Quirimbas Archipelago Travel Info, Quirimbas Archipelago

    Quirimbas Archipelago Travel Info, Quirimbas Archipelago

Quirimbas Archipelago Travel Info

Quirimbas Archipelago Travel Info Quirimbas Archipelago

The magnificent Quirimbas Archipelago in Cabo Delgado Province, Northern Mozambique, is a captivating chain of 32 coral islands, which are probably the richest corals in the world, providing breath-taking views of the abundant array of the marine life that Mozambique has to offer.

The Quirimbas Islands lay in the Indian Ocean off northeastern Mozambique, close to Pemba, the capital of the province of Cabo Delgado. The archipelago consists of about 27 islands, including Ibo, Matemo, Quilalea, Quirimba, Quisiva and Rolas Island. 

Originally home to fishing settlements, the islands' population grew around Arab trading posts and thrived under the Portuguese slave trade. Today, many of the islands are uninhabited. 

These islands are known for their high quality diving sites, including phenomenal vertical drop-offs, some up to 400 meters. 

Quirimbas Archipelago is the most southern island out of the 11 islands and is a vast expanse of mainland forest are included in the Quirimbas National Park - a conservation effort to preserve and protect the area. This area is noted for the size of its reef fish, with parrotfish, angelfish cave bass, morays, and others all reaching exceptional sizes. 

Best time to visit Quirimbas Archipelago is year round as the climate is tropical humid, rainfall is a bit unpredictable. 

Main attractions are diving, snorkeling, fishing and visiting ruins on Ibo Island.

Ibo Island is probably the most visited in the Quirimbas Archipelago due to its fascinating history and beautiful old buildings. Lying to the north of Quirimba, historic Ibo Island was where Vasco da Gama rested in 1502. In later years, Ibo became a major trading centre for ivory and slaves. Probably the most compelling attraction in the Quirimbas, Ibo's 200-year-old ghost town and 16th Century forts make for a fascinating journey to an era long forgotten. 

Three forts, a cathedral, and numerous palatial homes once graced the town. The main fort overlooks the entrance to the harbour and was built to protect Portuguese Mozambique from the French Comores to the east. It is constructed in the form of a pentagon. Only three other pentagonal forts remain, one each in Mombasa, in Cape Town, and in Maputo. 

Another interesting place to visit while in the Quirimbas Archipelago Area is the Quilalea Sanctuary, found off the beach at Quilálea Island. On the Quilaea Island is the Quilalea Sanctuary which was the first marine protected area in the Quirimbas Archipelago, an area considered by the WWF (World Wide Fund for Nature) to be of worldwide importance for conservation.