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Quirimbas Archipelago

Quirimbas Archipelago

The Quirimbas Archipelago is a string of 32 'glamorous' coral islands that dot the northern coastline of Mozambique, accessed via the town and airport of Pemba.

Luxurious Island Accommodation & Holiday Packages
Honeymoon & Wedding Holiday Packages for 'just the two of you'

Mobile Tented Island Hopping on Dhow & Kayak
Access to the Islands of the Quirimbas Archipelago

Most of the islands also fall within the Quirimbas National Park that spans an area of 7500 square kilometres and is currently featured on the ‘tentative list’ for UNESCO World Heritage Status for cultural and/or natural heritage of outstanding universal value to mankind.

Most of the Quirimbas islands are small, uninhabited and unexplored, so if your dream is to spend some time tucked away within coconut palms, lounging on a hammock with endless views of a bright blue ocean and dazzling white sands, the northern Mozambique islands are your indulgence.

The Quirimbas Islands have outstanding marine coral environments, with a number of sheer cliff drop-offs of 400m to get the adrenaline pumping. SCUBA diving, snorkelling and big game fishing is incredible here. There is one lodge per island, and the lodges focus on privacy, intimacy and pampering.

As in the case of the Bazaruto Archipelago, water sports are numerous, but here too one can interact with the locals, particularly on Ibo Island which has a fascinating history of Arab and Portuguese slave traders, the unique art of silver smithing by hand (handed down through the generations) each item a masterpiece of time and intricacy. Ibo’s cultural festivities in June for Kueto Siriwala, which means ‘to not forget your roots’, that began in 1773, is a cultural celebration of dance, music, food and activities to celebrate independence, family, togetherness and the heritage of the island. There is a traditional dhow race over this time from Ibo Island to Matemo Island and back, along with a football tournament between local soccer teams. Ibo Island has a fascinating history, Arab spice traders, Portuguese ivory and pearl seekers (Vasco De Gama visited the island in 1502) and the ensuing slave trade. Wander through Ibo’s 200 year old ‘ghost town’, and 16th century forts of which there are three, and a historic Catholic Church – getting married abroad (package below) on Ibo in a unique island setting within the church is ‘atmospheric’. The main Portuguese fort overlooks the harbour entrance and is constructed in a pentagonal shape, one of only four forts of this design in Africa – Ibo, Maputo, Mombasa and Cape Town.

Islands within the Quirimbas Archipelago, with Luxurious Island Accommodation & Holiday Packages

Holiday on Vamizi Island – Vamizi Island Lodge
Holiday on Medjumbe Island - Medjumbe Island Lodge & Spa
Holiday on Matemo Island - Matemo Island Lodge & Spa
Holiday on Ibo Island - Ibo Island Lodge
Pemba (on the mainland) - Pemba Beach Resort & Spa
* In certain instances clients may need to overnight at Pemba due to flight times/connections to the islands.

Honeymoon & Wedding Holiday Packages

Matemo Island – Matemo Island Lodge & Spa
Ibo Island – Ibo Island Lodge


Mobile Tented Island Hopping on Traditional Dhow & Kayak

Ibo Island – Ibo Island Lodge
Need to fill in details here on this experience.

Pemba has an illustrious history as the centre for trade in ivory and slaves, first by the Arabs and later by the Portuguese colonialists and is an attractive ramshackle port town, that is quite ‘run down’, but is still the gateway to northern Mozambique and the luxurious lodges of the Quirimbas Archipelago. Pemba also has attractive beaches, with coral reefs not far off shore. If you have a little time, you can visit the Slave Trade Fort at Ponta Romero Lighthouse, which is where slaves were auctioned off within an open area, and is now a historical monument. Within fairly close proximity is a traditional fishing village, where one can view village lifestyle and trading, along with the building or repairs of the Mozambique traditional sailing/fishing dhow.

Access to the Quirimbas Archipelago

  • There are a number of international and domestic flights into Pemba, which is the centre of the Cabo Delgado Province.
  • International flights into Pemba are from South Africa (Johannesburg), Nairobi (Kenya), Dar es Salaam (Tanzania) – all of these routes offer that bush and beach holiday combination i.e. go on safari in either, South Africa, Kenya or Tanzania and end your African holiday on the idyllic beaches of the Quirambas Archipelago.
  • Domestic flights into Pemba operate from Maputo, Beira and Nampula. Certain flights from Johannesburg operate either direct (approximately a 3 to 4 hour flight) or via Maputo (approximately a 6 hour flight).


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The Quirimbas Archipelago is one of Mozambique's top island and beach destinations
Great combinations with Mozambique's other top destinations are:
Go on safari to the incredible wilderness of Mozambique's Niassa National Park
Feel the Cuban-salsa vibe of Mozambique's capital city Maputo
Great Combinations with other Top Destinations in Africa
 The Namib Desert of Namibia
Victoria Falls in Zambia or Zimbabwe
Okavango Delta in Botswana
Kruger National Park in South Africa
Wild beaches of KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa
Cape Town & the Garden Route in South Africa

For innumerable holiday & vacation combinations in Africa's Top Destinations
enquire with Intriguing Africa Holidays & Safaris for expert