In the heart of the Quirimbas Archipelago (Mozambique) a place for travellers and researchers who love nature and work to protect it
Casa das Garças is a lodge that promotes inclusive and sustainable tourism in Ibo Island and for the surrounding communities. It is much more than a hotel: it is an environmental education centre, a place for travellers and students who love nature and want to protect it, a base for research activities in the archipelago created in collaboration with local and international universities.
In the coastal area of Quirimbas National Park there are 120,000 people living in extreme poverty, especially fishermen for whom the sustainable management of marine resources is fundamental to their survival.
Due to the lack of alternatives and awareness, the park’s inhabitants adopt subsistence practices that pose a risk to the conservation of the environmental heritage on which the economy, food safety and development potential for the entire community are based.
In recent years, fish stocks have decreased by 50% due to the degradation of mangrove forests and excessive fishing. At the same time, the growing international interest in the coast of Mozambique as a tourist destination has prompted growing demand for services, particularly accommodation and catering, which the local population is not able to meet.
Casa das Garças was born from the alliance between naturalists, architects, communities and institutions with a common vision: to break this vicious circle of cultural and social marginalisation and to transform the threats linked to an unplanned growth in tourism into an opportunity for sustainable development, both from an environmental and cultural viewpoint.
This initiative, created as part of the PHARO project, was made possible thanks to the valuable cooperation of the Architetti Senza Frontiere Association, with the financial support of the Italian Agency for Development Cooperation and Fondation Ensemble.