Ibo Island and the Quirimbas Archipelago

The Quirimbas Archipelago lies like a forgotten string of pearls, carelessly flung out along the far northern coast of Mozambique. 12 main islands and 20 smaller make up the chain, scattered along with shell-strewn sandbars and gleaming white tidal spits. The 11 most southerly isles are protected within the Quirimbas National Park, including Ibo Island, which is also the most accessible. Ibo was once an important trading centre on the East African coast, but its stately mansions now lie in ruins, amidst a laid-back community of subsistence farmers, fishermen and silversmiths. On Ibo Island, you’ll travel back in time to catch a glimpse of East Africa as it once was. And on the surrounding atolls you’ll find some of Mozambique’s most exclusive, romantic lodges, world-class diving and phenomenal beaches.

dolphins around ibo island mozambique holiday

Highlights

Ibo’s old town has been suggested as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and shares a similar cultural and architectural significance as the Island of Mozambique further south. Most of the historical buildings are from a later period, however – late 18th and 19th century forts, churches and villas. Ibo itself lacks a truly postcard-perfect beach, but it’s an ideal staging post for island hopping along the coast. Dhow and kayaking adventures can be booked from here, and there are fantastic diving and snorkelling on the protected reefs nearby. This is a region that still sees very few visitors so even if you’re not headed to one of the private island lodges, you’ll likely feel like you have the whole exquisite archipelago to yourself.

fort jesus ibo island mozambique holiday

Travel tips

The easiest way to access the Quirimbas is by air. Pemba is the main local airport and from there you can connect to Ibo or fly directly to your lodge. Ibo Island has a handful of budget-conscious options, but for the most part the Quirimbas Archipelago is the realm of stunning private islands and exclusive romantic escapes. The proximity to Tanzania also allows for great beach and safari combos, just be aware that December to April can see heavy rain and, in some years, violent storms. In early 2019, two huge cyclones battered this coastline, with devastating effect on the community and infrastructure. Tourism is a vital way to support those in the region, but be sure to check the current situation before you travel.


Our Recommended Itinerary

Magical Mozambique Honeymoon Holiday (6 days)

day 1

  • Magical Mozambique Honeymoon Holiday (6 days)
  • Magical Mozambique Honeymoon Holiday (6 days)
  • Magical Mozambique Honeymoon Holiday (6 days)
  • Magical Mozambique Honeymoon Holiday (6 days)
  • Magical Mozambique Honeymoon Holiday (6 days)
  • Magical Mozambique Honeymoon Holiday (6 days)

day 2-5

Island-style romance

day 6

Thank you for visiting

View Full Itinerary

You might also like

Vilanculos

Vilanculo is probably Mozambique’s fastest-growing and most bustling beach town, a jumbled network of half sealed, half sandy streets, on a typically lovely ribbon of coastline. With a small, but international airport that sees daily flights from South Africa, it’s popular with luxury fly-in visitors and backpackers alike. Though it has its own gorgeous beaches and is a much-loved…

Ponta do Ouro

Ponta do Ouro, literally ‘Tip (or Point) of Gold’, is a family-friendly beach holiday town, just north of the South African border. It’s the first of a succession of undulating sandy points that stud the wide, golden beach which rolls unbroken to Inhaca Island. This 85-kilometre ribbon of sand is one of the most beautiful and pristine in all of Mozambique. And ‘Ponta,’ as the…

Mozambique in November

Mozambique’s rainy season begins in November, starting in the south and moving slowly up the coast. The arrival of the rains is unpredictable and irregular, a succession of hot, humid days interspersed with impressive thunderstorms. Temperatures in the south can top 38°C (100°F), but conditions cool rapidly as soon as the rain begins to fall. Along the north-eastern coastline this is…

Mozambique in February

January and February are much the same in Mozambique. It’s the height of summer, with similar conditions through to March. Temperatures along the coast average 31°C (88°F), the nights are warm and humid and hot days can top 35°C (95°F). There’s regular rainfall, which can be torrential at times, especially in the north where there’s a chance of severe storms. December to April…

Solo travel in Mozambique

If you’re thinking of visiting Mozambique on your own, don’t let anything dissuade you. It’s a friendly, safe choice for solo travel and can be as adventurous or laid-back as you like. Those looking for solitude will find endless, empty beaches, ideal for long, peaceful strolls. And if you’d like to meet people there are lively beach towns, with restaurants and group tours and…

Wildlife in Mozambique

Most visitors, quite rightly, come to Mozambique for the sea. There are hundreds of dive and snorkelling sites along this quite extraordinary coast. And besides the abundant reef fish and spectacular coral, there are also the glorious marine giants. The soft-shelled leatherback turtle grows to over two-and-a-half metres long and the beach town of Tofo is famous for its whale shark…

Popular Mozambique Safaris

These popular itineraries can be customised to match your budget and travel dates

 | Kruger to the Mozambican Coast (7 days)

Kruger to the Mozambican Coast (7 days)

Combining the bush and the wildlife found in the famous Sabi Sand in the Kruger National Park with a tropical stay in one of the sublime lodges of Mozambique's Ponta Mamoli...

 | Luxury Mozambique Honeymoon Holiday (7 days)

Luxury Mozambique Honeymoon Holiday (7 days)

Powder white beaches and crystal clear, warm ocean water is what honeymoons are made of - and this is the perfect honeymoon option for you if this is what you are looking for. ...

Relax on the hammock  | Magical Mozambique Honeymoon Holiday (6 days)

Magical Mozambique Honeymoon Holiday (6 days)

White sandy beaches and the warm waters of an Indian Ocean island make a perfect setting for the most romantic getaway of your life...

 | Blissful Mozambique Honeymoon Holiday (6 days)

Blissful Mozambique Honeymoon Holiday (6 days)

Romance, exclusivity and barefoot luxury are the themes of this honeymoon...

 | Mozambique Island Honeymoon Getaway (6 days)

Mozambique Island Honeymoon Getaway (6 days)

Spend 5 romantic nights at Ibo Island Lodge, situated in the magical Quirimbas Archipelago in Northern Mozambique. ...

The beach deck at Anantara Bazaruto | Bazaruto Private Island Holiday (8 days)

Bazaruto Private Island Holiday (8 days)

Enjoy sandy beaches and scenic lakes on Bazaruto private island in Mozambique, try your hand at water sports or simply laze the days away at the pool...

Dhow at andBeyond Benguerra Island | Luxury Land and Sea Safari in Botswana and Mozambique (10 days)

Luxury Land and Sea Safari in Botswana and Mozambique (10 days)

Experience the Okavango Delta and the tropical Indian Ocean island of Benguerra for the best of both the bush and the beach...

 | South African Bush to Mozambican Beach Holiday (8 days)

South African Bush to Mozambican Beach Holiday (8 days)

In this exciting safari holiday, you'll get to experience both Southern Africa's bush and beach beauty...

Ready to start your adventure?

Your tailor-made African holiday starts here...

How can we get hold of you?

How many people will be travelling?

Details

Please tell us more about your travel plans?


Discover Africa needs the contact information you provide, to us to contact you. You may unsubscribe from these communications at anytime.

Submitting your inquiry

Thank you, your enquiry has been received

Thank you, your enquiry has been received

Reference:

 +27 21 422 3498
   discover.africa
    info@discoverafrica.com
    8AM - 5PM GMT+2