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Benguerra Island, Mozambique
Fast Facts
ACTIVITIES
Snorkeling
Scuba Diving
Birding
Fishing
Beach
 
 
Kid-Friendly Hotels

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BEST

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Points of Interest Nearby
 
 

Benguerra Island

 

Photo by Alfredo De Simone

Benguerra Island or Ilha de Benguerra was once a Portuguese penal colony and at roughly 11 km (7 miles) long by 5.5 km (3.5 miles) wide it is hard to imagine the archipelago's second largest island as anything but paradise for the castaway. Extensive white sand beaches and towering sand dunes provide a perfect backdrop to the Bazaruto Archipelago's major attraction, the sea. Snorkel and scuba dive. Kayak and sail. Head to the open waters and fish for marlin, kingfish and mackerel or partake in a whale watching tour. And should the kids require a break from deep-sea adventure, take a jeep tour of the interior and in addition to marveling at the forests and lakes spy on 164 species of birds. Or slow down the pace with a hunt for shells. And, at low tide, turn your stroll into a shallow water safari. Spot starfish, cowfish, seahorses and crabs and observe the local women as they fish for oysters while balancing their catch on the top of their head.
Getting There
 
Benguerra Island is situated roughly 14 km (9 miles) from Mozambique's mainland. The nearest airport is in Vilanculos. Pelican Air flies from Johannesburg to Vilanculos twice daily, direct and via South Africa's Kruger National Park. LAM offers flights from Maputo. Transfers and day trips to the island can be arranged through most upscale lodges. Sail Away, located in Vilanculos, is one of the few independent operators offering transfers and excursions. Make the necessary enquires before hiring a dhow from a local fisherman.
When to Travel
 
The weather in the Bazaruto Archipelago is characterized by a wet and dry season. The best time to visit is from June to September when the average daytime temperature is between 22-30° C (71-86° F) and the chance of rain is minimal. The weather is hot and humid throughout the rainy season (November-April); the heaviest rains are in January and February. Most resorts are closed for the entire month of February.
Things to Keep in Mind
 
Water socks are recommended at all times and fundamental at low tide. Scuba diving and snorkeling trips as well as game fishing and whale watching tours can be arranged through most area lodges and resorts.
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Travel Trivia
Which of the following is the capital of France: