Maputo is the capital of Mozambique. It is a bustling port city, with a population of about two million people and beautiful avenues of trees of various colorful types. Maputo lies only 100kms from its neighbors South Africa and Swaziland
There is a wide variety of tourist accommodation and destinations available to choose from and within the Maputo surrounds, can be found tourist or holiday destinations to meet anyone's need. Luxury hotels cater for the wealthier tourists and visitors, but there are a host of holiday accommodation and backpacker venues to choose from.
There is a ferry to serve those tourists or people who wish to cross to Catembe and there are various means to get to Inhaca Island and the tourist, holiday accommodation establishments and fishing destinations that are on offer there.
Maputo, formally known as Delagoa Bay and then as Lourenco Marques, or LM, was a very popular tourist destination until the early 1970s.
Things to see in Maputo
- The Railway Station on Praca dos Trabalhadores was designed by Gustave Eiffel (after his fall from grace in the Panama Canal scandal), and bears the mark of his genius.
- The National Art Museum has a small but good collection of Mozambican art, including several large canvases by the world-renowned Malangatana.
- The Jardim Tunduru is a very pretty (albeit small) botanical garden.
- The Museum of the Revolution chronicles Mozambique's fight for independence from Portuguese colonialism.
- The Mercado Central in the Baixa district has fresh fish, crabs, calamari, fruits and vegetables, and many household staples. Safe, lively and recommended, especially if cooking for yourself.
- Walk up Avenida Julius Nyerere. Start from the Hotel Cardoso or Natural History Museum along R Mutemba to Nyerere then left (north) to the Polana Hotel. Boutiques, restaurants, curio vendors, video stores, etc. to be seen in the relatively upscale Polana neighborhood.
- Praça dos Trabalhadores is a building built by Gustave Eiffel.
Places to eat in Maputo
Depending on the budget one can go to the many cafes that serve simple dishes that are affordable. One can try out the roadside stalls, which is usually cashews, fried bean cakes called Bhajia, fruits and ice-creams. If you want to eat in a nice restaurant, you can try out Chicken Piripiri which serves mouth-watering grilled chicken and only the best prawns. This place is also a middle-ranged place. But for those who want to splurge there are a couple of good restaurants to try. They include:
- Restaurante Escorpiao, in the Feira Popular (in the Baixa district). Has a huge menu, good wine list and caters to moderate and high-end budgets. Not fancy, frequented by locals. Slightly better than the Costa do Sol.
- Costa do Sol restaurant, in Costa do Sol (5km north of Maputo -- take a taxi, they will wait and bring you back). Icon over 50 years old. Great seafood in low-key atmosphere. Great variety too. Excellent service.
Night Life in Maputo
- Xima's bar, on Av. Eduardo Mondlane, is popular with the locals and has live music on the weekends.
- Africa Bar nightclub is on Av. 24 de Julho near Av. Karl Marx.
- Gil Vicente is a bar attached to the Gil Vicente theatre, across from the 'Jardim Tunduru.
- The Centro Cultural Franco-Mozambican has live music and cultural events.
- The Central Train Station houses a jazz lounge on weekends.
- The Feira Popular is located in the Baixa, and houses many bars and restaurants