I spent a good month thinking about my birthday trip. The hard part was picking a place! I was first thinking of staying local in Zambia and maybe go on the house boat on the Kariba (needed to do a self-drive from Lusaka to Kariba. Not happening). Then it was maybe head down to Madagascar (flights were way too expensive). Or maybe up to Zanzibar (flights were way too expensive aswell).
So when my friend suggested I go to Mozambique, it was like a light bulb moment. I was looking for a beach and diving trip so it made perfect sense to go there. So I looked into that. Or should I say, I asked Gateway Travel and Tours to look into it for me.
In the end, it was a great idea using them because I didn’t know what airlines flew into Mozambique (other than SAA). Or what resort to stay at (didn’t feel like backpacking this time). And they offered 4 days/3 nights packages which included flights and food, so what else did I need to do? Pack the bikini of course!
— 09 Dec 2011 —
I flew into Inhambane where it was bright and sunny. Stinky hot as well. In the little arrival hall, there was no ventilation, too many loud Russians and only one immigration officer. Needless to say, it was a disaster! An hour later, I finally made it on the Barra Lodge shuttle and made my way to the resort. We passed coconut trees. We passed side road shacks. It was exactly what I had expected of a coastal town!
First thing I did after downing my “Welcome to Barra” drink, the bikini and beach dress went on and I was feeling sand in between my toes, for the first time in 3 months, in no time. Ahh, such a good feeling.
On the stroll down the beach, I found plenty of battered boats scattered around. I wondered where they came from? Why did the people just leave them there? Are they junk or just looked like junk? What’s with all the netting?
The package included breakfast and dinner served at the resort. It was a smorgasboard every day. I was most excited about eating fresh mangoes, drinking coconut juice straight out of the coconut, digging into the meat of crustaceans straight from the ocean, and just good food in general. And the 3 course meal on the first night did not disappoint, and it gave me a sense of what I was in for. I loved it!
Belly filled with food and drinks, I took a stroll back to my room. I sat outside listening to the ocean and spent the night trying to take in the fact I was in Mozambique!