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Quirimbas Archipelago

Photo © Luis M

Travel Guide Africa Mozambique Quirimbas Archipelago

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Introduction

The Quirimbas Islands lie in the Indian Ocean off northeastern Mozambique, close to Pemba, the capital of the province of Cabo Delgado. The archipelago consists of about 32 islands, including Ibo, Matemo, Medjumbe, Quirimba, Metundo, Quisiva, Vamizi Island and Rolas Island all going up to the Tanzanian border. The Quirimbas Islands are currently on the tentative list for becoming a UNESCO World Heritage Site which was submitted in 2008.

Originally home to fishing settlements, the islands' population grew around Arab trading posts and thrived under the Portuguese trading routes when it was known as the Ilhas de São Lázaro (Islands of St. Lazarus) during the 16th century. When the Portuguese started occupying cities in the islands such as Ibo, the Arab merchants fled to other parts of the island to operate in. The Arab merchants refused to trade with the Portuguese, in which started an attack resulting in 60 Muslim merchants casualties and property being burnt down. The island was in control by the Portuguese until Mozambique gained independence in 1975. Before independence, only four of the 32 islands were inhabited. Today, many of the islands are inhabited. On May 23, 2014, a mudspill was reported off shore near the Quirimbas Islands which was caused by a drilling rig operated by Anadarko Petroleum Corporation.

These islands are known for their diving sites, some up to 400 metres. The Quirimbas National Park, spanning an area of 7,500 square kilometres, includes the 11 most southerly islands, which are partly surrounded by mangroves. The park was established in 2002 as a protected area.

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Weather

The islands have a tropical climate with a rainy season from December to April and a drier but cooler season from May to September. Daytime temperatures vary from around 25 °C to 35 °C depending on the time of year. Water temperatures are from 24 °C to 27 °C.

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Eat/Drink

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Sleep

  • Pensâo Cinco Portas, Ibo Island, Quirimbas National Park, ☎ +258 823266771, [1]. Cinco Portas is the only seafront hotel on Ibo. This charming guesthouse is one of the first accommodation in the island. Was build in an old Colonial house and storehouse, with a veranda facing the main street of the town. The tropical garden and the swimming pool contribute to make of this place a resting place for all those travelers visiting north Mozambique or Tanzania. The restaurant offers a good option for those who enjoyed seafood, based on Mediterranean and Swahili style (the manager is spanish). All rooms have en-suite bathroom and overlooking the Indian ocean and the mangroves of Quirambo Island, just 500 meters in front.
  • Miti Miwiri Lodge, Rua Antonio de Almeida (Ibo Island, Quirimbas National Park), ☎ +258 26960530, [2]. Miti Miwiri Lodge, Guest house, is an old colonial building seating in the middle of Ibo Island old Town. Rebuilt from its hashes following ancestral construction techniques it is a convivial place to enjoy the calm of Ibo in it luxurious tropical garden while enjoying a drink by the swimming pool. It offers exquisite seafood based dishes following Mozitalian cooking techniques. All rooms have a veranda where clients can read and relax in private.

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This is version 2. Last edited at 8:55 on Jul 24, 17 by Utrecht. 1 article links to this page.

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