Beira is the second largest city in Mozambique, with a population of over half a million. Located on the coast in the centre of the country, it lies on the banks of where the Pungue River meets the Indian Ocean.
Beira didn't escape the famine and poverty that came about with the civil war that raged from 1977 to 1992, and it was hard hit by the floods of 2000. Recently however, the city has been targeted for a massive and expensive modernisation.
Beira enjoys a tropical climate with generally warm to hot and humid weather. There are two seasons, a dry and cool season from April to October and a warm and wet season from November to March. Temperatures usually vary from around 25 °C during the day from June to September and around 30 °C from December to March, at night dropping to around 23 °C and 17 °C respectively. Highest rainfalls are recorded from January to March and these are probably the months to avoid if you can, because hurricanes can strike.
The TCO (Transportes Carlos Oliveira) bus travels between Nampula and Beira at least twice per week, costing M1,610 (Aug 2009) and taking 16 hours.
The TCO bus from Beira to Vilanculos runs at least once per week, leaving at 4:00am from the TCO terminal, costing M800 (Aug 2009), and taking about 7 hours.
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A taxi from the TCO terminal to Hotel Infante (see Sleep/Budget below) costs M150 (Aug 2009) though this can effectively double late at night.
See also International Telephone Calls
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