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cycle Malawi for Open Arms

itinerary

DAY 1

Depart UK

DAY 2

Lilongwe

We arrive in Lilongwe where we are met by our guides and transferred 2½hrs to our accommodation in the forest town of Dedza surrounded by hills. This area has been declared a UNESCO Heritage site because of its rock art. We have a bike fitting before our welcome dinner and briefing. 

DAY 3

Mua Mission (Kungoni) - 70 km cycling

We start early this morning on a mixture of real African roads with a hard climb out of Dedza through mountain valleys and past the World Heritage rock paintings and then ending up with a steep downhill as we head down the Dedza escarpment with its hairpin bends to the town of Mua Mission. Mua Mission is situated in the hills above Lake Malawi and is famous for its wood carvings. Time permitting on arrival there will be time to explore the Kungoni Centre of Culture & Art. It provides a fascinating insight into the history and culture of Malawi. 

DAY 4

Open Arms Infant Home Mangochi - 105 km

Today will be long but made easier by the good flat, tarred road that takes us to the Mangochi lakeshore. This scenic ride passes baobab trees, small villages and plenty of small scale farms to the southernmost end of the Lake. The splendid sandy beaches here are uncrowded and tonight after a delicious barbecue we camp in the grounds of the Open Arms Cottage. 

DAY 5

Open Arms Infant Home Mangochi

Today we have the whole day at the Open Arms Infant Home to understand better the incredible work they do here and how our fundraising is able to help the people of Malawi.

DAY 6

Liwonde National Park - 100 km cycling

This is an early morning start as we head further south, down the lakeshore road, through Mangochi, one of the largest lakeshore towns, and alongside the Shire river to the Liwonde National Park. This is about 100km of flat, easy riding along roads with more local traffic. Depending on the condition of the park's road, we continue to Liwonde, cross the Shire river and cycle through villages until we reach the park entrance. Here we enter the park and transfer to the Mvuu Campsite. 

DAY 7

Zomba - 85 km cycling

There will be an optional dawn walking safari this morning before coming back to camp for breakfast. We then start back along the dirt roads to Liwonde, from where the cycling day becomes tough with long uphills, making our way up from the lower Shire plains up to the Zomba plateau. The town is in a beautiful setting below the Zomba plateau and is just 65km north-east of Blantyre. It was the former capital, first settlement of the colonial administration and still has the old Gymkhana Club, the barracks of what were the King’s African Rifles, the old parliament, as well as being home to the University of Malawi.

DAY 8

Blantyre - 65 km cycling

Today marks the last day of cycling as we head to Blantyre. This relatively short distance over flat tarmac will take us all the way to cross "the finish line" just before reaching Limbe. We then transfer into town to our centrally located accommodation, surrounded by ample gardens with an amazing view. Here we have some time to relax before we celebrate the success of our challenge with a great dinner and some appropriate partying.

DAY 9

Depart Malawi

The morning is spent at leisure before our transfer to the airport for our flight home.

DAY 10

Arrive UK

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