Recent attacks on EN1: travelling N to S by land.

EddyMas created the topic: Recent attacks on EN1: travelling N to S by land.

  • Posts: 1

Dear Mike,

congratulations for this really helpful website!!

I'm flying from Johannesburg to Pemba, Cabo Delgado, on the 25th of February for a 25 days trip. After visiting the Quirimbas, Pangane and, maybe, Mueda, may plan was travelling with public transport from Nord to South all along the cost and re-enter in South Africa by land. I'm travelling alone.

After reading your recent warning post about the attacks on EN1 and EN3 and a person killed, I'm very worried and I'm considering changing my destination and travel through South Africa, instead of Mozambique.

So, this are my questions:
1- Do you consider the country safe enough for public transport solo travellers?
2- Haw can I reach the South of the country avoiding EN1 road? Is it dangerous to travel by bus across Sofala province?
3- Have I enough time to visit Niassa province (if it is safe)?
4- Are still the mines a real concern?
5- Should I change my destination and avoid visiting Mozambique?

Thank you very much, I will really appreciate your help.
Best regards,


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mozman replied the topic: Recent attacks on EN1: travelling N to S by land.

  • Posts: 5110

Hi Eduardo

Thanks for the compliment!

Unfortunately the Renamo attacks and the resultant armed convoys on the 100km of the main north-south road between the Save River and Muxungue town in Sofala Province. So I searched this forum and found lots of relevant information, see one example here:

"Yes the attacks between Save and Muxungue have made traveling north or south between Inhambane and Sofala provinces pretty difficult. For those using public transport you have the dual dilemma that firstly there is no other road suitable for buses (4x4 vehicles can drive through the Save River at Massangena, but the level is currently too high, anyway) and secondly because the FADM military use public buses to move troops, Renamo targets buses, and not..."

The most recent attacks started less than two weeks ago, and so far I have not heard of any attacks on passenger buses. This of course is no comfort and I do not recommend anyone drive this route unless essential until further notice.

Answers to your questions:
1. Apart from the 100km piece of the main road between Save and Muxungue - yes. Note that buses in Moz have a poor safety record, but try to use a Postbus.
2. There is only one proper road from Sofala to Inhambane provinces, and one bridge over the Save river. However there is sometimes a boat from Beira to Ilha Chiloane from where you can make you way to Nova Mambone using a small boat to cross the Save.
From a friend two years ago:
"Greetings from Mambone! We ended up getting linked up with a boat of
materials headed Beira - Missao Machanga, leaving the very next day
(sat). 14 hours on boat (2am-4pm), 1 stop on Chilowane island, boat
terminated in Maropanhe, overnight on a mat at the church in Maropanhe
from where a tractor(!) took us+the goods to Machanga at 3am, arriving
around 7. River crossing in a little motorboat, and Mambone at last!
260mt for the whole affair.

Boat had life preserver rings, seemed in relatively decent nick, and
operators were all very helpful. Not sure if this is the standard
Mambone boat or not, but it was better than i had anticipated.

Staying with peace corps in mambone and all is well. You were
absolutely right in saying there is no 'viable' alternative to the
EN1. This was an enjoyable but arduous journey, and we got very very
lucky to find cargo going all the way to Machanga."

3. Yes good to go to Niassa, so long as you give yourself two weeks. Almost all of Moz is safe, including Niassa Prov.

4. Mines no linger an issue. Moz has been declared "mine-free"

5. If you want to travel from Pemba to Inhambane, right now not a good time. But if you stick to Cabo Delgado and Niassa Provinces, then a great time right now, unless heavy rains occur, which is likely as it is the height of the rainy season in the north.

Go well



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