Ahhhhh Malawi, the unexpected home of Danish piss Carlsberg. They love it here, but they love the old advertising slogan even more. I even saw a school whose motto was “Probably one of the best schools in Malawi”. At first you despair, how am I going to survive on nothing but Carlsberg for a month!?!?! Then you discover Shake-Shake, and you are eternally indebted to those enterprising Danes. Malawi truly is home to the worst beer in the entire world, read on to see why.
I’m not going to lie. We drank A LOT of beer in Tanzania, especially on the beaches of Zanzibar. I almost feel overqualified for this review thinking back on it. The fact that we spent a couple of weeks in a beautiful, sunny, island paradise made them go down easy, and the fact they were cheap every night during the 2014 World Cup games certainly didn’t stop them flowing.
Travelling from Cape Maclear to Dedza was quite a challenge despite the relatively short distance seperating the two. With no regular public transport between them we once again resorted to the ancient art of hitchhiking. Unfortunately the first four cars to pass us were other white travellers, and even though three out of four had empty seats, they turned us down because they were ‘full’ or simply tried to ignore us as they slowly drove past us at the crossroads. Thankfully car number five was a Malawian with an empty ute tray. No problems.
There are so many times when driving through Africa on public transport that you fly past things you would love to stop and take a photo of but can’t. The drive to Nkhotakota had some real treasures. The men sprinting out of the rubber plantations trying to sell human head sized rubber balls which they bounced at the car. The signs for Tom and Jelly Daycare, and a Prumbing Speciarist (Malawians often mix-up their R’s and L’s). The world’s worst Rambo painting on a DVD shop, and the world’s best Randy Rhoads shirt. Even the ‘Kanye River’, which I would have really quite liked to have sullied. The road to Nkhotakota was yet another interesting journey to yet another special place in Malawi.
Whilst staying by the lake in Chitimba we had planned to make the trip up to the old Scottish mission town of Livingstonia in the hills above. We considered leaving our packs at the base and maybe spending just one night up there. After hearing several rave reviews from fellow travelers on their way down, we were also told by a friendly South African couple “Take your packs and go to Mushroom Farm… It’s a special place, you won’t want to leave.” Here we are a full seven nights later, very reluctantly leaving the most relaxing place in Africa…