The Enigmatic Save River

The Enigmatic Save River

The enigmatic Save River, the birthplace of the Bazaruto archipelago in Mozambique begins its colourful journey in Zimbabwe. From its source near Harare, it flows south east from the Zimbabwean highveld to merge with the Odzi River. From there it turns dramatically south and drops over the Chivirira Falls in frothy mayhem before meandering down the western side of Zimbabwe's Eastern Highlands and forming a dry river valley in the rain shadow of these mountains. It is joined by the Lunde River at the Mozambique border, forming a dramatic confluence at Mahenya and then crosses the vast wilds of Mozambique to flow into the Indian Ocean just north of Nova Mambone.

Vast swathes of sand flow into the Indian Ocean at the Save River mouth which forms a vast delta surrounded by dense mangrove forests. It is said that the spectacular island chain of the Bazaruto Archipelago was formed from the sand deposited by the Save, barring one… Paradise Island or Santa Carolina, which is a true rock island.

Historically the Save was a transport route for gold and trade goods between the coast and the hinterland occupied by the civilisation of Great Zimbabwe in the 13th and 14th centuries AD. Later on, it was used as a transport route for gold and slaves by the Arabs and the Portuguese.

The vast Save river estuary, flanked on either side by hundreds of kilometres of mangrove forest is one our most favourite locations to fly because of its ephemeral narure, no one day is ever the same. The estuary stretches out into the deep blue of the Indian Ocean in a profusion of blues and greens that leave one’s mind boggling. Opalescent bands of cobalt and cerulean curl through the low tide sand shoals and flamingo adorn the shallow wetlands like jewels.

Small, thatched fishing villages dot the shores, and dhows flutter across the lagoons with their multi coloured sails like butterflies on a summer’s days.

It feels like you have been transported back in time hundreds of years, and in many ways, you have, as this is a place that has largely gone untouched. Here people live according to the moods and ways of the sea and the sun. A hidden paradise.

Some of these spectacular images are featured in our latest fine art book entitled Aerial Art.  

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