Ntchisi Forest Reserve
The Reserve sits on the escarpment of the East African Rift Valley, on Ntchisi Mountain, and has stunning views of the valley, Lake Malawi and even across the lake to the mountains in Mozambique.
Flora and fauna
One of the last remaining patches of tropical rainforest in southern Africa, Ntchisi Forest Reserve is a haven for rare birds, several species of monkeys, hyena, small antelopes, civet, serval cat and many other small species. The rainforest flora, however, is the real highlight of this area of outstanding natural beauty.
At 1500-1700 metres, the climate in Ntchisi Forest Reserve is cooler than the surrounding low-lying areas, making it a welcome escape from the heat. It is also mosquito-free.
One of the most beautiful dirt roads in the country lies between Mponela and Ntchisi Forest Reserve, the most direct route from Lilongwe. The Reserve is around 2 hours drive from Lilongwe, or 1.5 hours from the airport, making it an easy first destination on arrival in the country. A four-wheel drive car is required in the rainy season.
Entry to the Forest Reserve is free.
There are numerous hiking trails of varying length covering Ntchisi Mountain and surrounding slopes. A guide can be hired at Ntchisi Forest Lodge, who can also arrange village tours or walks in the forest with the local traditional healer.
Ntchisi Forest Lodge can also arrange tours of their community projects in surrounding villages.
Various excursions are possible if you are based in Ntchisi Forest Reserve: