One of the “Paris of Africa”
A Gustave Eiffel train station
Beautiful beaches on the Indian Ocean

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The flows of Portuguese colonials

When you disembark at Maputo on an MSC Cruise to Africa, you will find a lively port city where intense flavours of the continent are seasoned with a hint of Portugal. In the architecture and every-day life in Maputo, a strong influence of Portuguese colonization, which only came to an end in 1975, can still be felt.

While strolling through the city, such as the heart of the central and extremely busy Baixa neighbourhood – which has been defined by some as the Paris of Africa for its busy day and night life – you will encounter large Rationalist-style buildings. A short distance from Baixa, there is a marvellous railway station, designed in the beginning of the 20th century by Gustave Eiffel (yes, the one that is also responsible for the famous Paris tower), full of marble and wrought iron, decorated columns and beams.

It is decorated with clocks, enormous ceiling fans, azulejos tilework, carved wooden doors, wrought iron benches, large bells and two antique steam railway engines displayed on the tracks. To get your strength back, stop by the fashionable Kampfumo bistro. Avenida Samora Machel hosts the famous Casa do Ferro, a building constructed entirely of iron plates, designed by the same prolific French engineer for the city’s Portuguese governor.

A visit to one of the public markets during your stroll through the city cannot be avoided. The characteristically busy Mercado Central, with stalls heaving with exotic fruits and vegetables; Or, the incredible fish market, located slightly farther from the city centre in Caminho da Costa do Sol.

Come here mid-morning, when the fishmongers are yelling their offers for all to hear and the market is overflowing with fresh fish: an impressive array of seafood, including large crabs, sea snails and lobsters. Behind the market, there is a locale where the daily catch is cooked. The peri-peri shrimp, with their unique spicy aroma are a must-try. Finally, visit the FEIMA Curio Market, where you will find rarities and interesting artisan products. Lovers of relaxation, on the other hand, will have the chance to go on an off-roading excursion to the beautiful beaches on the Indian Ocean.

Must see places in Maputo

  • Eiffel train station

    Eiffel train station

  • FEIMA curio market

    FEIMA curio market

  • Portuguese Fort

    Portuguese Fort

Discover our excursions

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    Explore the capital of Mozambique. This tour covers some of the highlights this city has to offer. It includes the historical train station (whose roof top is designed by Gustaff Eiffel who also designed the Eiffel Tower) which was home to a movie set for the blockbuster "Blood Diamond” with Leonardo Di Caprio. You will also visit the Central Market (locally known as the Mercado) where locals and tourists flock to buy fresh produce. A good place to purchase cashew nuts! The stop at the Museum of the Natural History (entrance included) will allow you to see the country's rich cultural heritage, as well as having a glimpse of Mozambique's Fauna and Flora. Don't miss the museum's unique elephant embryo display. You will also visit the St Sebastian Fort, now a military museum containing many relics of Mozambique's colonial past. A stop is included at Independence Square where the brand new gigantic bronze statue of Samora Machel stands. Here you can also visit the Franco Mozambican Cultural centre and House of Steel.
    • Shooting videos and/or taking pictures is not allowed or subject to fee

    • Limited seats

    • May involve a limited quantity of steps, uneven surfaces and/or periods of standing

      Difficulty Level

    • Duration
      2:30 h

    • Adults$42.00Price per person

    • Children$35.00Price per person

  • Down Town walking Tour



    Down Town walking Tour
      • Duration
        1:30 h

      • Adults$25.00Price per person

      • Children$22.00Price per person

    The excursions in the program above are intended to provide MSC Guests with an idea of the different tours that can be arranged in each port of call; this program is merely a guide and confirmation of each excursion and its description and prices will be made during your cruise.
    Shore excursions programs and itineraries may vary depending on local conditions and/or any unforeseen events in relation to the timing on the day of the tour.


    Some excursions are very popular and therefore availability cannot always be guaranteed, it is advisable to book in advance to avoid disappointment. The guides are guaranteed in English. Only for South America cruises, the guides are guaranteed in Brazilian Portuguese. Narration in other languages depends on the availability of guides. Please note that the final language of the tour will be confirmed on board during the cruise.


    Indulging in the shade of a baobab
    Indulging in the shade of a baobab

    A holiday to Mozambique means getting to know an authentic part of Africa which also has a strong Portuguese influence.

    It is a land which can mutate in just a few kilometres, from its white sands with the coral reef of the Indian Ocean, to its plateaus and mountains which almost reach 3000 metres, or to the legendary Rift Valley, the cradle of the human race, which lies in the centre of the country.

    Here, the population is cheerful and hospitable. The territory is shared by colonial cities and villages made up of huts, baobab and mangrove forests, unspoilt archipelagos and great natural reserves. Historically belonging to the Portuguese, on a cruise to Mozambique you will be struck by the charm of its inhabited colonial towns with palaces, fortresses and churches which are a medley of African, Arab and Indian influences.

    What strikes those who arrive by sea, however, are its 3000 km of coastline, which include some of the Africa's most beautiful beaches. It is a picture of a typical tropical holiday: white sands, crystal clear waters and palm trees gently swaying in the breeze. There are also islands to explore, real gems like Bazaruto, Benguerra, Magaruque, Santa Carolina, or Inhaca. Places where divers and snorkelers alike will find plenty to do and see. The island’s marine life will make for some interesting excursions too with dolphins, humpback whales, dugongs (sea cows) and green and loggerhead sea turtles.

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