Weekly Photo Challenge: V2V Collage

A submission to this week’s photo-challenge: Collage  Two years ago we were in the middle of our epic journey across Africa from Lake Victoria to Victoria Falls. I’ve decided to revisit this blog and to update it having never done so since it was composed on route. It’s a work in progress but I hope to…

The End of the Journey

We are home and after 29 days on the road it is good to stop. Some statistics about our journey We traveled a total of 5500 miles. We visited 5 countries. If you’d like to see more here is our day by day itinerary Tanzania Malawi Zambia Botswana Zimbabwe (courtesy of the Victoria Falls bridge) We passed…

Day 29 – Moshi to Mwanza

The one thing I am not going to miss about this holiday will be the early starts. The alarm goes off at 4:15am and we are up and ready for breakfast at 5am with our hosts. Tembo Tamu has been a real home from home and I would recommend it to anyone coming to this…

Day 28- Moshi to Msisu Village and Coffee Plantation 

We wake to rain! The first we have seen four weeks. Moshi means smoke in Kiswahili and The mist covered mountain is as if shrouded in smoke. Looks like we’ll be unable to see it on this visit. Today we are going on a coffee tour. This will take us over 2000m up onto Kilamanjaro…

Day 27 – Moshi

Moshi is the closest town to Mount Kilamanjaro the tallest mountain in Africa. Sadly you can’t see it most of the time. We are here in Moshi as an extension to our holiday plans. We also need to drop our son at the airport where he will take a flight to Nairobi,Kenya where he will…

Day 26 – Kipepeo Beach to Moshi

       Another glorious sunrise means another early rising as we pack up the tent.     It seems like much longer but after only a day we leave Kipepeo Beach and head back across the ferry. It’s along queue of cars but 5000TzS gets us access to the emergency gate – whether this is a…

Day 25 – Dar Es Salaam to Kipepeo Beach

We get off the train at 12:45am after 57 hours (see last post). We’re tired and a little disgruntled. Having anticipated a delay, we have not booked any accommodation tonight – we considered the train might be a day late but 12 hours late is a bit of a nightmare scenario. We are approached by…

Day 24 – Mbeya to Dar Es Salaam

Throughout the night the train chugs on. I sleep when we’re moving but wake when we stop. We stop at least three times overnight. Whenever we start there is always a jolt as the carriages bump one another. Soon though the sound of the tracks lull me back to sleep. I wake just after sunrise…

Day 23 Kapiri Mposhi to Mbeya (Tazara Train)

We make our way across Zambia. We have managed to cram our bags under bunks and in a storage area. There are four bunks a small table in our compartment. Pillows and blankets are provided. The train is a little decrepit- there is no light switch – just two wires which need to be tied…

Day 22 – Lusaka to Kapiri Mposhi

Kapiri Mposhi is apparently not a tourist town. All the guides are very dismissive of the place. We are coming here for one reason – to catch a train! Kapiri Mposhi is the end of the line (or the beginning!) for the TAZARA Express. This train will take us to Dar Es Salaam in two…

Day 21 – Livingstone to Lusaka

Today marks the start of our return home. For us the journey is part of the holiday and it will be a week or so before we are back home and still some places to see. We have a train to catch on Tuesday and need to be in touching distance of Kapiri Mposhi. We…

Day 20 – Livingstone

A day without travel, but it  doesn’t mean we’re doing nothing. Matt is really keen to do zip wire over gorge at Victoria. Bex is really keen to do Cheetah Interaction (a walk with Cheetahs). We resolve this by splitting in two. This morning Anita and Matt do the zip wire (it’s a fait et…

Day 19 – Livingstone to Chobe (Botswana)

Today we travel to Botswana, just for the day. Chobe National Park is a Safari Park just across the border. We leave at 7 pm prompt and travel the 40min to the Kazungula Ferry crossing. The crossing between Zambia and Botswana forms the world’s shortest border at 750m. The ferry crossing across the Zambezi River…

Day 18- Livingstone to Victoria Falls 

Just for once we are not jumping onto a coach, so after a leisurely breakfast we board a minivan provided by Jollyboys, which takes the 10 Km  to Victoria Falls. This is one of the seven natural wonders of the world. Jollyboys provide a minivan to take us the 10km to this World Heritage Site….

Day 17 – Lusaka to Livingstone

Just for once we decide not to go at the crack of dawn. We need to do some things in Lusaka and plan an early morning visit to a local shopping mall – conveniently 5 mins walk away from Kalula Backpackers.   The main reasons include fixing some broken glasses and sorting out mobile internet which…

Day 16 – Lilongwe to Lusaka

We’re up at 4:30am for the bus to Lusaka. My son complains “It would be nice some time if we could catch a bus at a normal time”. I can’t say I disagree with him. A hurried breakfast and Sam, our host drops us off at the bus station.         Like the Dar to…

Day 15 – Dedza to Lilongwe

After our first night in the tent we’re up early and after breakfast we explore the pottery. Dedza Pottery is a place Anita visited more than once in her time here. It’s much bigger now and has a lodge attached , where we are camped. We decide to buy a candle holder, pay our bills…

Day 14 – Zomba to Liwonde to Dedza

We wake up early and bid farewell to fellow guests Joanne and Claire who are heading off to Balaka for a week working with young people.    We also say goodbye to Helen, our hostess who is driving them.      After breakfast Paul takes us to the minibus station and we cram into the first of…

Day 13 – Zomba to Zomba Plateau

After an early church service at Zomba Baptist Church and a quick lunch we make our way up to Zomba Plateau. This lies at 1500m above sea level overlooking Zomba. We are dropped off by Helen our host near to Kuchawe Inn and make our way down the track past a troop of baboons.   …

Day 12 – Zomba to Chilimba

The following post recounts one of the most humbling experiences of my life and an amazing set of reunions for Anita. This was an amazing day for us all and a real highlight of our holiday. Twenty two years ago Chilimba Village was the place Anita lived and worked as an NGO for almost two…

Day 11 – Monkey Bay to Zomba

Today we leave the lake (Nyassa/Malawi) and head South climbing into the mountains towards Zomba the old colonial Capital. We will miss this body of water that has been our home for the past week; it’s dark skies; it’s gentle waters full of Cichlids; it’s amazing sunsets and awesome sunrises.       There is…

Day 10 – Monkey Bay

Having arrived yesterday afternoon at Mufasa Eco Lodge we decide to stay two nights giving us a chance to rest and explore the area.  I wake up early and enjoy another fabulous sunrise. You can see why Malawi’s flag has a riding sun on it when you see the number of fabulous sunrises here. Our…

Day 9 – Nkhotakota to Monkey Bay

It a tough night for the back, sleeping on the deck of the Ilala Ferry but we get some sleep and are greeted by an amazing sunrise.    The boat has moved continuously over night traveling from Nkhota Kota to Makanjira Chipoka and on to Salima which is up river. Monkey Bay is still ahead. One…

Day 8 – Likoma to Nkhotakota (Ilala Ferry)

Another early start, we are up at 6am and have breakfast before picking up a taxi at 7am to catch the Southbound Ilala Ferry. We’re ultimately heading for Monkey Bay, but the ferry will travel all day and night, arriving there tomorrow. The ferry is due to depart at 6:15am but everyone knows it won’t….

Day 7- Likoma Island (Mango Drift)

I wake up early, my body clock not yet adjusted, an early coffee as the pale pink of the dawn sky fades into blue. After a hearty breakfast we book a snorkeling trip out to an outlying island, Masimbwe. Here the fish are more plentiful and show greater variety. We are taken on a small…

Day 6 – Likoma Island

As soon as we arrive in Likoma we set our watches back an hour, we are now just one hour ahead of the UK. Our boat weighs anchor and immediately the rope snaps. We then spend much of the next half an hour retrieving the anchor and positioning the boat in the shallow bay. A…

Day 5b- Mbamba Bay to Likoma

Just before midnight there is a knock at the door of our guesthouse. There is a man outside. The landlady has gone to bed, we are up awaiting the arrival of the captain of our intended boat at 2am. We wake her up and she lets him  in. It is the owner of another boat…

Day 5a –  Mbamba Bay 2

After the peace and quiet of recent days the night is noisy. A local party blares out music through the night in typically Tanzanian style. As we toss and turn In our separate dorms we both mull things over. Some questions. Why a night crossing? What about the boat? Who is the captain? We meet…

Day 4 – Mbamba Bay

I wake at just before 7. The sun is rising, the smell of smoke from charcoal fires permeates the morning air. We are staying put today. After two heavy days of travel it is time to put our feet up and relax. One peculiarity of our accommodation is that all of us are in a…

Day 3 – Songea to Mbamba Bay

Yet another early start – up at 4:30am to get taxi at 5am except our taxi driver had overslept so no pickup until 5:45 for a bus which departs at 6am. We arrived so late last night we have not arranged for tickets do it is risky. Luckily there is room for us and our…

Day 2 – Dar to Songea

Another early start! Up at 4am for a 4:30 taxi to the bus station for a bus departing at 5:30am, except it isn’t departing on time. As ever here, the bus will leave when it’s full. At 6am we are ready to go, as is every other bus in the city so it takes a…

Day 1 – Mwanza to Dar Es Salaam

We are up at 5:30am in order to get the taxi to the Airport. The usual scans and searches at this provincial airport. Small as it is there are still two places where we need to remove shoes and electronic items. The flight is smooth and we land ahead of time.   Then a wait…

A Day of Packing

Originally posted on Tanza-Longs:
Tomorrow we head to Dar on the first leg out our holiday (vacation) to South Central Africa. A journey that will hopefully take us to Malawi, Zambia and Botswana. We’re going to be traveling by Boat, Train, Coach and Plane and if you are interested you can follow our journey on…

Visa Variations

It seems that every country has it’s own way of admitting or denying entry. In recent weeks  these have been revised and changed in such a way as to make it harder to get across the border. Whether this in response to  a perceived terrorist threat or ‘tit for tat’ responses to the way countries…

Filling in the Blanks

We have definite fixed points on our journey. The flight to Dar The crossing of Lake Malawi The train back from Kapiri Mposhi to Dar The flight for my son to Nairobi The other points are flexible and today we have spent some time filling in the gaps. We are definitely visiting Livingstone in Zambia…

Changing Plans

We’ve not even set off yet, but are plans are going to have to change. Two problems have arisen today. 1. The TANZARA train from Dar Es Salaam to Kapiri Mposhi is fully booked for next week. This was our way into Zambia. My wife’s malaria in recent weeks delaying our preparations and so we…

Flights Booked

How to get across Africa from Mwanza to Livingstone and back in just under a month is going to be a challenge and one of our first challenges has been how to get to Dar Es Salaam in time to catch a train to Zambia. We were considering a train from Mwanza to Dar  and…

Welcome

Welcome to this new blog, which will chart our travels in the next few weeks. It is a companion to our main blog Tanzalongs but is specific to our journey from Mwanza on the shores of Lake Victoria in Tanzania to Livingstone in Zambia, home to Victoria Falls and back again, hence the name Victoria…