White sandy beaches… an endless horizon… the smell of the sea… palm trees… the feel of the sand between your toes… pink coral reefs… brilliantly coloured fish… The scenario could place you in a few places on the planet, until you add LM prawns to the mix – fresh from the catch. Then you know you’re in Maputo hotels in Mozambique on the southeast coast of Africa.
One of the best ways to breathe it all in is on the beach with a bucket of prawns and a bottle of wine!
Maputo is known as the Pearl of the Indian Ocean as well as the City of Acacias, because its streets are ablaze with red blooms.
Fishing companies who export LM prawns claim to freeze them as soon as they leave the water, some as fast as within 20 minutes, and shoppers should be buying them frozen. The authentic recipe is marinated and flavoured with peri-peri – and it’s not for sensitive taste buds.
The Maputo International Airport, which opened in 2010, can process 900 000 international passengers per year. Once you’re there, you can get around from your Maputo hotels by minibus taxi, the recently introduced three-wheeler tuk-tuk, by ferry or on foot depending on what sights you want to see.
While Maputo hotels on Maputo beach claim a prized position in a trendy spot, the Maputo Waterfront is under development for an estimated $1,2 billion. Once complete, the project will offer tremendous leisure and commercial prospects for tourists and business travellers alike.
If you like the art, design and history components of architecture, you’ll love seeing the work of experts like Gustav Eiffel, Pancho Guedes, Herbert Baker and Thomas Honney. Guedes was a modernist, whose designs in the sixties and seventies were clean, straight and functional. However, he cleverly collaborated with local art schemes to create a distinctly Mozambican theme for the city’s buildings.
Be sure to visit the Central Train Station from your Maputo hotels where the influence of classical European trends is evident through the work of Alfredo Augusto Lisboa de Lima, Mario Veiga and Ferreira da Costa. The station was built between 1913 and 1916.
On this history front, Maputo hotels near the centre of town could guide tourists to the Fortaleza, a Portuguese fort, which holds the remains of Ngungunyana, ruler of the old Gaza Empire, who tried and failed to defeat the Portuguese in the late 19th century.