Referred to as the Land of Good People, a name bequeathed to it by the famous Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama in the late 15th century, Inhambane is a peaceful and sleepy historical town with old colonial-style architecture blended with Arabic, Indian and African influences.
When da Gama arrived in 1498, oral legend claims it began to rain and the native people took the explorer in and offered him shelter. Touched by the act of kindness, as opposed to the usual suspicion and resentment and often time hostility to foreigners, da Gama called the place Terra de Boa Gente (Land of the Good People).
Inhambane is the provincial capital of the province which shares the same name with the coastal city. It has a small, tidy and beautiful city center with wide tree-lined avenues and several shops, restaurants and various public services places.
You can pick up all kinds of things from Mercado Central (Central Market), from fresh foodstuff, fruits and vegetables to household items, religious and fetish items, souvenirs and all. There is also a museum, Museu Regional Inhambane where you can find exhibits about Portuguese influence and many other items.
Its main beaches are in Barra and Tofo. Praia do Tofo (Tofo beach) is about 22km from the city center and quite popular for water activities like surfing, snorkeling and diving and it is often referred to as Whale Shark Mecca of the World.
About 1.5km south of Tofo is Praia do Tofinho (Tofinho beach) a tourist beach, monument and residential area. At Tofinho which means Little Tofo, you will find the Tofinho Monument, a symbol of the independence struggle. There is also the Burraco dos Assassinatos, a well where the Portuguese colonialists used to dump indigenes who fail to pay taxes.
Barra Beach (Praia da Barra) lies about 25km away from the city centre, on the Ponta da Barra peninsula. The holiday settlement is home to beach resorts, private vacation homes, restaurants and diving charters.
At low tide, snorkeling is popular below the Barra Lighthouse where there is a natural tidal pool. The other has calmer waters of the estuary is a perfect honeymoon spot, and a great place for less experience divers to learn the art.
Opposite the city, further away across the bay, lies Maxixe, the largest city and economic capital of the province. Maxixe is easily accessible by local ferries. Although it can also be reached by road, the journey is far longer journey at about 60km away.
One response to “Inhambane, Mozambique: Land of the Good People”
This is so beautiful! I love this…. Africa is beautiful indeed!!
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