Lilongwe, Malawi

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Lilongwe, Malawi

Region: Lilongwe

Geographic Coordinates: -13.983300, 33.783300
Temperature Range: 15.0°C to 35.0°C (59°F to 95°F)
Climate: Seasonal.
Population: 989318
Language: Chichewa

Lilongwe is the capital city of Malawi, Situated in the central region of the country. It boasts a bustling atmosphere with over one million inhabitants and is divided into two areas: Old Town for commercial activities and City Center for government buildings and embassies. The Parliament Building is a remarkable landmark in Lilongwe designed by a British architect and completed in 1995. Its dome-shaped roof is visible from miles away, Housing both chambers of Malawi’s parliament as an important symbol of democracy. The Lilongwe Wildlife Centre provides a safe haven for rescued animals such as lions, Monkeys, Hyenas, And crocodiles.

Visitors can take guided tours to learn about conservation efforts while observing these incredible creatures up close. For culture enthusiasts, Several museums are worth visiting in Lilongwe. The National Museum showcases traditional Malawian art and artifacts from pre-colonial times to present day. The Kamuzu Banda Mausoleum honors Malawi’s first president who led the country to independence from British colonial rule. Lilongwe also offers plenty of opportunities for shopping and dining out with several markets where visitors can browse local handicrafts like wood carvings or woven baskets made by skilled artisans across diverse cultures.

In addition to traditional cuisine like nsima or chambo fish, International restaurants offer Italian pizza or Indian curry. Lake Malawi lies just outside the city limits – one of Africa’s largest freshwater lakes known for its crystal-clear waters and diverse marine life. Visitors can take boat tours or go snorkeling while relaxing on the beach soaking up the sun. Lilongwe has something for everyone – history buffs, Culture enthusiasts, Wildlife lovers or those seeking relaxation by Lake Malawi – making it an ideal destination when visiting Africa!

Important Landmarks

  1. Lilongwe Wildlife Centre
  2. Kamuzu Mausoleum
  3. Parliament Building
  4. Lilongwe City Mall
  5. Bingu National Stadium
  6. Kumbali Cultural Village
  7. Crossroads Complex
  8. Old Town Market
  9. Lilongwe Nature Sanctuary
  10. Capital Hill Government Offices

Primary Industries

Major Industries and Businesses in Lilongwe, Malawi

  1. Agriculture
    • Tobacco
    • Tea
    • Sugarcane
    • Maize
  2. Manufacturing
    • Textiles
    • Food products (beverages and pharmaceuticals)
  3. Banking and Finance
  4. Tourism
    • Lilongwe Wildlife Centre
  5. Construction
  6. Retail Trade
    • Shoprite (supermarkets)
  7. Information Technology (IT)
    • Skyband (internet services)
  8. Mining
    • Uranium
    • Coal
    • Rare earth minerals

Noteable History

  1. The establishment of Lilongwe as the capital city of Malawi in 1975, replacing Zomba.
  2. The construction of the Kamuzu International Airport in 1977, named after President Hastings Kamuzu Banda who led Malawi to independence from British colonial rule in 1964.
  3. The construction of the Lilongwe Wildlife Centre in 2007, which is now a leading conservation and education facility for wildlife rescue and rehabilitation.
  4. The visit by Pope John Paul II to Lilongwe in 1989, during which he blessed a new cathedral that was under construction at the time.
  5. The establishment of the University of Malawi College of Medicine campus in Lilongwe in 1991, which has since become one of Africa’s leading medical schools.
  6. Notable people associated with Lilongwe include former president Joyce Banda who was born there, musician Lucius Banda who is also a Member of Parliament for Blantyre City East constituency and journalist Raphael Tenthani who was born there as well.

Overall, these events and individuals have contributed significantly to shaping the history and development of Lilongwe into what it is today – a thriving capital city that serves as an important hub for business, culture and tourism within Malawi and beyond its borders.

Museums and Things To See

  1. National Museum of Malawi: This museum showcases the history, culture, and natural heritage of Malawi.
  2. Kamuzu Mausoleum: This monument is dedicated to the first president of Malawi, Dr. Hastings Kamuzu Banda.
  3. Lilongwe Wildlife Centre: This wildlife sanctuary is home to rescued animals such as lions, cheetahs, monkeys, and birds.
  4. Kumbali Cultural Village: Visitors can experience traditional Malawian culture through dance performances, food, and craft demonstrations.
  5. Bingu National Stadium: This stadium hosts major sporting events and concerts in Lilongwe.
  6. Old Town Mall: A popular shopping destination with a range of stores selling clothing, electronics, and household items.
  7. Chichiri Museum and Cultural Centre: A cultural centre that exhibits traditional art music and dance performances from different regions in Malawi.
  8. Lilongwe Nature Sanctuary: A nature reserve with hiking trails bird watching opportunities and picnic areas.
  9. Parliament Building of Malawi: The seat of government in Malawi where visitors can see the unique architecture style used for the country’s parliament buildings.
  10. Lilongwe City Market: A bustling market where visitors can buy local crafts, foodstuff, fruits, vegetables, among other things.

Cultural Events

  1. Lake of Stars Festival is an annual music and arts festival held on the shores of Lake Malawi in September.
  2. The Lilongwe Agricultural Show is an annual event that showcases Malawi’s agricultural products, livestock, and machinery.
  3. The Lilongwe Street Carnival is a colorful parade featuring dancers, musicians, and performers from different regions of Malawi.
  4. The Tumaini Festival is a celebration of African culture through music, dance, art exhibitions, fashion shows and food fairs held annually in October.
  5. Independence Day Celebrations are held annually on July 6th to mark Malawi’s independence from British colonial rule in 1964.
  6. World Food Day Celebrations are celebrated every year on October 16th to raise awareness about issues related to hunger and malnutrition globally.
  7. Christmas Festivities are celebrated with great enthusiasm by the Christian community throughout December with carol singing events, nativity plays and festive meals shared among friends and family members.


  • Nkhuku Ya Wala – a traditional dish of chicken cooked with groundnut sauce, served with nsima (maize porridge) and vegetables. This dish can be found at many local restaurants.
  • Kumbali Country Lodge Restaurant – this restaurant offers a variety of dishes including Malawian cuisine such as nkhuku ya wala, as well as international dishes.
  • The Four Seasons Restaurant – known for its Indian and Chinese cuisine, this restaurant also offers some local dishes such as chambo (a type of fish) and nsima.
  • Mama Mia Italian Restaurant – a popular spot for pizza and pasta lovers in Lilongwe.
  • Mugg & Bean – a South African chain restaurant that serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner with a variety of options including burgers, salads, sandwiches, and more.
  • Latitude 13° Hotel & Restaurant – known for its upscale dining experience featuring contemporary African-inspired cuisine using fresh locally sourced ingredients.
  • The Golden Peacock at the President Walmont Hotel – an upscale Chinese restaurant offering dim sum lunches on weekends and traditional Cantonese dishes on weekdays.
  • The Korean Garden – A Korean-themed eatery serving up spicy beef bulgogi bowls alongside kimchi fries to patrons who want to try something different from the usual fare in town!

  • Parks and Recreation

    1. Lilongwe Wildlife Centre
    2. Bingu National Stadium
    3. Kamuzu Mausoleum and Memorial Garden
    4. City Centre Park
    5. Nature Sanctuary and Botanical Gardens
    6. Lilongwe Golf Club
    7. Kumbali Cultural Village
    8. Lumbadzi Forest Reserve
    9. Mphatso Children’s Park
    10. Nkhoma Mountain Hiking Trail


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