An Ilha das Cobras experience

Having seen a report on the trip out to Ilha das Cobras, we decided to give it a try, not quite knowing what to expect. Well, the experience was unlike anything we had done before. From meeting Gail and Pete the day before, to arriving back safely the day after, we were entranced with the whole experience.

The trip over by dhow was unusual in that there was no wind so we paddled across, paddling done mainly by a very cheerful crew, but also aided and abetted by ourselves. We had plenty of time to enjoy the views of the slowly receding Ilha de Mozambique, Goa Island and the slowly approaching Ilha das Cobras. The tide was higher than it should have been due to the length of the crossing, so the landing was interesting, but accomplished with no problems.

The trip to the lagoon with its mangroves was  “otherworldly” with the clear water, the shaded areas between the mangrove roots, the birds and the quietness with just the sound of the sea in the background. Then back to a neatly set up camp and a cold drink in the moonlight after the sunset! We had the best dinner of our entire 9 day Moz trip on the small beach, cooked by Ayuba and his crew – marlin done with the perfect amount of lemon, wonderfully crispy and served with coconut rice and salad. Our tent roof was see-through so when we woke during the night the full moon was always visible as it moved across the sky above us.

After breakfast the next morning we had time to swim, snorkel and visit the lagoon again, before boarding the dhow at about midday, and sailing back with just exactly the right amount of wind. We could not fault the organisation or the friendliness of Gail, Pete and the crew and a big thanks goes to all for making our last days in Moz so different and so much fun.

Bev and Hedley Gerhardt – Johannesburg, South Africa

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