Summer Holidays in Mozambique 2024

Informative travel guide to Mozambique for 2024. The very best deals on lodges and hotels in Bazaruto or along the stunning coastline for the year ahead.

Planning a summer holiday in Mozambique is the most exciting thing you will do this year so take this comprehensive Mozambique travel guide to heart and make 2024 the year of dazzling white beaches, turquoise ocean vistas and deep-sea diving thrills. Where to travel in Mozambique…Knowing what to pack and how to plan ahead for that dream Mozambique safari is all you need – find the answers to your frequently asked questions about going to East Africa this summer. 

Top attractions in Mozambique include Maputo for its nightlife and restaurants, Tofo for its surfing and diving with Whale sharks, Ponta do Ouro for its boating and swimming with dolphins, Gorongosa National Park for its awe-inspiring wildlife and tented camps, and the Bazaruto Islands for their elite eco-luxury villas in a marine sanctuary. 

a woman diving with a whale shark in Mozambique
Dive or snorkel with Whale Sharks and Manta Rays in the warm waters of the Indian Ocean along the Mozambique coastline and marvel at their grace and beauty.

Your Mozambique holiday 2024 just happens to be in one of the most stable countries on this vast continent, one of the most scenic and one of the fastest developing nations in terms of economic and tourism infrastructure. The cherry on the top is that flight times and schedules to Mozambique have increased and flight prices have decreased – what a winner for your dream holiday in Africa.

Places to visit in Mozambique Ecotourism in Mozambique Travel Guide

The age of responsible travel has arrived, encouraging tourists to respect these ancient cultures and their customs, and to support all local artisans and small businesses. This is the age of ecotourism, environmental conservation, waste reduction, energy and water saving.  Ethical travellers are seeking eco-lodges and the best places to visit in Mozambique that are making a personal effort to reduce carbon footprints, conserve natural resources and support local communities.  Travel Mozambique – you will not be dissapointed!

Vilanculos is known as the gateway to the Bazaruto Archipelago where some of the best eco-lodges offer luxury suites for discerning tourists right on pearly white beaches. Mozambique features some of the most diverse ecosystems in Africa, including savannahs, wetlands, forests, and coastal habitats. These habitats harbour a wide variety of wildlife, including elephants, lions, leopards, Cape buffaloes, and many different bird species. 

Health Issues in Mozambique 

Just so you know. When travelling to Mozambique it is a malaria area and malaria risk is high all year round. It’s important to get your doctor’s advice before travelling and to take malaria precautions. Cover up in loose clothing with long sleeves and pants in the evenings and use insect repellents at all times, sleeping under a mosquito net. Get suitable antimalarial tablets to travel with from your doctor. Other diseases, prevalent in water, are cholera, hepatitis, tuberculosis, and rabies. 

Money in Mozambique

Mozambicans use the metical (meticais) but tourists can change US Dollars at most banks and South African Rands are widely accepted in southern Mozambique. All main towns have ATMs and all accept Visa Cards, not MasterCard. Credit card usage is limited in Mozambique except in resorts and tourist hubs, so it is recommended to have cash on hand and to use ATMs as needed.

Visas to Mozambique and Mozambique Tourism

Visa requirements to Mozambique depend on nationality. Some nationalities are eligible for visa-free travel, while others require a visa. From the 1st May 2023, nationals of 29 countries are now exempt from the requirement to present a visa when travelling to Mozambique for tourism or business reasons. Read the updated visa policy here

When these visitors arrive at the Mozambique border, they merely pay a nominal fee of 10 USD. A recent visa waiver was also announced for 14 SADC countries visiting Mozambique as of 1 May 2023. So South Africans and other SADC members can enter Mozambique without a VISA for up to 3 months/90 days. We are very excited to announce the launch of the new e-Visa Online Platform for pre-approved visas at the click of a button.

The Weather in Mozambique 

The weather in Mozambique is constantly balmy during winter and summer – between 24 and 30 degrees C. When the rains come during December, January and up until April, it gets extremely humid and uncomfortable so stay near the sea, where sea breezes help to ease the heat. The most stable weather is during the dry, cooler season from May to November – which also happens to be whale season. Remember that South Africans flock over the borders into Mozambique for their Easter and Christmas holidays! Choose your holiday to Mozambique when the climate is stable and the weather is warm every day. 

Safety in Mozambique and Mozambique Tourism

Safety in Mozambique is still a big discussion point when planning a holiday in the country. Be reassured that Southern and Central Mozambique are still safe destinations to visit, just like any other place in Africa. And contact us for full details on the safe places to visit in Mozambique. We know Mozambique tourism and safety intimately so you will advise you accordingly. Simply keep your wits about you and avoid being alone in strange places, especially at night. Be careful of petty theft and don’t carry items of value. You will no doubt be bribed somewhere along the way during your holiday. Always remain polite and stick to the rules. 

The reality is that terrorism could be a threat in Northern Mozambique – especially in Cabo del Gado Province. Check with your embassy for latest travel advice and recommendations.

Travelling to Mozambique

Drive: Jump on a large ‘luxury’ bus that travels daily between Johannesburg and Maputo via the Komatipoort / Ressano Garcia border post. Easy travelling to Mozambique on the new tarmac to Maputo, Ponta Mamoli and Ponta do Ouro has cut travel times by several hours for leisure and business travellers from South Africa. Enter Mozambique in the south at the Kosi Bay border or self-drive from Limpopo and cross the famous Katembe suspension bridge to Maputo. It is easier to access Ponta do Ouro accommodation from Natal Kosi Bay the new tar road ends within the boundaries of Ponto do Ouro and the roads then become potholed and very sandy. 

Fly: Fly into Maputo International Airport (MPM) on daily flights from Johannesburg then travel to Southern Mozambique. The Bazaruto Archipelago is easily accessible from Johannesburg with flights to Vilanculos, and the Kruger area with direct flights three times a week. Northern Mozambique is also accessible via Johannesburg, and other Mozambican hubs such as Maputo, Nairobi, and Dar es Salaam. So, it is a possible add-on to an East African safari. Once into the major hubs, you are transferred to your lodge by road, boat or aircraft.

Where to go in Mozambique? 

  • Bazaruto Islands

A prime honeymoon destination for your Mozambique holiday 2024, the Bazaruto Archipelago promises pure solitude, jaw-dropping beauty, opulent natural habitats and rich land and marine diversity. Romance seeps into every landscape and every gorgeous beach, forest, dune and ocean swell. One of the top places to visit in Mozambique by far.

The aerial view of the islands of the Bazaruto Archipelago
Five beautiful islands, unspoilt reefs, freshwater lakes, grasslands and bird watching what more could you want! Known as the ‘Pearl of the Indian Ocean’

Diving in the Bazaruto Archipelago is one of the most rewarding water sports in Africa and exclusive dive sites reach between 12 to 30 metres in clear waters. Divers will discover groups of dolphins, humpback whales, whale sharks, sharks, manta rays and turtles in dive sites like the famous Two-Mile Reef, northeast of Benguerra Island. This is a famous marine sanctuary set in place in the 1970s to protect the rare dugong, other endangered species and their ocean ecosystem. 

  • Gorongosa National Park

Gorongosa has been described as one of the most diverse national parks on Earth, covering a vast expanse of 400,000 hectares. The Gorongosa Restoration Project (GRP) is protecting an improving population of lions, reducing prime human-induced threats, and getting the Park recognized as one of National Geographic’s ‘Last Wild Places.’  

Mount Gorongosa in Mozambique
Did you know? Gorongosa National Park is one of the most ecologically diverse regions in the world, and is home to a number of endemic bird species.

This is in tune with its mission to preserve wildlife and empower local communities. The aim is to create a huge, unfenced area of protected areas for game to run free in a space where some 7 000 noted plant and animal species and landscapes reflect every habitat in Africa!  It is thanks to the enormous commitment from park management, scientists, local people, and game rangers that the Gorongosa National Park has returned to its former glory. Ecotourism is bouncing back as safaris take off in the name of conservation.  

  • Maputo

Maputo offers numerous highlights and attractions for your Mozambique holiday 2024. As one of Mozambique’s leading destinations, the capital city features the best stylish accommodation in modern hotels, guest houses, lodges and bed and breakfasts. Groups of friends, couples and business travellers use their weekend breaks in Maputo to the full to try real Mozambique prawns peri-peri and sip the local beer. Some restaurants have been open since the Second World War and through the Mozambique civil war! 

maputo streets in mozammbique
Maputo was founded in the late 18th century, and originally named after the Portuguese trader, Lourenço Marques, who first reached the area around 1544.

Take a stroll to the central market, the Mercado Central, to buy spices, fresh fruit and vegetables and dried fish. Find local cashew nuts, hot bread just out of the oven and other goodies. The craft and fresh seafood markets are nearby. Rest those legs at the Maputo National Botanical Gardens in Ave Samora Machel and then try something educational – fit in Maputo’s Museum of Natural History or find the Fortaleza, a Portuguese fort with cannons pointed out to sea. Other museums include the Art Museum, Money Museum and Museum of Geology – whatever the interest!

  • Maputo Special Reserve

A fabulous day trip to the gorgeous Maputo Special Reserve north of Ponta Malangane reveals a sanctuary of 50 000 ha, well worth experiencing if you love elephants. Many elephants died during civil strife and the entire population of White Rhino was decimated. Safari lovers on their Mozambique holiday 2024 can still seek out shy duiker, suni, nyala, hippo, crocs, reedbuck, monkeys, and many fantastic bird species in the reserve.

Nyala bull between the bushes in Mozambique
The reserve is most well-known for its prolific elephant and turtle populations—with over 350 elephants, and both loggerhead and leatherback turtles.

Maputo Special Reserve (formerly known as Maputo Elephant Reserve) began in 1932 as a 1 040 square km nature reserve located on Maputo Bay, about 100 kilometres southeast of the capital city.  The Elephant Reserve aimed to protect a small population of coastal elephants resident in the area and now the larger park combines lakes, wetlands, swamp forests, grasslands and mangrove forests with a coastline that lies within the Maputaland Centre of Endemism. The small reserve has been merged with the incredible Ponta do Ouro Partial Marine Reserve into one larger 1700 square km land and marine conservation area called Maputo National Park. 

  • Inhambane, Barra, Tofo

Visit Inhambane to explore the fascinating mix of African, old-world Portuguese and Muslim cultures. No one should miss out on the extraordinary Barra peninsula, Praia da Barra, right on the Inhambane estuary where long white sandy beaches meet the tides. Top spot and one of the best places to visit in Mozambique. Walk to the Barra Lighthouse to snorkel out to the wreck of the SS Inharrime. There is so much to do including deep sea fishing, dhow trips, surfing, parasailing, horse riding, water skiing, and quad bikes.

Vilanculos beach lodge
Set amongst coconut trees, Massinga Beach is luxury amongst nature with a 1.3km endless stretch of deserted beachfront.

Tofo runs from a rocky point in the south up towards Ponto do Barra and is filled with excited South African families during school holidays. From scuba diving and surfing to snorkelling and deep-sea fishing, Tofo offers a perfect outdoor activity for those who love outdoor action. Dive with majestic Whale sharks and huge Manta rays in the southeast region of Mozambique where the sun always rises. Come between October and February and catch a gigantic Black Marlin trophy. Catch a ride with big game fishermen to see how they do it. You may see Humpback whales breaching while out at sea.

  • Vilanculos tourism to Mozambique

Vilanculos is a popular destination loved for its dazzling ocean views, renowned kite surfing schools, scuba diving adventures to the Bazaruto Archipelago, peaceful stand-up paddle boarding sessions and snorkelling in clear blue depths. Perfect for your Mozambique holiday in 2024. Ride horses on the beach – beginners and experienced riders will love the outing on a pristine beach and swim in the ocean with your horse. Sunset Dhow Safaris close a busy day with cocktails or Mozambican beers on a traditional fishing boat with cloth sails. 

speed boat out at sea in mozambique
This area is one of the few sites where the rare Dugong lives. Visibility in the clear water can be as far as 40 metres. Deep sea fishing, especially for Black Marlin, is a major attraction in the waters surrounding this Mozambique marine park from October to February.

Thankfully Vilanculos has also retained its sense of timelessness as local fishermen in traditional dhows traverse the coastline as they have done for centuries. Stroll along the tranquil and tropical beaches and you will discover quaint traditional villages fringed with coconut palms and cashew nut trees. Flawless views across the bay to the Bazaruto Islands entice visitors to combine a Vilanculos beach break with an island-hopping adventure to Benguerra, Bazaruto and Magaruque islands. 

  • Santa Maria and Inhaca

Santa Maria is at the end of the bay of Maputo and Inhaca Island lies only 38 km from Maputo, part of the awe-inspiring Marine Reserve stretching from Ponta do Ouro in the south to the island and Portuguese Island. Inhaca Island is a regular destination for ecotourists and ecological researchers, its central area comprising cultivated fields, grassy plains, and dune forests along the eastern and western shores. Mangroves cover large sections of the northern shores and southern bay and there are two inland wetlands. The island is only 12 km by 7 km in size!  

Aerial view of Santa Maria and the islands around it
The village of Santa Maria is a small authentic rural town close to the tip of the peninsula

Santa Maria Bay and its estuaries offer rich mangrove forests harbouring flocks of flamingos, sea turtles, dugongs, and flying fish. Excellent diving in the Marine reserves surrounding the Machangulo Peninsula entices advanced divers on beach holidays. Visitors can explore Inhaca Village on the island, enjoying the many shops and even a restaurant., or wander around the small village of Santa Maria and have seafood lunch at the local restaurant, Teka Teka.

Getting to the Santa Maria Peninsula is easy – self-drive to Maputo then arrange a boat transfer to Machangulo, Villa Ukuthala or Colina Verde from the Maputo harbour. Our seasoned Mozambique consultants will be happy to do just that as part of your holiday package. 

This Mozambique Travel guide will make your holiday easier and all you have to do is plan ahead and make sure you have all your documents in place.  Pack your passport, visa, health certificates, malaria meds and light clothing and you are ready for the time of your life on a summer holiday to Mozambique.