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17.04.2011, 15:30   ---   Final destination paradise

The 26-hours train ride passed surprisingly quickly and was definitely a good alternative to that 14-hours bus ride. We booked an entire compartment, slept a lot and watched the Tanzanian life in those little villages rolling by. Just before sunset we crossed the Selous Game Reserve and even spotted heaps of giraffes, warthogs, antelopes, wildebeests, zebras and an elephant – Game drive a bit different.

As we arrived in Dar Steph left for her new job and Bart and I took the ferry to Zanzibar the next day – my last stop in Africa and truly a paradise! Along with Tony (met him as we arrived in Zanzibar) we spent a few days in Stone Town, a beautiful little town with tiny alleys, many mosques, Arabic flair and extremely good food at the night market.
With rented motorbikes we explored the island and met pretty much every single policeman of Zanzibar … Mzungus (white people) are rich and hopefully don’t have all the necessary papers – reason enough to get stopped at every single police checkpoint!
For a few days we’re in Kendwa now in the island’s north, we’re staying in an incredibly posh apartment with a huge balcony towards the sea and Kendwa is full of people that I met before in Malawi and Mozambique . On a little exploration by bike Tony and I had a little crash on a slippery muddy road, got a few bruises and lost some skin… but wasn’t that bad and with a few modifications to the equipment I could still dive the next day! :-) I was lucky that the dive centre had scheduled a trip to Mnemba Atoll. The reefs around this little island are meant to be the best around Zanzibar , the water is crystal clear and turquoise, on our way out we saw a pot of dolphins, snorkelled with them briefly and the dives were absolutely stunning! Amazingly beautiful reefs, huge shoals of fish passing by and a massive green turtle chilling on the ground – I’d say that’s one of my top 5 dive sites so far! :-)
Today we’re gonna spend the rest of the day on the beach and work on our tan, tomorrow we’re heading back to Stone Town and Tuesday’s gonna be a bit of a flight marathon: Zanzibar – Dar es Salaam – Doha – Dubai! :-)  

19.04.2011, 21:15   ---   Bye Bye Africa

Finally the time has come, I’m on my way to Dubai ! My last flight just took off and I’m enjoying the big change sitting on a plane after all that African public transport. A comfortable seat all to myself (instead of being squeezed and stacked with many others), no chaos, no smelly dried fish, no shopping through the window (which was quite handy though), no live chicken under the seat…
After more than 5 months in Africa it’s time for something new and I can’t wait. Africa was great, beautiful landscape, exciting wildlife, I met fantastic people and had a brilliant time! But there’s also a downside, things that I just couldn’t stand anymore in the end. African buses, begging people, dirt, chaos… and whatever you do takes forever. That’s enough for now! And the worst of all is the crime rate and the lack of independence and freedom that comes with it as soon as it’s dark, as in most areas it’s not advisable (or even dangerous) to leave the house alone after dark.
After hearing heaps of terrible stories other people experienced in Africa I’m very very grateful that my journey has been so smooth and without any major problems!
Many people asked me for my favourite place in Africa … It’s not all that easy to tell! The diversity of Namibia , the incredibly friendly people in Zimbabwe , paradise-like beaches and fantastic friends in Mozambique … Every country had its beautiful side and I had a fantastic time on this continent!


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