Why Visit Majete Wildlife Reserve
- Explore a park rejuvenated, now home to the Big Five
- Walk and drive through the park with near exclusivity, from isolated Mkulumadzi
- Cruise the Shire River, spotting animal and bird life along its banks
- Visit African Park's anti-poaching unit and learn about the challenges facing the park
A Little More About Majete Wildlife Reserve
Under the management of African Parks, Majete is a rags-to-riches success story that acts as proof of what can be done in Africa, when local communities and sound wildlife management principles collaborate.
Situated in the Lower Shire Valley, in the south-west of Malawi, Majete is approximately one and a half hours from Blantyre and three hours from Lake Malawi. The Shire River forms the park’s eastern boundary, with the Mkulumadzi River cutting through the north-east corner.
Low thicket covers the park, interspersed with small gullies, sandy openings and the occasional larger tree, including palms. By the river, the landscape is more open – a mixture of rocks and sand, bordering short grasses. This verdant environment is a haven for herbivores; it is packed with waterbucks, impalas, nyalas and greater kudus.
The park is also home to the Big Five, thanks to the reintroduction of lions and rhinos by African Parks. Whilst sightings are never guaranteed and populations are still small, Majete can lay claim to being the only Big Five park in Malawi.
African Parks in Malawi
Majete has not always been a prolific safe haven to wildlife. In the late nineties, the reserve once renowned for its vast animal numbers reached a nadir from which many conservationists thought it could not be saved. Elephants were completely eradicated and the few species of animals that did remain were reduced to critical numbers. Illegal encroachment, agriculture and hardwood logging were all taking their toll on Majete’s precious resources and drastic measures were required if Majete was to be restored.
Enter African Parks, who in partnership with the Malawian government and local communities, took responsibility for the rehabilitation and long-term management of the reserve. With an overhaul of Majete’s infrastructure and law enforcement, Majete was given a secure platform from which to begin a sustained program of wildlife restocking.
In the first 10 years of African Parks’ management, nearly 3,000 animals were reintroduced to Majete. These can be seen flourishing today, with the park going from strength to strength – even now being used to restock neighbouring reserves.