Best route: Mandimba to Pemba
toconnell created the topic: Best route: Mandimba to Pemba6 months 1 week ago
Hi Mike, thanks for having this site. I am overlanding with my own 4x4 and next week will travel from Malawi to Pemba. What is the best/fastest route? Via Lichinga/Marrupa or Cuamba/Nampula? I plan on 2 days from the border to Pemba so if you know any hotels/camps to break the trip up let me know.
mozman replied the topic: Best route: Mandimba to Pemba6 months 1 week ago
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Are you equipped to camp? I would go Mandimba - Cuamba - Nampula - Namialo - Pemba. A very long trip for just two days. From Mandimba to Cuamba the road is currently in very bad condition so expect 4 hrs. From Cuamba to Malema is perhaps 2 hrs on a poor road. From Malema to Nampula is a new tarmac road so expect 70kph average, so about 4hrs. If you depart Mandimba at 0600 I would aim for Complexo Montes Nairucu which is on your LHS about 15km before the centre of Nampula. Campsites, rooms and good restaurant.
Then next day a quite easy drive to Pemba.
If you are delayed departing Marrupa, you could overnight at complexo Malaya in Malema. Then a long day via Nampula to Pemba so depart 0500.
Go well and let us all know about it.
toconnell replied the topic: Best route: Mandimba to Pemba6 months 1 week ago
Thanks for the reply, that's great info.
Yes, I am equipped for camping. I plan to overnight in Mangochi then cross the border first thing the next day. I will plan on making it to Complexo Malaya in Malema that day, then push on to Pemba the next day.
I'll definitely report back on how it went.
mozman replied the topic: Best route: Mandimba to Pemba6 months 5 days ago
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Sounds like a good plan. If you end up having to stay at Cuamba then Quinta Timbwa is recommended. www.lonelyplanet.com/mozambique/cuamba/h...e71f4c7f42cd/1327985
Feedback and trip reports are always highly valued.
toconnell replied the topic: Best route: Mandimba to Pemba6 months 5 days ago
toconnell replied the topic: Best route: Mandimba to Pemba6 months 11 hours ago
As i sit here in Pemba, i will report my findings....
Mangochi to border - 1hr
Zambia side took less than 15 minutes, hand TIP to guard and he will open the gate for you, then go inside to get stamped out. Done.
Moz said took a total of about 30 minutes. As you roll up to the gate the military guides will come and ask some pointless questions and an insurance salesmen will begin to hard-sell you insurance for the vehicle. They will eventually open the gate...drive up to the building.
Visa = $100 (I'm sure this is a too high but they were not relenting on this)
TIP = Free
Insurance = 3700MZN or $30 (they will take US$). You can buy the insurance from the officer who fills out the TIP for you.
Money changers are there and will start the bidding at 55MZN=1$. I got them up to 62MZN...which is still worse than the bank rate.
Mandimba = There is an ATM in town...make a left at the T junction and it will be on the left side. You can also get a SIM card from the guy in the middle of the street.
Mandimba to Cuamba - 4.5 hours
Road is an absolute disaster.
Cuamba = Stated at Quinta Timbwa as Mike suggested and it was really good for such a remote area. 2500MZN for a room with A/C and TV. Room was clean and comfortable...but the hot water set up in the shower might frighten some people. Restaurant was good too!!
Cuamba to Nampula = 5.5 hours
First 25km outside Cuamba is bad, then its 50km of brand new tar, then 15km more of bad stuff, then its good tar after Malema.
Nampula to Pemba = 5 hours
*Note on the driving times that i tent to drive fast