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Dunes de Dovela: a story of tourism that benefits to the surrounding community by Alexandra Polleau

Situated at 80 kms south of Inhambane, Dunes de Dovela is Southern Mozambique’s only eco lodge surrounded by virgin coastal woodland.
After a beautiful 4X4 track criss crossing some rural villages, you will find the stunning eco lodge “Dunes de Dovela” erected on the 2nd crest of the dunes overlooking the Indian Ocean.

Melted in the forest, the lodge proposes 3 en-suite bungalows and 4 furnished tents pitched on wooden platforms. Guided walks in the forest, easy snorkeling at low tide, bird watching or kayaking on the lake are some of the activities the lodge offers.

The connection between the local community and touristic operators in Dunes de Dovela

But what makes Dunes de Dovela so special is the long term work with the communities around and the added value that our small touristic operation brings to the local development. Since the beginning, we employ only people from the villages around: 4 years construction took us to train and employ up to 70 people, some of which use and « sell » now their skills as carpinters or bricklayers in the village or a bit further. Some others are now employed as cooks, waiters or guides… after a second kind of training (from building to hosting !!) Today, our team of sixteen Mozambicans from the surrounding villages have dedicated the last years to both creating and operating The Dunes to show our guests the best has to offer.

More widely, our efforts have been put into creating local source chains so that we can provide our restaurant with locally grown produce and by fish and seafood caught by hand or by speargun straight from the beach in front of the lodge. This sustainable smale scale way of fishing avoids by-catch, therfore its footprint is very small. At the same time as generating revenues in the village by sourcing locally grown produce, our restaurant will then delight your taste buds with fresh, diverse and high quality food. 

The very good relationships we have with our neighbours permit to offer our guests the best conditions to walk through the villages and then have an idea of what a daily life is here in a rural area.

To finish, thanks to the help of several guests, we have been able to assist the primary school in building a borehole, the director’s office and now the building of two concrete classrooms. In the meantime, we employ at part time a young lady from the village that gives life to the several kids books that have been given to the school. This is a very useful way to stimulate the 500 kids of the school to learn to read and write.

Dunes de Dovela

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