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Mozambique in Southern Africa remains under the tourist radar but showers plenty of surprises to those who visit here. It has an endless coastline dotted with powdery beaches and has Portuguese-era architecture and historical monuments to investigate. The traditional masked mapiko dance of the Makonde people or the hugely popular Marrabenta dance music displays Mozambique’s robust cultural scene.
Maputo – Mozambique’s capital, is located in the country’s southern coast and accented with Portuguese colonial architecture. The bronze-domed railway station is a good example of the city’s rich architectural heritage. The Museu Nacional de Arte, the Museu de Historia Natural, Fortress of Maputo, Tunduru Botanical Gardens, Centro Cultural Franco Moçambicano (CCFM), Praca dos Herois Mocambicanos and Cathedral of Nossa Senhora da Conceicao are the highlights of the capital.
About 500 kilometres north-east of Maputo lies one of Mozambique’s most beautiful towns – Inhambane. The town has a fascinating history of more than 1000 years and is also the gateway to the pristine Tofo Beach. The coral-fringed beach is a great spot to dive or snorkel and is a popular spot for backpackers.
Mozambique’s long coastline is dotted with numerous islands. The five islands of the Bazaruto Archipelago encompasses the Bazaruto Archipelago National Marine Park which offers great diving and snorkeling. The eastern coast of the islands is a long stretch of majestic sand dunes, towering upto 300 feet high.
With historical architecture and rustic charm, Ibo Island is the highlight of Quirimbas Islands in the north. Due to its historic appeal, a gentle stroll in the island’s quiet streets feels like stepping back into the 19th-century. A mix of Portuguese, Swahili, Indian and African cultures make this island a fabulous place to experience Mozambique’s cultural heritage.
The UNESCO world heritage listed Mozambique Island was once the capital of Portuguese East Africa and a trading-post en-route to India. The massive 16th-century Fort of Sao Sebastiao and the historical buildings tell the fascinating story of its glorious past. A 3.5 km long bridge connects the island with the mainland.
Mozambique’s rich history and long coastline compensate for its lack of typical African wildlife. However, the country’s major national parks like Gorongosa and Limpopo offer a decent range of wildlife including lions, leopards, rhinos, zebras and elephant herds.
This offbeat African destination has plenty of history to tell, beaches and islands to explore, rich culture to experience and above all, grants you cherished memories for a lifetime.
Mozambique’s rich history and the long coastline compensate for its lack of wildlife and national parks.