I’ve been on the bicicleta tour, whale-watching trip and 3-fortaleza kayaking tour of the island – all absolutely amazing and led with great professionalism by local guides.
The bicicleta tour was a great way to explore the island, to see parts of it, such as the interior of the macuti town and the slavery memorial garden, that I might otherwise have missed, and have the history explained by our local guide (in Portuguese, but I believe he also speaks English well). The whale watching trip was out of this world – beautiful humpback whales leaping from the waves, sometimes just a few metres from the dhow (my one concern would be that us being so close to the whales might disturb them?), followed by snorkelling in the clear waters over a coral reef, and a picnic lunch on a little sandy island. The crew were really friendly and helpful, and seemed just as excited as we were every time a whale jumped out of the water!
And last but not least, the kayaking trip gave yet another perspective of the island: paddling through the shallows and chatting to local women as they waded out to collect shellfish; glimpsing bright starfish and dark sea urchins on the sea floor; seeing the warehouses from the angle they were built for; climbing up onto the craggy tidal island of the Fortaleza de São Lourenço, still littered with Portuguese cannons; watching a boatfull of fishermen hauling their nets in; seeing absolutely incredible, colourful fish as we snorkelled in the coral reefs, including a younger reef that has grown on the hull of an abandoned ship; and having another picnic in a little cove beside the Fortaleza de São Sebastião. My arms were exhausted by the end but it was definitely worth it!
Thank you Gail, Pete and the team for designing these tours with such imagination, and delivering them with such friendliness – hope to be back soon 🙂
Katharine H – Nampula, Mozambique