Gorillas in our Midst!

Take 4 teachers working in Dar, a former missionary turned Hollywood producer and an Aussie mining engineer living in Mongolia and it was never going to be anything but an interesting road trip through Uganda and Rwanda. Punctuated with highlights including a visit to the source of the River Nile, chimpanzee tracking in the Great … Continue reading

WHY I TRAVEL: The Maasai and the Storm Trooper, just another ordinary day in Dar es Salaam

I have often thought that travelling offers you the chance to go back in time. Such is the enormous difference between the world you know and your destination that it often seems to me the closest you can come to time travel. Living in Saigon, it sometimes felt like I had front row seats to … Continue reading

Mafia Island: Close Encounters of the Monster Kind

A thirty-minute flight from Dar es Salaam, lies the undeveloped, peaceful and pretty island of Mafia. Less touristic than Zanzibar, it is a glimpse of island life as it should be, without the big hotels and crowds of visitors. It offers an idyllic escape, good diving and in the warmer months of December- March, the … Continue reading

Back to Dar: Swahili For Beginners and Kite Surfing 101

There was no doubting that I was back in Dar. A smiling taxi driver held up a tattered piece of paper with my name scrawled on it, as I walked out into the milling crowd at the airport exit. The sign had read “Natalia” but it might as well have said “This sure the hell … Continue reading

La Dolce Vita: Summer in Italy

Italy is like a book you never want to finish. There are few books I would read more than once. Not because I have not enjoyed them, but because there are too many others left to read. Countries are a bit the same. There are so many to see and sometimes it seems a waste … Continue reading

School’s Out: The Selous

I normally jump on the first plane out of a country when my holidays start. This year when school finished on June 10 I decided to take a week to see some more of Tanzania before jetting off. I had long wanted to take the famous Tazara train, which operates between Dar and Zambia and … Continue reading

Kilimanjaro: It still snows on the roof of Africa

The only distraction from the small circular light radiating from my headlamp and aimed directly on the back of the guide’s boots in front of me, came from the glorious night sky, my stash of chocolate bars inside my jacket pocket and the certainty of morning which would finally put an end to this madness. … Continue reading

Zimbabwe: The Bold the Brave and the Beautiful

The man sitting beside me on the flight from Johannesburg turned and asked, “So, what is it you plan on doing while you’re in Zimbabwe?” It was a reasonable question, but one I couldn’t answer. The truth was I only knew the names of three places in Zimbabwe. Harare, the capital, which we would not … Continue reading

Spotlight On Dar Personalities!

In my last blog I mentioned how Roald Dahl had once lived in Dar es Salaam. I have since been surprised to learn how many other well-known names have at one point or another called Tanzania home. Freddie Mercury was born on Zanzibar and Che Guevara stayed in Dar for quite some time during the … Continue reading

Life in Dar: Learning to See the Trees For the Forest

I read an interesting statistic recently. Dar es Salaam is ranked the 12th Dirtiest City in the World. Although not a title worthy of the travel brochures, it has to be said, that is quite the achievement. After all, how many cities are there in the world? To come in just outside the Top 10 … Continue reading

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