Road trip from SA to Quirimbas

Mopane created the topic: Road trip from SA to Quirimbas

  • Mopane
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I am a Safari Guide, having worked far and wide in Africa. I am planning a once in a lifetime road trip for my family and friends (all who work in conservation) to the northern part of Mozambique. I have a period of 21-25 days in June/July this year 2009. I will have a Land Rover, but we may possibly 2 other 2 wheel drive pick-ups. I would like to be able to visit the Mozambique Island area, Pemba area and then onto the area around the Ibo Island and others in the Quirimbas. I plan to do this as a bit of a budget holiday, since we do not have the means to use some of the advertised lodges in the area, and so would like to try and camp along the way, with the option of staying in less expensive accommodation, even if clean and basic from time to time along the way.

I would like to drive straight up north rather than hanging around in the southern/central towns, so we optimise time spent in the north. My idea being to drive the quickest way up, and then once having reached the Pemba area, relax and enjoy the area. I would like to visit the islands in the area using transport that again is not loaded in price, but is reliable (might be asking too much here?) I would like to have the option here to stay in a simple and safe place, so I can use it as a base while we explore. I do not wish to drag tons of food along, and would like to try and buy food from the locals in the way of fish or other. Since our work is in wildlife, we have enormous interest in being able to snorkel about and see some of the marine life, and would like to know good spots to do this safely, and maybe if economic enough, do so in the company of someone who knows the area and can show us the ropes. We would really like to see the historic sites of interest, as well as to enjoy what birding opportunities might exist as well.

On our way home, we would like to pop in and see the Gorongosa N.Park, and possibly spend a few nights there too.

I am in the very early planning stages, but would like to acquire some information on:
1. The best route north (we are coming from Kwazulu Natal) and helpful notes as to the route we plan to take.
2. Useful up to date information on accommation along the route we plan to take, or safe place we could camp en-route.
3. Possible GPS positions or good information of interesting sites for historic visits, birding or areas in which to snorkel in the marine reserve or other areas.
4. Any general information that might be helpful e.g.:
* up to date costs that we might experience
* road conditions
* route changes
* officialdom issues that might impact us and need to be aware of
* contact people that might be useful that we could contact either beforehand or on the journey

I'd be hugely grateful for any help that could be offered in this regard. We are all active in wildlife conservation, guiding and consultancy, and are therefore sensitive people to the manner in which we intend to travel. I am well versed in Africa travel with my work as a guide and consultant. We do NOT belong to the 'brandy and coke' brigade, need we say more...
Best wishes
Matt

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mozman replied the topic: Road trip from SA to Quirimbas

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Hi

firstly look up the 'Take mozguide with you' link to the PDF guides on mozguide frontpage, also use the search function on this forum.

Briefly from KZN the quickest route north is via Swaziland, enter Moz at Goba then go Maputo and straight north on the EN.1 from there.

Also I would first aim to relax and enjoy around the Pebane area as I would not spend more than a day or two in Pemba.

More later.

Mike

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mozman replied the topic: Road trip from SA to Quirimbas

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I would also spend 2 or 3 days in the Maputo ele reserve right in the south before you rush on northwards as it is now part of the Tourism Anchor Programme and has been put out to tender for big development which will exclude camping and budget travellers - one of my favourite areas in southern Africa. In this case go north in KZN to Ponta do Ouro (I would give this a miss) - for route options look up www.kosi.co.za

From the ele reserve I would only aim for Blue Anchor Inn (beds) or Casa Lisa (camping). Then up early to get to SETA at Inhassoro where I would camp. Then perhaps to Rio Savane 3okm north of Beira then up to Mphingwe 32km south of Caia via Dondo, Inhaminga. Then Pebane area where you can camp at Matirre point (local run basic) or lodge at Macuacuane. Then the Gile reserve is also a well kept secret that could be developed in years to come so a few days there en-route north.

More coming

Mike

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Mopane replied the topic: Road trip from SA to Quirimbas

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Hi Mike

Many thanks for your comments. Have had computer probs, so not been on the site until now. Appreciate info re Elephant Reserve area. Your comment about not spending more than 2-3 days at Pemba, do you have suggestions of where to stay in order that we might enjoy the Quirimbas Island areas further north, without the costs of the respective lodges there?

I will look into route info on the site to see where if any info is not avail, and get back to you.
Many thanks
Matt

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mozman replied the topic: Road trip from SA to Quirimbas

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In Ilha de Mocambique are - look up Carrusco near Mossuril. In Quirimba area on mainland adjacent to Ibo Island look up Mutita and Charity Kashimoto who have basic facilities for campers. See: www.brighthopeworld.com/partnerships.asp?pid=11 Then on Ibo there are homestays and less expensive places such as Cinqo Portas. See www.kaskazini.com

Also look up Mareja just north of Pemba.

In pemba I would stay at Nacole Jardim also called Pemba Dive Bush Camp.

Then up near Mucojo there is Ashimi's place at wonderful (not romantic or deserted) Pangane.

Mike

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Mopane replied the topic: Road trip from SA to Quirimbas

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Hi Mike

Many thanks again for your valuable info, I will be looking into it as time allows and take it from there.
Thanks so much for a great service, well done!
Best wishes
Matt

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