The Makokola Retreat’s International Airport


The Makokola airstrip on the Southern Shore of Lake Malawi is now Malawi’s fourth international airport. This will make combinations between Zambia’s South Luangwa National Park and Lake Malawi even easier. For clients that, after an exhilarating but tiring safari in the South Luangwa, wish to relax and recuperate on Lake Malawi’s beautiful sandy beaches, they can now be at the Lake within an hour of leaving Mfuwe International Airport.

It is no longer necessary to stop in Lilongwe to clear customs and immigration or to refuel. It can all be done directly at Makokola. This way visitors don’t lose a precious day of safari. If staying at a distant bush camp, they can still do their morning walks, have brunch and leave the camp in time for an afternoon flight to Lake Malawi.

The runway can take anything up to ATR 42, Dakota DC 3 and King Air and offers the possibility of refuelling for both Avgas and JetA1 Fuel. With Makokola officially now being an international airstrip, access from neighbouring countries is must more achievable as they do not need to fly elsewhere in order to clear customs – this can be done at Makokola itself.

As well as giving immediate access to the outstanding Makokola Retreat, the airport can also be used to reach the growing number of international–standard lodges on the southern shores of Lake Malawi, including those in the Lake Malawi National Park, at Cape Maclear, just half an hour’s drive away.


Technical information on the aerodrome:

Coordinates 14.18 South: 35.08 East

Elevation 1,589ft above sea level

Runway; 29/11; 20 meters x 1,200 meters, Gravel; 6,000kg

Approach slop -11=1: 30,29 =1:40; HJ Daylight Hours

Landing fees- Nil for planes carrying hotel guests; otherwise US$ 30.00 or its equivalent in local currency.

Broadcast at take-off 1,1981:1 

Distances from other points in South and East Africa:


•             Lilongwe and Chileka: 85NM.

•             Likoma 125NM.

•             Mvuu (Makanga) 33NM.

•             Nyika (Chelinde) 240NM.

•             Zomab (Military) 66NM.

•             Nchalo (Sucoma) 120NM.




•             Beira: 330NM.

•             Nampula: 250NM.

•             Nacala and Pemba: 325NM.

•             Vilanculos: 460NM.

•             Maputo:705NM.



•             Dar es Salam: 505NM.

•             Zanzibar: 540NM.



•             Lusaka: 400NM.

•             Mfuwe: 200NM.

•             Livingstone (Victoria Falls): 580NM.

•             Mfuwe: 180 MN.



•             Harare: 320NM.

•             Victoria Falls: 580NM.