Lesser known than its African contemporaries, Mozambique's beautiful coastline is nevertheless perfect for a luxury beach break. Think endless unspoilt beaches and a feeling of utter tranquillity; you'll often feel like the only people for miles and miles. The famous African custom of smiling is apparent wherever you go and is completely contagious. Mozambique's southern coastline, which I've just returned from, has a particularly friendly feel which spreads across to the many islands that form the Bazaruto archipelago. This area is the picture perfect end to a safari if you're looking for an ideal bush and beach combo but it's also an idyllic spot for a relaxing holiday in and of itself.
Getting to the Archipelago
Once in Mozambique, transfers from the mainland to the various islands are most commonly done by boat but by far the best way to travel is by helicopter. The views across the archipelago are (understatement alert) pretty special and the colours defy logic; forget Fifty Shades of Grey, this is fifty shades of turquoise.
What to Do
While this region of Mozambique is all about, you guessed it, the beach and although lying on said beach doing nothing is a pretty fabulous way to spend a day (or week), there is still plenty to do for those who get itchy feet. From canoeing and paddle boarding to fishing and diving, the water-based activities are endless. If you have romance in mind a sunset dhow cruise is pretty hard to beat. It's also something of a kite-surfer's paradise and while August, September and October are the prime months for this, it's generally good all year round. To land, horse riding along the beach is pretty idyllic, visits to local villages will inject some culture and a day trip to the Vilanculos Coastal Wildlife Sanctuary is great for animal lovers.
Where to Stay
There are a few very good hotels in this region. Although Mozambique isn't necessarily the most-family friendly destination (being in a malarial zone and all) if you do have the sprogs in tow then Villa Santorini is the perfect hotel. While you're relaxing on the beach rest assured the kids will be kept thoroughly entertained with everything from cookery classes to watersports and good old fashioned sand castle building on the beach.
The Anantara Bazaruto Resort & Spa is currently undergoing refurbishment but will definitely be one to watch once complete. Located on Bazaruto Island you get that wonderful feeling of isolation and tranquillity and the spa will leave you feeling thoroughly pampered and spoilt.
Next up is Dugong Beach Lodge and, despite being on the mainland, you still very much get the sense of being miles away from anything nearing civilisation. The accommodation comprises chalets that lead directly onto pristine sand, making it an ultimate beach bum's paradise.
Finally, Azura on Benguerra Island is every diver's dream hotel with its own dive centre offering a full range of courses for all levels. It's not just under the water that the action happens either, guests can also enjoy fishing, dhow cruises and island tours.
For more information on Mozambique beach holidays, contact the Original Travel team.