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Whilst still being pockmarked from its war-torn past (look no further than the revolutionary names of its streets), Maputo offers a vibrant mixture of Portuguese and African culture.
Inhaca is an attractive island near Maputo. Take the ferry or do an island hop with Kaya Airlines. You can stay at Pestana Inhaca Lodge.
24 April 2013. Tsogo Sun announces that it will be spending $30m on refurbishing and expanding the Southern Sun Maputo, including redoing the 158 bedrooms, adding another 110 rooms and upgrading the restaurant and conferencing facilities. The hotel is situated on the Avenida de Marginal in Maputo.
The oldest hotel in Maputo is the Polana Serena, followed by the Cardoso hotel, with views of Maputo (it was also Renamo's headquarters in the runup to the 1994 elections). Another option is the Southern Sun Maputo.
Views expressed here don't necessarily coincide with those of SouthAfrica.TO
26 April 2013. "It was Easter holidays when I decided to visit Mozambique with my 8 year old daughter. I did not want to travel alone because I’d never been in a plane before and I was afraid of the flight. When I proposed that to her she was very excited and could not wait for the date to come. I’m an outgoing person and I must be honest that it was my first time to use a flight. Then the day arrived and we packed our things and went to the OR Tambo airport. I did not know where to start when I arrived at the airport but the people working at the airport was very helpful. I’ve never seen a plane very close to me, so you can imagine the feeling when we had to board the plane at 12:45. I had to be brave for my little daughter but deep inside I was afraid. The South African Airways flight attendants were very friendly; they prepared us for the flight to move. When it started I was shaking and my daughter recognised and laughed at me. They gave us some snacks and I could not eat because my daughter was looking outside, you could see that she was enjoying the plane. I could not eat until I arrived at Maputo airport because I was a bit nervous thinking that maybe we would crash with the plane. We then landed safely at the airport and I prayed just to thank God that we were safe. We went to change some South African Rands into Mozambican meticals so that we would have money to pay for transport to the hotel, which I had booked in advance at Hotel Cardoso. We then got into a taxi the funny party of it was that the taxi driver could not understand the language. Arriving at the hotel was a lovely experience, it was really beautiful. As I was busy unpacking our clothes, my little daughter come shouting to me that there’s a swimming pool outside. I put her swim suit and accompanied her to the swimming pool. She was very excited, then after a while I asked her to come with me to go and get something to eat because I only paid for bed and breakfast, not dinner. We asked the lady at the reception and she called a taxi for us we went to get food. The food is not the same as ours but we had to eat because we had to spend 3 nights there. The next morning after breakfast we went to the market to buy clothes, the market is big and there’s a variety of them. We chose and went back to the hotel and we befriended another guy who was telling us about some interesting places. The next morning we went to the museum. The day before we left for our return flight to South Africa we went to the sea, and watched a wedding ceremony being performed. On our way back we flew with British Airways. It was a really interesting experience in Maputo, and and when we came back we were exhausted because we had kept our days so busy during our holiday". Pinky Mashiloane
With the security on the ground floor of its high rises and an April 2013 attack by men with AK47 rifles on an Intercape bus leaving Maputo, it's clear that crime is a problem.
Visit the Museum of Natural History where you can see the only collection of elephant fetuses in the world!
Buy some cashew nights or seafood at Maputo's Mercado Centrale.
Learn a bit about the city's history at the Fort of Maputo.
The botanical gardens, Jardim Tunduru.
There are a number of cruises to Maputo from Durban on the MSC Sinfonia and MSC Opera cruise ships.
Just hire taxis - they're really cheap. You can build a relationship with the fella and turn him into your own private tour guide! Alernatively rent car from Maputo Airport, when you land (both Avis and Europcar have offices there).
On the streets of Maputo you're never far from hawkers trying to sell you their goods - and be aware that they may follow you around if they see any hint you might buy (we had hawkers follow us and even sit outside a restaurant waiting for us to finish eating, so that they could sell to us again!). Sadly, woodworm is a problem, so be aware of that (and your luggage limit on your flight from Maputo) before you stock up with too many wooden carvings.
Mozambique is famous for its seafood, especially prawns & crayfish, but make sure you try drinking from coconuts and eat some of the chicken cooked on the roadside.