Maputo City
Official language:
Time zone:
Dialing code:
+258 - 21
Moz. metical (MT) (MZN)
Maputo, known as Lourenço Marques before independence, is the capital and largest city of Mozambique. It is known as the City of Acacias, in reference to acacia trees commonly found along its avenues, and the Pearl of the Indian Ocean. Today, it is a port city on the Indian Ocean, with its economy centered on the harbour. According to the 2007 census, the population is 1,766,184. Cotton, sugar, chromite, sisal, copra, and hardwood are the chief exports. The city manufactures cement, pottery, furniture, shoes, and rubber. The city is surrounded by Maputo Province, but is administered as its own province.
During its five centuries of Portuguese colonialization, the city has gained several examples of Portuguese architecture. Most of the note-worthy buildings are former colonial administrative buildings or current government buildings. The city's landmarks include: Fortress of Maputo, Central Railway Station (CFM), Municipal Council of Maputo, Cathedral of Maputo, The Museum of Natural History, Vila Algarve - The former location of Portuguese Secret Police (PIDE), Hotel Polana, Tunduru Gardens.
The city does not yet have a very expansive list of parks and other recreational areas. However, at the center of the city lies the Jardim Tunduru (Tunduru Gardens) which was formerly called the Jardim de Vasco Da Gama. It was designed in the 1880s by a British architect, Thomas Honney. The entrance of the park is designed in the Neo-Manueline style. After independence, the name was changed to the current one and a statue of the country's first president was erected.
Part of the description above is taken from the Wikipedia article Maputo with patent CC-BY-SA. The full list of those who have contributed to the drafting of the article is available here.