Malawi High Commission in Lusaka, Zambia
              Telephone: +260 (0) 2 11 265 768                      

People and Culture of Malawi

The Malawi people are of Bantu origin and comprise of many different ethnic groups. These include Chewa, Nyanja, Yao, Tumbuka, Lomwe, Sena, Tonga, Ngoni, Ngonde, Asian and European. The Chichewa (Chewa) people form the largest part of the population group and are largely in the central and southern parts of Malawi. The Yao people are predominately found around the southern area of Lake Malawi and the Tumbuka are found mainly in the north of the country. There are small populations of Asian and European people living mainly in the cities.

Malawi is often called the "Warm Heart of Africa." because of the warmth and friendliness of the people. Malawians typically live with their extended families in huts that are grouped together in villages. A spirit of cooperation prevails as family members share both work and resources. As you drive through Malawi you can see the small villages of huts and people at work in the fields or collecting water for their families.

Malawi's culture is rich and fascinating due to the country’s ethnic mix of tribes, all of which have unique customs and traditions. Most Malawians live outside the cities in traditional villages based on agriculture, with each family working as a group. Housing, languages, dress, song, dance, and beliefs are as varied as the tribes themselves. The style and decoration of clothing denotes the individual's tribe, with the most important garment the chitenje, a wrap-around skirt worn by women over a regular skirt to be used as a baby-carrier, apron, basket, and more.

The dominant religion is Christianity. However, traditional beliefs still flourish, with some Malawians seeing no conflict between the two extremes. Religious persuasion, tribal identity and political affiliation are closely intertwined in Malawi, along with tolerance of all beliefs including Islam, the second most prominent religion.

Music and dance are an essential part of cultural life, both urban and rural communities.

Batik (color design) and carving are highly-respected art forms in Malawi, with designs representing stylized pictures of village life and animals. Teak, ebony and mahogany carvings including masks, figurines, traditional three-legged tables, and chiefs’ chairs are highly coveted souvenirs. Literature is via oral tradition, although nowadays ancient legends and tales are written down for posterity.


On 17 February, 2022, Diplomats from the Malawi High Commission in Lusaka paid a courtesy call to their counterparts at the Angola Embassy
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Lake Malawi
Elephant Rock in Mzuzu, Malawi
William Falls in Zomba, Malawi
Honala Dance from Nkhata Bay, Malawi
Msindo Dance from Ntcheu, Malawi
Tchopa Dance from Thyolo, Malawi
Beni Dance from Mangochi
Elephant at Lengwe National Park, Malawi
Kudu at Lengwe National Park, Malawi
Buffalo at Lengwe National Park, Malawi

Registering Malawians in Zambia

To serve you better as a Malawian staying in Zambia, the Malawi High Commission in Lusaka, Zambia is encouraging you to register your details. PLEASE click on the following link to provide your information: Click here to register if you are a Malawian in Zambia

Introducing Malawi e-Visa

Visitors going to Malawi can obtain Visa online effective 1st November 2019. The e-Visa portal allows an applicant to submit and make payments online. Notification is sent to the applicant's email address once the Visa is approved, together with a letter of approval that the applicant can present at the port of entry. For more information, visit

Building of Malawi High Comission in Lusaka, Zambia
Building of Malawi High Comission in Lusaka, Zambia
Building of Malawi High Comission in Lusaka, Zambia
Building of Malawi High Comission in Lusaka, Zambia
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  MALAWI HIGH COMMISSION   Monday - Thursday: 08:30  -  12:00; 13:30 -  16:00  
  PLOT No 5202 PANDIT NEHRU ROAD   Friday: 8:00 - 13:00  
  LONGACRES   Saturday & Sunday: Closed  
  P O BOX 50425   Public Holidays: Closed (Both Malawi & Zambia)  
  Telephone: +260 (0) 2 11 265 768