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Thursday, July 7, 2022

12 Best Luanda Touring Ideas and Excursion

Many won’t choose Angola when planning to explore the west coast of Southern Africa because they have little or zero knowledge of the hidden gems.

We will unveil most of the appealing tourists’ spots in Laundana, with their engaging activities and riveting histories that make them unique.

Keep reading to discover the touring ideas and excursions fully in Luanda, Angola, with mentions of the breathtaking views, museums, historical sites, and more.

Want to experience a classic tour? Take your pick from the 12 touring ideas that will allow you to enjoy Luanda city.

1. Museu da Moeda 

Museu da Moeda is a currency museum in Marginal, Luanda, Angola, next to BNA (Banco Nacional de Angola), built within two years and seven months. 

It is a perfect destination for educational tourism, mainly for those interested in banking and finance, featuring a collection of coins and banknotes covering all periods of Angola’s bank history, involving the colonial and post-colonial periods.

The museum, unique in its vocation, presents the history of money from the era of Zimbo to Kwanza. 

Museu da Moeda displays numismatics, objects, the iconography of money, and audiovisuals that enlighten visitors. 

It serves as a reference space to view a range of historical and social importance regarding the history of currency in Angola. 

Museography of Museu da Moeda

The currency museum is dependent on themes that support the narratives of the museum, and such themes include;  

  • Illustrations of banknotes
  • Iconography of money
  • Stories of currencies 
  • Evolution of banking
  • Pre-monetary and other means of payment
  • Personal testimonies on the role of money
  • Security elements 

Opening Hours: Museu da Moeda opens from Monday to Saturday from 9:00 am to 3:30 pm. 

Why You Should Visit the Museum 

  • The currency museum is among the main pillars of Angola’s history.
  • It is impressive with its originality and modernity.
  • The museum justifies a visit with its underground setting.
  • It has facilities like a cloakroom, cafeteria, gift shop, restroom, souvenir shop accessible to visitors.  

2. Kwanza River Tour

Kwanza River, known as the Cuanza River, is the longest in Angola’s capital city, situated south of Luanda, emptying into the Atlantic Ocean. 

The Kwanza river tour begins at the Kwanza River bar, where tourists can spot diverse species of birds. 

The tour, which approves communication in English, Portuguese, and Spanish, lasts for six hours and avoids crowds while exploring the river.

The tourist guides provide necessary information about lifejackets, lunch, binoculars, and wildlife information during this tour. 

Kwanza River Touring Activities

  • Sportfishing

Sportfishing in the Kwanza River, the largest river in Angola, is one of the activities to enjoy during the tour.

  • Boat safari                       

During boat safari, visitors can observe different birds like palm vulture, kingfisher, river guard, and the magnificent fishing eagle.

  • Discovering of biodiversity 

Biodiversities discovered in the tour include the ornate monitor lizard, Varanos of the Nile, blue monkeys, etc. 

Advantages

The Kwanza River Tour provides a perfect way for avoiding crowds watching birds, wildlife, and nature encounters. 

3. Cabo Ledo Regular Ride

Cabo Ledo, a commune with the best beach Quicama municipality of Luanda Province, Angola, allows tourists to practice and learn about surfing at its peak.

The regular ride at the most-known beach of Cabo Ledo is a 2-day excursion activity in Luanda, Angola, that shares their passion for Africa with no static conditions. 

The Praia dos Surfistas, known as Surfers Beach, is the best beach in Cabo Ledo for activities like yoga lessons and surfing. 

Things to Know Before Booking Cabo Ledo Regular Ride 

  • The ride is not wheelchair accessible 
  • Experience entails good weather 
  • The activity will permit a maximum of fifteen travelers
  • The departure time of the tour is 7:00 am
  • Instant confirmation 

Added Services

The services on the 2-day tour include the following; 

  • Hotel pickup and drop off, 
  • Wi-Fi onboard 
  • Surf lesson 
  • Yoga lesson
  • Lunch (fruit and sandwiches) 

What to expect during the excursion 

  • A guide will pick the traveler from any preferred location between 7 am, and 7:30 am to meet early waves.
  • About 120 kilometers drive from Luanda, the guide arrives in time for coffee, and the main course kicks off. 
  • Day 1 of the tour includes excess surfing practice, Miradoro da Lua (Moon Viewpoint), morning coffee at Kwanza River. 
  • Arrive at Praia dos Surfistas beach at 10:00 am, enjoy lots of surf lessons and lunch (fruit and sandwiches).
  • Day 2 includes a yoga lesson, more surfing, breakfast, more yoga and surf lesson, lunch, and back to your departure point. 
  • If the cancellation of the tour experience is due to poor weather, the visitor will receive a refund or a different date. 

Activities in Cabo Ledo

Cabo Ledo offers activities that include fishing, swimming, surfing, snorkeling, and yoga opportunities.

4. Day Trip Mussulo Full Day

Mussulo, a commune and peninsula situated as part of Belas municipality in the south of Luanda province, offers a “Full Day” excursion trip, thus providing the best way to retreat from Angola’s capital city.

It’s a memorable trip that lets families, individuals, and groups get away from the city’s bustle and hustle.

The relaxing warm water beach, boats, and quad bikes make the tour spot a great place to discover.

The day trip Mussulo full day is ideal to go with either family or a group of friends for maximum enjoyment.  

Added Services

  • Bottle water 
  • Pickup at Luanda Naval Club
  • Private transportation 
  • All taxes and fees

Additional Information about Mussulo Tour

  • The activity allows a maximum of ten travelers 
  • It’s a wheelchair accessible tour 
  • There is instant confirmation 
  • Infants at the expedition must sit on laps 
  • It’s an experience that requires good weather
  • It requires no fitness skills. 

Voucher Requirements

The 12 hours tour that starts at 8:30 am allows the presentation of an electronic voucher or a paper for the activity. 

Activities at the tour 

Obtainable activities at the day trip tour include trekking, biking, water sports, water tours, sailing, and cruises. 

5. Museum of Slavery 

The National Museum of Slavery, founded in 1977, depicts the history and testament of the Angolan people during slavery.  

It’s a museum with many collections of items utilized in the era of the slave trade and as well pieces relating to African pre and post-slave culture. 

Museum of Slavery, located in Morro da Cruz, Luanda, Angola, currently serves as an exhibition center. 

Following the modest artifacts in the museum, it hosts foreign travelers from Germany, Russia, Portugal, Spain, etc. 

Features

  • The museum houses Cauldrons from the 18th century
  • Tourists will also see various souvenir shops 
  • Sculptures featuring ships, weapons, and iron weights from the slave period
  • Chapel with adjacent rooms 
  • Photographic memorabilia
  • Monument commemorating the suffering of the Angolan 

Amenities 

The informative museum, filled with historical artifacts, is suitable for kids, and its entrance is wheelchair accessible.

6. Sangano Beach Tour 

Sangano Beach is a beautiful beach sited south of Luanda, Angola, just a short distance away from the Kwanza River, featuring many beautiful trees, restaurants, and scenic views.

The less crowded beach has options for those willing to spend a night in natural beauty for water activities.  

The characteristics, temperature, landscape, serenity, and tranquility of the beach justify every travelers’ visit. 

How to Get to Sangano beach 

Tourists can quickly get to the beach by flying to Luanda International Airport (LAD) and hiring a taxi to the south of Luanda. 

Best time to Visit

The best time to visit the fantastic Sangano beach is during the warm period, from November to April. 

Activities in Sangano beach 

Some of the activities on the beach are fishing, snorkeling, swimming, and other water sports activities. 

Services obtainable on the beach 

  • Cafes
  • Restaurants
  • Shops with food and item necessary for rest
  • Rental center for swimming equipment 
  • Renting equipment for playing sports 

Accommodations at the Sangano beach 

Sangano beach, suitable for quiet rest, has hotels near the beach that charge travelers $250 a day. 

7. Avenida 4 de Fevereiro

Avenida 4 de Fevereiro (February 4th Avenue) is a most famous avenue, and a prestigious boulevard passing along the Luanda Bay Coast meant for cycling and jogging across the city. 

The avenue, formerly known as “Avenida de Paulo Dias de Novias” during the colonial times in honor of the city founder in 1576, provides a spectacular view of the bay and Ilha, which is stunning at sunset. 

It features prominent buildings, beautiful terraces, cafes, and lounges alongside the waterfront where tourists can taste local beer or Portuguese wine while watching the scenery.

What Makes Avenida 4 de Fevereiro Iconic

There are various buildings like utilities, ministries, hotels, Agostinho Neto University, headquarters of major companies, National Bank of Angola, etc. All the skyscrapers in the background reflect the dusk.

Tourists Activities at Avenida 4 de Fevereiro

The main activities include;

  • Jogging on the marginal
  • Walking the Avenida, and 
  • Cycling while the skyscrapers in the background reflect the dusk.

8. Ships Cemetery

Ships cemetery is a sterile beach with over fifty (50) rusting abandoned ships on or near the seashore, located at Panguila, Luanda Province of Angola.

The ships are sometimes so close that you can wade out to them on low tide and at times further out with masthead above the surface of the ocean. 

Though locals call it ship cemetery, the spot is officially known as SaoTiago Beach, close to the town of Santiago.

Following narratives about the history of the spot, the common opinion is the ships were intentionally left there, hence, ship cemetery. 

Things to know before visiting the ship cemetery 

  • Travelers should bring along all the necessary edibles and water.
  • Going in groups and broad daylight is paramount.
  • Travelers with a car should park near the nondescript structure above the high-tide line. 
  • Visitors should ensure they tour with a guide. 

Activities at the Ship Cemetery 

  • Exploring the recreational equipment at the playground designated for picnics.
  • Taking some photo shoots at the scenery for photo memories.
  • Another activity is viewing dozens of rusting hulks of cargo ships, tankers, and fishing vessels.

Nearby Hotels for Dining and Accommodation

Hotels near the cemetery are;

  • Thomson Art House
  • EPIC SANA Luanda Hotel
  • Hotel Baía Luanda
  • Hotel Trópico, and 
  • Hotel Presidente Luanda. 

9. Mausoleum of Agostinho Neto

The Mausoleum of Agostinho Neto is an obelisk-like structure towering above Luanda, the city of Angola. 

The monument, standing 4,633 square miles, is the commemoration of Neto, the first Angola president, and it serves as the final resting place of Neto. 

Mausoleum, towering the center of the Agostinho Neto Cultural, above the city of Luanda, along Chicala road, is an obelisk-like concrete structure and a picturesque landmark that overlooks the sea. 

It’s a remarkable architectonic piece with historical importance and a difficult-to-miss monument in Luanda. 

The uniqueness of the memorial attraction 

  • Mausoleum of Agostinho Neto is a monument taller than New York’s Statue of Liberty.
  • The Obelisk-like structure dominates central Luanda’s skyline
  • It’s a stunning sightseeing landmark
  • The design of the tower is a reference to Neto’s poem titled The Path of Stars
  • The monument is surrounded by extensive grounds, including lawns, reviewing bleachers, and gardens. 
  • At the center of the Agostinho Neto Cultural Center, the memorial is among the tourist points in Luanda.  

10. Miradouro da Lua 

Miradouro da Lua translated as ‘Viewpoint of the Moon,’ is a geological set of cliffs at Belas Municipality in the province of Luanda. 

Miradouro da Lua has its stunning look from a tricolor karst formation carved out from erosion caused by wind and rain.  

The carved pinnacles offer an unusual landscape of ravines and deep gullies not familiar in Angola.  

Miradouro da Lua Features

The eerie spot has a glittering landscape masterpiece worth visiting 

  • It serves as vacationer’s work of art
  • Miradouro da Lua is a site for cinematographic productions 
  • The photos from this spot are Instagram worthy, especially pictures from sunset and dawn
  • Watching the sunset at this lunar landscape is a notable experience

How to Get to Miradouro da Lua

Reaching Miradouro da Lua is making a short trip to Belas, a few kilometers south of Luanda, Angola. 

The traveler will then arrive at a place where the blue ocean is clashing with the yellowish rock cliffs showing you are at “Viewpoint of the Moon.” 

11. Fortress of Sao Miguel

The fortress of Sao Miguel, known as Saint Michael Fortress, is a UNESCO World Heritage Centre built between 1641 and 1648 near Luanda Island bridge in the old mountain of S. Paulo.

The fortress encrusted with cannons was the main outlet for slave trafficking to Brazil.

The structure houses the Armed Forces Museum, renamed Museu Nacional de Historia Militar.

Rated Attractions at Fortress of Sao Miguel

The castle has ceramic tiles telling the story of Angola from the early years.

It also has giant imposing statues of the first European to reach Angola at the courtyard.

 Another attractive item at the fortress is combat vehicles and bi-motor planes.

Opening Hours: The Saint Michael Fortress works from Monday to Sunday, from 8:30 am to 5:30 pm.

12. Museu de Antropologia 

Museu de Antropologia, meaning National Museum of Anthropology, is a cultural institution formed on November 13, 1976, in Luanda city’s Coqueiros neighborhood.

The cultural and scientific establishment is keen on the research, collection, presentation, dissemination, and conservation of Angolan cultural heritage. 

Museu Nacional de Antropologia comprises 14 rooms spread over two floors for those interested in anthropology.

The central purpose of the museum is to assist people to conquer their cultural personality, revalue it and link it to future generations. 

Top Attractions at Museu de Antropologia

  • The museum houses more than 6000 traditional pieces like farm instruments, iron foundry, fishing items, pottery, jewelry, etc. 
  • It also has photographs of the Khoisan people and women’s rights memorabilia. 
  • Museu de Antropologia exhibits traditional musical instruments and demonstrations of the use of the marimba. 
  • The museum features the symbols of the rituals of the Bantu people. 

Another museum’s attraction is its masks and the rustic furnace for melting iron. 

Departments of the museum 

The departments in the museum are administration and finance, Museology, education, scientific coordination, and cultural animation.  

Conclusion 

Tourist ideas for an epic adventure are limitless in Luanda, Angola, and Southern Africa’s west coast, but the thoughts above are near perfection. 

The afore-mentioned tour ideas create a bespoke itinerary, covering stunning scenery and spots you will not regret visiting. 

Luanda is a must-see destination in Africa for different tours and excursions, be it 12 hours trip, a day, one week tour, and more.

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