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Mozambique stretches for 1,535 mi (2,470 km) along Africa's southeast coast. It is nearly twice the size of California. Tanzania is to the north; Malawi, Zambia, and Zimbabwe to the west; and South Africa and Swaziland to the south. The country is generally a low-lying plateau broken up by 25 sizable rivers that flow into the Indian Ocean. The largest is the Zambezi, which provides access to central Africa. In the interior several chains of mountains form the backbone of the country.

Almost all of Mozambique falls within the tropics and as such Mozambique features a mostly tropical climate. Along the coast Mozambique has a warm, tropical climate. Evenings are rarely cold, except for a few nights in June and July and the rainfall isn't too high. In summer temperatures can soar and the humidity levels rise. Temperatures are typically higher in the north, around Pemba, and around the Zambezi. The interior plains generally have a higher temperature then that of the coast and have higher rainfall throughout the year. The mountainous regions generally remain cool throughout the year.

Mozambique is one of Africa’s up-and-coming hot-spots
- stunning beaches, excellent diving and magical offshore islands. Go snorkeling around the Bazaruto Archipelago, sail on a dhow through mangrove channels or laze under the palms in the Quirimbas Archipelago, take an off-beat safari in the wilds of Gorongosa National Park, wander along cobbled streets past stately colonial-era buildings on Ilha de Mozambique, sip a café espresso at one of Maputo’s lively sidewalk cafes (or maybe a caipirinha at one of its jazz bars), watch the silversmiths at work on Ibo Island or dance to the country’s trademark marrabenta music.

For almost two decades, many of these attractions were inaccessible due to a protracted guerrilla war. Now dark times are in the past, and Mozambique is one of Africa’s rising stars, with an upbeat atmosphere, overflowing markets and a 2500km coastline waiting to be discovered. If you’re inclined to something tamer, stick to Southern Mozambique, where roads and transport links (especially with neighboring South Africa) are good and accommodation options abound. For more adventure, head across the Zambezi into the wilds of Northern Mozambique, one of Africa’s last frontiers. Getting around here takes time, but the paradisaical coastal panoramas and sense of space, the sheer adventure of travel and – for those with a healthy budget – some of the continent’s most idyllic island lodges make the journey well worthwhile.

Raggies Crossing at Aliwal Shoal Shark Alley