Bazaruto Dhow Excursion
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 depart from Vilanculos in the morning on a speedboat and will head back to the mainland after lunch to get ready for our sunset cruise on the traditional sailing vessel, the Dhow.
The Archipelago was established as a National Park in the year 1971. It is comprised 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 its 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 whale and dolphin. 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 grounds for breeding. Dugong (sea cows), game fish and giant lobster can also be spotted in these guarded reefs. All of the islands sustain 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 However, this skill has pretty much disappeared and been replaced by modern nail construction. Sailaway boasts outings on hand-crafted dhows, created to safeguard both your comfort and safety. The biggest boat available is a double-master and was constructed by a local craftsmen hailing from Vilanculo.
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 causes of their disappearance are hunting and unintended 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.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Facilities: En-suites Per Room, Hot Showers, Swimming Pool and Bar
Activity Package: Bazaruto Day Trip