When I tell people that I want to visit Comoros I am often asked to repeat the name. After repeating the name I am still often met by confused faces. Even my good friend who is a geography buff was stumped. Comoros is one of many not-so-popular African countries that I am keen to visit.
Comoros is a archipelago island nation off of Africa’s eastern coast. It lies in the Indian ocean between its closest neighbors Mozambique and Madagascar. The small island nation has four main islands: Ngazidja (Grande Comore), Ndzuani (Anjouan), Mwali (Mohéli) et Maoré (Mayotte), and boasts a population of just under 800,000. The country’s official languages are Comorian, Arabic and French and 98% of the population practice Sunni Islam.
I am not sure when my interest in Comoros was piqued, but let’s just say my Google history is riddled with searches of Comoran beaches. When I stumbled upon +@kanayakine’s Instagram feed I was instantly hooked. His photos are all taken in Comoros and shine a beautiful light on this little known nation. Below Mahamoud, the man behind the lens, shared with us his recommendation for five things to do in Comoros.
It is difficult to name only five things that a visitor could do in Comoros, but I will offer this:
- Karthala volcano: At 2,361 meters above sea level, it is the highest point of Comoros. The large crater extends over 30 km long and 15 km wide. The volcano is still active with the last eruption occurring in 2007.
- Moroni, the capital of Comoros archipelago: Visit the medina (the old town) with its narrow streets it is very charming. Also in Moroni is the Grand Mosque du Vendredi of Moroni which was built in 1427.
- Moheli: This is one of Comoros’ four main islands and has a marine park located in the southern part of the island. The beaches of this park are of great importance for nesting sea turtles. This is a protected site, but guided tours are available.
- Accommodation in Grande Comore: I will mention 3 hotels: the Cristal Itsandra Beach Hotel, the Retaj Moroni Hotel, and Khartala International Hotel.
- The town of Mutsamudu: Located on the island of Anjouan, the medina (town center) is full of narrow alleys, fortresses and ancient palaces of sultans.
- If I can speak of a sixth item, I would suggest the white sand beaches of Mitsamiouli located on the north end of Grande Comore. It is a popular beach on the weekends.
Please note, his responses were translated from French. All pictures (except the map) are copyrighted by Mahamoud Kanayakine.