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Author Topic: Round the World - Do you have beer we are coming to visit?  (Read 90872 times)

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Offline michnus

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These were the ones on the toilet doors. I must say the outdoor showers were quite groovy except for the salt water. We eventually move into one of the skew Banda's for not much more money.



Offline michnus

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Saucy Zanzibar
« Reply #161 on: January 28, 2012, 09:19:58 pm »
Zanzibar turned out to be more of a tourist island than we expected – almost everything in Zanzibar is setup with tourism in mind. Spice tours, town tours, park tours, Prison Island tours, …
The island can be split into 3 areas:
-   Stone Town, rich in history with its very old buildings, small alley ways, impressive doors and markets.
-   The South with beautiful beaches, expensive lodges and the national park.
-   The Northern beach area, buzzling with bikini and speedo cladded people, parties and many activities. This was where we headed!!


Paradise Island

Transport to and around Zanzibar could be very expensive if you do not shop around. We left Dar Es Salam with a ferry called, Kilimanjaro – the air-conditioned, first class luxury view will cost you $40, but makes the 70km to Zanzibar enjoyable. Regardless of ‘The Karate Kid’ movie showing repeatedly!

 
The story goes that those pointy cobber knobs were to keep Elephants away from rubbing against the doors in India it made it's way across to Zanzibar



It turned out to be quite a mission to take our bikes across with us – quotes around $250usd per bike makes renting a Vespa or Piaggio for roughly $20usd fair enough. Elsebie, Martijn, Wibien and I rented a ‘well-worn’ Suzuki Vitara for $30usd a day and made a beeline for the North. If you thought bribing is well and ripe in SA – you should see it around Zanzibar and Tanzania! We were stopped 4 times in 2 days – and blatantly asked for money as all our permits and paperwork were in order. Linda and Harry decided to rent motorcycles to stay in the spirit of the trip..


Use more fuel per mile than an Elephant tank!

 
Local transport

In Stone Town we met our guide, arranged via a person in Dar, Amour (yeah, ‘Love’ is the direct translation of Amour!).  Initially we thought that we do not need a guide, but little did we know how important it was to have a tour guide for Stonetone – the history needs explaining and not to miss some very interesting titbits about the cities spicy past, and then a negotiator is essential.  ‘Love’ was the perfect guide for us, not overbearing but quiet, knowledgeable and keeping a steady island pace.


The Mercury bar named after Freddie Mercury is a happening hip spot! (Check out the roof fan!)


Life on this island is slow and easy. Looooove it!

Stone Town turned out the be the birth place of Freddy Mercury and it seemed fit to go to the Mercury pub first – traveling is known to be a thirsty job and the arrangement of beers must be explored!

 


There is an evening food market everyday with an abundance of sea food and other foods like sweet pancakes with banana and chocolate spread.
The locally made cane sugar drink goes down well in the heat.

The small alleyways of Stone Town are amazing, initially you feel you can get lost quite easily.  You will find almost everything you need in these small alley shops. The history screaming at you once you see the doors, which played a huge role in showing off wealth, religion and origins.

 




The local fish market is right out of Asterix and Obelix village. Very busy and a thick fish stench sits in the back of your nostrils. The sad sight are the fish on the floor, it's enough to drive anybody to become a vegetarian.

   Boat building by hand and the traditional way.                                Roadside food, just love it!

You will not go hungry in Stone Town – there are so many restaurants, drinking spots and then the legendary night market in the square.  Take lots of small change as it is SO DIFFICULT for the sellers to find change … they seem to profit not only out of the sales but by making sure you return for your change or eventually telling them to keep it.  We sampled some of the fish sosaties, coconut milk bread, banana & choc filled ‘pizza’ and sugar cane drinks.  It is exciting and wonderful!

 
Half day excursion to Prison Island from Stonetone with the snorkeling and a visit to these 120 year old frisky tortoises.

The Prison Island tour takes you to a small little island visible from the harbour. Originally intended for prisoners but later used for the quarantining of incoming ships and passengers – thus managing illnesses on the island.  The snorkelling was fantastic, the island so beautiful and the tortoises – well for a 185 year old one … still frisky!


Sun-downers from one of the bars in Stonetown offers some of the most beautiful sunsets and is worth spending some time with friends from early afternoon.

« Last Edit: January 29, 2012, 10:34:23 am by michnus »
 

Offline Pietcoke

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Great RR Michnus :thumleft:

Thanx for all your efford just for us dawgs to read on the WD forum :mwink:
I don't know how to act my age.....I have never been this old before!
 

Offline michnus

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Great RR Michnus :thumleft:

Thanx for all your efford just for us dawgs to read on the WD forum :mwink:

It is difficult to write on the trip and uploading pictures is pure hell. That's why I post it here with a bit more info and more pictures.  ;)

Offline michnus

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The northern beach area of Zanzibar is where the young party and frolic in the sun. You can easily spend quite a bit of time on this side of the island. Snorkeling, diving, wind surf, sail, fish, go pub crawling or just do some people watching late in the afternoon while watching the sun set over the turquoise waters.  The beaches range from picture perfect white sands to rocky cliffs.  You will hear friendly ‘Jumbo’ calls everywhere and the food is as always colourful and good.

If I have to choose between Mauritius and Zanzibar, this place will win every time. It's laid back and not as touristy.


Drinking to the god of bikes.






Everybody and every animal has good time in Zanzibar, except for chicken and fish, they get eaten!




It was time to head back and fix the Dakar. Harold helped me and we erected a make shift cargo sail roof for shade. It's hell hot and there is no way we can work for 4-5hours in direct sun, it will boil the brains. A local guy was friendly enough to help us fix and clean the radiator and pump. The problem was the Malawi water I sued had sediment in it and it ate the water pump seals.

       


There's still good men left in Africa


On the road again!!

We were heading for Arusha a lovely scenic small town a few kilometers away from Kilimanjaro. We camped at the Honey badger over-landers lodge 15km away from Kilimanjaro. The next day we head up towards the entrance gate of Kilimanjaro just to be stopped at the gates and told we are not allowed to enter the park. Oo well, just as good is to sit at the closest pub and have a few beers.




The road to Arusha offers plenty of stops for water. Fixing punctures became a common activity


At the Honey Badger lodge I got this wannabe artist to paint me a Tanzania scene on my R1000 screen. Well he whole heartily fucked it up!! He took a carpet knife and cut out a vinyl sticker of his company's on my screen. Live and learn it's
.

   


Elsebie trying to clean the clouds over the top of Kilimanjaro for a better picture

On our way down Kilimanjaro back to Arusha Elsebie and me took a new a track that I saw on a map that wound it's way  around the base of Kilimanjaro towards Arusha but it is not on T4A or the other map sets. The dirt track meanders through an old forest with thick under growth and stunning views over the base of Kilimanjaro.


This was some of the best 6 hours of dirt track we have ridden in months, lots of technical sections and steep decents!

Masai camp in Arusha is about the best place to camp, there's also some rooms but horrendously expensive. Every Friday and Saturday night there's a huge party with the young from all over the world that cavort and binge till the early hours. It's a cosmopolitan mix of black and white and any other race on the face of the earth. I really feel free and home  with all these different beings having a good time around me.

 


Deniz and Elif that rode from Turkey to Cape Town on their Triumph. He did some damage to the bike at lake Turkana.


Life is good, forging new friendships and having a blast!!



Offline goingnowherequickly

Thanks for the update michnus... :thumleft:
The Zanzibar pics bring back a lot of memories from when I was there in 2008/9
Had a good few parties at the bar with the bike in the palm tree ( cant remember the name now - Cholos?)
Also saw the acrobatic team perform & the kids doing somersaults off the tyres...

 
Keep it coming, loving this report
 

Offline michnus

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It's a stunning place to spend some time. I think if I have a choice of Mauritius or Zanzibar I will go back to Zanzibar any day!

Offline See Duiwel

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Michnus, ek dink jy lieg. Julle is nie op die trip nie, jy kry die foties seker vanaf Nat Geografics. Dis net te ongelooflik om waar te wees! Wag net dat my kids klaar is met skool!

Baie dankie vir great rr!
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Offline michnus

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Michnus, ek dink jy lieg. Julle is nie op die trip nie, jy kry die foties seker vanaf Nat Geografics. Dis net te ongelooflik om waar te wees! Wag net dat my kids klaar is met skool!

Baie dankie vir great rr!
Groete
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photoshop  :biggrin:

Wel dis die bait die, ek het soveel pelle wat my vertel hulle wil graag maar het te veel familie betrekkinge wat moet klaar dat ons dit nou maar doen en hopelik n klomp lee nes ouers eventually kry om te vertaan die lewe is te kort om te mors.  :mwink:


Offline GSLaaitie

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After saving this report for over 6 months, I finally had time to read it! (Lekker kantoorure op 'n Maandag!) It is epic! This is an amazing adventure. I can't wait to read more! Thanks Michnus for sharing this!
Beer isn't the answer. It's the question. The answer, is Yes!

True story
 

Offline Kerritz

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Awesome stuff!  :thumleft:
Vorige skoeters: XT660E, TL1000R, 2006 R1200GSA, 2010 R1200GSA 30 Years Anniversary, CRF450R, CRF450X, DRZ400SM, 950 Adventure, 990 SuperDuke (ISM) 2012 R1200GS Triple Black, F800GS, Wolskoeter!

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Offline michnus

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Thanks guy's the next one is on it's way, a special on the Sereneti and Ngorogoro crater  :mwink:

Offline Wheelman

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Thanks Michnus, as you say....Zanzibar over Mauritius anyday! Jambo :biggrin: :thumleft:
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Offline michnus

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Thanks Michnus, as you say....Zanzibar over Mauritius anyday! Jambo :biggrin: :thumleft:


Sese island in lake Victoria a bit more rough it but just as cool place to hang.  ;)
« Last Edit: February 16, 2012, 10:18:00 am by michnus »
 

Offline wolfman

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Simply fantastic! Can't wait for the rest
 

Offline michnus

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***The Serengeti and Ngorogoro special***
« Reply #175 on: February 22, 2012, 11:25:46 pm »
Sir David Attenborough's in his soft whispering voice,
 "More meat eaters hunt and scavenge on the short grass plains of the Serengeti than anywhere else in Africa.
"For lions in particular, this is — in the rainy season — a savannah paradise. With so much food on offer, it's a good time to raise cubs."






Trigger happy!

In the back of my mind David Attenborough whispered in his soft spoken corny voice something about the Serengeti lions while he sit meters away from then looking at the BBC TV program photographer. Maybe because that was how I grew up, TV and the programs depicting the cruel but beautiful Serengeti planes as told by David.


Masai and nature live togehter. The Masai do not hunt, they believe their god gave cattle to eat not wild life



The damn Land-cruiser bounces and jumps around on the rubbish dirt road. It is hot and cramped in the back of the sardine can with the sun baking us mercilessly. The typical sweet bushveld aroma fills my nostrils as we drove into the park, it is wonderful to smell and feel the bush again.







It is not at all, what I expected. The images of a Kruger park type formal set-up would meet us at the entrance of this mega park, I thought to myself. None of that, it is an informal affair with our guide, Salem, pays our entrance while we sip some beers while waiting and then off we went.


Early morning, and Giraffe for breakfast




Life is good for these kitties

Now here is the million dollars or Kruger-rand, question. Why would you pay so much money to come and see animals you can see in Kruger?

That was what Elsebie and I were asking to ourselves just before the weekend, as we paid our 570USD over to Bobby tours with a heavy hand. We both have visited most game parks in SA and I have worked in Kruger in my young and stupid days as a student for a year and a bit.


click-click for big view




Stunning, majestic, the trees in the Serengeti are like works of art.

In short, this is not Kruger or any other game park in South Africa. It is mind-blowing jaw drop beautiful. There are some big advantages to having less people and camps without fences. Whatever David Attenborough whispered on DSTV about the Serengeti and the migration could not begin to explain the goose bump filled atmosphere while you are standing between thousands of Wildebeest and Zebras. The noise and dust charge the air with energy. Lions with fat big bellies sleep under trees, food is plenty, I swear I could see the smugness on their faces.


The shifting sands of the Serengeti. This heap of fine black sand move around the planes at slow speed. It's a weird phenomenon, the sand is completely different in colour and texture than the surrounding soil. The locals track the movement of the heap with small sticks in the ground.


Lunch under a tree. No fences, no rules!




Hyena laughing all the way to the den

As far as the eye could see there were animals roaming, never had I seen this in Kruger Park. It is a humbling feeling to see so many animals together and on the move. Salum said that was only the start of the migration! There are actually a few migrations throughout the year and this one is just a practice run for them.
In two days, we saw the most breathtakingly scenes the Serengeti could offer and the big five.


Game viewing vehicle Tanzania style.


When they say food included, it's not Butcher's Block steak. Spanish omelet, deep fried vienna, and bread. Still beats any Mcdonald's or Spur

Meat delivery Land Rover. Cold storage?
                                   What cold storage?
                                   Bulk water supply Tanzania


To go back a bit, biggest disappointment was that we could not enter into the park with our bikes. Were also not too keen to spend the ransom money the Tanzania officials thought they deserve to get for their precious park. We would most probably not fly back just to see this. We went along with Harold and Linda seeing they have not been to parks that much and this must be a highlight in anybody’s books.


Having a mid day siesta under a tree, camp sites have no fences. This field mouse ran around us looking for some cheese, ye high hopes.

Harold and Linda took the time to research all the options for the 4 day safari and after many hours got to Bobby tours in Arusha. The first thing you need to know and to put things into perspective is that the Tanzanian park officials thought it good to try and discourage people from self-drive in the parks. Might be because they want to protect the environment or create jobs for locals or whatever, in the end, it will cost a normal person with his own 4×4 nearly as much or more to visit these parks than if you use an operator like Bobby tours.
For nearly 570USD you get 3 nights 4 days in Serengeti and Ngorongoro crater. It includes all meals and tents and only excludes alcohol, but a bit about that later.


click-click for big view

We used a Land Cruiser fitted with 4 seats in the back and a pop-up roof which allowed people to stand upright in the car to do game viewing.
I can understand why they do not want people to self-drive, the place is vast and flat. There are no direction boards to show the way to camp sites and look out points. You can self-drive for weeks and see nothing. The guides from the 300 different operators all talk to each other as they go around in the park and direct people to happening spots, which guarantees the visitor sightings of whatever is in the park. Chauffeur driven game drive rarely is this good.  
Before we entered Ngorongoro crater the last day we slept on the rim of the crater in a campsite, which is also not fenced. Elephants, Zebra’s and Hyenas walk through the camp at will.


Ngorogoro crater camping


Elephants and other animals share the camp site for a close up feel to nature


Cool man you say your office overlook the Ben Schoeman Highway in Gauteng, that must be awesome?
 :mwink:

Just before dinner, a few Elephants walked into the camp to drink some water from the water tanks. It seems like a regular occurrence as the guides just stood around and laughs at the overseas visitors coming close to the elephants for a photo. I spoke to one of the guides, he said there has never been a visitor killed, and the animals are quite tame! Yes, they thought wild elephants that are used to people are tame. At the same time, one of the older elephants made a mock charge at the visitors and in the blink of an eye, the campsite was empty.


Ngorogoro at dawn




Breakfast in front of a hippo pool in Ngorogoro crater. this is what makes Serengeti different to SA parks. This will never happen in SA. Too much rules

It is great still being able to camp like that, but for some reason I do not think this operation is going to last in future. Someone is going to be mowed down or seriously injured from stupidity and not knowing wild animals and the guides also do not educate people about this. It would be sorry if it happens but it is bound to.


Linda showing what prison feeding time must be like  :biggrin:

That night a lone ranger Hyena decided my bags had something that was edible. I woke with the noise of a snorting Hyena and Elsebie trying to wake me up while she played tug-a-war with the beast. Elsebie reluctantly let go when I told her the Hyena would most probably win this fight. He must have had the same ideas as us. He dropped the bag and ran off in to the night.

The next morning before sunset, we took the small dirt pass into Ngorogoro crater. There is one way down into the crater and another steep uphill pass out of the crater. The enclosed ecosystem exists for 100 of years in an area 8km˛. Small power pack game viewing does not come better than this.


On our way back to Arusha, Harold wants his bike back, this cramp limo is not for us.

In four days, we saw the big five and part of a migration in a park not over run with tourist. Better than that, you cannot ask for. If you are a nature lover or wild life narure photographer this is nirvana!
« Last Edit: February 23, 2012, 03:07:37 pm by michnus »
 

Offline Fuzzy Muzzy

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When I did Kili I should have taken the Crater tour offered to us.. it looks like it s an amazing experience but like you said. it is not a cheap experience, for bikers travelling through and around Southern Africa budgets get stretched.. 500US is a chunk of change.

Keep it coming.. enjoying it
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Offline michnus

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Fuzzy I have asked every traveller we have met on the trip and most skip Serengeti and Masai in Kenya due to cost. About all of them said they would rather come to Kruger as it's loads cheaper and the ablutions and stuff are 1st class.

They lose out big time with the exorbitant prices they charge, where the de hell all those money goes to is anybodies guest, but definitely not back into the parks infrastructure. The toilets and showers are a disgrace and the kitchens...eeeerrrrggg  :)
« Last Edit: February 23, 2012, 12:07:10 am by michnus »
 

Offline V-Strom

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Michnus ek is bly ek het op die Ride Report af gekom......nou het ek iets om na uit te sien as ek nie kan slaap nie.

Shit julle moet dit geniet, ek is nou k@k jaloers. Sien uit na die res.  :thumleft:
 

Offline michnus

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Bliksem we must get onto the new forum software, need to get onto a new page, otherwise like this one it start to get to long and takes too much time to open.