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Introduction

Mozambique has emerged from a long liberation struggle and civil war to claim the affection of tourists worldwide and has done so with great style. Travelers can visit Mozambique's golden beaches, surf, scuba dive, jet ski, hit the nightclubs, check out the museums and game parks, and relax at a large selection of resorts. Mozambique is still not widely promoted as a tourism destination - most tourist arrivals come from nearby South Africa, as opposed to Europe or the United States - so it offers a slower pace.

Portugal colonized Mozambique. The Mozambique Liberation Front (Frelimo) waged a war with the country's Portuguese-controlled regime and in 1975 Mozambique won its independence. But fighting continued through battles with its neighbor, apartheid South Africa, and South Africa's proxy force, the rebel group Renamo. Mozambique's first president, Samora Machel, was assassinated when his plane was shot down in 1986. A peace agreement was signed between Freelimo and Renamo in 1992 and the fall of apartheid in 1994 brought new stability and impressive economic growth to Mozambique in the 1990s. Terrible floods destroyed and damaged much of the infrastructure that was rebuilt after the war, but the country appears to be rebuilding well.  President Joaquim Chissano stepped down in 2004 and was replaced by Armando Guebuza.

Mozambique is home to 21 million people, most of whom practice indigenous beliefs, Islam and Christianity. The official language is Portuguese, although many local languages are spoken, including Makua-Lomwe, Tsonga, Shona and Swahili. Mozambique cultivates the visual arts, including painting and pottery, as well as jewelry. has visual art with the beautiful pottery, paintings and jewelry.

International flights arrive regularly in the capital, Maputo, and there are also inexpensive buses from Johannesburg, South Africa. Within the country, travel by mini-buses, public buses, taxis and hired cars are good options. Guided tours and yachts along the Indian Ocean offer another option to travelers with a larger budget. The roads are in mediocre condition, even between large cities, which can make traveling more time-consuming and expensive.

There is an excellent selection of resorts. Polana Hotel in Maputo has huge and beautifully decorated guest rooms, a great selection of restaurants and bars, and a large swimming pool. Another place to stay is the Indigo Bay Resort. There are also options for backpackers and campers, although the tourism infrastructure is not as developed as in other southern African countries.


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