Land Area (km²) / Rank 2,056 km² / 19th out of 28 districts
Population (2018) / Rank 684,107 / 11th out of 28 districts
Population Density / Rank 333 persons/km² / 6th out of 28 districts

Mulanje Town started life as Fort Anderson, one of two British forts built in the region to control the Yao slave trade to Mozambique via the Fort Lister Gap.

The original Fort Anderson was built in 1893 about 20km away from the present-day town, but it was relocated there after three years. Fort Anderson was renamed Mlanje in 1907 and this was later corrected to the more accurate spelling Mulanje.

The town is situated along the M2 highway from Thyolo to the west to the Mozambican border to the east.

It is famous for both its spacious and green tea plantations and the achingly pretty Mulanje Massif, the tallest mountain (3,002m) in south-central Africa.

The upper plateau, serviced by ten well-maintained huts, offers some of the most rewarding hiking opportunities in the country, while the peaks are renowned for their rock climbing.

The town is also an important gateway for overland travel to/from Mozambique, situated about 16km from the Muloza/Milanje border post at the southeast base of the Mulanje Massif.

The town comprises two discrete parts;

If coming from the direction of Blantyre, you arrive first at Chitakale, which is the main commercial centre and the most popular base for climbing Mulanje.

The older administrative part of Mulanje, home to most of its smarter hotels, lies about 1.2km further east, and it is reached by following a flame-tree-lined stretch of the M2 that bisects Chitakale Tea Estate

Mount MulanjeMount Mulanje Mulanje Massif, as it is also known, is composed of h...
Hiking to Mount MulanjeHiking to Mount Mulanje Mount Mulanje is the best known and most po...
  1. Mulanje is famous for its spacious and green tea plantations.
  2. It is also renowned for the Mulanje Massif, the tallest mountain (3,002m) in south-central Africa.
  3. The town is an important gateway for overland travel to/from Mozambique.

Getting there and away

It is approximately 64 km (40 miles) south-east of Blantyre. AXA buses go to/from Blantyre (one and a half hours), as do minibuses (one and a quarter hours). If you’re heading for the border with Mozambique, minibuses and matolas run to Muloza (30 minutes).