Take a lakeside trip like none you've ever experienced in the "warm heart of Africa." Having earned its nickname not for location or climate but for the friendliness of its people, landlocked Malawi comes as a welcome surprise to many travelers. Stretched along its eastern border lies long, narrow Lake Malawi, a deep Rift Valley lake rimmed with rolling hills and tropical vegetation. Dotted with sandy beaches, hidden coves, and wooded islands, filled with unique tropical freshwater fish, the lake makes for an idyllic water-sports destination, including superb lake diving. Balancing this waterworld are Malawi's dramatic plateau game parks filled with skittish zebra, and the highlands around the 3,000m (9,849 ft) Mulanje Massif, rising from tea plantations and spotted with mountain streams tumbling into steep mountain gorges.