forest camping
forest camping
  • Spice Island
    • 22/09/2017
Zanzibar, Zanzibar, a name to conjure with, the island famed for spices, beaches and slavery...
Spice tour was informative walk around an agricultural research centre, smelling and tasting leaves, roots and fruit.
Beaches are sandy, sun is hot, sea is warm and blue, however the beach is also roamed by touts offering snorkelling tours, cruises, etc etc, even some dubious looking Masai with a herd of cows on the beach, also offering boat trips?!? Gift shops abound, full of paintings which, whilst created live on the spot, all follow a handful of presumably popular common designs...

Went scuba diving at Mnemba atoll, first time in 16 months, and due to the choppy weather reducing visibility, not the best. Not the greatest coral either, and plentiful trumpet fish and moray eels OK but not new and exciting.

The capital, Stone Town, is a hugely interesting place with narrow alley ways forming a maze between staunch colonial houses with impressively grand studded doors.
A trip to the site of the old slave market was suitably sobering, the scale of the operations, the brutality and callousness of the "traders", the confusion and suffering of the victims....

Ending the stay on a more cheerful note with rooftop sunset cocktails and a night food market with BBQ meat, Indian somosa, schwarma, and savory "pizza" pancakes.
Early start tomorrow for the ferry back to the mainland and the start of the long drive towards Malawi...
  • The Great Game
    • 17/09/2017
The last few days have involved much driving: driving to the national parks, driving around the national parks, driving back from the national parks, so big thanks to our driver and guide, Boneyface, for navigating miles of dusty, furrowed dirt roads covered in cows, tuctucs, Masai, ancient lorries, other suicidal safari vehicles and other sundry obstacles.

The scenery of Ngorogo Crater and the Serengeti plains I can only describe as "expansive", yellow savanna stretching away into the distance.
Wildlife wise, the last few days have yielded some new species, and close up viewings, but not so much action, we have been spoilt by the previous drive in the Masai Mara and by tales and photos of fellow tourers recent experiences, seeing leopards making kills etc.
Anyway, a thoroughly worth while trip.

Yesterday stopped almost in the shadow of Mt Kilimanjaro, and had a local tour including local plantations, a swim at a rather picturesque waterfall, and a visit to a complex of underground tunnels dug by the native Chagga people to escape from raiding Masai, who were historically forced to steal and rob in the fertile higher altitudes during periods of drought on the plains.
During "normal" weather conditions, the two tribes would be amicable traders, swapping cattle products from the plains for vegetable and metalwork from the mountain, but in desperate times resorted to maiming and enslaving, hence the construction of the tunnels which provided a hiding place and safety. Any Masai that entered to attack would be conked on the head in the darkness, chopped up and thrown into the river at midnight. The Masai subsequent tried to flood the tunnels, fill them with poisonous gas, and locate ventilation holes, all without success.

Now sitting out a couple of long drive days to take us to the coast at Dar es Salaam for the ferry to Zanzibar.
  • Lake Victoria
    • 06/09/2017
Crossing the border brings immediate change - from driving on the right back to the left, but more obviously in the landscape, as the hilly banana plantations of Rwanda are replaced by dry wild west looking scrub land with scattered trees...

Giant storks roam the villages, picking at any garbage. Later pass a rubbish dump where dozens of them search alongside people for anything useful.
Also seen kingfishers and the odd eagle.

Staying one night in an interesting German fort built in 1905, when Germany was being empirical and did bad things to the local populations - but who didn't...

Dinner is the local fast food -
Chips my eye? Essentially a chip omelet, and a kebab of unspecified meat.

100km of roadworks in the morning, then a stop at a local market for cooking supplies. Much less frantic market here, fruit, veg, fish, goats heads, chipatis and doughnutty things abound.
Shortly after, a short ferry ride across a spur of the lake before reaching the traffic of Mzansa, the second biggest city in Tanzania, lying on the southern shore of Lake Victoria.
Camping tonight at a resort on the beach, very nice but the beer double the price!

Miles of dry yellow plains dotted with sporadic trees and bulbous rock formations, boys herding cattle and the usual regular towns and roadside stalls.
A short drive today, with another stop for supplies and an early arrival at another beach side camp for a lazy afternoon... Proper holidays!


browse by location

Iceland

Slovenia

Hungary

Slovakia

Hungary

Slovakia

Poland

Slovakia

Poland

Czech Republic

Poland

Czech Republic

England

Thaliand

Hong Kong

Thailand

RSA

Zimbabwe

Malawi

Tanzania

Kenya

Tanzania

Rwanda

Uganda

Kenya

Norway

Sweden

Denmark

Germany

The Netherlands

Cuba

Cayman Islands

France

Switzerland

Italy

Switzerland

England

Wales

Scotland

England

France

Holland

England

Germany

England

USA

England

Thailand

Malaysia

Singapore

Fiji

Australia

Samoa

Fiji

Australia

New Zealand

Cook Islands

Mexico

USA

Canada

USA

England