Blue Zebra, Lake Malawi: The Lowdown

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Tucked away on Nankoma Island, sweet little Blue Zebra is a classic Malawian lakeshore experience- simple, laid-back and close to nature.

What’s Blue Zebra really like?

Blue Zebra has long been a favourite of Lilongwe residents, and it’s easy to see why. Its island location is gorgeous, the lodge itself is comfortable, but absolutely not glitzy, and there’s plenty to do while you’re here. However, we’ll save the activities for later- if you just want to relax the pool is a glorious place to wallow and watch the world go by, and the bar is ideal for sharing a few tales at the end of the day, not to mention a Malawi G&T. Or three. And if that’s not your scene there’re several quiet spots you can escape to if you want a few moments to yourself. Lastly, Blue Zebra’s restaurant serves three hearty, wholesome meals each day- not fussy haute cuisine, but good warming fare.

Generally we’d recommend this as an escape from the outside world, though if you need it there’s also a degree of wifi, though just remember, speeds reflect your location on the laid-back shores of Lake Malawi!

There are 13 rooms at Blue Zebra, mainly tented chalets, and a family cottage. This gives a natural, almost safari style feel to your stay, with the rooms cooled by lake breezes (there are no fans here and electricity goes off at night), a fabulous array of birdlife, and the occasional friendly gecko scampering along the wall of your room. The simplest rooms are the five Lake Safari Tents- all ensuite, and sit on stone floors below a thatched roof. Inside three of them are doubles, 1 is a twin and one a 1 single. Some have sofa beds for U12s. Larger are the Executive Chalets, with a private balcony to hide from the world. Two have queen beds and two are two-bedroomed Family Chalets each with a double and a twin room. Lastly, there’s the two-bedroomed superior family cottage, which has its own sitting and dining rooms.

What can I do at Blue Zebra?

Blue Zebra is a lovely spot for the classic Lake Malawi experience. The lodge has six kayaks which you can use to paddle around the island (or for the energetic, explore the wider archipelago), and blissfully relaxing sunset cruises. For an extra fee, there’s also wake-boarding, water-skiing and tubing. Below the water there is snorkelling- the array of fish here is something rather special, and there is also a lovely pool at the lodge. As always with Lake Malawi we’d issue our standard warning that you should check locally for bilharzia before entering the lake, however we have no reason to be especially concerned about this at Blue Zebra, and have cheerfully swum in the lake ourselves without ill effects! On the island there are some short hiking trails, and as always around the lakeshore, lovely birding, and we’d challenge even the most bored birder not to be just a little excited about a fish eagle.

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