Destinations > Mozambique
Mozambique is the land of pristine beaches, ocean adventure combined with a rich & diverse culture.
With 2,500km of Indian Ocean in the south-east of Africa, diving and ocean activities, getaway island adventures, are just some of what people travel here for. Known in times past for its fine gold and ivory, and for having been active in the slave trade, Mozambique is a safe travel destination and despite its regained popularity, this warm-hearted country remains for the most part un-commercialized, and gives an open-armed welcome to those willing to explore its treasures.
In the north is the Cabo Delgado province and the Quirimbas Archipelago. The National Park (Cabo Delgado Biodiversity Project) offers visitors diverse environments to explore. With world class fishing, diving and bird watching this is a remote paradise, perfect for those wanting to combine solitude with an experience of a lifetime.
Travel further south to Ilha de Mozambique and you will be transported back in time. This part of the coastline has been declared a World Heritage Site and is an architect’s dream, with buildings made of coral dating back to the 16th century. The Bazaruto Archipelago is one of the best known beach destinations in Mozambique.
Many may not think of Mozambique as a wildlife destination, however Limpopo National Park is a transfrontier park connected to Kruger National Park of South Africa and Gonarezhou of Zimababwe offering a remote and wilderness safari experience with great wildlife diversity along the Limpopo River, which can for months on end, remain a dry river bed. Gorongosa National Park and Niassa National Reserve are also first class wildlife destinations with recently established good standard accommodation available. These are lesser known destinations, and gems indeed, and certainly ideal destinations depending on what your ‘ideal’ safari scenario looks like, we will help you establish this.
Regular flights from various South African airports to Vilanculos, Maputo and Pemba make Mozambique a convenient and accessible destination.
Bazaruto Archipelago National Park
The Bazaruto Archipelago is a group of six islands in Mozambique, near the mainland city of Vilankulo. The archipelago comprises of the islands of Bazaruto, Benguerra, Magaruque, Banque, Santa Carolina (also known as Paradise Island) and Shell. The group belongs to Vilankulo District of Inhambane Province. The islands were formed from sand deposited by the Save River, which has since shifted its course. Santa Carolina is a true rock island with deep channels and is just 3 km by 0.5 km in size. It has three beautiful beaches with coral reefs close to the shore. The island, also known as Paradise Island for obvious reasons is regarded as the ‘gem’ of the islands forming the Bazaruto Archipelago which is a proclaimed marine national park that boasts sensational beaches and magnificent scenery.
Gorongosa National Park
The greater Gorongosa region is ecologically unique, situated at the southern most end of the Great African Rift Valley; as a result it is a region with high species diversity and environmental features found nowhere else in the sub-continent. Gorongosa National Park includes the valley floor and parts of surrounding plateaus. Rivers originating on nearby 1863-meter Mount Gorongosa water the plain. Seasonal flooding and waterlogging of the valley, which is composed of a mosaic of different soil types, creates a variety of distinct ecosystems. Grasslands are dotted with patches of acacia trees, savannah, dry forest on sands and seasonally rain-filled pans and termite hill thickets. The plateaus contain miombo and montane forests and a spectacular rain forest at the base of a series of limestone gorges. This combination of unique features at one time supported some of the densest wildlife populations in all of Africa, including charismatic carnivores, herbivores and over 500 bird species. But large mammal numbers were reduced by as much as 95% and ecosystems stressed during Mozambique’s long civil conflict at the end of the 20th century. The Carr Foundation/Gorongosa Restoration Project, a U.S. not-for-profit organization, has teamed with the Government of Mozambique to protect and restore the ecosystem of Gorongosa National Park and to develop an ecotourism industry to benefit local communities.
Quirimbus National Park
The Quirimbas National Park, stretching along the northeast coast of Mozambique, protects 750,639 hectares of coastal forest and mangroves, rich coral reefs and abundant marine life, including sea turtles, dugongs and hundreds of fish species. The park was established in 2002 to protect the region’s natural resources.
With a population of about 6,000 people subsisting on fishing and agriculture, where at low tides women harvest crabs, oysters and fish while at high tide fishing boats leave the island for deeper sea fishing. Inhaca island is a popular winter destination of South African tourists, with it’s sun-drenched sandy beaches, this idyllic tropical island is the destination where you can look out at fun loving Dolphins, local fishing boats navigating their way through pristine and warm blue waters, Ilha da Inhaca (Inhaca Island in Portuguese) is where time can stop. A great place to start your Mozambique adventure.
Maputo, known also as Lourenço Marques, is the capital and largest city of Mozambique. It is known as the City of Acacias, trees commonly found along its avenues. Famous for the inscription ‘This is Portugal’ on the walkway of its municipal building. Today it is a port city on the Indian Ocean, with its economy centered around the harbour. Coal, cotton, sugar, chromite, sisal, copra, and hardwood are the chief exports. The city manufactures cement, pottery, furniture, shoes, and rubber.
Lake Malawi formally known as Lake Nyasa or Lago Niassa in Mozambique, is one of the great lakes in the Great Rift Valley system of East Africa. This lake, the third largest in Africa and the eighth largest lake in the world, is located between Malawi, Mozambique, and Tanzania. It is the second deepest lake in Africa. Lake Malawi is said to have more species of fish than any other body of freshwater on Earth, including many species of cichlids. Lake Malawi was officially declared a reserve by the Government of Mozambique on June 10th 2011 in an effort to protect one of the largest and bio-diverse freshwater lakes in the world. Lake Malawi has the nickname ‘The Lake of Stars’ which came about due to the lights from lanterns of fishermen in their boats, that appear like stars twinkling. There is also an annual music festival that draws international attention, under the same name.
Portuguese trader Candido José da Costa Cardosa was the first European to visit the lake in 1846. Dr. David Livingstone arrived in 1859 and named it Lake Nyasa. This area was soon acquired by the British Empire and formed into the colony of Nyasaland. The Portuguese took control of the eastern shore, though Likoma Island on the Eastern shore remained part of Malawi with its mission history and unique cathedral drawing many guests each year. Many options exist for accommodation on both sides of the lake. Any trip to Malawi or Mozambique should certainly include a stay on Lake Malawi. Anyone interested in a sailing trip to different destinations around the lake, attractive options exist.