Kisawa, where experiential travel meets conservation

Kisawa Mozambique… The 11 residences on the property showcase the traditional art forms and techniques of the community such as weaving, thatching and carpentry

Its Resort to Research initiative, for example, is a collaboration between the resort and Bazaruto Center For Scientific Studies (BCSS), where Kisawa guests are actively involved in BCSS research, joining the science team to monitor marine life, gather data, explore the seabed, and go on scientific diving expeditions. “The BCSS will be the one leading and guiding the guests through their experiences,” explains Mathieu Hellec, General Manager at Kisawa in Mozambique in an interview with TTN Middle East at Private Luxury Dubai, earlier this year.

The Resort to Research project has also meant the development of a Dive Center concept, where Kisawa guests can learn about and see dive spots detailed in 3D mapping.

Kisawa is situated on a small island called Benguerra, which is a seven-minute helicopter ride or a 20-minute boat ride from Vilankulos Airport. It lies within the Bazaruto Archipelago, part of a National Marine Park (BANP). It is home to over 200 bird species, 2,000 fish species and boasts picture-perfect beaches with rolling sand dunes and towering palm trees.

The 11 residences on the property showcase the traditional art forms and techniques of the community such as weaving, thatching and carpentry. Each of the 17 bungalows has a living room, a king bedroom, two dressing rooms and a joint bathroom. It also has a private day area, an infinity pool, open air deck and outdoor shower. Ranging from one- to three-bedroom formats, each bungalow sleeps two people.

Kisawa has four culinary concepts: The Main Terrace, Cove Mussassa, Ocean Mussassa, Baracca and the Pizza Tuk Tuk. These are led by culinary director Jean-Piere Nunez, and use where possible fresh, natural produce from farmers and fishermen from within the Inhambane province.

The resort is also home to the Natural Wellness Center, which specializes in integrative holistic healing, through Ayurveda, meditation, yoga, energy healing, sound healing, acupressure, infrared Iyashi Dome therapy, fitness and nutrition.

Meaningful holidays are important, believes Hellec. “Exposure for the kids is very important.” He explains that there are many ways to introduce concepts to children. “For example, for Christmas, everybody expected a Father Christmas and I said there will be no Christmas father, but our 11 guests will come with us we’re going to go to the school, and we’re going to offer 500 hampers full of food to people.

“That was meaningful for the parents, but the parents worked very hard to get where they are. But for the kids it was a gamechanger for their life. And this is I think what hospitality should become – on the experiential side really open eyes, open minds,” he says.

Considering a holiday here? Perhaps the best season to fly down is between July and October, when the area experiences a Humpback whale season, with peak sightings of pods containing up to 100 mothers and calves in a single day.

Kisawa makes diving and snorkelling a thrilling experience, with Kisawa’s Big Ocean Five offering focusing on humpback whales, pelagic sharks, and the largest population of dugongs in the West Indian Region.

“I would say stay for at least four to five nights to experience at least a little bit of the archipelago,” he adds.