Boat, kayak or sail alongside breathtaking panoramas of towering plateaus and blue waters. Sleep under the stars on a luxurious platform atop the flooded plains of the Shire River. Enjoy snorkeling, scuba diving, and swimming on the remote Likoma Island — but don’t forget to explore the local villages. Malawi is home to some of Africa’s friendliest people. Malawi is an enchanting destination for those seeking more than the traditional game drive, but you can still get your wildlife fix combing through the lush forests of the high Nyika Plateau, where you can spot leopard and serval at night.

Gateway city: Lilongwe

Best time to travel: May through October

Highlights: Mvuu National Park, Lake Malawi