Established in 2009, with an extension of 678 km2, the Ponta do Ouro Partial Marine Reserve is located in the southernmost part of the country, along the Mozambique Channel and close to the South African border. Its natural landscape comprises beautiful beaches with coral reefs, sea grass beds, estuaries and stunning mangrove forests. From the sands, you can observe dolphins and whales emerging on the clear water surface. The turtles also offer a beautiful spectacle of nature, nesting during the hot season, along the Reserve’s coastline. The beaches attract tourists from several nationalities who enjoy the beauty and the emotions this paradise has to offer.
PARTIAL MARINE RESERVE OF
Ponta do Ouro
Coming from South Africa, the best route to Ponta do Ouro is from the Kosy Bay border. The border is 673 km away from Johannesburg, 498 km from Durban and it is open every day, from 08h00 to 17h00. To reach the accommodation locations, a 4×4 vehicle is advised to drive in the sandy roads that surround the reserve. The Kosy Bay border has rent-a-car services and a parking lot in which you can park your vehicle for a daily charge.
The journey between Johannesburg and the Kosy Bay border is estimated to take 7 to 8 hours, depending on the road conditions. When scheduling, plan your arrival at the border for a few hours before closing time.
BY LAND / SEA
Coming from the Ressano Garcia border, follow the EN4 until Shoprite and then take a right turn into EN2 to Boane. After that, drive towards Ponta do Ouro for about 170 km. Alternatively, from Maputo, cross the bay via ferryboat to Katembe. The ferryboat departs every hour and transports both vehicles and passengers. From Katembe to Ponta do Ouro, drive for about 110 km in a dirt road. A 4×4 vehicle is recommended. Enjoy the landscape of the Maputo Special Reserve and the animals that cross the fields and the road in the zone between Salamanga and Zitundo. When you arrive at Ponta do Ouro, relax and take your first dive!
The distance between Maputo and Ponta do Ouro is estimated to take around 3 hours via Katembe and 4 hours via Boane.
In Mozambique, there isn’t a cold season equivalent in temperatures to the northern hemisphere’s winter. Therefore, any time of the year is adequate to visit the Park. The hottest season is between November and April, with temperatures ranging from 22 to 35ºC.
In the Reserve’s heavenly beaches allow yourself to practice activities like snorkelling, scuba diving, boat rides, surf, kitesurf, canoeing and hikes. The accommodation locations in Ponta do Ouro also offer individual or group leisure activities.
There are several accommodation options,such as the Devocean Resorts, Coco RicoResort, Ponta Gamboozini Lodge, Kaya Kweru,Lar do Ouro Guest Lodge, Planet Scuba,The Waves Lodge and the Motel do Mar.You can find more lodging options in otherbeaches in the Reserve, such as in PontaMalongane, Ponta Mamoli, Techobanine,Ponta Chemucane, Santa Maria, Inhaca Islandor Portugueses Island.
The Reserve has excellent beaches, snorkelling and scuba diving allow you to swim alongside whale sharks and dolphins, as wellas discovering the textures and liveliness of the colours of the coralreefs. The nesting of two species of sea turtles, the loggerhead andthe leatherback sea turtles, which normally occur between Octoberand February, is a stunning natural phenomenon, not to be missed.
Take the chance to observe several emblematic marine species, like dolphins, whales, sharks (including the whale shark), rays, coral fishes and sea turtles.
The Reserve is part of the first and only African Marine Transfrontier Conservation Area, named Ponta do Ouro-Kosy Bay and also the Libombos Transfrontier Conservation Area, involving Mozambique, South Africa and Swaziland. It possesses a scenic splendor with a diversity of habitats of exceptional beauty and a great variety of land and marine fauna and flora species, some of which are endemic. It has a flat coast, forming vast sandy beaches, intertwined with small rocky edges and wide parabolic dunes covered in vegetation. For this reason, it was proposed to UNESCO its designation as World Heritage.