Climbing Mount Mulanje Malawi 2024 | Guides, Hiking Tips and Routes

Published on 30 August 2023 at 16:55

Are you thinking of visiting mount Mulanje in Malawi? Are you considering hiking up the 3rd highest mountain in Africa? Then this article contains everything for you. Mount Mulanje is located in the southern region of Malawi close to the border with Mozambique. With over 3000 meter in heights you can claim the mount Mulanje is a real mountain. Please keep reading to find more tips about hiking, the different huts, the best guides and more.


Before you start make sure you download the Mount Mulanje Hiking Guide by the Mulanje Mountain Club.

Hiking Mount Mulanje

If you are looking to hike mount Mulanje it's best you book a guide in advance. There are no official systems in place, which means that there is a bit of an overgrown in guides around the Mulanje mountain. As soon as you arrive in the region you will notice dozens of guides trying to sell you a trip up to the mountain. We recommend to try to get a guide in advance. To make sure they can book the right huts, routes, porters and food if needed. All guides have a fixed price of $25,- a day (excluding porters, and food). If you search online you will find that there are some agencies offering trips up to mountain. We prefer to not use one of the agencies (as they have enough trips) and use one of the locals. Some of the guides only find enough tourists to go up the mountain once or twice a year! So it's really important to support also the smaller onces without fancy websites and marketing.


The best guide for Mount Mulanje

We were lucky to have Rafick Duncan (Feel free to whatsapp him: +265 881 04 78 28) as our guide for our mount Mulanje expedition. Rafick is a local Malawian guide who has been guiding the mountain for 12 years. He speaks fluent English and has climbed the mountain countless times. Rafick is always in a positive mood and takes care of his mother and sister as the only man in his household. Hiring him as a guide not only supports his family but also ensures a reliable and knowledgeable guide. Rafick provides a briefing the day before the climb and is always on time. He is happy to chat about life in Malawi, mountain life, or any other topic. Moreover, Rafick has a pleasant surprise for his clients at the end of the climb. He can arrange hikes ranging from 1 to 10 days, including a 3 day hike to Sapitwa Peak, the highest peak. We highly recommend Rafick as your guide for a safe and enjoyable mount Mulanje experience. He is also a member of the Mount Mulanje Hiking Club Emergency Rescue Team.

Rafick Duncan our hiking guide for mount Mulanje

The most Beautiful Hike in Mount Mulanje: Sapitwa Peak

Do you want to climb the highest peak in Mount Mulanje? Then this hike is the right hike for you.  It's the most popular route (no worries, there are no large crowds (yet)). The hike can be done in either 3 or 4 days and will require you to sleep in the huts on the mountain. Our guide Rafick organized the full trip. You can do the hike either with or without porters. We went without porters but in hindsight it's not a luxury to have porters... The climb with all your gear is really though. Rafick organized all the huts for us. We slept at the Chisepo hut and Chambe huts. Cost for the huts is $1 per person per night. This is all booked and organized by your guides.  Later we will explain more what to expect at the huts.


Day 1. Mount Mulanje Sapitwa Peak (3003m)

Distance: 15km

Climb: >1400 meters (2200 altitude )

Time: 7.5 hours 

Destination: Chisepo Hut


On the first day we left from Hikers Nest at 06:00 (don't start later, trust us). We got our entrance tickets to the mountain (1000 kwacha) and went straight up. Rafick warned us that the first 2 hours are on of the toughest. Be prepared. We climbed for two hours steep up the mountains. We were happy it was still early, so we didn't have the sun on our backs.  While climbing up you will find the locals - who are working in the mountains - climbing downwards carrying large bundles of wood on their heads.  

After a challenging uphill climb, you’ll reach a picturesque plateau. It’s an excellent spot to take a refreshing lunch break by one of the stunning ponds on top. You may even want to take a dip in the freezing waters! The natural scenery in this area is breathtaking, and even if you don’t have the time for the full three-day hike, this part alone is worth the journey. Our break lasted approximately one hour, and Rafick assured us that the upcoming terrain would be easier. He was right. You’ll traverse the Chamber basin plateau within a massive crater, and the path is mostly flat, with mild inclines that last about two hours.

One of the ponds on top the Chombe Basin in Mount Mulanje. 

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9 months ago

I am so happy that i decided to trek Mulanje during my trip in Malawi. As i was not prepared and am not fit, so did 2 nights and 3 days, stayed in Chambe and Lichinya huts. Going up through Skyline and going down through tea plantation. The landscape is beautiful and diversed. Experiencing life of people those dependant in forest and talked with friendly guards in the huts. It was cold during night, then i had to ask for blankets to add up with my thin sleeping bag. I found Gayson

(+265 990564799 )

contact here and he was so helpful, acted as my guide, porter, cook. I visited his home near the forest gate, left some of my stuff before the trek, had lunch with his lovely family , you won't regret once book him as your Guide.

9 months ago

We spent two nights in the lovely Likhubula Forest camp with delicious food. And we enjoyed the hiking tour with rafick to the Dziwe la Nkhalamba Waterfalls (Likhubula Falls) - great landscape, friendly Tour guide.