Taking advantage of a long weekend, we spent a few days down in Blantyre. Javi had some interviews with people he’s writing articles about, and I tagged along just to get out of the house. Compared to Lilongwe, Blantyre is great. It’s a bigger, busier city and has life pulsing though its veins. Lilongwe seems to be in a permanent state of hibernation. Here are some fun things we managed to do, although I’m sure there are a lot more.
Things to do:
Visit La Caverna in Mandala House for lunch, coffee and a browse through the arts and crafts shop. The food in the cafe is to die for, the coffee is real Italian espresso, and there’s even gelato.
Eat dinner at Casa Mia, an Italian restaurant on Kabula Hill. Just don’t go before 9PM, which we did, and found ourselves to be the only customers, with the waitresses breathing down our necks.
A burger and a dance at Blue Elephant. There’s a great vibe in this lively bar / restaurant and the classic ‘Ely Burger’ is surprisingly good. Again though, don’t go before at least 8:30PM or you’ll be the only customer(s).
Spend a day lounging by the pool in La Hostellerie de France. This place is run by an eccentric and hospitable Frenchman. It’s a little piece of provincial France in Malawi- a very strange sensation but pleasant. Be sure to order the Basque Chicken or Chicken in Red Wine Sauce for lunch / dinner. We were blown away. After some disappointing meals at Chez Maky, we couldn’t believe our luck when we found La Hostellerie.
Go for some live music at Mibawa Cafe, opposite the Protea Hotel. This is a really nice local club with an outdoor seating area serving grilled meat.
Drink garlic and ginger tea at Alem Ethiopian restaurant. Sit outside on the terrace and people-watch.