Maputo: Wikis

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Maputo
Maputo is located in Mozambique
Maputo
Location in Mozambique
Coordinates: 25°58′S 32°35′E / 25.967°S 32.583°E / -25.967; 32.583
Country  Mozambique
Government
 - Municipal Council President David Simango
Population (2006)
 - Total 1.244.227

Maputo, formerly Lourenço Marques/Lourenzo Marques, is the capital and largest city of Mozambique. A port on the Indian Ocean, its economy is centered around the harbour. It has an official population of approximately 1,244,227 (2006),[1] but the actual population is estimated to be much higher because of slums and other unofficial settlements. Coal, cotton, sugar, chromite, sisal, copra, and hardwood are the chief exports. The city manufactures cement, pottery, furniture, shoes, and rubber. There is also a large aluminium smelting plant, Mozal. The city is surrounded by Maputo Province, but is administered as its own province.

Contents

Geography

Maputo is located on the west side of Maputo Bay, at the mouth of the Tembe River. The bay is 95 km (50 mi) long and 30 km (20 mi) wide. The Maputo River empties into the southern end of the bay.

History

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Portuguese rule

On the northern bank of Espírito Santo Estuary of Delagoa Bay, an inlet of the Indian Ocean, Lourenço Marques was named after the Portuguese navigator, who with a companion (António Caldeira) was sent in 1544 by the governor of Mozambique on a voyage of exploration. They explored the lower courses of the rivers emptying their waters into Delagoa Bay, notably the Espírito Santo. The various forts and trading stations which the Portuguese established, abandoned and reoccupied on the north bank of the river were all called Lourenço Marques. The existing town dates from about 1850, the previous settlement having been entirely destroyed by the natives. The town developed around a Portuguese fortress completed in 1787. In 1871 the town was described as a poor place, with narrow streets, fairly good flat-roofed houses, grass huts, decayed forts and rusty cannon, enclosed by a wall 6 ft. high then recently erected and protected by bastions at intervals. The growing importance of the Transvaal led, however, to greater interest being taken in Portugal in the port. A commission was sent by the Portuguese government in 1876 to drain the marshy land near the settlement, to plant the blue gum tree, and to build a hospital and a church. A city since 1887, it superseded the Island of Mozambique as the capital of Mozambique in 1898. In 1895, construction of a railroad to Pretoria, South Africa caused the city's population to grow.

View of Lourenço Marques, ca. 1905

In the early 1900s, with a well equipped seaport, with piers, quays, landing sheds and electric cranes, enabling large vessels to discharge cargoes direct into the railway trucks, Lourenço Marques developed under Portuguese rule and achieved great importance as a lively cosmopolitan city. It was served by British, Portuguese and German liners, and the majority of its imported goods were shipped at Southampton, Lisbon and Hamburg. With the continuous growth of the city's population and its expanding economy centered on the seaport, from the 1940s, Portugal's administration built a network of primary and secondary schools, industrial and commercial schools as well as the first university in the region - the University of Lourenço Marques opened in 1962. Portuguese, Islamic (including Ismailis), Indian (including from Portuguese India) and Chinese (including Macanese) communities managed to achieve great prosperity - but not the unskilled African majority - by developing the industrial and commercial sectors of the city. Prior to Mozambique's independence in 1975, thousands of tourists from South Africa and Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) frequented the city and its scenic beaches, high-quality hotels, restaurants, casinos and brothels.[2][3]

The Mozambique Liberation Front, or FRELIMO, formed in Tanzania in 1962. Led by Eduardo Mondlane, FRELIMO fought for independence from Portuguese rule. The Mozambican War of Independence lasted over 10 years, ending only in 1974 when the Estado Novo regime was overthrown in Lisbon by a leftist military coup - the Carnation Revolution. The new government of Portugal granted independence to all Portuguese overseas territories.

After independence from Portugal

The People's Republic of Mozambique was proclaimed on 25 June 1975 in accordance with the Lusaka Accord signed in September 1974. A parade and a state banquet completed the independence festivities in the capital, which was expected to be renamed Can Phumo, or "Place of Phumo," after a Shangaan chief who lived in the area before the Portuguese navigator Lourenço Marques first visited the site in 1545 and gave his name to it.[4] However, after independence, the city's name was changed (in February of 1976) to Maputo. Maputo's name reputedly has its origin in the Maputo River. The statues to Portuguese heroes were removed and most were stored at the fortress, and black soldiers carrying Russian rifles replaced Portuguese Army soldiers (both black and white) with western arms in city barracks and on the streets. Most city streets, named for Portuguese heroes or important dates in Portuguese history, had their names changed too.

Maputo Skyline

After the Carnation Revolution in Lisbon, over 250,000 ethnic Portuguese pulled out virtually overnight,[5] leaving unmanageable Mozambique's economy and administration. With the exodus of trained Portuguese personnel, the newly-independent country had no time to allocate resources in order to maintain its well-developed infrastructure. In addition, authoritarian Marxist policies and failed central planning made the newly-independent country slip into an extremely precarious condition since the beginning, and so the economy plummeted. FRELIMO, now the governing party, turned to the communist governments of the Soviet Union and East Germany for help. By the early 1980s the country was bankrupt. Money was worthless and shops were empty. Starting shortly after independence, the country was plagued from 1977 to 1992 by a long and violent civil war opposing FRELIMO to RENAMO - the Mozambican Civil War.

Growth and stability returned in the 1990s, but the city, although being the largest and most developed in Mozambique, is still well under its full potential. Overpopulation, unemployment, poverty and crime are major problems.

Transport

Maputo harbour and city centre in 2006

Airports

Maputo International Airport is the main international airport of Mozambique. Maputo's transportation needs are mainly served by minibus taxis called chapas, which are believed to transport the majority of the city's commuters. There is also a state-owned bus company with a bus fleet that currently numbers some 37 buses. The minibuses are largely used imports from Japan, and they carry most of the public transport activity. There are two major bus terminals in the city: one at Baixa ("downtown"), and another one at Museu ("the Museum"). The chapas (minibuses) are Toyota Hiace.

Infrastructure

Maputo is home to the Universidade Eduardo Mondlane, Mozambique's first university, and to the main campus of the Universidade Pedagógica, another major Mozambican university. The city has a museum of Mozambican history, a military museum, Natural History Museum, and the Roman Catholic Cathedral of Our Lady of Fatima.

Maputo is a planned city with square blocks and wide avenues, with Portuguese traces and their typical architecture of the 1970s. Portuguese refugees fled in massive numbers at the end of the independence war in 1975, and the resultant lack of skills and capital, in the context of a fierce civil war and government mismanagement, contributed to its state of dereliction in the years following the declaration of peace. Nevertheless, the city itself was never damaged, since it was tacitly considered neutral ground during both the colonial and the civil war. Recovery has always been very slow owing to a lack of investment. In many cases new buildings are being erected for the rising middle class, rather than existing buildings being renovated, and many city services are still precarious.

The Maputo beach has been spoiled by waste dumped into the bay, so it is not used for recreation, though the water quality does now appear to be improving.

Culture

Maputo International Airport

Maputo is a melting pot of several cultures, with a strong South African influence. The Bantu and Portuguese cultures dominate, but the influence of Arab, Indian, and Chinese cultures is also felt. The cuisine is diverse, owing especially to the Portuguese and Muslim heritage, and seafood is also quite abundant.

An important cultural and artists' centre in Maputo is the Associação Núcleo de Arte. It is the oldest collective of artists in Mozambique. Seated in an old villa in the centre of Maputo the Núcleo has played a significant role in metropolitan cultural life for decades. Over one hundred painters, sculptors and ceramists are member of the Núcleo, which regularly stages exhibitions on its own premises and over the last few years has actively participated in exchanges with artists from abroad. The Núcleo became well known for their project transforming arms into tools and objects of art. It played an important role for reconciliation after the Mozambican Civil War. The exhibition of art objects such as the Chair of the African King and the Tree of Life was shown around the world, among others in the British Museum in 2006.

Maputo is home to the Dockanema Documentary Film Festival, and international festival showcasing documentary films from around the world.

Tunduru Gardens, a public park designed by a British gardener in 1885, is located in the centre of town.

Maputo is the see city for the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Maputo.

Climate

Weather data for Maputo
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 43
(109)
39
(102)
40
(104)
39
(102)
38
(100)
34
(93)
36
(97)
38
(100)
46
(115)
45
(113)
44
(111)
44
(111)
46
(115)
Average high °C (°F) 30
(86)
31
(88)
29
(84)
28
(82)
27
(81)
25
(77)
24
(75)
26
(79)
27
(81)
28
(82)
28
(82)
29
(84)
28
(82)
Average low °C (°F) 22
(72)
22
(72)
21
(70)
19
(66)
16
(61)
13
(55)
13
(55)
14
(57)
16
(61)
18
(64)
19
(66)
21
(70)
18
(64)
Record low °C (°F) 16
(61)
17
(63)
16
(61)
11
(52)
8
(46)
8
(46)
7
(45)
7
(45)
9
(48)
12
(54)
11
(52)
15
(59)
7
(45)
Precipitation mm (inches) 130
(5.12)
125
(4.92)
125
(4.92)
53
(2.09)
28
(1.1)
20
(0.79)
13
(0.51)
13
(0.51)
28
(1.1)
48
(1.89)
81
(3.19)
97
(3.82)
761
(29.96)
Source: BBC Weather [6] 2009-08-18

Notable people

See also

References

External links

Coordinates: 25°58′S 32°35′E / 25.967°S 32.583°E / -25.967; 32.583


Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

Maputo is the capital city of Mozambique.

Understand

Maputo has been the capital of Mozambique since 1898. The city was previously called Lourenço Marques until the country's independence in 1975. It is the largest city in Mozambique and the country's most important harbour. It is situated at the mouth of the Santo River in the extreme south, 90 km from the border with South Africa.

View of Maputo Bay
View of Maputo Bay

In comparison with other sub-Saharan African cities, the urban area feels small and concentrated, with wide avenues and old trees. People are generally out and about in the streets, walking, driving and getting on with life. The vibe is healthy and active, with little begging and lots of street vendors and markets. There is no heavy presence of police during the day.

There are few tourists or white people to be seen and at times the atmosphere is as much South American as African. Buildings range from old colonial palaces to new high-rise constructions, but the dominant architecture consists of Stalinist-looking concrete-walled boxes, generally with badly eroded paint and rusty security bars. Fortunately, these tend to fade into the background, and there are enough buildings with old charm and lush enough gardens (cycads, coleus, flamboyant, jacaranda, bouganvillea, etc.) to give a pleasing if shabby feel.

The city provides a range of accommodation, from many-star hotels (e.g. Polana, Cardoso, Southern Sun) to comfortable backpackers' hostels (Base and Fatima's) and reasonable options in between (Mozaic Guest House).

Get in

By plane

Most international flights to/from Mozambique use Maputo's airport. See the the Mozambique page for more information. Local airlines LAM [1] and Air Corridor [2] operate a high number of domestic flights within Mozambique. TAP flies non-stop from Lisbon. SAA operates two flights a day from Johannesburg to Maputo and SA Airlink has 5 flights a week from both Durban and Cape Town (www.flysaa.com) 1time, the South Africa budget carrier, have announced they will be offering a service from Johannesburg starting February 2010

Taxis from the airport to town should be around 350 Metecais (approx $12). Hotels generally send their buses to meet flights, but only if they have passengers on the flight with bookings at their hotel. Local SIM cards can be bought at the shop near the exit from the terminal where there is also a bank.

By car

The highway from Johannesburg to Maputo is very good. From Johannesburg, take the N4 towards Nelspruit (about 400 km). From Nelspruit, continue following the N4 to Komatipoort, the last town on the South African side (about 100 km). Just past Komatipoort is the Komatipoort/Ressano Garcia border post. NB: current car registration papers (or good facsimile thereof) are required to get a car past the border. On the Mozambican side, just follow the N4 (now called EN4) for a further 100 km or so to reach Maputo.

Also easy access from Manzini in Swaziland, around 186 km. With minivan/taxi the cost from Manzini to Maputo is around USD 8 with luggage (price per October 2006). The drive time, including getting visa at the Namaacha border post, is 4 hours. The price for visa is USD 25.

From Durban, on the KwaZulu Natal coast (South Africa), Maputo is 600 km away and best approached via the Golele border post into Swaziland. The shortest route from Golele into Mozambique is at the newly opened Goba border post.

Komatipoort/ Ressano Garcia Border Control The border control can be very intimidating to new (and even returning) visitors to Mozambique. As you drive into the Mozambican side of the border, you will have many people rushing to your vehicle (some even looking quite official) and then directing you to perform this or that activity. The goal is probably to intimidate you so that you use their services (expertise) to expedite the border crossing, which they do. They will then suggest that you pay them a fee that you believe is fair for all this. In essence, the role of these helpers is to "fast track" your queue through the border control, meaning that they kinda bump the ordinary traveller out of the queue. This is done with the tacit approval of the border officials--implying that they are part of the tactic, and they quite possibly also receive some gain from it.

Depending on your standpoint, it may be viewed as encouraging an activity that is nor entirely legal but expedites your passage, or something you are vehemently opposed to.

By bus

From Johannesburg

By bicycle

If you are a little adventurous, it is possible to cycle by means of a mountain bike from Maputo to Ponta do Ouro. But be warned that you will have to push your bicycle for about 30km through thick sand. The trip is well worth it, and the look on the locals faces when they find out where you are going is not to be missed.

Central Maputo
Central Maputo

You can walk the center of the city by day but steer clear of the central business district at night.

Metered (yellow-roofed) taxi longer distances or at night but agree to a fare beforehand as many don't have meters. Ask hotel desks or locals for guidance on reasonable fares (e.g., Hotel Cardoso to Feira Popular or Mercado Central is around Mts 80 - 90,000 (USD 4 - 5).

A very inexpensive way to get around is by mini-bus or "Chapa" (pronounced SHA-PAA). They work like small busses and have routes that criss-cross the city. All major routes begin and end in the downtown core/market area called "Baixa" (pronounced BAA-SHAA). If you can speak Portuguese, then this is an excellent way to travel, or if you have a local friend to take you. Prices are low, around Mts 5,000 (US$0.20) for most trips and Mts 10,000 (US$0.40) for longer ones (all one way). Even if you don't know which Chapa to take, it's a great way to explore the city, and to get back to the core market area just find a Chapa that goes to "Baixa." Generally asking the navigator (usually hanging out of the passenger side door) if they go to "Baixa" will either result in them motioning you to jump on, or them pointing to where you need to go. Drivers usually cannot get away with overcharging you because you can easily see what the locals are paying, or the locals themselves will object.

While chapas are an interesting and authentic form of transport, they are not particularly safe. Even locals suffer from frequent pickpocketings on chapas, or while waiting for chapa stops. The minibuses are always packed far beyond their originally intended capacity, seats are frequently broken, and many travelers have to stand up while riding, though there are no handrails or appropriate places to hang on like in a larger bus.

Chapa drivers are notorious for disrespecting traffic rules and taking unnecessary risks with passenger safety to cut a few minutes off the journey.

Beware of the safety issues regarding chapas when you decide whether or not to experience this form of transport as a tourist (or resident).

  • 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 indepedence from Portuguese colonialism(Closed in 2008 and by the looks of it will not re-open soon)
  • 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.
  • Museu de História Natural, Praca Travessia de Zambezi (close to Cardoso Hotel). Enjoyable little museum. Lots of stuffed animals, birds and reptiles with full-size models of elephants. Interesting collection of wooden carvings, including a selection of traditional and very uncomfortable looking wooden pillows. Mtn 50.  edit
  • Visit some beautiful beaches, such as Catembe and Ponta d'Ouro. It is very jovial in these atmospheres and are generally safe, but beware of pickpocketing and avoid bringing valuables with you on a beach stroll .Ponta D'Ouro and Ponta Malongane have some beautiful scuba-diving spots, with either campsites or chalets right on the beach.
  • Take in a wedding. Beautiful tribal singing and women ululating. Civil ceremonies next door to Avenida Hotel. Several weddings on Saturday morning.

Learn

Nucleo de Arte. Nucleo D'Arte, 194, Rua D'Argelia, Maputo, Mozambique Artist's working atelier that is home to over 100 sculptors, painters, and other artists. Anyone is welcome to visit or to meet the artists next door in the Cafe Camissa. Live music especially on Sunday evenings or on one of the (many) public holidays.

Work

Work is now available to the locals, but if you are a foreigner and thinking about taking a sabbatical, it is a perfectly safe and comfortable place to do it. However, new regulations on expat workers in Mozambique have imposed quotas on the number of foreigners a business can employ, and it is getting increasingly difficult to obtain work permits as a foreigner in Mozambique, in particular with small companies or organizations.

Buy

On July 1, 2006 Mozambique officially introduced the second metical, dropping three zeros off the old currency. As a result, all prices you see in this article, or else where on the internet that are in thousands should be converted down by a factor of 1000. As a result Mts. 10,000 would now be MZN 10. The local abbreviation for the new currency is MTn. As of January 1, 2007 only the Bank of Mozambique will convert the old currency, but only until December 31, 2013.

  • African fabrics both waxprint and woven in the fabric shops along the Avenida de Guerra Popular
  • Cashews all over the place, roasted, salted, plain, any which way and nearly anywhere. The number two export of the country, selling for about US$3.20 per pound (Mts. 140,000 per kg).
  • Wood carvings, boxes, picture frames from curio vendors.
  • Batik cloth ranging from the tacky animal stuff to glorious works of art. Most of what is on offer is on the lower quality end, but persistent searching will yield some gems among the dross.

Eat

The local cuisine is a mixture of Middle Eastern, African, Indian/Pakistani/ Portuguese, Hispanic, and African. All these different cuisnes are served at various areas in the city.

Budget

Any number of small cafes serve simple dishes and juices that are affordable. Unless you are adventurous, stay away from most roadside stalls especially if they are serving meat. Safe roadside fare includes cashews (usually fire roasted without salt served in small paper cones), fried bean cakes called Bhajia, uncut and unwashed fruits (cut and wash yourself with bottled water), and soft-serve ice cream. Expect to pay between Mts 5,000 and 20,000 (US$0.20 - $1).

The fruit from roadside stands is usually fine, especially the bananas. They expect to sell the fruit by the kilogram, so be prepared for strange looks if you want just a couple of individual fruits. A couple of bananas should set you back 5 or 10 MTn.

The smaller cafes will have egg sandwiches, fries, grilled chicken, small pastries, and simple hamburgers. Expect to pay between Mts 15,000 and 75,000 (US$0.60 - $3).

  • Gelati Av. Julius Nyerere 794. Good ice cream, on its own or served with Crepes.

Do not lose sight of your credit or debit cards or they may be cloned. Rather always pay cash at any restaurant.

Mid-range

Chicken Piripiri near the corner of Avda. 24 de Julho and Avda. Nyerere serves grilled chicken and also very good prawns.

  • Mercado de Peiche The fresh fish market. Behind the Sasol Garage on Ave Marginal, you chose you own prawns, clams, crab, Grouper, Coral and Rock cod, Squid and a galaxy of other tropical fish still flapping at the market, then retire to one of the many small restaurants behind the stals where they are cooked beautifully. Everyone's favourite Sunday afternoon.
  • Mundo's next to Avenida Hotel on Av. Julius Nyerere. Multiracial meeting place with bar and restaurant, including pizza. Lots of televisions tuned to sport from South African channels. Internet free for 30 mins. per day, after that for moderate charge.
  • Waterfront, Av. 10 de Novembre, 21301408. Good, mainly seafood, restaurant on the seafront.  edit
  • Restaurante Escorpiao, in the Feira Popular (in the Baixa district). Has a huge menu, a decent wine list (by Mozambican standards) and caters to moderate budgets. Not fancy, frequented by locals. Soggiest vegetables in town; for better Portuguese-inspired fare, try Restaurante Cristal, Costa do Sol or Monte Alentejano.
  • Costa do Sol restaurant, in Costa do Sol (5km north of Maputo by the sea -- 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. Booking recommended at weekends and if you want an outdoors table.
  • Restaurant Sheik, part of the Sheik entertainment complex. Offers high-end Chinese and African cuisine in an elegant atmosphere. The disco below has dancing, drinks, and fun until the wee hours of the morning.

Drink

Fruit juice is (sadly) usually sweetened nectar and not fresh 100% juice. The usual selections of fizzy sugar water in a bottle (soft drinks) can be found too. Pressed sugar cane juice is available in some markets.

Coca-Cola products are also widely available including Cola, Sprite, and Fanta fruit-flavored pop (Orange and Pineapple are most common, Grape is also sometimes available). "Sparletta" brand fruit-flavoured pop is also widely available. Expect to pay between Mts 7,000 and 10,000 (US$0.25 - $0.40). Shop owners are usually very strict when it comes to the empty bottles as they are expensive and reused, do not try and keep one without trying to pay the full price for the bottle first.

The wine selection is reasonably good, and depending on your budget you can get a range of South African, Portuguese and Chilean wines. Most common are cheap South African and Portuguese wines, but you can find nice wines (for a price) in upper-end restaurants and certain bottle stores or delis. Wine by the glass generally comes from a box.

Beer is widely available, with 2M ('dosh-em'), Laurentina (brewed by 2M), Manica, and Raiz being the common selection. Laurentina comes in two varieties, 'Clara' a lager, and 'Preta' a very dark Lager with hints of coffee and chocolate. Locals tend to order the Laurentina varieties simply by saying Clara or Preta, and leaving out Laurentina. Preta is the most expensive beer, followed by Manica and then 2M. Raiz is a newer beer intended for the budget market and is considered a 'cheap' beer. Beer bottles are also expensive and should always be returned or purchased. The beer itself is very inexpensive and reasonably good ranging from Mts 9,000 to 15,000 (US$0.35 - $0.60).

Drink water from a bottle, not the tap.

NIGHTLIFE

  • 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-Mozambicain has live music and cultural events.
  • The Central Train Station houses a jazz lounge on weekends.
  • The Feira Popular is in the Baixa, and houses many bars and restaurants.
  • Dolce Vita Av. Julius Nyerere 800. New, upmarket bar with blue lighting.
  • Fatima's Place, 1317 Mao Tse Tung Avenida, Maputo, email fatimas@tvcabo.co.mz, Phone: +258 (0) 82 4145730 - +258 (0) 82 3070870 Fax: (+) 258 1 300 305, [3]. Dorms from US$12. Many people really enjoy this place, but it has more of a part atmosphere and is quite a bit larger than Base Backpackers. Some have found the staff and the other guests to be quite standoffish. It's a bit out of the main part of downtown, but still a very easy and generally safe walk to the business district. Fatima's also offers shuttle service to Fatima's nest in Tofo beach, around 7-8 hours north of Maputo. While this bus is very convenient, it can also be extremely dangerous and the motorist has stolen from expat passengers in the past. Take at your own risk.
  • The Base Backpackers, 545 Avenida Patrice Lumumba (+258) 21 302723, not so great rooms, balcony with a view over the sea, 2 computers with fast internet, a small room with a tv and news, a self-service fridge and kitchen facilities. Members of the staff can be extremely flaky, and told a guest whose laundry was not returned clean as promised, "It's not my problem, it's your problem." The place needs to undergo a total renovation, but its one positive quality is its central location. The dorms become very hot during the spring and summer due to a lack of a fan. For US$9 ( Oct 2006), this is an OK alternative. Base is small, with only two small dorms, so you should call ahead for a reservation.
  • Maputo B&B, Backpackers, at Triunfo, 4 Avenida, House 98, (look for saure blue sign with yellow letters), +258824672230. The very affordable alternative for hot city places, at very reasonable prices, like other backpackers, and ultra clean, little bar, free pool table, restaurant with best/freshest home cooked seafood, garden space to sit, secure parking in and outside, meet great travellers get all info on trips to Tofo, diving, culture, and very important great location close to the beach. Takes long term residents for special conditions and can point you to administrations of government, university, business. city tours, Inhaca-Portuguese Island boat trips, live music bar.
  • VIP Grand Hotel Maputo is a conference-hotel near the commercial centre of town, the Feira Popular, the ferry to Catembe. The rooms are pleasantly clean and modern, but service is poor, internet non-existent, and food mediocre. Don'T stay here unless you have to...
  • Catembe Gallery Hotel, [6]. 14 luxurious rooms that are individually decorated by leading Mozambican artists. Inconvenient to find, approximately 45 minutes from the CBD (via crowded public boat, then taxi), located on a remote dirt road on the opposite side of the bay. It has a bar, beach, library, pool table and swimming pool. Internet access is available. Rates start from about €60, up to €380, depending on type of room selected.
  • Cardoso Hotel, [7]. Opposite the traffic circle from the Natural History Museum. Recently refurbished and is a solid 4-star hotel although things often tend to go wrong. Staff fluent in English. A great garden to have a drink in and watch the sun set over the Baixa and Rio Santo. Doubles with a river view and airconditioning were US$140 or more in May 2009.
  • Hotel Polana, [8]. The grande dame of Maputo hotels, a colonial era masterpiece by Sir Herbert Baker, famed South African architect (who also did the Mount Nelson Hotel in Cape Town). As close to perfection in service, food, pool, view, etc. as can be found in Maputo. Small casino can be a fun diversion. Doubles start at US$217. Good place to have a drink, or to have lunch in the Tea Room.
  • Hotel Avenida [9]. 5-star hotel on Avenida Julius Nyerere. Has large and fairly comfortable rooms. Rooftop pool and bar for excellent sunsets and a good way of appreciating the rather confusing geography of Maputo. Several restaurants (Thai, Greek, Indian and pub style) within a few minutes. Hotel shuttle to and from the airport available. Free access to the Internet. Rooms from around $170 (April 2009) including good breakfast but really the only thing that is 5-Star about this hotel is the price.

Stay safe

Violent crime does not arise to the Joburg level, but is a problem. Occasional pickpocketing attempts do occur, and are almost guaranteed on busy streets. At night, it is better not to walk around alone. Regardless of the hour, be smart when walking around -- don't carry much around in the streets with you, and if you have a bag, keep it close to you. If you have a cell phone, do not flaunt it -- pickpockets have been known to take cellphones right out of people's hands when talking on them.

The local police are out of control and will target foreigners in the area around popular backpacker hostels, bus stations, etc. Carry a copy of your passport (not your real one) and a copy of your visa too, so that there is no potential problem with the police (you are legally obliged to carry both at all times). Also, very obviously, do not carry drugs or knives (penknives) around with you at all. One backpacker arriving by bus from Tete was detained and taken to the police station where he was robbed. Do not expect the police station to be a sanctuary if police hassle you.

  • Malarial prophylaxis is essential in all parts of Mozambique.
  • Do not drink the tap water. As Fatima puts it: "Your stomachs are not used to it."
  • There is high HIV incidence. For your own safety, do not have unprotected sex.
  • Prostitution is not prudent.

Contact

English (and some Portuguese) language radio transmissions are available from BBC World Service on 95.5MHz.

  • Avenida Julius Nyerere 3332 Maputo, 0025821 491 440 (, fax: 0025821 493 023).
  • United Kingdom, Av Vladimir I Lenine, 310 (CP 55) Maputo, + (258) (21) 356 000, [10].  edit
  • United States, [11].  edit
Fishing Boats at Catembe
Fishing Boats at Catembe

Take the short ferry ride across the bay to visit Catembe. Its relaxed atmosphere is a pleasant retreat from Maputo.

This is a usable article. It has information for getting in as well as some complete entries for restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please plunge forward and help it grow!

Wiktionary

Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

English

Proper noun

Singular
Maputo

Plural
-

Maputo

  1. The capital city of Mozambique

Anagrams


Simple English

[[File:|200px|thumb|Maputo]] Maputo is the capital of Mozambique. It is located on the coast of the Indian Ocean. As of 2004, about 1,114,000 people live in the city. Maputo was founded in the 18th century. The original name was Lourenço Marques, but it was changed after independence. Lisbon in Portugal is a twin town of Maputo. Eduardo Mondlane University is located in Maputo.


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