Xai Xai Accommodation
Xai Xai (pronounced 'shai shai') is a town in the south of Mozambique. It also happens to be the capital of the Gaza province. It was developed in the early 1900's when Mozambique was still a Portuguese colony, as a second port to the busy, economic hub of Maputo. It was known as Joćo Belo until Mozambique became independent in 1975. The small city was never as economically powerful as Maputo, but did develop a pretty strong name for itself as a port, agricultural and industrial centre.
These days it is still a bustling little place and tourists are often delighted and intrigued by the sense of Mozambican life they seem to get from the place. Some of the notable features are a large market selling anything you can imagine and an open-air furniture factory operating under a cluster of cashew trees.
Xai Xai lies on a flat, wide, fertile plain where rice is the agricultural produce of choice. It lies on the Limpopo River (and suffered greatly after the massive floods of the year 2000) about 200 kilometres from Maputo, the country's capital. A much closer point of interest though is the Praia do Xai Xai, or Xai Xai beach, 12 kilometres from the town.
The beach is a revered tourist spot not least because of its fluffy white sand contrasting with the turquoise blue Indian Ocean. The beach's major draw card is a coral reef running parallel to the beach, which not only offers a great opportunity for snorkelling, but protects the beach from big waves, making swimming there very pleasant and safe.
Two kilometres from the town is the Wenela Tidal Pool, with its natural tunnel and blow hole connecting it to the sea.
Xai Xai is a great place to visit and extremely accessible from South Africa by road.
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