The Best Time To Visit Mozambique

Palm trees and sands of Pemba Beach in Mozambique
The dry season is the best time to visit Mozambique's coast

Seasons and Weather

Located in southern Africa, Mozambique experiences a similar weather pattern to its neighbouring countries. January to March sees the wet season, with high temperatures and humidity. Fortunately, rainfall tends to occur in brief but powerful downpours before the sun returns. The rain arrives on southeast trade winds, however as Mozambique lies in the rain shadow of Madagascar, the total annual rainfall is relatively low. During the months of January and February there is also the possibility of cyclones in southern Mozambique, therefore it advisable to avoid the Bazaruto Archipelago during this time.

From April to December, Mozambique experiences its dry season and slightly cooler temperatures. By far the best time to visit, this season brings clear skies and sun-drenched sands to the country’s stunning coastline. These months aren’t only great for beach lovers, but also for wildlife enthusiasts. During August and September, the bush thins out and wildlife is much more easily seen concentrated around rivers and waterholes. Humpback and Southern Right whales can also be spotted as they have migrated from Antarctica to Mozambique’s warmer waters.

Despite its two seasons, Mozambique boasts a warm tropical climate and temperatures vary relatively little over the year. Rarely dipping below the high 20s, its easy to see why Mozambique is one of the top beach destinations in Africa.

Climate | Maputo

Temp Min °C232322201714141517192122
Temp Max °C313131292826262728282930
Rainfall (mm)120120904030202020304011070

Climate | Bazaruto Archipelago

Temp Min °C242322201815151618202324
Temp Max °C313131292725252627282930
Rainfall (mm)15016080423525182484058138
The national flag of Mozambique

Festivals and Events

Several festivals take place each year in Mozambique. Bringing together music, dance, art and local culture, here's a few of the best.

AZGO Festival

Held over three days in May, this annual festival brings music, documentaries and workshops to Maputo. With ‘Azgo’ being old slang for ‘let’s go’, this festival celebrates arts and culture, with a focus on artists from Mozambique and across the African continent. There are also craft and fashion shows - all taking place against a background of street food and drink stalls.

STRAB Festival

The Subterranean Rhythm and Blues Festival kicks off every May in Ponta Malongane. Starting off as a live show for a birthday party, it now features 20 live bands with people travelling from far and wide to attend. The festival’s philosophy promotes love, respect and harmony, and there’s a great beach party to start the celebrations.

CHOPI Music Festival

There’s no better event to discover Mozambique's culture than the CHOPI Music Festival. Held from July into August in the province of Inhambane, this festival was created to help preserve the area’s musical heritage. Traditional instruments such as the mbila, a handmade xylophone unique to the region, as well as drums, animal horns and rattles are all played.

Independence Day

Celebrated on June 25th, Independence Day festivities are biggest in Maputo. The city’s stadium sees traditional dancing and live performances from many of Mozambique’s most famous bands. There's also various cultural events involving visual arts and traditional poetry. The President has even been known to attend and the celebrations go on all night.

TAMBO International Art Camp and Festival

Hosted in the city of Pemba, this festival runs for seven days in July each year. Celebrating cultural diversity through performing arts, the event features music, dance, theatre and art exhibitions. Whilst the majority of performers are local, international artists do feature. Visitors also have the chance to take part in workshops given by traditional craftsmen, women and international artists.

2018 Calendar

To help you plan your trip to Mozambique, here's an overview of the festivals and events taking place in 2018:

May 19th - AZGO Festival (Maputo)
May 24th-27th - STRAB Festival (Ponta Malongane)
June 25th - Independence Day (Maputo)

There's also a number of national holidays in Mozambique and on these dates many businesses and some tourist sites will close for the day so plan your visit accordingly.

See Also

Take a read of the following useful resources to help plan your visit to Mozambique:

Best Places to Visit - destinations in Mozambique not to be missed
Tourist Visas - what you need to know before you travel
Top Travel Tips - information about money, food and shopping