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Mozambique Geography
 
 
 

General

Located on the southeastern coast of Africa, opposite the island of Madagascar, Mozambique, formerly known as Portuguese East Africa, has an area of 801,590 sq km (309,496 sq mi), of which land constitutes 784,090 km² (302,738 mi²) and inland water 17,500 km² (6,757 mi²). Comparatively, the area occupied by Mozambique is slightly less than twice the size of the state of California. The country extends 2,016 km (1,253 mi) north-northeast to south-southwest and 772 km (480 mi) east-southeast to west-northwest. It is bordered by Tanzania on the north, the Indian Ocean (Mozambique Channel) on the east, the Republic of South Africa on the south, Swaziland, South Africa and Zimbabwe on the west, and Zambia and Malawi on the northwest, with a total boundary length of 7,041 km (4,375 mi), of which 2,470 km (1,535 mi) is coastline.

Mozambique is 44% coastal lowlands, rising toward the west to a plateau 150 to 610 m (500-2,000 ft) above sea level and on the western border to a higher plateau, 550 to 910 m (1,800-3,000 ft), with mountains reaching a height of nearly 2,440 m (8,000 ft). The highest mountains are Namuli (2,419 m/7,936 ft) in Zambézia Province and Binga (2,436 m/7,992 ft) in Manica Province on the Zimbabwean border. The most important rivers are the Zambezi (flowing southeast across the centre of Mozambique into the Indian Ocean), the Limpopo in the south, the Save (Sabi) in the centre, and the Lugenda in the north. The most important lake is the navigable Lake Malawi (Lake Niassa); Lake Cahora Bassa was formed by the impoundments of the Cahora Bassa Dam. In the river valleys and deltas, the soil is rich and fertile, but southern and central Mozambique have poor and sandy soil, and parts of the interior are dry.

Two main seasons, one wet and one dry, divide the climatic year. The wet season, from November through March, has monthly averages between 27°C and 29°C (81-84°F), with cooler temperatures in the interior uplands. The dry season lasts from April to October and has June and July temperatures averaging 18-20°C (64-68°F). The average annual rainfall is greatest (about 142 cm/56 in) over the western hills and the central areas, and lowest (30 cm/12 in) in the southwest.

Overview

Location :
Southeastern Africa, bordering the Mozambique Channel, between South Africa and Tanzania

Geographic coordinates :
18 15 S, 35 00 E

Map references :
Africa

Area :
total: 799,380 sq km
land: 786,380 sq km
water: 13,000 sq km

Area - comparative :
slightly less than twice the size of California


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