The game of Bao is treated like a national sport in both Mozambique and Malawi.  It brought back fond memories of first learning to play Bao with my Nana in Raumati 20 years ago. The game is highly addictive, in fact whole days of my trip seemed to disappear through playing it. This large board was located in the Maputo ports area as I sat to enjoy a lunch of rice and beans.

1. Walking taxis promote their services outside the bus stand in Maputo.
2. It was a fine day for drying washing and watching quarter-final football in Maputo.

Shoe-shiners and their customers enjoy an early morning chat on the streets of Maputo.

The contradicting worlds of Mozambique’s national Government and booming western companies.

An old Portugese influenced church, Vilanculos.                                                                                                                    Back to Home

Low tide in Vilankulos.

Hermit crabs at low tide.

Some of the houses in the beach shore villages take a real battering from winds that sweep in off the Indian Ocean.

1. While staying at Joseph e Tina’s place in Vilanculos, I met some fellow campers – Hanan, Dan & Roay, and we arranged to go snorkelling at Maroaque Island on a local dhow boat with a fisherman called Emanuel. The sail out there was very nice, followed by a fresh seafood bbq on the beach. But shortly after, we found ourselves being towed back by a police boat. There turned out to be a rule stating only ‘set’ companies are allowed to take tourists to the islands. The two licensed companies are foreign-owned, hugely expensive and run hand-in-pocket with the coastal police: A nice profit is made regularly by the police whenever a fisherman attempts to do business with not-so-wealthy tourists. A common story found throughout travels.
2. Emanuel’s nephew gets ready to take his hat and wheel for a swim.

Many of the roads in Mozambique have not been rebuilt since the civil war. Some areas in the north are virtually unpassable, so the Chapas (public minivans) only operate around certain areas. My options to get up-country from Vilanculos to the Malawi border were either 2 days in a row of 4am buses via Chamoio, or hitching a ride with a passing truck. I opted for the latter and scored a ride with some South African’s in a sturdy 4WD. It was the easiest and quickest ride of my trip, due mainly to not stopping every hundred metres to collect chickens or someone’s missing goat.

Gourmet eating options from the roadside. Mouse kebabs and monkey nuts.

The oily salted mice proved too much temptation for some and they were soon sold out.

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