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Our route



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We entered Tanzania on a warm sunny day near Bukoba on the western side of Lake Victoria. We chatted to the customs men and managed to persuade them that they didn't want the 25 dollars they were asking for, and so Nelly entered Tanzania for free. We, on the other hand, had to buy visas for 50 dollars each. From the border we sped on to Bukoba and spent the afternoon there changing our Ugandan shillings into Tanzanian shillings and visiting the market for supplies.

The next day we headed round the Lake to Mwanza. We had decided not to take the ferry as they lift the car on with a crane and we didn't really like this idea. We still had to get a ferry but it was a standard drive on and off ferry and lasted about half an hour. The road to Mwanza is long but not that bad until you are within about 30km of the ferry when it deteriorates. We bounced along a very sandy track, with other lorries destined for the ferry, as it got dark. We ended up sleeping at the ferry terminal as we missed the last one of the day. Next morning we boarded the ferry after the 'off road express' had left.

Photo 1747 Off Road Express


In Mwanza we went for lunch over looking the lake, got some money from the ATM and lots of petrol before driving up towards the Serengeti and camping just outside the gate.
Lunch time next day we entered the Serengeti, Nelly was now officially only 2 tonnes or it would have cost 150$ for one day in the park.
The western corridor was not very full of animals. We saw a few herds of zebra and wildebeests but then only the wide open plains of the Serengeti, the TV pictures of the typical African plains were right before our eyes. We drove along towards the centre of the park and the campsite at Seronera and went along some tracks along the river banks looking for animals. Just as it was getting dark, we were heading to the campsite, and we saw a creature cross the road. "What was that?" "Don't know". We stopped to investigate, it was a leopard who was thinking about having Impala for dinner that night. He nestled down in the grass to watch them and wait but after a short while our eyes failed us and it was too dark to make out if he or his prey were still there. Dinner time for us instead.


Next morning the alarm went at 6am and we set off in search of more animals. This time we went towards the kopjies, outcrops of granite, and again searched the rivers. Reedbuck and waterbuck were nibbling away in the rivers but no more big cats. After lunch we entered the Ngorongoro crater conservation area. Immediately we met herds of wildebeests and zebras, all thinking about migrating north to find some water. The plains continued onwards and then rose up towards the crater and coolness.

Our first view into the Ngorongoro crater was late that afternoon and we camped on the rim before descending into the crater next morning. The road down was steep. They have a single descent and a single ascent road only for use by 4x4 vehicles and a gentler ascent and descent road in the north. We zigzagged our way down and drove in search of animals and we were certainly not disappointed. After a stop for breakfast we came across a lioness and two cubs walking along the track, then we turned towards the la ke and saw flamingos and hippos in the lake with elephants and buffalo nearby. Then, in a small cave, we saw some bat-eared foxes resting and hyenas not far away that were eating the remains of something as the vultures looked on, waiting for their turn. In the far distance, across a swamp containing crowned cranes and herons, we saw the distinctive horn of a rhinoceros and in the forest some vervet monkeys. The plains were dotted with wildebeest, warthog, ostriches and zebras all truly amazing stuff and with reluctance we ascended the very steep road out of the crater.


Photo 1855 Zebras drinking


Photo 1857 Buffalo


Once out of the park we sped onto Arusha and the Meserani Snake Park where we rested up and used their workshop. First off, was a wash for Nelly's bottom which revealed that the hole in the rear cross member was now quite large and we got that welded along with the drivers door post hole and some solder on the leaking pipe from the oil cooler. It took three attempts to stop the leak but it seemed fixed. We also bought a new rotor arm. The existing one had broken and stopped Nelly when we were about 50km out of the Ngorongoro park. The screw holding the condenser on had shaken out and come loose and must have hit the rotor arm as suddenly she stopped, we put on the spare one and continued.

After a few days in Arusha we moved on, eastwards to Lushoto, an old German holiday resort from the time of German rule, and it was very refreshing up in the mountains. Then the heat returned when we descended down to sea level and Dar Es Salaam. We stayed right on the seaside at Mikado beach and swam in the warm waters of the Indian Ocean, again right out of the TV pictures and holiday brochures with the palm trees and white sand.

Unfortunately, the solder on the oil cooler was no use and we had to get the oil cooler fixed properly, so wen went to the industrial area of Dar and found an air conditioning place who took out the old bit of pipe and replaced it. The only problem now was the amount of oil that had been sprayed all over the engine. We cleaned it up as best we could and also changed the spark plugs.

The heat in Dar was quite oppressive at night when the temperature only dropped to 20degrees C, and after a few days of this we were heated through and through so left in search of so me coolness. This, we found in Mikumi, where we needed the duvet again. The main road goes straight through Mikumi National Park so we drove very slowly and were rewarded with sights of warthog, giraffe, zebra and elephants. After a night just outside the park we moved on to Iringa before Tukuyu and then south to Malawi. But not before the Nelly's odometer went back to 00000.


Photo 1919 - 99,999


Photo 1921 - 00,000



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