Mozambique

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Mozambique is a country on the Indian Ocean coast of Southern Africa. It is bordered by South Africa to the south, Tanzania to the north and has inland borders with Malawi, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Swaziland. Mozambique's eastern coastline along the Indian Ocean is more than 1,000 km long, a fantastic draw for scuba divers, fishermen, sailors and beach lovers.

Population: 24,096,669 people
Area: 799,380 km2
Highest point: 2,436 m
Coastline: 2,470 km
Life expectancy: 52.29 years
GDP per capita: $1,200
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Cities

  • Metropolis over 100 hotels
  • Big city 50-100 hotels
  • Medium city 20-50 hotels
  • Small city 5-20 hotels
  • Village below 5 hotels

Points of Interest

  • Beach Beach
  • Business object Business object
  • Casino Casino
  • Civic property Civic property
  • Education Education
  • Entertainment Entertainment
  • Golf course Golf course
  • Green space Green space
  • Harbor Harbor
  • Historic site Historic site
  • Interesting place Interesting place
  • Medical Medical
  • Monument Monument
  • Museum Museum
  • Shopping Shopping
  • Skiing Skiing
  • Sports facility Sports facility
  • Theater Theater
  • Winery Winery

About Mozambique

History

In 1500, the Portuguese established a string of forts and posts up and down the coast, starting with present day Isla de Mozambique (at that time simply known as Mozambique and where the country gets its modern name), where the Portuguese plied the spice and slave routes from Mozambique up until 1891.

After World War 1, Portuguese investment in commercial, industrial, agricultural, educational, transportation, and health care infrastructure for the indegenious population started providing for better social and economic possibilities and these continued to gain pace up until independence in 1975.

In 1962, several anti-colonial political groups formed the Front for the Liberation of Mozambique (FRELIMO), which initiated an armed campaign against Portuguese colonial rule. Mozambique became independent after ten years of sporadic warfare on June 25, 1975. FRELIMO took complete control of the territory after a transition period and within a year of independence, almost all the Portuguese population had left Mozambique – some expelled by the new government of Mozambique, some fleeing in fear.

Upon independence, Mozambique had less than 5 engineers in the entire country and the previous colonial infrastructure investments stopped entirely resulting in the rapid disintegration of much of Mozambique's infrastructure. FRELIMO responded to their lack of resources and the Cold War politics of the mid-1970s by moving into alignment with the Soviet Union and its allies. FRELIMO established a one-party Socialist state, and quickly received substantial international aid from Cuba and the Soviet bloc nations.

In 1975, the Mozambican National Resistance (RENAMO), an anti-communist group sponsored by the Rhodesian Intelligence Service, the apartheid government in South Africa and the United States after Zimbabwe's independence, was founded and launched a series of attacks on transport routes, schools and health clinics, and the country descended into civil war.

In 1990, with apartheid crumbling in South Africa, and support for RENAMO drying up in South Africa and in the United States, the first direct talks between the FRELIMO government and Renamo were held. In November 1990, a new constitution was adopted. Mozambique was now a multiparty state, with periodic elections, and guaranteed democratic rights. With the signing of the Rome General Peace Accords, the civil war ended on October 15, 1992.

Climate

Almost all of Mozambique falls within the tropics and as such, Mozambique features a mostly tropical climate.

Along the coast Mozambique has a warm, tropical climate. Evenings are rarely cold, except for a few nights in June and July and the rainfall isn't too high. In summer, temperatures can soar and the humidity levels rise. Temperatures are typically higher in the north, around Pemba, and around the Zambezi.

The interior plains generally have a higher temperature than that of the coast and have higher rainfall throughout the year. The mountainous regions generally remain cool throughout the year. For up-to date weather forecasts and tide tables visit http://www.climateandweather.com/weather-in-mozambique

Geography

Mozambique stretches for 1,535 mi (2,470 km) along Africa's southeast coast. It is nearly twice the size of California. Tanzania is to the north; Malawi, Zambia, and Zimbabwe to the west; and South Africa and Swaziland to the south. The country is generally a low-lying plateau broken up by 25 sizable rivers that flow into the Indian Ocean. The largest is the Zambezi, which provides access to central Africa. In the interior, several chains of mountains form the backbone of the country.

Activities

  • Dive, see Diving in Mozambique for details.
  • Tours and Safaris, a number of tour operators can help you reach Mozambique's highlights. The most reputable as per guide books Lonely Planet and Bradt are Mozaic Travel [11] and Dana Tours in the south, and Kaskazini in the north.

Food

As a country the Portuguese occupation has a profound impact on local foods that has produced some of the most unique and interesting cuisine within Southern Africa. Towards the coast a great deal of seafood is used within even the most basic of dishes, however, in land the maize based partridges common throughout Africa becomes staple but with some Portuguese flair.

  • Piri-Piri, also known as the African bird's-eye chili this extremely strong chili is common is sauce form throughout the country.
  • Pãozinho , also known as Portuguese rolls or Prego(beef) no pãu and bifana (pork) . A floury and often semi-sweet bread roll, typically served with meat in the center.
  • Matapa, a seafood (clam, crab or prawn)stew made with Casave leaves and generally served over rice. This is one of the Mozambique staples.
  • Camarão National, are Mozambican prawns marinaded in a Piri-Piri, garlic, onion, lemon and vinegar.
  • Cray fish and other seafood. These are caught off the beach throughout the country and will generally be prepared with a piri-piri marinade, served with rice and matapa.
  • Kakana This is a bitter tasting local vegetable.

Drinks

All tap water in Mozambique should be assumed to be unsafe to drink, even if it is not harmful it usually has some sediment that your stomach will not be used to. Most western oriented lodgings either provide a fresh water source or sell bottled water.

Beer

In Mozambique Cervejas de Mocambique which are owned by SABMiller have a virtual monopoly on beer brewing. The three most popular brands are 2M (remember to pronounce it doysh-em or you will end up with an extra beer), Laurentina Clara and Manica. Other local African beers such as Castle and Windhoek are reasonably widely available but are not as popular as in neighboring countries due to the high quality of the local brews.

Liquors

Locally produced spirits such as vodka and gin are relatively common throughout the country and are relatively inexpensive. The local drink is Cashu made of the peel from the cashew nut. According to the locals it's very good for a man's libido. It has a sour taste.

Shopping

The currency of Mozambique is the new Metical (Meticais Nova Família, MZN), plural meticais (Mts, pronounced 'meta-caysh'), divided into 100 centavos.

Three zeroes were dropped from the currency in 2006. Old currency could be exchanged at banks up to the end of December 2012. People will occasionally still refer to the old currency, so if someone asks for "1 million", they generally mean one thousand new meticais.

Note that many businesses in the tourist centers are run by South Africans and prices are often quoted in Rand (for which the usual abbreviation is ZAR). In this guide prices are also quoted in Rand when applicable.

US$, ZAR, British pounds and Euros are freely convertible at commercial rates at any bank or exchange. Other currencies such as Canadian or Australian dollars or Japanese Yen, are not accepted anywhere, even at official banks and exchanges.

There is very little black market currency exchange, since the commercial exchanges offer the best market rate. You cannot exchange meticais outside Mozambique, but you can convert them back at exchanges prior to leaving the country. Also you cannot buy meticais outside Moçambique.

ATMs are present throughout the country; Standard, Millennium Bim, BCI, ProCredit and Barclays are the brands you are most likely to run in to. Standard accepts Visa & MasterCard, Millennium accepts all international cards including Maestro/Cirrus cards while Barclays doesn't seem to accept any cards with great regularity. ATMs have transaction limits on withdrawals, which vary with the bank. Millennium Bim limits withdrawals to 3,000 Mts, BCI to 5,000 and Standard Bank to 10,000; you can always insert your card again to withdraw more money.

Everything in Mozambique that does not have a price attached can be bargained down to whatever you consider a reasonable price to be. Remember that while laughing when they give you an insane price is perfectly OK you should not get outwardly angry or hostile, you will be unlikely to get a reasonable price if you do. If in doubt about what a fair price is ask your hotel.

No one in Mozambique, including often backpacker lodges, have change. The 1000Mzn and 500Mzn are almost impossible to use day to day, so change them down in to more manageable notes in any bank. The one exception to this rule is chapa drivers, if you find yourself running low on small bills pay for your 15Mzn fare with a 100Mzn note.

This article is based on Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike 3.0 Licensed text from the article Mozambique on Wikivoyage.

Cities in Mozambique

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Vilanculos (Vilankulo) is the Mozambican capital of water sports. It's a popular beach resort area with accommodation from economy to 5 star barefoot luxury. The gateway to the Bazaruto Archipelago, Mozambique's only underwater national park. The dry season is from March to November with temperatures around ... (read more)

Interesting places:

  • Vilanculos Beach
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Inhambane is in Mozambique. It is a sleepy historic town some 485 km north of Maputo. It has some great colonial architecture (in a low-key sort of a way) and is considered by many to be one of the prettiest towns in Mozambique. It is situated on a peninsula overlooking a bay, and also serves as a springboard ... (read more)

Interesting places:

  • Inhambane Museum
  • Heroes\' Square
  • Barra Beach
  • Inhambane Park
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Beira is a port town in Mozambique.

Interesting places:

  • Praca do Municipio
  • Beira Cathedral
  • Beira Beach
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The Bazaruto Archipelago is a group of islands off the coast of Vilanculos in Mozambique.

Interesting places:

  • Santa Carolina Beach
  • Magaruque Island Beach
  • Benguerra Island Beach
  • Bazaruto Island Beach
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Inhambane is in Mozambique. It is a sleepy historic town some 485 km north of Maputo. It has some great colonial architecture (in a low-key sort of a way) and is considered by many to be one of the prettiest towns in Mozambique. It is situated on a peninsula overlooking a bay, and also serves as a springboard ... (read more)

Interesting places:

  • Tofo Beach
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Pemba is the capital of the Cabo Delgado Province in the north of Mozambique.

Interesting places:

  • Pemba Beach
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Nampula is the capital of Nampula Province in Northern Mozambique, surrounded by plains and rocky outcrops. The city is connected by plane (LAM) to Maputo; it hosts the regional market and is well supplied with shops, banks, hotels and restaurants.

Interesting places:

  • Nampula Cathedral
  • Nampula Stadium
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Lichinga is the capital of the province of Niassa, in Mozambique.

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Maputo is the capital city of Mozambique.

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The Quirimbas Islands are a national park in Northern Mozambique.

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Ponta d'Ouro is a popular destination for South African divers and surfers in southern Maputo province, Mozambique. There is a small village, but it is mostly overshadowed by the tourist camps.

Interesting places:

  • Signal Hill
  • Ponta Do Oruo Market
  • Malongane Park
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Interesting places:

  • Quirimbas National Park
panoramio Photos are copyrighted by their owners

Points of Interest in Mozambique

  • Ilha de Mozambique, i.e. Mozambique Island is the only UNESCO World Heritage Site in Mozambique. The island boasts colonial architecture including probably the oldest European building in the Southern Hemisphere and beaches.
  • The historic town of Inhambane.
  • Sites from the civil war all over the country and the Museum of Revolution in Maputo to learn more about recent events in the country's history
  • Wildlife and nature in Gorongosa National Park.

Praca do Municipio - Beira

Maputo Cathedral - Maputo

Fort Sao Sebastiao - Mozambique Island

Tofo Beach - Tofo

Inhambane Museum - Inhambane

Nampula Cathedral - Nampula

Pemba Beach - Pemba

Santa Carolina Beach - Bazaruto Island

Signal Hill - Ponta d'Ouro

Vilanculos Beach - Vilanculos

Carrusca Beach - Carrusca

Quirimbas National Park - Mucojo

Museum of Natural History - Maputo

Maputo Botanical Gardens - Maputo

Beira Cathedral - Beira

Praca dos Trabalhadores - Maputo

Maputo City Hall - Maputo

Heroes\' Square - Inhambane

Beira Beach - Beira

Barra Beach - Inhambane

panoramio Photos are copyrighted by their owners
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