Hippo View Lodge

Lodge in Liwonde

This 111-room behemoth does its best to banish a lingering feeling of faded grandeur, with rooms in blocks overlooking riverside gardens shaded by palms and a huge baobab. Superior rooms have tiled floor, fridge, phone and plasma-screen TV; it's worth upgrading to the more attractive and modern deluxe rooms, with larger bathrooms and tea and coffee.

Overlooking a garden decorated with deranged models of hippos, fish eagles and zebras, the breezy bar-restaurant (mains MK5000) has a broad menu featuring Indian and Chinese dishes, pizzas and grilled chicken. To reach the lodge, turn down the dirt road next to the National Bank and look out for the two hippos flanking the road just before the entrance.