Vilanculos, 435 mi/700 km northeast of Maputo, is the jumping-off point for travelers bound for the Bazaruto Archipelago (separated from the mainland town by a narrow channel) by dhow or helicopter. Visitors may spend at least a day in the town waiting for the right winds to the islands or for the bus that heads south toward Maputo or north to Beira. It's a relaxing town with a curious old Portuguese hotel, recently restored, that makes the wait pleasurable, and there's a modern airport.

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