Claire Wade

RedPlanetClaire

Claire Wade

I started these blogs as a record for myself- something to read and comfort me when I'm old, cold and broke, wondering where all my money went...

With time, my blogs have developed as it turned out other people were reading them! This has inspired me to improve my writing (well I try) and add more photos. I hope you enjoy reading my blogs and please do leave comments.

The photos in the blog are taken on my phone, but when I return home, I always have lots of images from my DSLR, that I upload to Flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/wadeyc





Africa » Tanzania » Zanzibar » Zanzibar City September 22nd 2018

The ferry port at Zanzibar is something Glyn described as a well oiled machine. This is sarcasm, as sheer chaos with a lack of information and people blocking the entrance as they swarmed to get through immigration is not oily. But it is sweat-soaked as the heat was intense stuffed with packed bodies and luggage. It was a necessary evil to get us on our way home. Earlier I put a cleanish tshirt and deodorant in my hand luggage so I don't stink too badly on the plane, but things aren't looking hopeful and pity the poor people sitting near Glyn and myself. After packing, we had time for a last wander around Stone Town, buying essential souvenirs and tat before doing a self tour. We were stuck in there for ages getting lost, having gone ... read more
Stone Town
cat in souvenir shop
Stone Town Kitten

Africa » Tanzania » Zanzibar September 21st 2018

Today is our last full day in Zanzibar/Tanzania and we'd left it free as a relaxation day, only there's things to do and see. The question was how to fit it all into a day. So I went on TripAdvisor and searched out a driver to get us around and organised. 'Friendly Taxis and Tours' had consistent 5 star reviews, so I contacted them and Salim arrived at just after 8.30am. The first place was Jozani Forest, going south on the island. It is home to a colony of Zanzibar Red Colobus Monkeys of which there are only a few left in the wild. Salim left us with another guide along with 4 other tourists after purchasing the permits we required to enter. We stepped into the forest and quickly came upon a group of small ... read more
red colobus monkey
tiny from on leaf
mangrove

Africa » Tanzania » Zanzibar » Nungwi September 20th 2018

A cheetah chewed my hair!! I felt his teeth on my skull and there's cheetah slobber in my hair - I'll never wash it again! I also hand-fed a lion, bottle-fed a baby vervet monkey and been in an enclosure wth a young white lion. This wasn't some tourist trap wth drugged and mistreated animals (before you worry), this was Cheetah Rock in Zanzibar, for rescued and injured wild animals. Full of awful stories about each animal's past and near extinction, but with some hope plus the chance to get near wild animals, just use your common sense (that was a problem for most) and our tourist money pays to keep it going. * please note that as we could only take one camera into the cat enclosures, I took my Nikon and left my phone, ... read more
Jenny and Chaka
Glyn and Doris the colobus monkey
glyn and lemur

Africa » Tanzania » Zanzibar » Zanzibar City September 19th 2018

Arusha airport is bigger than Kegoma, but not a lot, just the one scanner but a few desks plus some market stalls selling local trinkets and souvenirs. We were taken there by my new Instagram buddy, who I will be helping to improve his Hekima House Safari website, as they have a lot of competition from travel companies abroad. We'd been worried about paying extra fees at the airport due to a lack of communication from various people regarding bookings. It wasn't our fault as Glyn had done everything required but we'd been told via email we had to pay an extra $130, which we didn't have in cash and they don't take cards. However, bad communication worked in our favour at the airport as no one knew what we were talking about and we checked ... read more
moving the planes by pushing them, Arusha Airport
Kirundo Group
hubby in Arusha Airport

Africa » Tanzania » North » Arusha » Arusha City September 18th 2018

The Tengeru Cultural Tourism Programme is an organisation for tourists to experience local communities of the locals and culture of the Meru people of Tanzania, this is where we spent most of today. 65% of their profit goes into local schools, orphanages, women's projects and tree planting projects, so it is all good. Glyn found this place when researching coffee tours, as it also does this plus a village tour. The guys at Hekima House had no idea where it was situated, but sorted us out a lift there and as always, it was down a very long and bumpy dirt track including such a steep part that I didn't think the car could make it back up! The building itself was home to Mama Gladness, who owns the business and it was very beautiful with ... read more
Avenue of banana trees
coffee beans on bush
Peeled coffee bean from the bush

Africa » Tanzania » North » Ngorongoro Conservation Area September 17th 2018

Seeing the Big 5 all in one trip is a challenge and that is the reason why they are the Big 5. Rhino was the last to tick off the list and Bori had said not to get our hopes up as they're very shy. So even Bori can't believe that we saw a couple of rhino making a new addition to the family as baby looked on, not so shy are they? And in front of the children! Later on, passing rangers thought Bori was winding them up about this sighting - it's so unusual no one believes it! We photographed the sun rising over the Ngorongoro Crater because we'd gone very early again. Two reason for this: the predators are up and active, and the Hungarians are flying home tonight so we needed to ... read more
sunrise
lions in the distance napping
hyena

Africa » Tanzania » North September 16th 2018

There's another campsite here in the Serengeti where the campers were kept awake by 6 male lions taking down a buffalo during the night. Unlike our lions that were a couple of hundred metres away from our camp, these lions were at the camp edge, mere metres away from the toilet block, as was the dead buffalo. I hadn't heard a peep out of our lions, which was good as we had to be up at 5.15am. It was still starry and very dark when I emerged from my tent, so it was still necessary to go to the shower block in pairs. It gets light very quickly here and by the time we left at 6.15am, the land was well lit with a soft light. The reason for this early start is because many of ... read more
early morning elephants .
elephant in campsite.
elephant herd.

Africa » Tanzania » North » Serengeti National Park September 15th 2018

Waking up in the Serengeti is an amazing experience (unless it was unintentional) and lying in my tent I could hear various birds and animals making a variety of sounds. They were accompanied by the sounds of the rangers and cooks who talk endlessly, I'd love to know what about! In the distance a large herd of zebra were grazing and I'm sure I heard baboons. During the night we were surrounded by the grunting of buffalo grazing around the tents, plus the yowls of nearby hyena. It's still more peaceful than living in Stoke on Trent! At 6.20am it was extremely bright out despite the sun not having risen yet, so we could easily avoid all the buffalo dung when walking to the toilets. We met Molisi there and I proudly bragged how I managed ... read more
hubby in our tent at Serengeti
elephant.
zebra

Africa » Tanzania » North September 14th 2018

We got up at 6.20am to see the sunrise not worth mentioning, except I just have. At breakfast we were joined by two more guests from Hungary, Uri and Mark. They have just spent 5 days climbing Mount Kilimanjaro and were very happy to be eating food that is not frozen. They seem a good laugh and with the Polish couple, we have a nice group. Molisi, our chef told us off for not eating his papaya and said we probably would like his omelette. I did like it. We were meant to be leaving at 9am for the Serengeti, but it was closer to 9.30 by the time everything was packed up by Bori and Molisi. Glyn and I were getting angsty as its a couple of hours drive and we hate to miss a ... read more
Rudy and the friendly Massai
Agam lizard
blurry phone pic of cheetah

Africa » Tanzania » North » Tarangire National Park September 13th 2018

Glyn asked me this morning about my feelings on people who brush their teeth whilst walking. No. I do not agree with it. Teeth cleaning only takes a few minutes, so why the need to go for a walk around the campsite? There's also been a severe case of socks and sandals where the lady in question was actually wearing fluffy socks with said sandals. Her companion started singing 'here comes the sun' as the sun rose, then found the actual track on her phone, subjecting all around to it. I can't wait to read Glyn's blog as I'm sure he will go into a lot of depth about this kind of thing. We'd got up at 6.20am to see the sunrise at 6.40am. It was already light and the sky had been pale grey for ... read more
Giraffe
sign at entrance of park
Zebra in waterhole




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