Orientation

Maputo sits on a low escarpment overlooking Maputo Bay, with the long avenues of its upper-lying residential sections spilling down into the baixa (the lower-lying area near the port).

Some accommodation and many businesses, plus the train station, banks and the post office, are in the baixa, on or near Avenida 25 de Setembro, while embassies and most better hotels are in the city’s upper section, especially in and around the Sommerschield diplomatic and residential quarter. Maputo’s tallest building and a good landmark is known as ‘trinta e trés andares’ – the 33 Storey Building, now called Mcel – in the baixa at Avenida 25 de Setembro and Rua da Imprensa. The seaside Avenida Marginal is lined with several hotels and restaurants. At its northernmost end, about 7km from the centre, is Bairro Triunfo and the Costa do Sol area, with a small beach and a restaurant.

About 10km west of Maputo is the large suburb of Matola, home to many industries and new developments.