The first people to inhabit Mozambique were the San people who were hunter-gatherers. Then, between the first and fifth centuries, the Bantu people, who were farmers and ironworkers, moved to the area too. Mozambique has a really long stretch of coast, which makes it a good place for boats to come into harbour. Because of this, in the 10th century, Arab traders built settlements along the coast.
In the 15th century, the Portuguese gradually took over control. Mozambique became a colony of Portugal, until it became independent in 1975.
Not long after this, Mozambique experienced a civil war because two political parties both wanted power. The civil war meant that at least four million people had to leave their homes because it wasn’t safe, and up to one million people died. Since the end of the war things have got better, but there are still some tensions between the two groups. Mozambique has lots of natural resources and its economy is gradually growing and getting stronger. They have lots of good land for growing crops, and industry and tourism are both developing. However, it is still one of the poorest countries in the world. Half the people living there live on less than $1 a day. In 2010 natural gas was discovered off the coast of Mozambique, which will help the economy even more in the future.
One of Mozambique’s popular board games is called Butterfly. It’s a strategy game played with two players. Find something to use as counters (small pebbles or coins), download the board and instructions here and why not play it with your friends or family?