N.., E.. & W..


N.., E.. & W..

We are Canadians living in Doha, Qatar. N.. was born in Sri Lanka, E.. was born in Poland and W.. was born in Canada.

This summer we were over the map starting in different places. Then we joined together in Zambia, and after a short trip to Chobe NP in the Okowongo delta, we proceeded east via Malawi to Northern Mozambique.

Total Distance: 0 miles / 0 kmMouse: 0,0

2012 Africa

East Africa to Southern Africa

Africa » Mozambique » Northern » Pemba August 20th 2012

Though Pemba is the gateway to the Quirimbas Archipelego, those islands are still a ways away. We decided to spend all our beach time in Pemba and not go to Ibo, or any of the other islands of the Quirimbas Archipelego. From our hotel room, we had a beautiful view of the Indian Ocean and the nightly sunsets were gorgeous. We went into town only once, to change money, as the hotel only took Meticais or Visa and not US dollars. Other than that small excursion, we spent all our time exploring the shore line near our hotel. The inter-tidal zone was quite interesting. We saw star fish, multi-coloured coral, sea anemone, moray eels, sea urchins, and many other interesting creatures. Swimming in the sea was also fun.... read more
Tidal Stream
Flipping Flip Flops

Africa » Mozambique » Northern » Pemba August 16th 2012

Eduardo, the taxi driver, claimed he was sick and couldn't show up at 08:00. Our hotel arranged for another driver, but at a much higher price than we'd arranged with Eduardo, yesterday. The most important thing was, we had to get to Pemba, as we fly out from Pemba to Dar-es-Salaam from where we head home to Doha. It was too late for the bus which had left at 05:00, and chapas would have been too much hassle for this distance (about 400 km). On the road, we realized this new driver was the friend Eduardo had taken the car jack from. Oh ... So, ... this made things interesting ... but, ... we had to get to Pemba. The road was being worked on in sections, but our driver was doing 120-130 km a lot ... read more

Africa » Mozambique » Northern » Island of Mozambique August 15th 2012

We got up and felt quite good. So, we negotiated a taxi to take us on a day trip to Mozambique Island, and also to Pemba tomorrow. The taxi was well cared and in excellent condition. It was going to be a good day! Mozambique Island has a similar history to Zanzibar Island. It was the capital of the country and was a slave trading centre that saw countless numbers of captives mistreated and boarded onto ships for transport to slave buying ports around the world. It's a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and was the primary reason for us selecting Northern Mozambique in this trip. We'd initially planned on 2 nights on the island, but a day trip was just as good, since we had a good hotel in Nampula, the drive each way was going ... read more

Africa » Mozambique » Northern » Nampula August 13th 2012

Nampula is the capital of this Northern Region of Mozambique, and as such it has lots of administrative offices and lots of activity. It does have a "hard edge" to it, but N.. Walked around and bought clothes and toiletries to replace the essentials that he lost. He managed to find everything he needed except secure Internet access. E.. cheated and used the hotel's computer. N.. refused to use a potentially compromised machine. It took us 2 days to recover from the stomach bug and the ill effects of lousy train travel.... read more

Africa » Mozambique » Northern » Nampula August 12th 2012

We got to the train station at 04:00. There was a semblance of a line up, but there were pockets of people not in the line up too. We stayed near the entrance to the station. At 04:30 the station doors were opened by big beefy men in hard hats who were used to crowd control. We used out torches to get to the unpopular 3rd class caqrriages near the front of the train. They were less crowded because they involved a long walk from the station platform. We got 3 seats in a corner where there was plenty of luggage space on top. We put our 3 bags on the top luggage rack and held on to our day packs in our laps. We chose the corner seats, so there would be more security for ... read more

Africa » Mozambique » Northern » Cuamba August 11th 2012

The road out of Cape Maclear was supposed to be a rough track and we understood it took an hour to get to Monkey Bay. From there it was another hour and a half to Mangochi and then another hour and a half to the Mozambique border at Chiponde/Mandimba. From there, it was another two hours to Cuamba. We were prepared for a tough day of travel. To make it easier, we hired a taxi at Cape Maclear to the border at Chiponde. The taxi driver really wanted the business, and underbid the "established" cartel prices listed on all the backpacker guest houses. We arranged to leave at 07:30, but the taxi driver finally showed up around 08:00. Then came the good news. The track out of Cape Maclear had been graded, and was being prepared ... read more
Bicycle Taxi at Border

Africa » Malawi » Southern » Cape Maclear August 10th 2012

Cape Maclear was the original location for the mission of Livingstonia. But, it turned out to be malarial, and andthus Livingstonia was relocated further north on Lake Nyassa (Lake Malawi). It's now a backpacker heaven with the usual banana pancakes for breakfast, myriad water activities, souvenir shopping and hammocks at most guest houses with a vibe to match. Oh yes .. Bob Marley and Reggae everywhere too. Tomorrow, we plan to head to Mozambique and head towards the Indian Ocean at Mozambique Island. It's going to be at least 2 days of travel.... read more
Cape Maclear Beach
Baobob Tree

Africa » Malawi » Southern » Cape Maclear August 9th 2012

Since the travel to Senga Bay was tough, we splurged and paid for a speed boat direct to Cape Maclear. The speed boat was an adventure in itself. Much better than paying for a zip line across Batoka Gorge at Victoria Falls. Longer than the 3 minute zip line too. When we first inquired about the speed boat, we were told it takes about 25 minutes from Senga Bay to Cape Maclear. Then someone else said it's more like 40 minutes. When we asked Captain Magic (Yes, that's his name, and the name of his boat was "Bad News"), he said it would be about an hour. We thought the lake was calm and the ride would be quite smoothe. Guess again! the beach areas were relatively calm, but the middle of the lake was windy ... read more
N.. and W.. Speeding
E.. and 1st Mate
Guest House Reception

Africa » Malawi » Central » Senga Bay August 7th 2012

Lilongwe is not the typical African capital city. It's laid back and low key. We decided to stay an extra day to catch our breath and also because we liked our hotel room so much. But, it turned out our room was already reserved. So, we went to the bus station around 11:00 and caught a half bus to Monkey Bay on Lake Malawi (Lake Nyassa). We were told it was a 4-5 hour trip. From Monkey Bay, it's a short hop to Cape Maclear, our actual destination. A half bus is a bus that seats less than 40 people and are older and less comfortable than full size buses. Only one full size bus goes each day to Monkey Bay, but it leaves early. The half buses leave whenever they are full. Full means really ... read more
Travel on Motola
Sunrise at Senga Bay
Boat Remnant

Africa » Malawi » Central » Lilongwe August 6th 2012

Following the Game Walk, we hired a taxi to take us to the Malawi border. The "taxi driver" was an off duty police officer. Civil servants are generally not paid a living wage. Most survive by charging bribes for the smallest of tasks. Others moonlight. As a bonus, the police officer was a good driver. The first hour of travel was on unpaved road, and was rough on the small car. The final leg was on fresh tarmac. After immigration formalities of stamping exit and entry visas, we got lucky when a Zambia-Malawi bus showed up at the border crossing heading to Lilongwe. Since it was Sunday, we'd considered staying at the border overnight, to give ourselves better choices at traversing the last hour and a half from the border to Lilongwe. This bus goes only ... read more

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