map of Mozambique
map of Africa
Copyright © All World
Archipelago, Mozambique by Ann LoCicero
As we approached the Pelican
Air counter in Johannesburg, South Africa, I began searching through my
bag for our flight confirmation and passports. The woman at the desk smiled
warmly and cut my efforts short:
"Just your last names, please",
The realization of just how
far we had traveled was immediate.
Twenty years of civil war
and a history of famine have kept Mozambique and its Bazaruto
Archipelago - one of Africa's most precious treasures - off the tourist
path. Not for long. The government's commitment to democracy and foreign
investment are slowly changing the face of this remote corner of Africa.
Tourists are discovering its wonders, South Africans and Italians above
all. They were the majority of passengers on the 18-seat twin turbo prop
plane bound for Vilanculos, the gateway to the Archipelago. All well-healed
tourists. No backpackers in site.
|To fully enjoy Bazaruto,
you need to adapt your concept of luxury. Although the resorts and lodges
are sophisticated, here, luxury means getting as close to nature as possible.
Our first brush with reality came shortly after landing. Visas purchased
and luggage in hand, we were whisked to the boat landing in a comfortable
minivan. As we approached the coast, we spied a craft anchored in the shallow
water. That was it. There was no dock much less a harbor. Our initial uncertainty
was short lived. In a matter of seconds our small group was removing shoes
and socks, rolling up the legs of trousers and wading out to the sleek
The Bazaruto Archipelago
was declared a national marine park since 1971 to protect the islands'
more than 250 species of birds, butterflies and crocodiles. The Archipelago
consists of five islands: Santa Carolina (also called Paradise Island),
Bazaruto, Benguerra, Margaruque and Benque.
The 25-minute boat ride to
Benguerra Island was a perfect way to arrive. The contrast between the
deep blue sky, turquoise water and stark white sandbars rising up from
the sea remains one of the most memorable images of our trip.
Snorkeling and diving along
the Archipelago's virgin coral reef is an unforgettable experience. While
isolation has carried a steep price for Mozambique, the dearth in tourism
has ensured that this part of Africa's Indian Ocean coast is today unexploited.
The diversity of marine species is phenomenal. Not wanting to miss an opportunity,
my daughter and I rushed off to the beach, snorkel gear in hand, moments
after we arrived. There were seashells everywhere. So many that we forgot
all about snorkeling and busied ourselves examining each and every one.
The next morning we woke
to find the beach roughly 100 yards - nearly a full soccer field - longer
than the previous afternoon. The coves and inlets had been transformed
into an endless stretch of sand. Wading in the shallow waters was nothing
short of an underwater safari. There were starfish of every shape and color
and seahorses frolicked in the reeds. "Look, a cowfish!", I cried. "Oh,
there's a crab", my daughter shouted. The lodge staff suggested wearing
water shoes at low tide. We were thankful to have followed their advice.
Returning home, I wondered
which of the following memories would remain, a private picnic on Pansy
Island, dune boarding on Bazaruto, snorkeling along a virgin reef, or the
solitude of an endless beach shared with but a lone fisherman.
Copyright © more2explore
S.r.l. All rights reserved.
|About the Author - Ann
LoCicero is the founder of www.kidscantravel.com an emergent website for
families intent on making the most of their leisure time together.
where the sunny skies are aqua blue by Darren Ravens
Located on the south-eastern
coast of the continent, Mozambique is considered one of Africa's coastal
jewels. It is renowned for its crystal blue waters, fantastic coral reef
and its amazing diversity of marine life.
This former Portuguese colony,
a unique melting pot of diverse cultures, is a major attraction for travellers
seeking an African adventure experience. Devastated by a bloody civil war
that raged for about 17 years, since the end of the war in 1992, Mozambique
has been actively rebuilding itself. This has begun to open up a host of
travel opportunities for visitors eager to get a taste of this tropical
Mozambique, bordered by Tanzania,
South Africa, Swaziland, Zimbabwe, Zambia and Malawi is the ideal base
for the traveller hoping to explore these countries aswell. Equally, a
visit to Mozambique can easily be incorporated into a tour to any of these
Mozambique's road network
is reasonably well-established and most major routes are regularly maintained.
Most of the major centres and popular areas are accessible by two-wheel
drive vehicles. Of course, a 4x4 offers a special advantage and opens up
a range of further travel possibilities. There are several car-hire companies
in Maputo, catering for the needs of the traveller
interested in a self-drive holiday.
If you prefer the convenience
and added security of being driven by a professional, there are a number
of private mini-bus operators and reliable public transport companies operating
in the major centres.
If you wish to experience
Mozambique travel as part of a more comprehensive African experience, the
packages offered by overland adventure travel companies are a good option.
Usually, these companies put together overland tours, which pass through
a number of countries and provide travellers with a unique opportunity
to enjoy a diverse African travel experience.
Climate and weather
Mozambique enjoys a warm,
tropical climate with an average temperature of around the high 20s (degrees
Celsius) range. The weather is warm and sunny all year round, ideal for
maximum enjoyment of the countries coastal charms.
The summer months, from October
to April, are often very hot, humid and rainy. From April to September,
the winter months are cooler, drier and more comfortable for visitors not
accustomed to heat and humidity normally associated with the warm season
in tropical areas.
That's not to say that you
shouldn't embark on Mozambique travel during summer though, since actual
temperatures and rainfall varies by region within the country. The higher-lying
Nampula and Niassa provinces are the coolest, while the north-eastern coastal
regions are the hottest. The northern region receives far more rainfall
than the south.
If you're hoping for a Mozambican
safari experience, the best time of year to visit is towards the end of
the winter months. This drier season normally sees animals congregating
in larger groups than they do in summer. The summer months offer excellent
fishing opportunities with the larger fish populating the coastal waters
during this time of the year.
|Diving in Mozambique
Mozambique is a world-famous
dive location with numerous fantastic reefs supporting an amazing variety
of marine life. The relatively warm water temperature and a multitude of
interesting creatures including the dugong, sharks, dolphins, whales and
shoals colourful fish, makes for an awesome diving experience. The area
most popular amongst diving enthusiasts is the Bazaruto
Archipelago, consisting of four islands; Bazaruto, Benguerra, Margaruque
and Santa Carolina. The archipelago's coral reefs and clear, crystal blue
waters provide what is regarded as the best snorkelling and scuba diving
in Africa. If your trip to Mozambique is to be limited to just one destination
in the country, then this group of islands must be it.
The unit of currency is the
Metical. Introduced mid-2006, this relatively new currency is used alongside
the older Meticais, which is being phased out. In the southern parts of
the country, the South African Rand, US Dollars and Pounds Sterling are
also accepted. In the north, US Dollars and Pounds Sterling are widely
accepted. Credit cards are accepted to some extent, but only by the larger
hotels or businesses geared specifically towards tourists. Generally, it
should be assumed that your credit card will not be readily accepted.
Mozambique is a malaria-risk
area, so it's vital that visitors take proper precautions. To minimise
the mosquito risk, travellers are advised to wear long sleeves and trousers
when possible and to use an effective mosquito repellent on exposed skin.
Treated mosquito netting should be used and the doors and windows of your
accommodation should be screened to keep mosquitoes out. A fan or air-conditioner
can also help limit night-time mosquito activity to some extent.
Also important is the use
of and effective anti-malaria medication. Be warned though, certain medications
cause side-effects, so consult you doctor or travel clinic well before
you intend to be exposed to the risk to ensure that you are adequately
With a painful history of
war and destruction, Mozambique has rebuilt itself and looks to the future
by capitalising on its natural beauty. Whether you are after an adventure,
leisure or the perfect eco-tourism experience, Mozambique is an idyllic
tropical destination that will not disappoint. It is truly a slice of paradise.
|About the Author - The crew
from the overland adventure travel company, Oasis Overland have an extensive
knowledge of Africa, the Middle East and South America. Their philosophy
is to provide excellent value for money for budget conscious travellers
without compromising their experiences, and providing quality vehicles,
equipment, and crew. Travel in Mozambique is encompassed by various Oasis
REGION ACCOMMODATION, MOZAMBIQUE
do Mar, Self-Catering/Camping, Macaneta, Maputo Region
Come and visit Esperanca
do Mar "Home at Sea" in Mozambique for a relaxing holiday. We are
situated at Macaneta, 30km North of Maputo, crossing the Komati River with
a ferry, following a 6.5km dirt road and then about 1.5km of sandy road,
requiring a 4x4 vehicle or at least a 4x2 bakkie with diff lock to reach
our premises. A definite relaxed and unspoilt vacation on a non crowded
beach, stretching for 80km to Bilene in the North. Pristine tranquil bush
surroundings, ideal for birdwatchers and those needing to recharge in quite/calm
surroundings. Excellent deep-sea fishing for those fishermen looking to
hook and hopefully land the "big one"! Our shaded campsites are only
300m from the beach with power points, lighting, braais and ablution facilities,
with hot water.
Camp, Selfcatering Chalets, Tents & Camping sites, Inhaca Island, Maputo
Manico Camp is situated
on Inhaca Island, Mozambique surrounded by clear blue waters and coral
reefs which make Inhaca a popular diving, snorkeling and fishing destination.
We have one bedroom log cabins, bush cabins, a tent camp, camping sites
with power points and ablutions facilities with hot and cold water. We
have a fully fitted kitchen with ample freezing facilities. We are in close
proximity to a variety of restaurants and pubs that serves excellent seafood
dishes. Several recreation activities available such as deepsea fishing,
fly fishing, snorkeling, scuba diving, hiking trails and daily trips to
Guest House, Bed & Breakfast, Maputo
Situated in the centraly
located up-market residential area of Sommerschield in Maputo, Sundown
Guest House is a perfect place to relax and recharge whether on business
or leisure. Entering Sundown Guest House gives you a warm feeling of coming
home. Our rooms offer what one would expect of a bedroom in one's own home
plus they all come with an en-suite bathroom. A 'Sundowner' drink
from the honor bar can be enjoyed in the comfort of the Guest House's intimate
lounge area, or if you so prefer, in your own room. And before heading
off in the morning, for that all day meeting or to explore Maputo, one
can sit down to enjoy our delicious complimentary buffet breakfast...
Das Arvores, Beach Lodge, Ponta Malongane, Maputo Region
TreeTops Lodge is situated
north of Ponte Malongane in Southern Mozambique. The lodge itself is made
out of Zimbiri which is a local hardwood and it is nestled in dune forest.
The Lodge is fully serviced and is very luxurious. The views from the decks
are breath-taking, in the east and unspoilt ocean sunrise and in the west
a beautiful sunset over the wetland and lakes in the area. Long white beaches
provide endless walking space. We have 5 Luxury Suites each with on suite
bathroom. All suites have a view of the ocean and coastal forest.
Activities include: fishing, ocean safaris, scuba diving, snorkeling, horse
riding, tours, deep sea fishing, whale & dolphin watching.
n' Banga, Self-Catering, Bilene, Maputo Region
A barefoot paradise, where
the only requirement is total relaxation, an environment uniquely preserved
a place where the only intruders are the birds. Where peace and tranquillity
are a given, where sundowners can be enjoyed everyday while watching a
majestic sunset, a place where time is measured by the setting sun. Where
the beach is engraved by your foot prints. The tranquillity is enhanced
by the sound of the waves lapping on the beach and the evening stars can
be viewed in all their glory, a true African Paradise. Paradise has no
tarred roads - 4x4 required. We are a self Catering guesthouse which
can accommodate a total of 16 people There is the Main House which can
accommodate 8 people, and our Tented Camp which has four 2 sleeper tents
with en-suite bathrooms with hot water.
- Botswana - Burkina
Faso - Cameroon - Congo
- Eritrea - Ethiopia
- Gabon - Gambia -
- Ivory Coast - Kenya
- Lesotho - Madagascar
- Malawi - Mauritius
- Mozambique -
- Nigeria - Senegal
Seychelles - South
Africa - Swaziland - Tanzania
- Uganda - Zambia
- Zanzibar - Zimbabwe