We left Mwanza on monday, our destination: Geita. So first we had to take the ferry across Lake Victoria. We arrived just in time for the ferry and started the 30 min trip. But all of this would take a bit longer... There were some trucks on the ferry, and one of them had 2 huge 5-ton wheels for a dumpdruck on the back. No problem there, but, the wheels were to big to fit under the bridge of the ferry, so ofcourse they got stuck. The guys first tried to just hit the throttle and ram through, but no succes. After deflating the tires of the truck (1h30m) they managed to get through and we were on our way. The road wasn't to good, but we've seen worse. After arriving in Geita, we checked in at the Lake view (as everything is called here) Hotel and camped because all the rooms were occupied (mine workers). There was a lot of rain that night...

Next day our goal was to get to the Rwanda border at Rusumo. First we had to get to the tarred road, this was a tough drive because of all the rain the night before. At 3 o'clock we were at the border and found out there was no camping space or guest house on the Tanzania side of Rusumo, so we crossed the border. Here we found out that driving with flip-flops is illegal in Tanzania!!
The rest is on the Rwanda-page...

So, we're in Mwanza. At the beautiful and very huge Lake Victoria. Let me sum up the last few days...

After hanging around the Kilimanjaro for two days we were getting a bit depressed by the sight of all the happy people coming down the mountain, so we decided to leave. We went to Arusha, and stayed at Masai camp. Nice place, there was live music that night. We did some internetting and book-buying as well. The next day we went to the Old Arush Clinic first of all because Alex was having some facials skin problems. He has never been seen by a doctor so quick in his life, 2 minutes after arrival at the clinic!! He's better now by the way.

After Arusha we went to Karatu, our plan was to go to the Ngorongoro crater and then take a shortcut over a 4x4-track in the direction of Mwanza. We calculated 24 hours in the crater with our own car would cost us 140 USD. But on arrival we discovered it was 240 USD, because they raised the service fee from 10 to 100 USD all of a sudden. Again, we were very disappointed. We're starting to get fed up with the way Tanzania charges tourists. But we reckon as long as there are Americans paying obscene amounts of money for an expensive zoo, they will keep raising the fees... So we left the crater entrance and started driving (it's al longer drive when you can't cross the Ngorongoro National Park) and ended up in Babati. Instantly, we found we were no longer in tourist-Tanzania. Very friendly people and a huge drop in prices. We stayed in the Trinidad lodge with the car securely parked and a double room for TSH 7.000 (EUR 4.80)! The next day we drove on to Singida. The roads over here are not tarred, so we cannot do alot of km's per day. Again we stayed in a good lodge for little money.

Then yesterday would be the back breaker, driving from Singida to Shiyanga. 300 km with an average of 30 km/hour! So we started at 7:30 an then all of a sudden at 12:00 there was a tarred road!! That's the only advantage of having old maps in a developing country. We arrived at Siyanga early, so rattled on to Mwanza. We arrived at 17:00 after 9 hours of driving, completely exhausted. We wanted to hang around the lake and relax, but there's not much to do here. And today it has been raining all day long... We found this little pizzaria where they have terrific fresh fruit and great pizza's, so untill Monday we'll be either there or in an internet cafe. Monday we leave again and our plan is to be in Kigali by November 9th. Then you guys will get another update and hopefully some pictures. See you then!

Next was Ruaha National Park in Tanzani and again we had to made a stop, this time it was in Mbeya. The road was good but the distance and hills were killing. Happily the border did only take an hour or so (we finally bought the Comesa insurance (150usd for 3 months); also valid in Rwanda, Uganda, Kenia, Soudan etc.). We arrived in Mbeya in the dark. The owner of the lodge Utengule is Francis, a very nice guy who gave us his contact for climbing the Kilimanjaro. The next day we continued to Ruaha, again a very long drive and after the town Iringa another 100km's of very, very bad road had to be covered. Pietje was having a bad time because of diarrhea.

We stayed in the Ruaha River Lodge. They made problems of us two sleeping in the tent, so we were obliged to book a room at 80usd a day! Bastards. Furthermore the restaurant was not good, the waiter couldn't tell the difference between a beer, white wine or red wine and other employers were not friendly. So, if you visit Ruaha we recommend not to go to the Ruaha River Lodge! But the park was really beautiful. I have never seen so many elephants, zebra and giraffe at one place. To bad we didn't see any lions or other predators. Again we could see the elephants and other animals just few meters away from our boma (room).

Then the final stretch to Zanzibar with, again, one stop. This time in Morogoro, a nice little town not far from Dar es Salaam. The road to Iringa was again terrible, but after that it was ok. In Morogoro the Oasis Hotel couldn't stop laughing after the question if it was OK to sleep on our car that night on their parking. They even got in the tent to check it out, very friendly people!

The next day a little drive to Dar. It was no problem to leave our car at the Movenpick hotel and soon we were on the ferry. Just before we bought some books and wanted to pay with Mastercard. It was possible but they had to phone to Nairobi, and then another call... afterall it didn't work. The ferry takes about 90 minutes and is quite comfortable. Zanzibar was like Lake Malawi, a lot of relaxing and swimming. We did do the spice tour, very interesting because we never realized how and where some spices come from. The 26th, we dropped Elly + Leen at the airport and we took the ferry to Dar. With 4 we have had a really good time, but now it's time to move on! We said let's sit outside, yeah good idea.. a lot of salt and water later we arrived in Dar again. Next time we will travel by Dhow we hope.

The afternoon we were heading to the Kilimanjaro. We thought credit card was not accepted, but actually it is. Too bad we know that just now because we didn't go up. So a lot of time left to get to Rwanda. We decided to take it easy and stayed in Marangu Hotel, very comfortable and friendly. We met Jackie + Marc, nice Aussies and walked around the village with them to the waterfalls (not very impressive).

We've decided to stop driving in Egypt and ship the car from there to Amsterdam and fly back. The time it takes for driving back we rather spend in Africa.

Up to now no problems whatsoever regarding police, customs or the car! Let's hope it stays like this.