NAM14 Day 09 : Bazaruto Excursion

November 14, 2014 Comments Off on NAM14 Day 09 : Bazaruto Excursion
Andrew Walton
Just a happy guy who loves travelling, loves Africa and feels that travelling changes you forever.

Bazaruto Excursion, Mozambique

The Bazaruto trip takes place on a traditional dhow. We glide out to the islands where we have the chance to snorkel, swim and unwind during the day. The Bazaruto is one of Southern Africa’s biggest marine parks. We will head back to the mainland in the afternoon and enjoy the evening relaxing after our excursion today.

Note: In the event of adverse weather conditions, we will visit Magaruque Island instead of Bazaruto Island.

The Archipelago was established as a National Park in the year 1971. It comprises of six islands, the four primary being Bazaruto, Benguerra, Magaruque and Santa Carolina, or ‘paradise island’. The islands were created by sand deposits from the Limpopo River which has since changed it’s route. The three bigger islands formed part of a vast sand-pit peninsula that was once joined to the mainland, but has since parted as the continent sank into the Indian Ocean over the past millennia. Only Santa Carolina is a genuine Rock Island and is therefore encircled by deeper water than the rest. Because of their protected status, the Archipelago is an untouched gem that hosts over 180 species of bird life, butterflies and even suni Antelope.

The islands are covered by massive sand dunes and freshwater lakes which are home to crocodiles and are the nesting ground for stunning black-winged flamingos. The beautiful coral reefs that encircle the islands contain more than 2,000 fish species as well as whales and dolphins. A wide range of coral forms ideal diving spots, regarded as some of the finest locations in the world. The five types of turtle living in the Indian Ocean can all be found here, using the pristine beaches as their breeding ground. Dugong (sea cows), game fish and giant lobster can also be spotted in these guarded reefs. The entire island sustains many traditional fishermen and their families, majority of whom are not permanent residents and may drift between the Archipelago and the mainland in search of abundant fishing waters.

For over two thousand years, lateen rigged dhows have sailed the Indian Ocean, joining economies and people and forming a cosmopolitan maritime Indian Ocean culture. For ages, Arab shipwrights fashioned boats using sewn construction – sewing the boards together using coconut fibre cord. However, this skill has pretty much disappeared and been replaced by modern nail construction.

Dugongs are the only members of the order Sirenia, from the family Dugongidae. Dugongs are one of the most threatened mammals in Africa and are among the most endangered mammalian species in the Western Indian Ocean. They are located in the Western Indian Ocean with a minimal occurrence on Southern Africa’s east coast. The Bazaruto Archipelago and coast of Mozambique are one of the most crucial environments for dugongs in the Western Indian Ocean. They are only found in certain areas due to their specific living requirements – sea grass meadows growing in shallow, covered lagoons guarded by reefs and islands, in particular. Your best chance at seeing one of these magnificent creatures is in the Archipelago’s sea grass meadows. The primary reason for their disappearance is hunting and unintentional entanglement in fishing nets, specifically gill nets. Extrapolation of a recent survey showed an estimated total population of a mere 104 animals still living in the region surrounding the Bazaruto Archipelago.

Accommodation: Two Per Room: Golden Sands Apartments
Facilities: Shared Ablutions Please visit the website of the accommodation provider for a full list of the facilities offered
Activity Package: Bazaruto Island Day Excursion (full day)

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