Bazaruto Archipelago is a chain of islands off the southern coast of Vilanculos Mozambique in the Mozambique Channel. All the five islands of Bazaruto, Benguerra, Magaruque, Banque and Santa Carolina lie in ghostly beauty making one of the most beautiful places to be on Mozambique Africa safaris.
Banguerra islands are one of the most famous of the Bazaruto Islands Mozambique named after a local chief. This island is about 11kms long and 5kms wide and its forests, savannah and wetland eco-systems sustain a diverse population of flora and fauna. The island was declared a National Park in 1971. On the seaward side of the island cashew nut trees are indigenous and the local residents harvest the nuts and the toxic husks to brew very intoxicating liquor
Bazaruto Island is the biggest of the islands at is 37kms long by 7 kms wide. Flamingos frequent the tidal flats, and the freshwater lakes on the island are home to many large crocodiles. The West of the island is savanna grassland and thicket whereas the East is composed entirely of enormous sand dunes that change colour in the different lights of the day.
Bazaruto Island tours
The islands attract nature lovers, sun worshippers and water sports enthusiasts alike. One of the highlights is the diving and snorkelling as there are numerous coral reefs and old wrecks to explore.
Wild orange trees abound, as do sisal plants that are used by locals, in a manufactured form, to repair their fishing nets. Mlala palms are everywhere and the leaves are used in the weaving of mats, baskets and souvenir hats. The sap from the palms is used to brew potent liquor.
The whole Bazaruto Archipelago is part of a Conservation area whose primary objective is to maintain the ecological diversity of the Bazaruto National Park by wise sustainable use of the resources. The park is one of the biggest marine reserves in the Indian Ocean. The island actually lies in untouched natural beauty which earned it the name-Pearl of the Indian Ocean
Visit the deserted sand beaches, inland saline lakes and undulating sand dunes along the island. Coral reefs on the island coast are home to thousands of marine life, drawing in huge numbers of scuba divers. Each of the dive sites like Indigo Bay have clear waters, beautiful coral gardens and abundant sea life. Some of the protected reefs attract dolphins, humpack whales, sharks, manta, spotted eagle rays and green turtles. Diving is monitored with PADI courses.
Game fishing is a tradition on the Bazaruto islands. Marlin fishing season runs from October to January when the marlin fish swim to the shallow waters. Other pastimes are saltwater fly-fishing and above all game fishing. Sailfish fishing is from April to August and smaller game fish such as King Mackerel, Bonito, Travelli, Queen Mackerel are available all year round.
For birding enthusiasts, approximately 164 different birds have been identified and confirmed on the islands in habitats varying from the coastal dunes, open grasslands and fresh water lakes. More unusual birds to be seen are the green coucals, green pigeons, purple banded and black sunbirds, olive bee-eaters, paradise fly-catchers and crab plovers.
Dhow safaris are a unique way to experience Bazaruto Mozambique islands and a fine wayb to visit each of the islands. Island cuisine relies heavily on freshly caught fish and shellfish and these are combined with the exotic flavours of the Portuguese.
Bazaruto Mozambique Hotels and Accommodation
Bazaruto islands are tropical gateway fro exquisite travelers and you’ll find plenty of accommodation raging from Luxury hotels, camps, lodges and self catering facilities. Fro Babquerra hotels and accommodation, relax at Banquerra Lodge, Azura Banguerra Hotel and Marlin Lodge.
Pestana Bazaruto Lodge is a4-star lodge with excellent rooms, warm friendly staff, comfortable resorts and beautiful views of the beach from your room. Indingo Bay Island resort and spais another Bazaruto island hotel with comfortable rooms and good dining.
The best time visit the Bazaruto archipelago is from June to September when the rainfall is reduced with cool temperatures of 22C. November to April is the rainy season with high temperature and peak rains around January and February.
Archipelago which is the most popular of all tourist destinations in the country, is comprised of 4 islands which include Santa Carolina, Magaruque, Bazaruto and Benguera.they are located about 35 kilometers from the shores, and can be accessed by a small air craft taken in Vilanculos town or by boat. The modern and comfortable accommodation offered at the islands attracts visitors from all parts of the world to sun bathe, swim and partake in the numerous water sports like scuba diving, salt waterfly-fishing, snorkeling, water skiing and fishing in the deep sea.
Travel Guide to Bazaruto Archipelago
In addition to the small species of antelopes seen roaming on the islands, mangrove crabs, fresh water crocodiles & samango monkeys are popular and the pink flamingos are nested on the shores of fresh water lakes. There are more than 240 different bird species resident on this island and among them are bee eaters, ospreys, crab plovers, harriers, green coucal and fish eagles. The Bazaruto National Park which currently occupies the whole of the Bazaruto Archipelago sits on 1400 sq. kilometers making it one among the largest reserves in the entire Indian ocean. In addition to the humpback whales, manta rays, 5 turtle species, dolphins, there are about 100 dugongs that exist here and being one of the few feasible populations in east Africa.