Fly To Blantyre, Malawi
Blantyre, named after the Scottish birthplace of Dr David Livingston, is the oldest city in Malawi, and the commercial hub of this otherwise laid-back country. Having undergone significant growth in the last few years, the city centre has evolved into a bustling business district, while shopping, restaurants and bars have migrated to the lush, green suburbs where the majority of hotels can now be found.
Blantyre offers significantly better value for money than Malawi’s official capital, Lilongwe, and makes the perfect entry point for deeper exploration into areas like Mulanje and the Lower Shire Valley.
Blantyre is not a major transport hub and Chileka Airport is fairly small, so finding flights can be tricky. Luckily, Travelstart will do all the work for you – find the cheapest flights from all the major airlines flying in and out of Blantyre right here.
Visa Requirements & SA Embassy Details
- South African Passport holders do not need a Visa to visit Blantyre, or anywhere else in Malawi. Don’t forget, you’ll still need to check that your passport is valid for 6 months after your return date, and that you have 3 blank pages available for entry stamps.
- The South African High Commission to Malawi is situated in Lilongwe. 3rd Floor, Kang' ombe House, Robert Mugabe Crescent, Lilongwe 3. Phone: + 265 1 77 3722/ + 265 1 77 3597/ + 265 1 77 3036. Website: http://www.southafrica.intl.tn.
See and do
Blantyre isn’t a major tourist attraction in itself. Most of its visitors are either there on business, or spend a day or two in the city before venturing into more remote areas in Malawi and its surrounds.
The Museum of Malawi is one of the few official attractions the city does have to offer. Its collection includes fascinating displays on Malawi’s archaeology, history and ethnography. Mandala House is also worth a visit. It’s one of the oldest buildings in Blantyre, and is set in spacious and attractive grounds. It houses a café and art gallery, and even a small museum section, making it a pleasant place to pass a few lazy hours.
If you don’t find your souvenirs in amongst the arts and crafts at Mandala House, try visiting the local markets and curio shops for some locally-made goods. Basketry and wood carvings are popular choices, and prices are very reasonable, especially if you’re willing to haggle.
Public transport in Blantyre is limited, consisting mainly of minibus taxis, but the city is compact and easy to explore on foot. Try to avoid looking like a tourist, not so much to avoid crime, but to evade the attentions of persistent street vendors and beggars. It’s fairly safe to walk around during the day, but can be more dangerous at night. It might be worth using a taxi rather than risk heading out alone in the dark.
Chileka International Airport – BLZ
Food and beverage: There is one small restaurant serving light meals, and a bar where you can grab a drink, or a cup of hot coffee before your flight from Blantyre.
Currency Exchange: Information unavailable – consider exchanging currency before arriving at Chileka International Airport, or use a bank in central Blantyre.
Lost Luggage: Lost hold luggage should be handled by your individual airline’s help desk. Report items lost or found within the airport terminal to any airport staff member, who will direct you accordingly.
Airport Hotels: None on site. Nearby: Villa 33, Studios de France, Casa Mia Lodge and the Namiwawa Blantyre.
Car Hire: Avis, Honk, and other car rental agencies can be found in the airport parking facility.