With a population of nearly 1.8 million, Maputa is both the largest city and the capital of south-east African Mozambique. Until the country's independence from Portugal in 1975 it was called Lourenço Marques, and its history goes back to the 16th century when Portuguese navigators first started exploring the area. Situated at the mouth of the Santo River, Swaziland lies about 50km westwards, while the border with South Africa lies about 100km to the south. Maputo is home to the largest harbor in Mozambique.
Although we would really like to, depending on where in the city you are roaming about it can be really hard to describe Maputo as "attractive". Certainly it has the colonial architecture (the Railway Station, for instance), has wide avenues lined with jacaranda trees, lush green parks, and its beaches are in some places nearly deserving of the label "spectacular". Yet other (or, well, most) parts of the city are filled with generic Soviet-esque concrete boxes that are in less than perfect state, huge billboards, bad traffic, etcetera.
But though not exactly attractive all around, Maputo is certainly a pleasant city. Explore one of the lively and colorful markets (for instance the Xipamine Market on Saturdays, or Mercado Central where you will find anything from fish, fruit, meat, spices to household appliances), or check out some of the bustling cafés where locals sip on coffee and talk for hours, and you will understand what we mean. [Review by travelindicator]
- Maputo is a city in Mozambique. It has a population of 1,766,184, is situated at an altitude of 233ft and the best airport to fly into is MPM (Maputo International, Maputo)
- The currency used in Mozambique is the Mozambican metical (MZN)
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