Getting from Livingstone to Benguerra Island seemed complicated, but to my surprise and delight, it was a rather seamless experience. We had flown to Joburg several days earlier and holed ourselves up in an apart-hotel to smash out as much work as possible. From Joburg we would need to fly to Nelspruit Airport – which services Kruger National Park – and connect to an international flight bound for Vilanculos.
Once we had arrived in Vilanculos we would need to obtain arrival visas and transfer to a helicopter which would finally bring us to the beautiful Mozambican beaches that I had heard so much about.
This last leg was by far the part of the journey that I was most excited about. I had never been in a helicopter before, and it would be a completely new experience for me!
After a surprisingly quick and efficient transfer, we were buckled in, given headphones and in just a few minutes, the mainland had disappeared and was replaced with some unbelievably stunning views of the archipelago below.
I absolutely adore how small the boat looks in these next few shots, and how well it stands out against the azure ocean beneath.
What seemed like an endless expanse of sandbars and sea stretched out before us, but all too soon we had begun our descent, and within less than a minute, the ocean had completely disappeared from view!
We were greeted at the helipad by an Azura representative who guided us to the reception area, checked us in and introduced us to Bela, who would be our point of call for anything we would need during our stay. After some welcome drinks and a quick tour of the common areas, it was time to go and check out our home for the next few days.
Azura Benguerra is home to 20 villas, ranging from the entry level ‘Beach Villa’ right up to the uber luxurious ‘Presidential Villa’.
I had been expecting that our stay would be in one of the beach villas – so imagine how delighted I was to discover that we would be staying in one of the most luxurious villas in the resort?
Arriving at our ‘Royal Beach Villa’ was utterly magical.
The master bedroom is dominated by a king sized bed and complemented by thatched roofing, wooden furnishings and small pops of aqua and turqouise, much like the colour of the ocean! This bed also faces two huge sliding doors, which when opened, allow you to see, smell and hear the ocean from the comfort of your enormous bed.
Ordinarily I would have explored the entire villa before settling in, but upon finding a bottle of welcome bubbles, I just couldn’t help but to crack it open!
After a glass (or three) I began to explore the remainder of the villa, whilst my Dan took a dip in the pool. It was around this time that I noticed the wind starting to pick up and the sky turning a dark grey colour, but at the time I didn’t pay it any mind.
My first stop in the villa was the indoor shower. I loved the open plan layout of the bathroom, and despite there being two other outdoor showers (three seperate shower areas for a two person villa – that’s luxury!) this one was definitely my favourite. I absolutely adore a good outdoor shower, so that is definitely saying something.
The adjacent dressing/powder room is also suitably beautiful. In addition to all of the standard amenities there were also several different African Botanicals products to use (such as rosewater wipes and sleeping gel) which was a lovely touch.
As mentioned above, there are two outdoor showers. The first is a couples shower with two shower heads – making it perfect for rinsing off after a dip.
The second is a smaller offering designed for just one person. This shower is also surrounded by thousands of shells from the Benguerra beach, which is certainly a unique feature!
After I was done exploring our glorious villa, it was time to join my other half and enjoy our pool!
When I said that this pool was big enough to do laps in, I was not kidding in the slightest. It is one of the biggest pools that I’d ever seen in a private villa.
We finished the afternoon with a meal on the beach. Perfectly cooked and deliciously seasoned crab curry was on the menu, and as I filled my belly and downed the first (of many) glasses of sauvignon blanc, I felt deliriously happy and excited to be in Mozambique.
Our time in Mozambique didn’t end up going according to plan thanks to a rather unusual turn of the weather, but it still ended up being a wonderful adventure.
Getting to Vilanculos: This is one of the least well connected airports, you will need to get yourself to Johannesburg in order to arrive here
Getting to Benguerra: From Vilanculos the best option to travel to Benguerra is via helicopter transfer. These transfers are on the pricier side, but the unbelievable views they provide you make it well worth the money
Azura Benguerra: One night in a beach villa starts at $1390 USD for two persons including all meals and drinks. For more information about Azura Retreats, click here
Camera: Images captured with an Olympus OM-D E-M1 in conjunction with M.Zuiko 7-14mm f/2.8 and M.Zuiko 12-40mm f/2.8 lenses
Remember: Even a small storm can wreak havoc on an island. Bring books and other ways to keep yourself occupied on the odd chance that you become unable to get out onto the water