Ponta do Ouro

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Ponta do Ouro

Ponta do Ouro (also Ponta d'Ouro in English meaning "tip of gold", in reference to an existing cape at the southern part of the beach) is a town in the extreme south of Mozambique, lying on the Mozambique Channel south of Maputo and just north of the border with South Africa. It is known for its beach, for its dolphins and for its offshore diving and deep-sea fishing. From other points in Mozambique, Ponta do Ouro can only be reached by a 4x4 vehicle as there are no tarred roads.

The currency is the Metical, but the South African Rand and the US Dollar are also accepted. Shopping is very limited in Ponta. There is a petrol station, bank, pharmacy, hardware stores, bottle stores and other small shops in town. Fresh bread can be purchased at the local market. Basic food items like vegetables, fruits can be purchased at this market. No luxurious items are available anywhere in Ponta do Ouro. Holiday accommodation is readily available. There are 3 to 4 modern and comfortable resorts in Ponta on the beachfront and surrounding areas. Other resorts date from pre-war and although quite primitive with limited facilities are very popular with tourists due to reasonable pricing and excellent location on the beachfront. It is commonly referred to as 'Ponta' by visiting South Africans.

Ponta do Ouro is about 15 km away from the South African border and about 130 km South of Maputo. Due to the lack of tar roads between Maputo and Ponta, reaching Ponta from Maputo takes about 3–4 hours and a 4x4 vehicle, mainly due to the 20–30 km closer to Ponta, since most of this segment of the road is made up of soft sand tracks, sometimes confusing due to the many parallel paths and the lack of direction signs. Nevertheless, reaching Ponta from Maputo is easy in the dry season, since most of the sand tracks merge near Ponta, there is always some traffic and to find help if required is not difficult. There is a project planned to build a full tar road between Ponta and Maputo, starting with a huge bridge crossing the Maputo bay.

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Coordinates: 26°50′56″S 32°53′17″E / 26.849°S 32.888°E / -26.849; 32.888