Ibo Silver

Ibo Silversmiths, the Ancient Tradition

Delicate silver creations from way back when

When 12th Century AD Arabian explorers brought their trade and customs to Africa in sailing ships, they passed it on to the local people. These incredible talents of creating, by hand, exquisite jewelry and other delicate items from real silver are now being taught to Africa’s children. These ancient Arabs may be long since gone, but their history remains embedded in the stones of the ruins on Ibo Island, a small island in the Quirimbas Archipelago of Mozambique.

From fathers to sons

And today, traditional silversmiths on Ibo Island hand-craft exquisite, intricate, jewelry using ancient Arab techniques and tools. The artisan-artists are simply continuing an ancient Ibo tradition, passed down from fathers to sons, of producing fine metalwork. This jewelry is found nowhere else in the world. Which makes it valuable to all who buy it.

The Ibo Island Lodge Silversmiths Project ensures local people on the island benefit from the sales of the silver creations. Their very appropriate base is the star-shaped 17th Century fort on the island where tourists can visit them.

Sustainable income from beautiful art

The project has enabled the establishment of an international distribution network, based in Cape Town so that the crafters get better returns as their creations reach all corners of the globe. And they are recognized for keeping this trade alive, vital for ongoing island income.

The lack of socioeconomic opportunity on Ibo Island is a serious problem. Keeping this ancient tradition alive generates vital income for the island.

Keen to spend more time learning about this ancient craft on Ibo, meet the silversmiths and try your hand at making your own? Book your special holiday package to the Quirimbas today.

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