Liquiçá is in East Timor.
The district of Liquiçá lies just west of Dili. The highway hugs the rugged coast crossing a series of rivers that swell during the monsoon. Every so often side roads fill with trucks carrying arabica coffee beans from plantations, and avocado trees hide the mountains. Driving along the quiet beaches of Liquiçá, you can see why the Portuguese felt at home here. The Portuguese made Timor one of the first ports in Asia, and some of the earliest buildings can still be found in Liquiçá. Liquiçá was so valuable that in the late 1600s the Dutch established a beach head fort here. Maubara fort still stands well preserved with its cannons overlooking the bay. In the mid-1800s, the Dutch traded the fort for the islands of Flores.
Liquiçá is 40 minutes of driving west of Dili on a reasonable coastal road with good scenery.
Today, divers flock to Liquiçá for its colourful reef. An expedition in the Ombai Strait found 2,000 whales in just one day, which may be as many whales here as there are anywhere else in the world. The colourful reef in Tibar is popular with divers, and a great place to learn to dive.
Just east of Liquiçá are the ruins of Aipelo Prison, where the Portuguese kept rebellious Timorese kings. Placards amid the ruins tell the story.
Swimming, scuba diving, fishing, water sports, volleyball, and cycling.
There are no large supermarkets in Liquiçá, but most basic products are available.
- Lauhata Beach Escape, near end of Lauhata Beach Road (the turnoff is just east of Liquica and is signposted), ☏ +670 7740 1111.