, and carnivores, many of which were rescued as orphans and victims of the illegal pet and bushmeat trade. Take an organized tour and listen to a professional guide, who will explain how one of the world's poorest nations goes about its efforts to conserve its natural resources.
Suggested duration: 1 hour
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Tours including Lilongwe Wildlife Centre:

2. Kuti Wildlife Reserve, Salima

Witness and participate in the effort to conserve animal life and natural habitats at Kuti Wildlife Reserve. Run by a non-profit organization, all the revenue generated by the reserve goes back into the project and the local community. Admire a diverse collection of animals residing here, including baboons, zebras, and kudu. If you want to extend your stay, you can reserve accommodations ranging from camping to luxurious bush villas. The reserve also has a restaurant, a shop, and a bar known for its sunset views.
Suggested duration: 8 hours
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3. Nature Sanctuary

Rescuing and taking care of orphaned and injured wild animals, Nature Sanctuary features the world's first accredited People and Wildlife center, teaching locals how to conserve their natural heritage. When the sanctuary opened in 2008, its first residents were animals rescued from poachers and illegal wildlife traders. Take a guided tour or follow one of the wilderness trails running through the woodlands and alongside the riverbank. Healed animals are released back into the wilderness, but you can still expect to see monkeys, lions, bushbucks, crocodiles, and even monitor lizards. The restaurant offers traditional cuisine and live entertainment in form of Malawian dancing and drumming.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
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4. Parliament Building

See the brand new government building of the capital of Malawi at Parliament Building. Admire the beauty and the architectural vision that this big, bold, well-maintained parliament building represents. Although taking photos of the building is officially prohibited, the friendly police guards often let visitors capture its beauty on camera. However, you can only enter the building if you have a formal invitation. The building's construction was financed by the government of China, so the entrance gate possesses some typical Chinese flourishes.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
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5. Kumbali Cultural Village

Get a feeling for traditional Malawian culture and live a typical village life at Kumbali Cultural Village. As you amble around the village, try your hand at an array of crafts and recreational activities, such as pottery, painting, and bike riding. Adults and children alike will love the experience, with plenty of activities suitable for visitors of all ages. Sample the delicious range of traditional African delicacies as you enjoy the authentic experience of living life in a Malawian village.
Suggested duration: 2h 30 min
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Tours including Kumbali Cultural Village:

6. Nkhoma Mountain

Many visitors come to hike up Nkhoma Mountain for a panoramic view of Malawi. Select a trail and try to stick close to the path (which can be covered with foliage during the rainy season). Some sections can be steep; wear appropriate footware.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
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7. Chongoni Rock Art Area, Dedza

A World Heritage Site, Chongoni Rock Art Area stands as the largest cluster of ancient rock paintings in Central Africa. While the site contains 127 artworks, the guided tour starts with the three that are open to the public, surrounded by massive granite hills and untouched nature. Admire the rock art sites depicting animals, rituals, and symbols, made mostly by BaTwa hunter-gatherers who lived during the Late Stone Age, and Chewa clan folk from the Early Iron Age.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
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8. Old Town Mall

A good place to pick up a few souvenirs, Old Town Mall remains a quiet spot for shopping and dining. A few bookstores and eateries draw mostly tourists looking for some reading materials and a chance to grab a bite in a chic setting.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
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9. World War I Memorial

A moving piece of architecture, World War I Memorial pays tribute to fallen Malawi soldiers. The memorial square also includes a statue to Malawi's first president, Dr Hastings Kamuzu Banda.
Suggested duration: 30 minutes
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10. Gems and Jewellery Lanka

Gems and Jewellery Lanka offers a selection of metals and precious and semi-precious gemstones for purchase (a one-of-a-kind piece for yourself or a loved one). Staff can help with decision making, jewelry advice, or requests and questions about special pieces. Personalize your piece and have it made in-store, whether you prefer delicate jewelry or something more edgy. The store also does jewelry repair.
Suggested duration: 1h 30 min
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11. Kungoni Centre of Culture & Art, Mtakataka

For captivating arts and crafts with an undertone of local culture, visit Kungoni Centre of Culture & Art. Religion and culture play a part in influencing the style of the pieces displayed and sold; you can question locals and staff members for further information behind the items like handcrafted wooden masks and carvings. The hut embraces the surrounding greenery and the area is neatly designed; you'll find lodging and food nearby.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
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12. Lizulu Market

Suggested duration: 1h 30 min
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13. Maula Cathedral

Experience African praise worship by taking part in a mass at Maula Cathedral. Expect a busy collective due to this cathedral's popularity (especially at the 8 a.m. mass) and its convenient capital city location. Quieter times for mass are possible (like at 5 p.m.), but the bustle adds to the communal atmosphere of the cathedral.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
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14. Khondi Spa Retreat

Suggested duration: 2 hours
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15. Tindoz d'Afrique

Suggested duration: 30 minutes
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