10 July 2009


After 3 days at Kande Beach we set out on Thursday morning for the 4 hour drive to the capital of Malawi, Lilongwe.

When the Lonely Planet describes somewhere as "hardly awash with excitement . . . isn't particularly interesting . . . soulless" then you know your in for a rip roaring time.

Thankfully we weren't stopping in Lilongwe for its tourist sights. It was simply a good place to re-stock the truck and a the best place to camp for the evening between Lake Malawi and the boarder with Zambia.

The best thing we could find to say about Lilongwe is that it has a Nando's . . . and we don't even like Nando's!

Ordinarily you would have to pay us to go into a Nando's. We both despise the greasy chicken based restaurant chain and are constantly amazed at their popularity. Whenever you see one in the UK there always seems to be a queue 50 people deep out of the door. We just don't get it. And what's that rubbish about having to fetch your own drinks?

Since we left Asia a month and a half ago the food, on average, has been so dull that even Nando's looked exciting. So we put our prejudices aside and went in for some lunch at the only fast food joint that we have so far seen in Africa. The verdict - ok it was tasty but you still won't see me in that 50 deep queue out of the door.

After de-greasing after Nando's we left the excitement of Lilongwe behind us and headed to Mbuya Camp on the outskirts of town for another evening of high altitude, low temperature camping.

Friday was going to be another fairly long one on the road with a 9 hour journey to our next stop at South Luangwa National Park. We were lucky to spot some wildlife before we finished loading the truck. This massive 4 inch long praying mantis was sat warning himself in the early morning sun as we prepared to leave Mbuya Camp.

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