The Songwe border crossing into Malawi was easy as pie (no paperwork issues, and no touts trying to earn money by guiding us through the border), and we made it through in a matter of minutes. The border guards reminded us to stick to the speed limit, so we did. Advertisements
There is a very interesting snake park outside Mikumi National Park, called the Genesis snake park. It houses several highly deadly snakes (and other reptiles) and some questionable enclosures that don’t appear entirely secure. We received the royal treatment when we visited, a stopover on our long road trip. A friendly Tanzanian man with a … More The Genesis Snake Park at Mikumi, Tanzania
The three scooters parked in front of us looked rough. If we sat on them, I imagined we’d collapse into a clanging pile of rusted engine parts and bald, eroded rubber tyres. But Jeff and Wessel were wearing the biggest grins i’d ever seen. We had poorly-fitting helmets, no riding experience and brake pads as effective as kitchen … More Scooter crashes, police roadblocks and flea bites – a crazy riding day on Zanzibar
Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania’s bustling capital, was a place I didn’t care to stay long in. The drive in was a gridlock of beeping horns and clouds of exhaust fumes. Trucks with colourful stickers and cabin decorations, battered cars with cracked windscreens and huge luxury 4WDs and black taxis.
This was not your average safari. We picked up hitchhikers. We got lost at night. A man with a machine gun rode in the passenger’s seat for a while. The car was infested with disease-carrying flies. We visited an African village, meeting locals.
The more we drove long distances through Africa, the more we realised that the journey is not about the destination, but the road you take. As we approached Dar Es Salaam from the west, somewhere in the Tanzanian heartland between Mbeya and Mikumi, we found the most spectacular mountain pass.
We stared at the menu with skepticism. A pile of limp, pale, thick-cut fries was piled in the corner of a glass-doored display cabinet. On another wooden shelf was some kind of withered, skeletal fish. Both options looked like they’d been waiting for quite a while for a brave customer.
What are the roads like in Zambia? The short answer – shocking. The potholes are out of this world. They come in all shapes and sizes – miniature, jagged edged pockmarks that look like the lunar surface; road-width trenches that sneak up on you; corrugated fill-in jobs. Journeys in Zambia often take twice as long … More Zambia’s insane potholes: a survival guide
Some awful, horrific (hilarious!) antelope taxidermy awaited in the garden of the hotel in Kabwe. Ripped stitches, hard legs as skinny and straight as table legs, and snarling, dead-eyed expressions. This crazy display of shoddy taxidermy craftsmanship made us laugh for hours afterwards.
Zambia was zooming past at great speed as we crossed it’s great arterial highway. Golden brown scrubland, dry skeletal trees, yellow-tinged earth, low rolling hills. Small villages clustered by the highway, clusters of tiny thatch huts with people and livestock standing around, sweeping leaves or carrying bales of wood. This truly felt like wild Africa.