Published: March 9th 2011March 9th 2011
So after the bright lights of Dubai, we landed back in reality in Nairobi in the evening and met up with Aleem, Carrie’s friend from Uni who lives in Nairobi. He kindly took us out for a bite to eat (best Indian food we have had, including when we went to India!) and a few Tusker beers. Unfortunatley, we left at 7am the next morning so that was the extent of Nairobi that we saw, but it was great to see a friendly face!
So, the next morning we were up early and met our group, guide and bus that is taking us all the way to Cape Town in the next 40 days. There are 21 of us in all, with ages ranging from 19 to pensioners. Lots of different nationalities but I am one of only 5 blokes so the quality of conversation leaves a lot to be desired. Some people leave and new joiners arrive in Zanzibar so hopefully there will be a few more younger guys (not in a paedo/gay way) join.
We left Nairobi and had a long drive to Arusha, just over the border in Tanzania. Our bus is ok but no aircon so it
is windows open and a large supply of deoderant is required. We stopped off at a Tanzanite store –but after Jaipur and Dubai, I had had enough of gem shopping so barred Carrie from taking any money with her. We then arrived at our first camp site – called Snake Village. They had loads of snakes in cages which was a little freaky as we were looking at snakes that could eat you whole and they lived in Tanzania – and we were camping! The first night sleep was aided by a few Kilimanjaro beers then we set off at 5 the next morning on Safari.
We headed to the Ngoro Ngoro Crater and the Serengeti national park. We stayed 2 nights and had 3 days on safari. It was amazing. Highlights include:
- Lunch on day 1. We pic-nicked at a pic-nick site and the guides warned us to be careful as the birds steal your food. Now, these were no pigeons but huge black kites which dived like Stukers with big and sharp talons and took food out of people’s hands. After a few attacks, most of us headed back into the trucks to eat in peace, but
Carrie and a couple of other girls decided that they would brave it outand continued to eat outside, but leaning over their food as protection. Whilst leaning over, they failed to notice a wild pig sneaking up on them as it was interested in their food. It then charged, the girls ran off leaving their lunch on the ground, and it was quickly hoovered up by the pig. It was hilarious!
- Seeing all of the Big 5 (Lions, Leopards, Elephants, Buffalo and Rhinos)
- Seeing 3 cheetas drinking (water, not Kili beer) about 2 yards from our jeep
- Having to shine your torch all around when getting up for a wee in the night as buffalo and elephants come into the camp sites
- Carrie’s reaction to having to shine your torch all around when getting up for a wee in the night as buffalo and elephants come into the camp sites
- Seeing hippos up close and on the run
- Getting very close to 2 lions who we thought were going to mate – but they didn’t!
- Pitching our tent 20 yards from where a huge elephant was drinking water from the camp’s water supply
– then taking photos and hoping that it wasn’t going to charge!
- The 4:30am wake up calls
- Seeing a leapard at a distance of about 30 yards sitting in a tree.
- The food – was actually very good and all cooked for us by our guides – we just help out with the dishes.
- The toilets – a frog jumped on my foot when I was on the loo. Carrie is also loving the squats!
- Evenings by the camp fire
This safari was 10x better than the ones I have done before. We got really close to the animals and saw everything we wanted (apart from a kill and the lions getting down to it, which sounds a bit pervy come to think of it!). We were in a jeep of just 4 of us so we could move around, take photos and our jeep buddies were 2 fun girls – Daisy from Croydon and Kellie from Canada . Also, the scenery in the park and the crater was fantastic.
The following day we packed up our stuff, put the wet tents away at 5am and set off to Dar es Salam. We left about
6am and arrived at 8pm. What a fun day! We had the option of upgrading from tents to beach huts for $10 each. Guess what we did? Carrie is loving the camping and hasn’t complained once, but as a treat we got a hut! Waking up 10 yards from the Indian Ocean was pretty special. We are now on a ferry to Zanzibar where we will spend 4 nights.
Until the next time..
There are more photos below