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Malawi History

History and Culture of Malawi: Before and after Independence

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Malawians are part of the large Bantu population that migrated northward from South Africa at around the turn of the twentieth century. Location and Geography: Malawi is a landlocked country that lies east of Zambia, north and west of Mozambique, and south of Tanzania. Malawi History and Culture Information and Travel Guide.  Vacation package Book. Its area is 45,747 square miles (118,500 square kilometers). The major topographic feature is Lake Malawi, a freshwater lake that is home to hundreds of fish species found nowhere else in the world. Twenty percent of the landmass consists of water. The topography varies from the high Nyika plateau in the north to the Shire River valley in the south that is an extension of the Great Rift Valley. In the far southeast corner is Mount Mulanje, which is among the highest mountains in Africa. The capital, Lilongwe, is roughly in the center of the country. However, the major commercial center is Blantyre, named after the birthplace in Scotland of the first European to discover Lake Malawi, the English explorer Livingston. Access to the Indian Ocean is normally by rail to the port of Beira in Mozambique. Demography: In 1999, the estimated population was ten million, with 45 percent of the population under age 14, and 3 percent over age 65. The population density is one of the highest in Africa. Among the major ethnic groups are Chewa, Nyanja, Tumbuko, Yao, Lomwe, Sena, Tonga, Ngoni, Ngonde, Asians, and Europeans