Tanzania: The Long March

On Sept 29th, we leave for Arusha National Park to begin the ascent of Mount Meru. At 4,566m (14,978ft), it isn’t the tallest mountain in Africa (that title goes to Mt. Kilimanjaro at 5,800m) but it is one of the most challenging, and certainly steeper than Kili. By the time we get our briefing, we(…)

Tanzania: Bush birthday

  Finally, it is time to leave our Alpine paradise and return to the hot and dusty Maasai plain. The seven hour drive to Ndarakwai, a camp on a Maasai ranch in the West Kilimanjaro region, gets us there just in time for a surprise birthday celebration for Enoch. Bush babies pop out of the(…)

Tanzania: Lost world

Still in the Usambaras, we drive three hours to the remote town of Mtae, a small settlement on a mountain “peninsula” which juts out over the Maasai plains, 1000 metres below. The road seems to go on forever, our journey only interrupted by the small school children who seem to dart on and off the(…)

Tanzania: Alpine Retreat

After the dry dust bowl of the plains, our arrival in the Western Usambara Mountains feels like crossing the Looking Glass. Lush forests, terrace fields and cool mountain air . We spend three days in a chalet on a Swiss farm, complete with sensible wooden furniture, fireplace, pretty flower beds and black and white Swiss(…)

Tanzania: “Over the hills and far away”

It is a seven hour drive from Bagamoyo to the Usambara Mountains, where we plan to spend a few days in Alpine isolation from the dust and heat of the plains. On the way we have the inevitable breakdown, smoke billowing out of the engine. Lomayani, our resourceful driver uses a Nakumatt supermarket bag to(…)