When to visit Mozambique

Climate

The coastal regions of Mozambique are best visited in the dry winter months of May through to October, when daytime temperatures are generally around 20–25°C.

There is no major obstacle to visiting Mozambique during the summer months of November to April, except that climatic conditions are oppressively hot and humid at this time of year, especially along the north coast. Because most of the country’s rain falls during the summer months, there is also an increased risk of contracting malaria and of dirt roads being washed out.

Public holidays and festivals

Unless you are a South African with children at school, it is emphatically worth avoiding the south coast of Mozambique during South African school holidays, when campsites as far north as Vilankulo tend to be very crowded and hotels are often fully booked.

The exact dates of South African school holidays vary slightly on a provincial basis, but the main ones to avoid are those for Gauteng (the province that includes Johannesburg, South Africa’s most populous city and only a day’s drive from Maputo).

To give a rough idea of the periods to avoid, there are four annual school holidays in Gauteng: a three-week holiday that starts in the last week of March and ends in the middle of April, a month-long holiday running from late June to late July, a two-week holiday starting in late September, and a six-week holiday from early December to mid-January. If you do visit southern Mozambique during school holidays, then you should make reservations for all the hotels and campsites at which you plan to stay.

In addition to the fixed public holidays listed below, Good Friday and Easter Monday are recognised as public holidays in Mozambique. Other Islamic and Christian religious holidays are widely observed as well. Many of these days will be marked by heavily orchestrated public demonstrations and marches.

There are also marked commemorative days and, in addition, most larger cities have their own public holiday; Maputo’s is on 10 November.

  • 1 January – New Year’s Day
  • 3 February – Heroes’ Day
  • 7 April – Women’s Day
  • 1 May – Labour Day
  • 25 June – National Day (Independence Day)
  • 7 September – Lusaka Accord Day
  • 25 September – Armed Forces Day
  • 4 October – Peace and National Reconciliation Day (end of Civil War)
  • 25 December – Family Day
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