The gateway to the north, Pemba sprawls across a small peninsula that juts into the enormous and magnificent Pemba Bay, one of the world’s largest natural harbours. Established in 1904 as administrative headquarters for the Niassa Company, Pemba was known for much of its early life as Porto Amelia. Today it’s the capital of Cabo Delgado province and a city of three distinct parts. The mildewed baixa (old town) area is home to the low-lying port, the old town and the poor but lively township of Paquitequete. Steeply uphill from here, the busier and less atmospheric town centre is the place to get things done, with banks and offices, a few restaurants, and the main bus stand. About 5km east of the town centre is Wimbi (also spelled Wimbe) Beach, the hub of tourist activity and the favoured destination of most visitors.
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