Lake Malawi

Lake Malawi is just one of three great lakes in the Great Rift Valley, in Africa. Surrounded by three countries, it is the most southern lake in the rift valley. Malawi borders most of the lake along the western coast, Tanzania at the north and Mozambique near the south east. Most locals refer to it as Lake Nyasa. Also called Lake Nyassa, and Lake Niassa in Tanzania, or Lago Niassa in Mozambique. The former name being Livingstones Lake.

The great lake is 600 kilometers long, and 80km at its widest point. The surface area is close to 31,000 square kilometres. The lakes largest outlet is the Shire River. It is the third largest lake in Africa, and the tenth largest in the world. This vast underwater space provides many different environmental niches, which has led to to specialization of many cichlid species.


If you desire to keep any fish from Lake Malawi, then its natural water quality should be of interest to you. It is important to try and replicate their natural habitat to prevent stress, which will help them to have long healthy lives. The water in Lake Malawi is slightly alkaline, with a PH between 7.7 - 8.6, and a carbonate hardness of 107 to 142 mg.

The temperatures above the lake can reach more than 30 degrees Celsius. The lakes water temperature is very stable, mostly due to to the large water mass. It ranges from 24 to 29 degrees Celsius (or 75 to 84 degrees Fahrenheit) at most depths, with the deepest places at roughly 22 C (72 F). These underwater figures apply all year round.


  • Wave-washed upper rocky.
  • Sediment-free rocky
  • Deep, sediment-rich rocky.
  • Intermediate (sand and rocks).
  • Shallow intermediate.
  • Sheltered bays with aquatic plants.
  • Sandy (no rocks).


Bana, Bandawe, Baobab Point, Benga, Boadzulu Island, Bua Point, Cape Kaiser, Cape Maclear, Cape Manulo, Chadagha, Charo, Chembe, Chemwezi Rocks, Chesese, Chewere, Chia Lagoon, Chidunga Rocks, Chiloelo, Chilucha Reef, Chilumba, Chimate, Chimwalani Reef, Chinkoole, Chinteche, Chinula, Chinuna, Chinyamwezi Island, Chinyankwazi Island, Chiofu Bay, Chipoka, Chirwa Island, Chitande Island, Chitimba Bay, Chiweta, Chiwindi, Chiwondo, Chizi Point, Chizumulu Island, Chuanga, Chuwa, Cobue, Crocodile Rocks, Domira Bay, Domwe Island, Dwangwa, Fort Maguire, Gallireya Reef, Gome, Hai Reef, Harbour Island, Higga Reef, Hongi Island, Hora Mhango, Ikombe, Ilala Gap, Itungi, Jalo Reef, Kadango, Kaiser Point, Kakusa, Kambiri Point, Kande Island, Kanjindo Rocks, Kaporo, Karonga, Kasinda, Katale Island, Kawanga, Kirondo, Likoma Island, Linganjala Reef, Lion's Cove, Lipingo, Liuli, Liutche, Liwelo Bay, Londo, Luhuchi Rocks, Lumbaulo, Lumbila, Lumessi, Lundo Island, Lundu, Lupembe, Lupingu, Luromo, Lutara Reef, Luwala Reef, Luwino Reef, Machili Island, Magunga Reef, Maingano, Maison Reef, Makambukira Bay, Makanjila Point, Makanjila Reef, Makokola Reef, Makonde, Makulawe, Maleri Island, Mamba Bay, Manda, Mango, Mangochi, Mara Point, Mara Rocks, Masimbwe Island, Masinje, Matema, Maunyuni Rocks, Mazinzi Reef, Mbako Point, Mbamba Bay, Mbamba Island, Mbenji Island, Mbowe Island, Mbuzi Island, Mbweca, Mdoka, Meluluca, Membe Island, Membe Point, Meponda, Metangula, Minos Reef, Mkanila Bay, Mkondowe, Monkey Bay, Mpanga Rocks, Mphande Island, Mphandikucha Island, Msala, Msisi, Msuli Point, Mulale Lagoon, Mumbo Island, Mundola Point, Mwalawaqueeni Reef, Nakantenga Island, Namalenje Island, Nankoma Island, Nankoma Reef, Narungu, Ndomo Point, Ndumbi, Ndumbi Rocks, Ngara, Ngoo, Ngwazi, Njambe, Nkanda, Nkhali, Nkhata Bay, Nkholakota, Nkhomo Reef, Nkhudzi, Nkhungu Point, Nkhungu Reef, N'kolongwe, Nkopola, Ntekete, Ntumba, Otter Point, Pombo Rocks, Puulu, Ruarwe, Sambia Reef, Same Bay, Sanga, Sani, Selewa, Senga Point, Taiwan Reef, Tchia, Thumbi East Island, Thumbi Point, Thumbi West Island, Thundu, Tsano Rock, Tumbi Point, Undu Reef, Ungi, Usisya, Vua, Wikihi, Zimbawe Rocks, Ndonga, Kanchedza Island, Masasa Reef, Nametumbwe