Lilongwe is Malawi's capital, a pleasant enough city where you'll find embassies and government departments. It's a planned capital, and the population is smaller than Blantyre, at around 1 million. The "new town" is spread out with modern office buildings and residential areas. The "old town" is much more lively with a really great market where you can buy everything from bikes to fans. Just watch your valuables here and enjoy a little bartering. Lilongwe is a good place to regroup if you've been on the road for a while, lots of accommodation options and some decent restaurants can be found in both the old and the new town. The Lilongwe Wildlife center and the tobacco auctions (see above) are two of several worthwhile attractions in the capital. Some of the embassies and cultural centers host local art shows which are worth attending, check local papers for information.