I for one am incredibly excited to be back and blogging again, it has been a year – but without boring you with all of that I just want to put it out there that I am in a good space, I am happy and fully living life. I declared this year the year of travel – I was so intentional about this that I even attended a prayer service on new years eve with my passport and the travel Gods finally agreed. In February I was on my first adventure for 2019 to Mozambique an 8hour short left from Johannesburg. To say I have been craving a visit out of the fear of missing out (FOMO) would be an understatement. I now know why It’s the ultimate summer vacation spot, the people, the music, the food, the clothing, the drinks and the air all scream summertime.
Maputo, the land of negotiation: No literally never accept the first price given to you at any market or by any street vendor in Mozambique. That’s one of the main things that caught my attention on arrival. The second and third things were the humidity that forced us to all whip off our wigs and how Portuguese was about to be the order of the mini group vacation.
Last October, I did myself a favour and got in touch with the wonderful team at www.letsgetlost.co.za – they are the team who made sure I had the best group trip ever. From their fantastic communication before the journey to ensuring we all made it on the shuttle that would be taking us to Maputo via the ever so beautiful Mpumalanga to explaining how crossing the Mozambique border works, what to look out for when exchanging money and how to purchase a SIM card but The main highlight from the This well-executed group trip was how much freedom we had.
Waking up at 04:00 am to get to O R Tambo international airport where the shuttle was waiting to drive all 15 of us across the Mozambique border was no fun but knowing what was ahead got me extra excited. That road trip was the first time I fully indulged in amapiano, upon arrival we got our groove on, experienced fireworks and got stuck in a thunderstorm all in one day. I enjoyed all of the above listed with a group of strangers, and that’s what made the whole experience worth it. We were a very diverse group, with my sister and I being the youngest, which is always great.
Maputo is the capital city of Mozambique, situated on the South East of the African continent. Maputo is not the most visually appealing city according to my expectations, of course. In essence, it has very complex chaotic structures which in some areas are dilapidated but don’t be discouraged as it’s a beautiful surprise when I say it has the most welcoming and loving faces I’m not even exaggerating.
Where to stay?
The Letsgetlost team booked us into Maputo Hotel, a basic hotel that had all the necessary amenities, spacious, clean and breakfast. It’s perfect because it is a walking distance from all the tourist attractions like Samora Machel statue in independence square, iron house, the Anglican church, Casa De Ferro which is 19th-century governor general’s home, Cathedral of our Lady Immaculate conception, the famous train station, and the central market.
Where to eat
South Beach restaurant
If waiting 3hours to get my food is a thing, then I don’t want it lol. But yes that’s what happened at the famous South Beach restaurant. The only explanation is that they make everything from scratch. We finally received our meal, and it was worth it. So that’s why it’s on this list. The service is not the best I have received, and it is a bit pricey, but as a traveller, it is worth visiting. (You can pay in rands
Fish Market (Mercado de Peixe)
Hehehe one would have to experience it first hand to understand the reason I am laughing so hard. I have never seen people hustle so hard. I don’t know if I was put off or inspired. Situated right on the beach with way too many vendors hoping you will choose their restaurant as the place to get your meal prepared. Overwhelming is an understatement – but the portions were huge and I think this is where to go for an authentic Mozambique-an cuisine. I can safely say I had the best sea food I have ever tasted in my 25 years of being live. Well prepared.
I wouldn’t recommend your fast food places such as Debonairs, pizza perfect, steers, ocean basket etc because they’re overpriced for absolutely nothing.
Tuk Tuk / Meter taxi / Chappa (mini bus) / ferries but I would definitely recommend walking about. We were lucky enough to have our shuttle drop us off meaning we didn’t spend money on any transportation.
This is definitely what I’d go back for, since the age of 18 all I have ever heard when it comes to Mozambique was the amazing party scene. I feel I didn’t taste what it truly means to be out partying in Mozambique since everyone has either a beach party story, street party story and live music in every corner. With all the many recommendations I think a festive season there is in order.
R3000 + for a weekend visit will take you very far.
Visa Information: No visa required for stays upto 30 days (as a South African). Passports must be valid for at least 6 months and have at least 2 blank pages.
Capital City: Maputo
Local Beer: 2M
Exchange Rate: R 0.26 / 1 Mozambican Meticals (Rands are widely accepted)
Return Flights: R3500+ (Driving is a great options too +- 8hours)
Hotels / Guest Houses: R350+ per night
Hostels: R 180+ per night
Languages spoken: Portuguese and English as a second language
The Men: You reading this will have to be the judge of that (see image below) that was our ever so helpful bar tender who knew how incredibly handsome he was. Ask for Dulio and tell him Cwayita sent you and you’ll receive free shots – he works at the club opposite Maputo Hotel.
What to pack
- Sunscreen (Lots)
- mosquito repellent
- Healthy appetite for fish
- Dancing shoes
- People of Maputo take simple living to another level so pack light
Africa is literally where it’s at and I cannot wait to go further north and explore all the beautiful beaches this country has to offer.