Criss-crossing the dynamic landscapes of Mozambique takes some guts. Things change around every corner on a self-drive holiday through this awe-inspiring African destination. From untouched bushveld in game reserves to endless white beaches and violet oceans, Mozambique entices visitors to sample her treasures. If you self-drive, you can soak it all up in your own time.
The Perks of Driving Your Own Car Across Mozambique:
- You get to explore corners of the country other travellers would never know existed.
- You get to take things at your own pace – this is your custom made, tailor made holiday in paradise where you call the shots and decide when and where to eat and drink or sleep.
- You meet people from all walks of life, locals and visitors – in border queues, country pubs, beach cafes and maybe a cultural show or live music gig
- You pick your choice of accommodation ranging from camping and self-catering to friendly guest houses and villas to private chalets, five star hotels and pristine island lodges.
Take Heed of These Tips:
- Always stay within the speed limits and respect the rules of the road. This is a busy country where bicycles, donkeys, carts, taxis, huge trucks and buses use the road at the same time. Even on the main EN1 highway, you must look out for goats and sheep, cattle and vendors at the sides of the road. When you approach a small town, slow down to 80kph, then 60kph as you enter the town. Traffic police will usually be waiting for people like you who don’t like to slow down. If you hit a speed trap, expect to pay a minimum fine of Mtn 1 000 but remember not to pay any bribes, even when you are in the wrong. Pay the due fine and ask for an official receipt.
- Do not use your cellphone while driving.
- Do not drive on the beaches. This is illegal and results in the wanton destruction of turtle nests and has been known to cause changes in dolphin behaviour. Crabs, snails and other tiny creatures come out onto the beaches at night too.
- Do not go off the main roads as many roads are unpassable. There may even be remnants of land mines since the civil war a few years ago.
- Take your passport that is still valid for 6 months after your return date and make sure it has at least 2 blank pages before you set off. Make sure your driver’s license is real and up to date. South Africans do not need a Visa.
- Ensure that you have third party vehicle insurance so arrange this before your trip to save time and money. Make sure your insurance does cover Mozambique. Read the fine print.
- Make certified colour copies of all your legal, ID and travel documents and hide them in a separate place to your original documents. Laminate the copies to protect them.
- You can take some things into the country with you but make sure you keep the slips from when you purchased them: alcohol (1 litre spirits or 2.25l of wine but NO beer); tobacco (200 Cigarettes or 100 Cigarillos or 50 Cigars); Perfumes (50ml of perfume or 250ml of Eau de Toilette; Pharmaceutical products (prescribed by a registered medical practitioner).
- When loading or repairing your vehicle, or involved in an accident, by the side of the road, you are expected to wear reflective vests by law. You also need to carry 2 red triangles for break downs or accidents.
- It is best to visit the country between May and October for the best weather and to avoid the heat and the South African school holidays. Travel out of season to escape the crowds.
- It helps if you are a bit of a car mechanic as you may need to sort your car out in the middle of nowhere. Take along enough spares to get you to the nearest garage if need be: tyres, jacks, fan belt, fuses, etc.
The Best Way to Self-Drive in Mozambique is the Chilled Way