Far away from the coast and to west one finds the province of Manica, an enticing tourist destination home to rock paintings of Chinhamapere, the conservation areas of Chimanimani, the Penhalonga mountains alongside the Zimbabwean border with its ecological trails.
Manica is situated in the central interior area of the country. To the North is the Province of Tete, to the South, the Provinces of Inhambane and Gaza, to the East the Province of Sofala and to the West, Zimbabwe.
The Province of Manica is one of the highest in country and the source of many of the rivers that flow east towards the Indian Ocean.
The mountain water is pure and light, in particular the waters of Mountain Vumba, bottled and distributed throughout most of the country.
The capital is Chimoio, an important economic centre of the Province.
Vila Manica, benefitting greatly from frontier commerce, is the second largest urban centre.
The main ethnic groups are the Shonas, the Senas and the Ndau.
Points of note about the Province
• Essentially an agricultural province with a good plateau climate.
• Producer of a vast diversity of fruits and horticultural produce.
• Inland tourism but with access to beaches at Beira.
What to visit
In Chimoio, the mural in Praça dos Heróis is a testimony to independence. The Mosque is worthy of a visit as is also the Provincial Library, housed in a typical colonial era building.
In Vila Manica, after passing through the charming historic gates, is the Geology Museum installed in a beautiful colonial era house and where on show is a varied and rare collection of the minerals and rocks to be found in this region.
Near Vila Manica, is the fort of Macequece, built by the Portuguese to strengthen their hold on the land.
About 5 Km from Chimoio, is “cabeça do velho”, (the old man’s head), an incredible natural stone formation resembling profile of an old man’s face.
A little further on, about 50 Km from Chimoio, in Revué is the Chicamba Real Dam, and about one Km higher up is a belvedere providing a magnificent view over the lake. Photography lovers can find numerous species of exotic and rare birds in this region.
Chinhamapere is a sacred place for the local inhabitants. Here the paintings engraved on rocks testify to the presence of the ancient people who once lived here.
Superfície 23.576 Km2
Ponta do Ouro is situated 116 km away from the city’s capital and has magnificent and pristine beaches with fine white sands.
Inhaca Island, 34 km away from the capital, is a biological reserve with magnificent multicoloured coral reefs, diversity of birds, plains, lagoons and in numerable sand dunes.
What to visit
In the City of Maputo:
• Ilha Inhaca, 15 minutes from Maputo by air, or 3 hours by boat boasts magnificent coral reefs and the interesting Marine Biology Museum.
• The “Pequenos Libombo” Dam, built on the River Umbelúzi.
• The Maputo Reserve, south of the city, on the way to Ponto de Ouro, is famous for its elephant herds and the bands of flamingos to be seen on the lakes that have formed near the coast.
• In Namaacha there is a magnificent waterfall.
• Macaneta Beach in Marracuene distrit.
• Matola Town and its surrounding
• The Casa do Ferro (House of Iron) ,transported to Maputo from the Universal Exhibition of Paris;
• The botanical gardens of Tunduru on Av. Samora Machel with its doorway built in the Manueline style;
• The Fort of Nª Senhora da Conceição situated in Praça 25 de Junho (June 25th Square) which has been turned into a military museum;
• The Central Market, known as “Bazar da Baixa”, built in 1901, supplies fresh fruit, vegetables and herbs and a wide variety of handicraft can be purchased there;
• The Catholic Cathedral situated in Praça da Independência and facing the botanical gardens of Tunduru;
• The Mosque, built at the beginning of the XX century;
• The “Yellow House” in Praça 25 de Junho was the seat of the first Colonial Government. Today it is the Money Museum;
• The Natural History Museum, a gothic style building in Praça Travessia de Zambezi, displays many of the animal species natural to Mozambique and a collection, considered unique in the world, of elephant fetuses showing the different months of gestation;
• The National Art Museum on Av.Ho Chi Min;
• The National Geology Museum on Av.24 Julho;
• The Museum of the Revolution Av.24 Julho;
• The Money Museum, on Rua Consiglieri Pedroso