Here Comes The Planet 45 – Tanzania 02

Our group, which has now taken to calling itself “Team Toto”, moves on to the main part of our African adventure when we meet up with the Dragoman tour that will be taking us around east Africa. We’ll be spending over a month with most of these people and our tour guide, Steve. The beginning of a new adventure!

In this episode we check out the Forodhani Night Market and the Darajani spice market in Stone Town before heading to a spice and fruit plantation tour where we get to sample lots of exotic fruits and see some impressive tree climbing. We stay in northern Zanzibar on Nungwi Beach where we get the chance to visit the Mnarani turtle sanctuary and tick something off Nicolette’s bucket list – swimming with turtles!

Also, people are rightfully worried about being bitten by turtles. Because it frickkin’ hurts.

Also, cute kitten!! 😀 😀

Nakuru National Park

Who’s studying who?

The alternative title for this post could’ve been ‘Not Our Best Game Drive Ever’. We woke up early and got into the vans (not jeeps this time – the vans are 4 wheel drive but don’t have the clearance of jeeps. This turned out to be rather unfortunate) in groups of 7. I was with Luke, Kat, Lucas, Pam, Ross and Joan.

After very heavy rains even getting out of the property was a challenge but we made it to the park which is set around Lake Nakuru, home of many black rhinos and many more birds than the previous parks I’ve been to. We were hoping to see flamingoes, although the rising water levels meant that most had left to find shallower lakes where the algae was easier to reach.

After a long wait to get into the park we got in and drove around, spotting rhinos almost immediately. Although I’m happy to see them, I don’t find rhinos all that interesting an I’ve seen them plenty of times in the past anyhow. The first one we saw did do something I’ve never seen before – it urinated. Now, this might not sound like something worth mentioning, but it was like someone had snuck underneath the rhino with a firehose, directed it horizontally out between the rhino’s hind legs and intermittently let it off. Quite an eye-opening sight and something you wouldn’t want to see too close up. It went on for ages.

We were part of a group of 3 vans as we drove around and, as I’ve said, there’d been heavy rains. Along one road there were some decent sized puddles and the first van got bogged.

Uh oh.

Fortunately a jeep came by and towed them out. Then the second van in our convoy (we were last) drove into exactly the same pothole, much to everyone’s surprise. There was plenty of room on the other side of the road so what, exactly, the driver was thinking, we had no idea. When that van was extricated, thanks to another jeep, our champion driver, Charles, managed to get across without getting bogged. There was much clapping and cheering within our van.

‘Adventure!’ say the drivers, every time something goes wrong.

Once we were all across we turned back to see that the helpful jeep had also become bogged but much, much worse than our vans had been – on one side the back corner was in up to its window. Of course we all piled out to have a good look and take photos and video. Even Charles got out his camera and had a photo with me in front of the stranded vehicle.

Eventually we all gave up on helping the jeep and headed off. The only noteworthy thing (in my books) that happened on the way out was seeing two young male giraffes play-fighting.


They were bashing their necks and heads together. Despite this being quite far away I could’ve sat there and watched for hours. I didn’t think I’d get to see that in our travels so I was extremely happy. Oh, we also saw some very cute monkeys along the road, quite close up too.

So really, not such a bad drive, and certainly exciting at points. Africa’s like that – you never know what’s around the corner.