Union of Comoros (Umoja wa Komori zdj, Union des Comores) fr
Capital – Moroni
Official languages – Comorian, French, Arabic
Religion – Islam (98%)
Government – Federal presidential republic
Area – 1 861 km2 (719 sq mi)
Population – 850 688
Inter. Tel. prefix – +269
Currency – Comorian Franc
Time zone – UTC +3 (EAT)
The islands are known for their unique wildlife, which developed these lands during the era of Madagascar’s separation from the African continent. Numerous lava fields and chaos of rocks, framed by thickets of relict forms of vegetation – this is the natural appearance of these unique islands. It is home to about 60 plant species and about 37 species of animals that are not found anywhere else on the planet, and some of the oldest life forms on Earth are found in the ocean waters off the coast of Comoros. The preservation of the natural beauty of the islands is facilitated by the fact that the Comoros are still one of the most exotic regions of the planet, at the same time – the least frequently visited and least developed in terms of tourism of all islands in the region.
MOST VISITED AREAS
Grand Comoros. The east coast of the island of Ngazidja has a noticeably wilder and more unsettled appearance than the west coast. However, these shores invariably attract the attention of the still few guests – the most natural corners of the island and its most interesting historical sites are concentrated here. The largest city in the archipelago and since 1962 – its capital (since 1947 – the capital of the French possessions), Moroni is also known by its old name Port-au-Boutre. Its name can be translated from the local dialect “On fire”, which quite accurately reflects the location of the city at the base of the huge volcano Karthala, always breathing heat.
Mwali (Moheli) is the smallest, wildest and least visited of all the Comoros. The island’s rich volcanic soil, magnificent forests and beautiful grasslands are complemented by picturesque valleys, usually overgrown with coconut groves, old coffee or cocoa plantations, ylang-ylang forests or crops.
The island of Ndzuwani (Nzvani or Anjouan) is famous for forests and rivers, literally “tumbling” along numerous rapids in a sea of green trees, plantations of exotic ylang-ylang palm trees, thickets of jasmine, cassica, basil and orange scattered throughout the island. The French called this practically triangular island with a side length of about 50 km “the pearl of the Indian Ocean”.
Tropical monsoon, quite hot and humid. Two seasons are quite pronounced here – a warmer and wetter summer (November to April) and a relatively cool and dry winter (May-October).
Average monthly temperatures range from + 24 C in winter to + 27 C in summer, and almost at any time of the year, daytime temperatures are not uncommon, significantly exceeding the mark of +30 C. The mountainous regions are cooler, especially at night, which is facilitated by a noticeably greater number rainfall in these areas. In general, from 1100 mm (leeward areas) to 3000 mm (on the windward slopes of the mountains) rain falls on the territory of the islands per year, but in some years up to 5500 mm of precipitation can fall here. Their maximum falls on the monsoon season (from November to April-May), when the air humidity reaches 100%, and daily showers bring with them up to 60% of the total annual precipitation rate. In the period from December to April, powerful tropical cyclones are also frequent.