South of the Zambezi River

Beira, Savanne, Gorongosa & Chimoio, Central Mozambique

The area south of the Zambezi River forms a natural corridor route from the Mozambique coast to neighbouring Zimbabwe in the west. The Sofala Province on the east coast is named after the ancient port of Sofala which has since been replaced by the modern city of Beira, Mozambique's second largest city. The Sofala Province is also home to Gorongosa National Park and Gorongosa mountain, a must see for nature lovers with their own transport, and the Marromeu Buffalo Reserve. In the west the province of Manica borders with Zimbabwe, many of Mozambiques rivers originate in the Chimanimani mountains and Phenhalonga hills of this province.


Beira is Mozambique's second largest city and was built north of the ancient town of Sofala, once one of the most important ports in Africa. While the old Sofala port has been largely reclaimed by the ocean, Beira is built on land which as once swamps below sea level. The first buildings of Beira were built from zinc, giving rise to the name "Zinc City" by which it was known for many years. The catherdral is constructed from the imported portuguese stone used to build the fort of San Caetano in Sofala and rescued before being overtaken by the sea, San Caatano was the first Portuguese fort in Mozambique. A short future was predicted for Beira city when first it was built for military purposes during the colonial period, however the development of the port and railways to Zimbabwe and Malawi have placed the city of Beira firmly on the map.

Many business people fly to the international airport at Beira, however there is little reason for tourists to visit. More attractive than the city is the laid back holiday resort Rio Savanne 40km north of Beira on a gravel road situated between the mouth of the river Savane and the Indian Ocean. You will need to take a boat accross the river to the resort.

    Things to do & see in Beira:
  • Visit the catherdral
  • Have a meal at Biques, situated on Makuti beach (take extra care if walking along the beach)
  • Take a day trip to Savane
  • Visit any exhibitions at "Casa dos Bicos"
  • Buy local handicrafts from the shops in the old part of the city