Mountains and Plateaux of Malawi – January 2nd, 201014.1S 34.1E
The Great Rift Valley traverses the country of Malawi from north to south. In this deep trough lies Lake Malawi, partially visible in the upper right corner of this orthorectified image. It is the third-largest lake in Africa, comprising about 20% of Malawi’s area. The Shire River flows from the south end of the lake and joins the Zambezi River 400 kilometers (249 mi) farther south in Mozambique.
West of the Great Rift Valley, the land forms high plateaus, generally between 900 and 1,200 meters (2,953 and 3,937 ft) above sea level. In the north, the Nyika Uplands rise as high as 2,600 meters (8,530 ft). The area to the west of the lake in northern and central Malawi has been categorised by the World Wildlife Fund as part of the Central Zambezian Miombo woodlands ecoregion.
South of the lake lie the Shire Highlands, with an elevation of 600–1,600 meters (1,969–5,249 ft), rising to elevations of 2,130 and 3,002 meters (6,988 and 9,849 ft) at the Zomba Plateau and Mulanje Massif respectively. In the extreme south, the elevation is only 60–90 meters (197–295 ft) above sea level.