Malawian facts and figures

For anyone who is planning a similar journey in the near future, here are a few helpful Malawian facts and figures.

On the road

Our route:






Diesel costs:


Diesel price:















Total costs overnight:


Average costs overnight: 


Songwe, Karonga, Mzuzu, Chintheche, Chembe, Mangochi, Chiponde.




We had no problems getting diesel. There is no filling station in Chembe.


92.000,00 MWK (108,87 EUR)


890,90 MWK (1,05 EUR) in Dwanga.       




9 (15.09.18 – 23.09.18), the first as usual inside the van in a pension courtyard, use of a shower and toilette, cold water, no wifi, for 10.000,00 Kwacha (11,83 EUR). 3 at Mazuki Lodge, Chintheche, an exclusive lodge with very nice South African style campsites on a terraced lawn next to the beach and each with its own stone braai stand including hot water but again no wifi. 14.400,00 MWK (17,04 EUR) and very empty. One at The Eagles Nest in Chembe, same price but not a very nice place. We then moved to Malamba Lodge in the centre of the village where we stayed the next four nights in the courtyard and were allowed to use the sanitary block used by the backpackers in the dormitory. Again no wifi and the water was solala but the price was good, 6000,00 MWK (7,10 EUR) and the people much more to our liking.


91.600.00 MWK (108,40 EUR)


10.177,78 MWK (12,04 EUR)



Exchange rate:






Eating out:




Bits and bobs:











1,00 EUR = 845,00 MWK


ATMs seem to be in all towns. There were none in Chembe.





  47.600,00 MWK (56,39 EUR)


39.320,00 MWK (46,53 EUR)


1600,00 MWK (1,89 EUR) wifi voucher

3800,00 MWK (4,50 EUR) telephone card

17.200,00 MWK (20,36) fabrics

5000,00 MWK (5,92 EUR) souvenirs 

7000,00 MWK (8,28 EUR) schistosomiasis (bilharzia) tablets. There is a clinik in Chembe that sells them. The number of tablets you need is coupled with one's weight. So I needed a few. They are supposed to be taken anywhere between 4 weeks and 3 months after a first possible infection, which in our case would have been in August at Lake Turkana and so we'll wait a few more weeks untill we take them. 

Other costs

Malawian Visa:











Road Tax: 


Boat trip:


Museum in Mangochi



75,00 USD (63,75 EUR) each, or 150,00 USD (127,50 EUR) together.


We bought them at the border without any problems. A customs officer there was a bit of a niussance. She wanted money from us to process the carnet and couldn't believe that we refused to pay. Indignantly she snatched the carnet from me and went off to have it stamped. Shortly afterwards she returned it, still compaining that I hadn't even a few Kwacha for her. At the gate she reappeared and had us sent back to wait. With the help of the Police we got through however, without bribing. I wish I could have seen her face when she realised that we were gone. It's a disgrace that such people are employed.


20,00 USD (17,00 EUR)


36.000,00 (42,60 EUR)


1000,00 (1,18 EUR)

Total costs 








Other costs:






108,87 EUR


108,40 EUR


143,87 EUR


188,28 EUR


549,42 EUR

In conclusion


Malawi was very enjoyable. Chembe offered the opportunity to experience the locals and live amongst them as a tourist for a few relaxing days. This was the last Rift Valley lake on our list. Our next destination is the Indian Ocean. 

  • Thankyou Malawi