Comoros - Profile
- Update August 2016: An outbreak of Foot and Mouth disease in Reunion and Rodrigues has resulted in strict food import restrictions. See this Noonsite report.
- This small archipelago lying in the Indian Ocean between the northern tip of Madagascar and the African mainland at the northern end of the Mozambique Channel, consists of three main islands: Grande Comore (Ngazidja), Moheli (Mwali) and Anjouan (Ndzuani).
- Formerly a French colony, the islands are now independent. A new constitution was voted for in a referendum in 2001 with greater autonomy for each of the three islands. The country’s new name was adopted, the Union of the Comoros, along with a new national flag.
- Note that whilst Mayotte is part of this archipelago, the islanders voted against independence so it remains an overseas territory of France and a naval base.
- Most yachts who visit are sailing between Mauritius and East Africa, the the Union of the Comoros being very conveniently located on that route.
- The underwater scenery is their prime attraction and the south side of the island of Moheli is particularly beautiful. This is the first protected area in Comoros and the Moheli Marine Park encompasses nearly half the coastal waters off the island of Moheli.
- There is an anchorage at Moroni, the capital, on Grande Comore, however, the main port of Mutsamudu has the best protection. More sheltered anchorages are to be found in neighbouring Mayotte.
- There are only limited facilities available, although Mutsamudu does have a small boatyard and some workshops. Fresh produce is available, but major supplies are better in neighbouring Mayotte.
Visitors here in September 2015, SV Totem have sent the following comments re. security in Comoros:
- We felt very safe on shore here and had no qualms about walking through town after dark.
- It’s sensible to take measures to prevent opportunity theft, especially in very poor countries like Comoros. Lift the dinghy at night, and hide or lock-up anything of value on deck (e.g. jerry cans, portable generator, dive tanks, etc.).
- Your agent can help you hire someone for a nominal fee to be on your boat if it will be unattended for a full day.
- There isn’t a place to land and leave your dinghy, but your agent can facilitate shore-bound ferrying by canoe.
- Gregarious kids will come to your boat in dugouts, kayaks, or just float out on rice sacks filled with empty plastic bottles. Our agent warned us however that some of these cherubs weren’t quite so sweet, and may be spotters that would inform shoreside thieves of what might be had from our decks. Best therefore to keep them from coming on board.
The dry season, from May to October, is the best time to visit when the average temperature is 75°F (24°C). November to April is the rainy season, when temperatures range from 81° to 95°F (27-35°C), although the coast is cooled by sea breezes. The NW monsoon season from December to March can have high winds and cyclones.
For links to free global weather information, forecast services and extreme weather information see the Noonsite Weather Page