Detailed Map

Full Name
Republic of Mozambique

Area
784,090 sq km

Capital City
Maputo

People
African (99%, including Shangaan, Chokwe, Manyika, Sena and Makua)

Languages
Portuguese (official), indigenous languages

Government
Republic

President
Joaquim Alberto Chissano

 

Shaped a bit like an upside-down Afghan hound, Mozambique stretches for 2500 km on the south-eastern coast of Africa, bordered by Tanzania to the north, Malawi and Zambia to the north-west, Zimbabwe to the west, and South Africa and Swaziland to the south-west.

The island of Madagascar lies directly east, 400km (250mi) across the Mozambique Channel.

Two of Southern Africa's longest rivers, the Zambezi and the Limpopo, flow through the country. Other major rivers are the Save and the Rovuma (which forms the northern border with Tanzania).

The massive Lake Malawi (also called Lake Nyasa) forms part of the border with Malawi.

As you go westward, the land changes abruptly from a narrow, palm-studded strip of beach along the coast to a broad belt of savannah and woodland and then to forested mountains.
Trees include hardwoods, acacia and papaya. Fauna include the rare, endangered black rhinoceros.

Mozambique has great potential for anybody keen on wild animals or hiking (or both), but, tragically, the presence of nearly a million land mines in national parks and mountain areas (and throughout much of the country) means these activities aren't yet available.

The safest bet is diving or snorkeling, and the best places to go down are the beaches at Wimbi, in the north, or Tofu and Barra or the Bazaruto Archipelago, which has great reefs.

Bird watching is popular in Mozambique, especially in the southern part of the country. The Maputo Elephant reserve, located on the ocean, is a good spot for bird spotting.