Bilene Lodge in Mozambique is located within the seaside town of Praia do Bilene. Picture: Supplied.

If you’re craving a cross-the-border beach holiday with your significant other this February, look no further than Bilene Lodge in Mozambique. Settled within the seaside town of Praia do Bilene, it’s an easy two-hour drive north from Maputo and a top-notch option for couples arriving via the capital city. 

Since the region surrounding the lodge has not quite solidified itself as a tourist destination yet, it still manages to keep a low profile from holidaymakers, so if you’re seeking a romantic, yet laid-back sort of place to wind down without disruptions, this is it.

Run by Dream Hotels & Resorts, Bilene Lodge offers a high level of service, with swift check-ins and efficient staff. It offers a collection of self-catering apartments complete with open-plan kitchens, lounge areas, private patios (with braai facilities) and en-suite bathrooms. 

There is no skimping on comfort either, with interiors that are light and natural along with features like complimentary wifi and air-conditioning. 

Discover the Bilene buzz

The views are incredible. Picture: Supplied.

When you’re both ready to hit the beach, a large sandbar between the lagoon and the Indian Ocean creates a protected area ideal for swimming and snorkelling. Throughout the day, barges, boats, dhows, canoes and kayaks effortlessly skirt across its calm waters.

The thriving town of Bilene is also just a short walk from the lodge. Its small yet colourful market features fresh fruit and local fare, with brightly-coloured capalanas (sarongs) carefully draped across each store. Listen out for the curio traders hawking their wares, with cashew nut sellers never too far behind.

Couples looking for some fun can visit the local beach bars serving Tipo Tinto rum and raspberry (R&R), Laurentina and 2M (pronounced "dosh M") before ordering their ‘catch of the day’ from the fluttering dhows as they return to shore. Eat it right on the beach and follow up with a late afternoon nap back at Bilene Lodge – and you may never want to leave! 

Getting into Mozambique and to Bilene Lodge

One of the rooms. Picture: Supplied.

If you’re planning on driving into Mozambique this year, there is a tar road to the lodge from Komatipoort (Lebombo border post crossing) and Maputo, so a 4X4 vehicle is not needed to make the journey there.

To cross the border from South Africa, passports must be valid for at least six months after the date of return, and if your vehicle is hired, you will require a letter of authority permitting you to take it across the border.  

Since Bilene Lodge is self-catering, you may also bring meat with you for personal consumption, as long as it is frozen and properly sealed or vacuum packed. The alcohol limit is one litre of spirits per person and 2.25 litres of wine (three bottles), just remember that no beer is allowed to be brought in. 

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