The idyllic islands that comprise the Quirimbas Archipelago stretch for 250 km along the northern Mozambican coastline, from the historic port of Pemba in the south, to the town of Palma in the north.
With its 27 islands virtually untouched and unexplored, the Quirimbas Archipelago represents one of the few tropical island destinations in the world still untainted by man's influence. The 1500km2 Quirimbas National Park provides sanctuary for the remarkable flora and fauna residing in this marine area. Feeding and nesting grounds for sea turtles, dugongs, dolphins, sharks and whales are protected here, as is a vast expanse of tropical forest.
Included within the park are 11 unspoilt coral islands which are strung along 100km of coastline. These Mozambique coral atolls boast vertical drop-offs of up to 400 meters and are abundant with coral-covered caves and tropical fish. Expect to see a wide variety of fish ranging from Gobies to Mammoth Napoleon Wrasse as well as game fish such as Askingfish and Spanish Mackerel. As you can imagine it is a scuba diving and snorkelling paradise.
The Quirimbas have enormous cultural and historical value and are a melting pot of Arabian, Portuguese, and African influences. Ibo Island, with its coral reefs, mangroves and magnificent old fortresses, has a fascinating and disturbing history. With such a prime location off the East African coast, this Mozambique island became a significant trading post for gold, ivory and later slaves between the 16th and 19th centuries.
There are some wonderful lodges amongst the islands where you can experience the cultural heritage of this area, the stunning stretches of untouched, white, sandy beaches and the turquiose, crystal-clear sea.
If you want a sheer exclusive island paradise then there is nowhere better than Vamizi Island.
A wonderfully natural lodge and very good lower cost option is Guludo Lodge.
If you would enjoy a more cultural and historical experience whilst still wanting an island experience then Ibo island Lodge is perfect.