Malawi is in southeastern Africa, bordering Mozambique on two sides, along with Tanzania to the north and Zambia to the east. The distinguishing geographic feature of Malawi is Lake Malawi, which runs along the country’s western side, and is a quarter as large as the entire country, and clocks in as Africa’s third largest lake. Malawi is also home to Africa’s second-highest peak, Mt Mulanje.
Here is a short overview of the country’s history from the CIA World Factbook:
Established in 1891, the British protectorate of Nyasaland became the independent nation of Malawi in 1964. After three decades of one-party rule under President Hastings Kamuzu BANDA the country held multiparty elections in 1994, under a provisional constitution that came into full effect the following year. President Bingu wa MUTHARIKA, elected in May 2004 after a failed attempt by the previous president to amend the constitution to permit another term, struggled to assert his authority against his predecessor and subsequently started his own party, the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) in 2005. MUTHARIKA was reelected to a second term in May 2009. As president, he oversaw some economic improvement. He died abruptly in April 2012 and was succeeded by his vice president, Joyce BANDA. Population growth, increasing pressure on agricultural lands, corruption, and the spread of HIV/AIDS pose major problems for Malawi.
Read more at the CIA’s country summary for Malawi.