andBeyond Benguerra Island, Mozambique
Benguerra is the second largest island of the Bazaruto Archipelago. Characterised by its towering sand dunes, inland lakes and idyllic beaches, Benguerra was declared a National Park in 1971. It is home to over 140 bird species and the waters surrounding the archipelago are home to Africa’s last remaining population of the rare dugong. With one of the most pristine coral reefs in the world just offshore.
- Located on the tropical Benguerra Island
- Sparkling ocean on your doorstep
- Luxurious and chic cabanas
- Family casa available
- Spend your days on the sparkling ocean
- Sparkling swimming pool
- Al fresco dining
The climate of Benguerra Island is warm throughout the year, with a low chance of rain. The warmest months are December, January and February – with averages of 28°C, and highs of 31°C. While temperatures are hot, the humidity is high, and these are also the rainiest months of the year.
The average temperature during the rest of the year is between 26°C and 29°C, with a very small chance of rain. May to September is generally regarded as the best time to travel to Benguerra, for warm temperatures and clear skies.
Cabanas and Casinhas
The lodge has a range of luxurious thatched accommodations. Set amidst lush island forest, there are two cosy cabanas, ideal for couples or honeymooners, and the slightly larger 10 casinhas. The cabanas and casinhas all offer private timber decks, rim-flow pools offering incredible Ocean views, sun loungers and private salas, with irresistible hanging daybeds.Casa Familia
The perfect haven for families or small groups, the exclusive-use Casa Familia is an ideal option with three en-suite bedrooms, a large deck area and a private pool overlooking the beach. Casa Familia is tucked away in the island’s lush indigenous forest, looking out onto a picturesque crescent of sandy beach. Casa Familia offers families the opportunity to reconnect and make memories that they’ll forever cherish.
Featuring a main guest room with a lounge area and two interleading rooms on each side – families will also love splashing around in the private swimming pool set on a sheltered wooden veranda. The Casa Familia is situated on the edge of the main lodge and offers private views of the ocean and a long stretch of beach. The Villa comfortably sleeps 4 adults + 2 children, though facilities for a 3rd and 4th can be requested.
Dining at andBeyond Benguerra
The food at andBeyond Benguerra presents a wonderful Mozambique influence. The talented Chef uses the freshest of ingredients, preparing vibrant and delicious meals. The truly memorable cuisine will not disappoint, the chef and staff are both very accommodating of dietary requests. Guests will encounter and enjoy the best of South Africa’s beautiful fusion of classic and Mozambican styles.
Shaded gazebos provide the ideal venue for starlit dinners, while the elegant dining room and open lounge, both of which boast wide and sunny decks, are the setting for more social dining. Castaway Picnics can also be arranged, allowing guests to indulge in a decadent, private picnic on the silky, pristine white sands.
The lodge additionally hosts the Dreamy Dhow Bar, which provides guests with the ideal spot to treat themselves to an ice cold and sensational cocktail.
Dhow Cruise to Bazaruto Island
Hop aboard a traditional dhow, a wooden vessel with a triangular sail, used for fishing by the island’s locals. A welcoming local skipper will collect you from your casita or cabana in the late afternoon, embarking on an unforgettable cruise around the azure bay. Sail across calm waters under the glow of the setting African sun whilst being presented with the beauty of the Island and its surrounding waters.
You will experience the Island in a unique light, from the perspective of one of the island’s fishermen. The trip provides excellent photographic opportunities of the wide horizon, the calm waters and the glowing horizon. Guided by ocean breezes, drift across the soothing waters amid the golden ambience. Witness the cerulean sky rapidly change colour, embracing hues of rose and violet spread over an amber canvas.
Marvel at the illuminated water, dancing and shimmering, as it welcomes the sun’s descent beneath the distant horizon. The scene plays out beautifully and the ocean swallows the golden orb into its infinite depths. Travel back to the shore, accompanied by the quiet swoosh of the dhow’s sail, lost in the kaleidoscope of an African sunset.Horseback Safari
Join a troop of nine keen horses and a dedicated guide as you traverse the lush island, riding over whimsical trails and marked pathways and see the island through the eyes of a mighty steed. Horseback riding is a picture-perfect activity on which to take in the exceptional and unparalleled beauty of Benguerra Island. Revel in this exceptional perspective of this piece of paradise, at a pace that is comfortable and relaxing for every guest, depending on your varying ranges of skill.
Guides are well acquainted with the horses’ temperaments and are filled with knowledge about the island and its lustrous flora and fauna. They are more than willing to accommodate the whims of each rider and willingly allow advanced riders the freedom of galloping across the silky, alabaster sands, while those with less experience can delight in a more leisurely stroll.
The routes are not fixed, meaning guides can tailor-make rides to accommodate your preferences, endeavouring to highlight the treasures of the area, seamlessly incorporating miles of open beach, a dash of the lush inland bush and a tempting glimpse into the everyday happenings of local life on a paradise island. Rides often travel toward the Northern end of the island, taking in the rolling waves of the deep Indian Ocean and the vast vistas of neighbouring Bazaruto Island.Benguerra Island expedition
Benguerra Island is awash with soaring sand dunes that shimmer under the golden sun, illuminating freshwater lakes rivalling the ocean with its deep blue hues. This expedition allows guests to explore the azure waters and sand dunes on the Northern side of the island, stroll among the pews of the resident church, and interact with the native Mozambican people in their vibrant thatch and straw village. These Island expeditions are fully tailored and customised to accommodate your personal interests and preferences.
Enjoy a dip in the ocean and marvel at the towering Casuarina trees plunging into the shore. Guests will have the option to indulge in fresh, scrumptious fruit and vegetables from local farmers. Later, enjoy the streaks of pink and amber in the sky before savouring a delectable picnic spread, served al fresco on unblemished, satiny sand.
As part of the expedition, guests will encounter a fascinating excursion to the community centre, revealing a wonderful community initiative where women delve into their entrepreneurial creative spirit and create beautiful, beaded items, and men practice conservation initiatives.
Each drive is accompanied by a local guide with extensive knowledge of the island, its rich history and animated fauna and flora. Guides are dedicated to ensuring you are treated to an authentic local experience, teeming with culture and African flavour.
andBeyond's Impact Model
Since 1991, andBeyond’s company ethos has been “Care of the Land, Wildlife & People.” Always looking for ways to contribute to wildlife spaces and local communities and reduce their environmental impact, without compromising the guest experience. Each of their lodges has a “sustainability champion” who looks for ideas “to reduce energy consumption and carbon emissions, recycling initiatives, conservation awareness drives, water efficiency … addressing erosion and re-greening.” Exclusive experiences are created for guests whilst showing lasting benefits which are meaningful for the communities around their camps and the natural environment. Currently, andBeyond has 59 awards recognising their sustainability impact.Care of the Wildlife
andBeyond protects endangered land and marine species in the areas they operate and they focus on at least 3 endangered species in each area. In Botswana, they support the Rhinos Without Borders initiative which so far has translocated 87 rhinos from South Africa to Botswana to keep them safe from poachers. They also help maintain biodiversity by actively managing the wildlife populations in the areas they operate. To help care for the wildlife, andBeyond educates local communities in conservation, over 18,000 lessons on conservation have been taught.Care of the Land
andBeyond understands that to protect the land they operate on, they need to implement eco and sustainable initiatives. One of the aims is to reduce their direct carbon footprint by 8%, so far all of andBeyond’s lodges have been audited with an average sustainability score of 88%. Another way they are caring for the land is by resourcing and using their water sustainably, 96% of their lodges use water sourced from water bottling plants and they are currently 85 litres/head better than their target of 500 l/head. A target for andBeyond is zero plastic water bottles through their camps and so far 740,000 plastic water bottles have been eliminated per year.Care of the People
andBeyond maximises their “localised shared value opportunities through economic benefit, capacity building and social service infrastructure.” They have created 101 jobs in the communities they operate within, offering life-changing opportunities to local people. Through social service infrastructure initiatives, 56,000 people from local communities now have access to clean water through water access sites and 4724 Hippo Water Rollers, which assist in the transportation of water. 532 school students have been provided with an opportunity for higher education in 285 new or renovated classrooms.The Africa Foundation
andBeyond has partnered with The Africa Foundation, a non-profit organisation, in order to collaborate and consult with local communities, identifying the needs of the people and finding creative solutions to fulfil these needs. The main areas on which they focus are: education, healthcare and clean water, small business development, and environment and conservation.
“The appropriate training, skills and resources are provided by Africa Foundation or through partner organisations to ensure projects are not only effectively implemented but remain self-sustainable long after initiation. Over 26 years, Africa Foundation has made a clear and significant impact on the health, education and economic standing of the identified communities surrounding the wildlife reserves where andBeyond operates.”
The Africa Foundation’s Community Leaders Education Fund (CLEF) bursary programme has created opportunities for youth by providing access to education. One of the biggest setbacks that young people in Africa face in terms of receiving an education is being able to afford it. This issue is particularly prevalent in rural communities. The Africa Foundation has provided bursaries for 475 CLEF students over the last 26 years, giving all of them access to education that will allow these youth to unlock a career.
The Africa Foundation also funded the Mbhedula craft market in 1997, where tourists can purchase locally-made crafts in Mduku. The Mbhedula craft market allows women in rural communities to source their own income and support their families. People living with disabilities are also able to find work here, giving them the opportunity to work and provide for themselves.
Additionally, the market allows Mduku women to sell their products locally rather than having to travel up to 300km away to Durban and be forced to sleep on the streets. As well as funding the construction of the market, the Africa Foundation also invested in street signs and improving the visibility of the craft market, bringing in more trade and supporting the people who work there.Rhinos Without Borders
andBeyond has 23,763 hectares of conservation land under their care, meaning that all of this land, and the nature that inhabits it, is protected. andBeyond is also working with Great Plains Conservation for their collaborative project, Rhinos Without Borders. On average, one rhino is killed every eight hours by poachers who are seeking rhino horns. To help combat this, Rhinos Without Borders relocate rhinos from high-risk poaching areas in South Africa to Botswana’s wilderness areas. At present, Rhinos Without Borders has been able to translocate 93 rhinos, who as a result will be far safer from poachers.Oceans Without Borders
andBeyond recognises the threat posed to the world’s oceans and marine resources. Efforts to combat the peril of ocean degradation have inspired a partnership with a fellow bastion of ecological awareness, Africa Foundation. In addition to the over 3.6 million hectares (9 million acres) of protected wildlife sustained through the Care of the Wild initiative, andBeyond’s footprint now covers an additional 2000 km (1242 mi.) of African coastline, striving to conserve and enlarge Marine Protected Areas (MPAs).
andBeyond seek to apply their trilogy philosophy to their marine operations in order to better care for/impart a positive ecological effect on the areas of the ocean under their jurisdiction. This philosophy comprises Protecting Reefs, Protecting Marine Species and Community Empowerment, which have thus far, through the facilitation of partnerships with like-minded institutions, has proven initial levels of success and sets optimistic targets for future projects.
In 2018, a solar photovoltaic (PV) plant and a Tesla Powerpack Battery-Energy Storage System (BESS) were installed at Nxabega Okavango Tented Camp. Generator time has been dramatically reduced, with 80% of Nxabega’s total energy consumption now supplied by this ‘green’ technology. Eco-friendly alternatives such as this facilitate a lesser dependence on environmentally detrimental energy sources such as those requiring conventional fossil fuels, resulting in a profoundly positive impact on the ecosystems, wildlife and landscapes in which these lodges are situated.Reducing Consumption of Plastic Water Bottles
Recognising the profoundly negative ecological effects that plastics pose to the environmental welfare of the sensitive ecosystems of Southern Africa, andBeyond has implemented ambitious measures prohibiting the use and importation of plastic bottles to all its properties – derived from the original target of installing water bottling plants at 100% of their lodges. A target of reducing plastic water bottle usage by 90% was set for 2020, yet this figure was surpassed the year prior with a collective reduction of up to 99% spanning all andBeyond properties.
In Southern Africa, all lodges utilise glass water bottles as opposed to plastic, reaping the many ecological and environmental benefits inherent to the change. Glass is 100% recyclable and has an unlimited recyclable life span, making it the most sustainable, if not logical alternative, posing an inherently smaller carbon footprint and environmental impact.Building for Efficiency
In line with andBeyond’s stance on ecological sustainability and streamlined efficiency mandate, there currently exists a wealth of initiatives and protocols designed to mediate the ecological impact on areas built upon and utilised for means of ecotourism. For instance, careful site selection ensures that the areas chosen for the construction of all andBeyond properties are compatible with the surrounding landscapes, ecosystems and wildlife.
The implementation of repurposed and recycled construction materials greatly benefits the ecology of the land, negating the need to source and haul industrial quantities of lumber and other construction materials across vast distances through otherwise undisturbed ecosystems. Minimal foundations and excavations are achieved using steel frame structures atop the designated areas of construction, minimising the imprint on the immediate environment.
Energy efficiency is maintained through the architectural use of very wide eaves, covered external terraces, cross ventilation and maximised insulation. Heat pumps have been used to heat the pools, with gas used for water heating to greatly reduce the carbon footprint. State-of-the-art wastewater and sewer treatment systems enable all wastewater to be effectively recycled for irrigation.Effective Water Management
Above-ground wastewater treatment plants work on an environmentally friendly accelerated aerobic and anaerobic digestion process. Up to 57% of all andBeyond lodges now contain water treatment plants. Additionally, an ever-increasing number of andBeyond lodges have seen the installation of Hydro Loop grey-water treatment systems, used to purify wastewater for gardens, irrigation and cleaning solar panel banks.
At andBeyond Phinda Mountain Lodge, more accurate water measurement systems have been implemented to trial more efficient water management practices that hold the potential for wide-scale implementation across all andBeyond ecotourism destinations.
Innovative water management initiatives are being rolled out across a variety of andBeyond properties. This is achieved through identifying the locations that would best benefit from these cutting-edge installations and trialling solutions to assess viability for future rollouts in equally affected areas. andBeyond Ngorongoro Crater Lodge is currently testing an above-ground wastewater treatment system which will utilise laundry water to wash safari vehicles and flush staff toilets, saving 160,000 l (42,267 gallons) of water monthly.
Children of all ages are welcomed to stay at andBeyond Benguerra Island.
Children visiting the lodge can take advantage of the fun-filled and interactive WILDChild Programme that offers various activities such as treasure hunts, building sand castles, baking in the lodge kitchen with the chef, an array of beach games, snorkelling in the lodge pool, hand-line fishing from a dhow or the beach, horse-riding, kayaking and stand-up paddle boarding.
This trip will run late 2021/2022.
- Return transfer flights from O.R Tambo International Airport to Vilanculos International Airport
- Helicopter transfer between Vilanculos International Airport and Benguerra Island
- Full board meal inclusions
- Drinks – soft, house wines, local beer and spirits, tea and coffee (luxury and premium brands are at additional cost)
- Park fees
- Laundry facilities
- Emergency medical evacuation insurance
- Administration fee
- Activities – Scuba diving (max two dives per day and full PADI certification required), horse riding, sea kayaking, dhow cruise at sunset, snorkelling, castaway picnic, island exploration and tour of the local village (all activities listed are subject to tidal conditions and are weather dependant).
- Accommodation – A Casinha (small hut) with and en-suite and outdoor shower
- International inbound and outbound flights to O.R Tambo International Airport
- Additional transport requirements outside of the included transfer flights
- Visa costs
- Travel Insurance
- Health Insurance
Connection flight O.R Tambo International Airport to Vilanculos International Airport where an andBeyond representative will meet and assist you to the helicopter bound for Benguerra Island.
This five-day getaway is the perfect experience for couples seeking relaxation alongside an African adventure. The romantic setting of Benguerra Island and the shorter duration of this trip also makes this ideal for honeymooners touring the southern countries of Africa. Most activities included cater for all skill levels, from complete beginners to more experienced guests, making this trip ideal for all travellers.
Suitable for ages 4 to 65