Mail sent: Wednesday November 3 2004
Just a quick one, we are safely in Dar Es Salaam. We had the most amazing week of our entire trip thus far! Tanzania is totally different than Malawi and a much more tourist-friendly country. Roads are good and the scenery is beautiful.We have done just more than 10 000km since leaving Cape Agulhas and 2 200km from Blantyre.
sent:Friday November 5th 2004
The border crossing into Tanzania took 21/2
hours, but the worst of it was the heat and it was only 9am. You had to
stand in cues and wait for the officials , who chat to everyone and catch up
on news from home. They are generally very friendly (so far) The biggest
pests at the border are the money changers, they run after you flashing
bundles of cash shouting good exchange rates. But as soon as they see that
you know how to convert from one currency to another they loose interest and
leave you alone. On first impressions of Tanzania - it is a richer nation -
better dressed people and not so many without shoes as in Malawi, more organized farming
and better looking home grown crops, and better housing - more colonial. The area we
traveled through to Mbeya was Tukuyu and is very beautiful like the Eastern Transvaal.The
roads are also in a much better condition. We traveled through an area that is much dryer,
savannah like country which reminded us of Grunau. We went into an area that had the most
Boabab trees that we have ever seen!!! We stayed at the Boabab Valley Lodge and camp site
on the Ruaha River. Not much to say about that camp site,except that it has huge
potential, but is run by a Swede who is more interested in keeping his beers cold than
maintaining his facilities. The bird and animal life is really wonderful there, we saw our
first d'Arnauld's Barbet and Ashy Starling, Monkeys and Baboons walked through the camp
site to the river bank. Hippos and crocks ( apparently) also pop in every now and then.
We then stayed in the Genesis Snake Park and camp site in
Mikumi Town. We really recommend this facility as a stop over. They have lovely rooms,a
restaurant with game on the menu ( we did not eat there), safe parking behind huge walls
with 24hr security and a lawn area to camp with hot showers ( donkey system) The main road
to Dar Es Salaam, the Tanzan highway, travels through the Mikumi National Park. There is
no fencing or gates that you travel through, so the game crosses the road all over the
show. We saw our first wild buffalo only about 6km into the park, lots of impala,giraffes,
zebra, eland, wildebeest, elephant, vultures, lilac breasted rollers, storks, swallows,
red billed quellas and warthogs. We were hoping to see some wild dogs but no luck this
time. The traffic into Dar Es Salaam is something else - more than Mozambique and Malawi
put together. Dar Es Salaam is a huge city with all the mod-cons
Shoprite,Steers,Spur,Debonairs, People,Taxis, very fast traffic and even faster moped
Arusha, Safari Country
Arusha, Safari Country
Sorry to the English guys, going to do
this one in Afrikaans. We had a very nice time in Zanzibar and are currently in Arusha, 300km south of Nairobi and
acording to Getaways Cape to Cairo book halfway to Cairo.
Dar Es Salaam is 'n baie meer woelige stad as Blantyre,eintlik kan jy nie die 2 vergelyk nie, daar jaag al war ding op wiele is en jy moet lekker wees anders word jy om gery. Daar is plekke soos Steers en Debonairs en so aan. Die lekkerste van Dar is dat dit ruik so lekker na see envis (dis nou by die waterfront). Toe is ons na Zanzibar, 2 dae in Stone town gebly en 2 dae in Jambiani, in die suid-ooste van die eiland. Dis ramadan en almal (90%) vas. Prys die Here ons het verlossing gratis gekry en hoef nie guns te wen deur werke nie! Nietemin is die mense daar baie vreedsaam en rustig. Ons het ons CMA t hemde gedra en niemand het ons gepla nie, wel, i.v.m.godsdiens. Hulle pla jou wel deur jou lastig te val om een of ander deal met jou te maak. Elk geval dis nice daar. Jambiani beach, in die suid=oos kus van die strand.
Wednesday 17th November 20
We all went on a camel ride (my first) to a masai village, arranged from the snake park. The camel ride was fun slow and bumpy I loved the look on Johans face, I could just eat him up he is so gorgeous!! The village didnt look very masai as there is a lot of modern influence in the way the people dress now days. Some of the houses are also more modern with glass windows and sink dak roof. I found out that the walls are plastered with a mixture of ash and cow dung. The houses are quite big inside and are divided into sections with internal walls. A wall divides the kitchen from the guest resting area. There is a huge bed for the wife and children and another bed for the husband. There is also a section fenced off for the goats. Yip, they are kept inside at night for security against theft and wild animals. They are very sturdy houses with a well-designed roof. Oh, all the houses are built by the women! The masai women also make beautiful cloth decorated with colourful glass beads, leather and shiny discs; this cloth is worn as a wrap around and looks very stylish when worn correctly. The original masai cloth was red but now with the modern woven fabrics they are red with blue and purple, very beautiful. It was a nice trip to the village but I enjoyed the camel ride more. BJ and Ma the snake park owners are also building a masai museum, it is very interesting and a must visit for anyone going that way.
Johan serviced the GS and put on the new tyres and the next day we headed to Nairobi, Kenya.