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Kilimanjaro via the Machame route

I am still living this adventure I did back in September 2007, The trip was supposed to be via the Rongai route but fires on the mountain closed the trail, so we were found a place on the Machame Route. My friend and I had planned it a good 12 months in advance, and picked September due to the lack of rain ( Hopefully ) and we also co-incided it the best we could with a full moon on Summit night, This worked out well as visibility was increased at night.

Wadi Rum jeep drive and Exhibition

In the morning we could finally see where we were : The Mountain Rocks were high and carved. When we climbed up on the rocks you could see the clear blue sky, the strech of desert and camels glistening in the morning sun. We ate breakfast at the Bedouin camp. It was pita,eggs, spices and jam. At 9am we all climbed into two jeeps to take us on a 4hr tour of Wadi Rum. It was such fun! Maybe the equal favourite thing so far (along with Mount Sinai). We stopped off at several places and could run down the gigantic sand dunes before climbing back up and going down them in the jeep.

The Spice Plantation - Zanzibar

Mmm… the food is lovely, so much so that I am the first one to get a second helping. Spicy meat, rice and bread, what more could I want under the African sun. The Cows at the farm are looking at me in hunger as I devoured my food and I bet there thinking greedy girl. The touring of the spice plantation is intense with the potent smells that were coming from the plants. Suddenly one of the workers climbs a coconut tree singing a tune that I will never forget, ‘Jambo Jambo.’ He then makes hats and jewellery for the group out of leaves and I must say we all look rather fetching.

Paradise found - Zanzibar

Wow, the scenery is fabulous and what a bonus it is because on the way here in the bus the buildings looked half finished and old. In reality I know it’s paradise that hasn’t yet been exploited by tourists. The palm trees and vast beeches remind me of a Caribbean country instead of beautiful Africa, though I am not complaining. In fact totally the opposite, as the sky and water is so blue in colour that it looks like they almost join together. Miles and miles of the Indian Ocean stretch before me and my heart is a bit in love with Africa.

The boat safari

Baboons move with a certain rhythm and style, almost as if they were thoroughbred race horses. They kept us company as we passed the swamp on the way to the lake. Our driver kept stopping the jeep to point out various birds which I am not to familiar with, though some of the other travellers on the jeep were on first name terms with them. A crocodile crashed into the water near our boat and it felt like he or she was watching us out of the corner of its eye, waiting for us to fall in or be silly enough to test the water with our hand. Bang!

The trip to Zanzibar

Oh no, the airport is a massive tree that has a roof made out of bamboos sticks and it looks like a wooden bus shelter, time to use the facilities and go a loo in the outdoor toilet! In flies what looks like a toy plane but in reality is really a small charter plane that seats eight people at the most. Will it be able to take our luggage as well, or should we just leave it behind? I am trying so hard to be brave. What can I do to take my mind off the roaring noise of the engine except stare at the pilot and hope the weather is good for him today?

The Lions

The boat safari was exhilarating but tiring and as I was sat in the front seat with the driver who was explaining to me about this vast game reserve, I was trying my best to stop my head from bobbing up and down from sleepiness and the sun, which was beating down on my head. The driver started pointing wildly to something and he was really excited. What’s the matter with him I thought? Then I saw it, a beautiful large cat sleeping under an African tree looking as if he didn’t have a care in the world, a Lion.

Goodbye Selous

I decided to rest today and I went to explore the waterholes near the lodges, not to near though as the monkeys prefer to paddle in it. I wanted to see the old fashioned ovens as well, that the marvellous cooks have been making excellent food from and after seeing them I know I will never again complain about washing up! The whole experience at the Selous game reserve has been wonderful and the best way to finish the evening off was go and star gaze in the star circle.

Stone Town - Zanzibar

Going around the former slave market sight was hunting especially trying to imagine how fifty people were confined in a room so small that it would be classed as a child’s bedroom in the UK. The atmosphere was eerie, like spirits were never put to rest there and they were still calling for help as they were shackled together without food or water for three days before being sold off, if they were strong enough to still be alive. ‘Kumbukumbu Ya Historia Ya Watumwa’ means memory for the slaves.

The jeep safari

A GIRAFFE… A GIRAFFE! At long last, hiding behind the tree. I never knew that they could camouflage themselves so well and if it wasn’t for our guide pointing it out, I would never have seen that beautiful animal with its long neck and bandy legs. “The battle cry of freedom” sound track kept playing around in my head as the jeep sped along the dusty ground disturbing a herd of Zebras and Impalas which ran away and disappeared from view within a matter of minutes. More Giraffe’s kept appearing, first there seemed to be one and then two appeared.