The perks of traveling to Africa are endless. Instead of scanning the game parks for rhino or setting off for a day sampling Cape chardonnays, take a look at the other side.
The townships of Cape Town….. You inhale the roots of freedom, exhaling air of human rights, justice, and reconciliation. A flow from shebeens to sangomas, the emotional sensory vibe sets you sparkling off with a vivid social culture. Nothing is amiss as every township bubbles with its own unique story about its struggles and how it evolved and revolved to its current state.
Beyond the hustles and bustles, just beyond the city of Cape Town, you find Bo-Kaap.
The “Bo Kaap” is one of the most interesting parts of Cape Town culturally and historically. Colorful houses, steep cobbled streets, the muezzin’s calls to prayer, and children traditionally dressed for Madrassa add to this unique Cape experience. It is a multicultural area, tucked into the fold of signal hill. Use the cobblestoned streets as your guide and you will be lead into a lively suburb filled with brightly colored houses from the nineteenth and seventeenth century, shrines of Muslim saints, an abundance of beautiful Mosques, and the very first mosque that existed in South Africa.
Use the cobblestoned streets as you are lead into a lively suburb filled with brightly colored houses from the nineteenth and seventeenth century, shrines of Muslim saints, an abundance of beautiful Mosques, and the very first mosque that existed in South Africa.
The residents of Bo-Kaap are mostly descended from slaves who were imported to the Cape by the Dutch during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. They came from Africa, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, India, and Java Malaysia. Some of them were political exiles and convicts. They were known as “Cape Malays”, which is incorrect as most of Bo-Kaap’s residents are not entirely of Malaysian descent. Their many Indonesian traces of vocabulary in the dialect of Cape, for example, “trim-
They were known as “Cape Malays”, which is incorrect as most of BoKaap’s residents are not entirely of Malaysian descent. Their many Indonesian traces of vocabulary in the dialect of Cape, for example, “trim-makaasi” thank-you, as well as “kanalah” please! There are also many words, which have also been substituted with Afrikaans.
Funnily enough, Afrikaans evolved as a language of its own through a simplification of Dutch so that the slaves could communicate with the Dutch and each other since they all came from different countries and cultures. Muslims were the first to write texts in Afrikaans.
Each year on the 2nd of January, the Bo-Kaap celebrates a big street party, the “Coon Carnival” in the center of town. It was originally introduced by the Muslim slaves who celebrated their only day off work in the whole year. Nowadays men, woman, and children march from the Grand Parade to the Green Point stadium, singing, and dancing.
Kramats or Muslim Shrines are burial sites of Saints of Islam. Cape Town residents have for a number of generations paid their respects these Shrines. There are three Karamats in Bo Kaap, and Signal Hill behind BoKaap has two.
One of the oldest buildings in Wale Street 71 houses the “Bo-Kaap Museum”. It is necessary to see since it feels like your stepping back in time. Built in by Jan de Waal in 1768, the museum was originally the home of Abu Bakr Effendi, a well-known Turkish scholar and prominent leader in the Muslim community. He was brought here in the mid-19th century to help quell feuding between Muslim factions and is believed to have written one of the first books in Afrikaans. The house has been furnished to re-create the lifestyle of a typical Malay family in the 19th century within a national socio-political and cultural context. Look for works by artist Gregoire Boonzaire, who’s famous for capturing the chaos and charm of neighborhoods such as the Bo-Kaap and District Six.
The Dutch brought slaves that were skilled artisans, political exiles, artisans, religious leader’s famous scholars, and convicts too. Islam, who roots started in Saudi Arabia some 1400 years ago, was brought to the Cape in the 1700’s. Skills and talents passed down from generation to generation accompanied these slaves. Not only skilled artisan but also superb cooks and cuisines blossomed. The Cape Malay Cuisine is not only delicious but also unique and has played a huge role in South African dishes.
A township tour can be one of the most illuminating and life-affirming experiences you will ever have.
Recently in a conversation with an eager traveler on the lookout for the best Safari, I was asked, why Tanzania? A good Safari is just that, anywhere. I could not answer him. It was not a single line answer for a short conversation. I thought about it for several days........What will you get 'Only in Tanzania'. What are the unique aspects of Tanzania?
A citizen report announced that 27 new endemic species of animals were discovered, exclusive to Tanzania. Not anywhere else in the world but in Tanzania’s the Eastern Arc Mountains.
The biological potential was an instant qualification to the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites.
Scientists from the Italian Science Museum advocating range inclusion in the Unesco list spent an entire decade surveying the mountains in Tanzania. Twenty-seven vertebrate species were found in the forests new to science and fourteen other species discovered that were unknown before
UdzungwaMountains forests in the south-central of Tanzania, researchers found a multitude species whose confined to the Eastern Arc mountain range, A curious chameleon species was of three newly discovered reptiles belonging to genus Kinyongia. A Mahege Mountains discovery.
The geologically ancient mountains and forests persistence of forests for millions of years result in extraordinary living forms.
It is an important site existing in Africa for vertebrate forms. Some of these species are one hundred million years old and are evidence of forest stability and unique evolutionary history of the mountains.
We have a list of mammal and tree species endemic to Tanzania, and probably much more will be discovered.
Explore Motherland Africa – Tanzania will continue posts in the ‘ Only in Tanzania’ stream in a discovery of all the unique features in the heart of The Motherland -Tanzania!
With its natural landscapes of wonder,the blessed land of Tanzania is one unforgettable destination to set foot on in the world.
It is not extremely expensive, but there is so much to do. This leaves you yearning to experience all you can, that can leave your wallets undernourished and the magnetism will leave you craving to come back.
Get Budget Wise in a Smart sense
A ‘must have’ trip to Tanzania can include mountain climbing, safaris, city bustling excitement and beach relax escapades. The ideal backpacking trip venture can include reaching the highest summit to the wilderness of Serengeti in the north until chimpanzees at the Gombe national park in the west.
The Tanzanian journey for most and many begin in the city of Dar-es-Salaam, the capital of Tanzania, a natural start for a tour around Tanzania.
It is a fascinating mixture of cultures. Dar-es-Salaam is a compelling insight into city life in Africa. The Kariakoo market is jam-packed with an allure of remarkable food and exotic products. Dance and nightclub joints leave you thumping to East African beats of Tanzania
There are cities in the north and the south of Dar-es-Salaam where you find camping and beach relaxation points. It is recommended to get in tune with Tanzania in the city a few days before jetting off to the natural wonders beyond the buzzing city life.
Trekking and Wildlife in Tanzania- The North
The essence of a travel in Africa is an experience of rich unique nature and wildlife. The northern side is where Mount Kilimanjaro the highest summit in Africa is located and amazing sightings along the way. A week can be dedicated to climbing the mountain. On route up, there are cabins and camps to spend nights and rest. It is possible to climb Kilimanjaro at any fitness or temperature level. Reaching the top can be tedious but exhilarating!
We have ample opportunities in Northern Tanzania to experience fascinating wildlife on a safari tour. There are alternatives to the known and most visited parks like Serengeti National Park. One is the Arusha National Park, between Mount Meru and Kilimanjaro.
Arusha National Park has a wide variety of flora and fauna that differs from the Serengeti National Park. It has savannah, marshes, and forests. The highlights include the Ngurdoto Crater, Mount Meru and Momela Lakes.
Mount Meru is the alternative to climbing Kilimanjaro. A unique opportunity to explore abundant wildlife. There are buffaloes, elephants, zebras, antelopes, monkey and bird types and leopards too.
There is a wide range of Safari options including the Lake Manyara National Park. The park has teeming hippos and gains its fame for masses of flamingos.
Another highlight is tree climbing lions. Spend a tent night camp and the evening can be spent absorbing and reflecting on the mesmerising day experiences and watch the sunset in a backdrop of huge baobab trees.
If you decide to travel through the west of Tanzania, chimpanzees in Gombe are the highlight in the Gombe Stream National Park. The park is near the border of Burundi near the Tanganyika lake and the only pathway there is a boat ride to the deepest Africa continent endeavor.
Jane Goodall researched chimp behavior in Tanzania since 1960. Chimpanzee sightings are special experiences. Baboons and monkey sightings, as well as approximately 200 bird species, can be possible in Gombe. There are many options of accommodation in lodges and lakeside camps or the permanent campsites.
Close by Lake Tanganyika next to the Zambia border is the Kalambo waterfalls. These are the second highest in Africa, 235 m tall. Visit Kalambo in conjunction with a trip to the Katavi National Park. The least visited because of it so so remote. Great opportunities to see wildlife. Katavi, a river delta has may elephants, hippos, and crocodiles
The highlights include the mesmerizing annual migration of the wildebeests in Serengeti. The south Serengeti and moving to northern Kenya as well as the Maasai Mara from about August to September. Safaris are in the range of $300 for about three or four days if you carefully plan.
Kilimanjaro with its snow-capped peak is a drawing card on a note. Experts say that the top glacier with the iconic snowcap will melt away by 2020, so get a move on to experience the soon to be the extinct wonder! The costs are between $850 and 5000 depending mainly on your willingness to rough it up.
Zanzibar, the spice island in the world apart from the mainland of Tanzania, it is a hidden Arabic alcove, and if you ignore the five-star hotels, you can experience the island that is forgotten by time. Blue waters and giant tortoises together with food markets to making your mouth water in a full moon party.
Ngorongoro Crater has more animals than you can imagine. It is brutally something else. Even months can pass by in a heartbeat in Tanzania.
The Tanzania Backpackers Budget
$30 to $40 per day excluding Safaris and climbing Kilimanjaro
Food: expect to spend $4 for each meal on the street and about $ 3 to $5 at semi décor cafés. Accommodation ranges from $10 to $15 dollars per night
Transport: Buses are about 3 dollars for an hour of travel, but it is common for them to be late
Zanzibar is almost 100 percent Islamic and culturally sensitive with dress and behavior. The mainland is more of a mixture but cultural awareness remains key.
There is Visa and MasterCard ATMs in most of the major towns and cities, visa is at $50 and are available when you land at the airports
Travel to Tanzania and start changing life and influencing others breaking free from to ‘real world’ padlocks in the wastelands that drown magnificence.
Kilimanjaro is a dormant volcano which has three separate volcanic cones, Mawenzi, Shira and Kibo, where the Uhuru summit is located.
Kibo is dormant but it is not extinct. Three hundred and sixty years ago, the last eruption from Kibo occurred. Volcanic activity that occurred two hundred years back and resulted in the ash pit (that is visible from the Uhuru Peak)
Hikers journey through five differing ecosystems – from alpine desert to rainforest right up to the arctic snowcap. Climbing 19,340 feet up is undoubtedly an empowering adventure of note.
Approximately 35,000 people launch to climb each year. The number of people that actually reach the top of the summit remains an elusive statistic.
The “Kili” climbs can take between five and nine days, depending on the route you choose and the time you have for the mission and reach the altitude.
There is a total of Kilimanjaro routes. Three routes from the south including, Machame, Marangu and Umbwe , two routes from the west – Lemosho and Shira, from the North-East Rongai. Another option is the Northern Circuit approaching from the with Lemosho as the starting point, and circles around the north following a summit passage through Gilman’s Point.
The first successful Kilimanjaro expedition took place 125 years ago. In October 1889, mountain climbers on a mission to reach the peak conquered the Mount Kilimanjaro after forty years of previous attempts.
Mount Kilimanjaro is the highest mountain in Africa, the most iconic peak in the world.
The Venture to Kilimanjaro
Snow capped and close to the equator, Mount Kilimanjaro attracts climbers from all over the globe. Reaching Africa’s highest point is a challenge many seek to undertake. Why?
It is Africa’s highest mountain and the world’s highest freestanding mountain.
Open plains rise up to touch soaring clouds with snow capped peaks at an elevation of 5895m.
Every ecological system existing in the world can be found on the mountain from tropical crops to cultivated slopes, lush forests n wild animals. Cactus like plantations, giant lobelia lies in above the forest. A saddle stretches between the Mawezi and Kobo peaks.
Cactus like plantations, giant lobelia lies in above the forest. A saddle stretches between the Mawezi and Kobo peaks.
The roof of Africa is a wonderland of magnificent beauty.
Kilimanjaro is an accessible summit. The Kobo peak can be reached without any special mountaineering equipment or climbing experience. A determination with proper clothing is all that is needed. The climb takes about six days with about five overnight stays in tents or mountain huts.
Gillman’s point is the lower peak on Kobo and Uhuru peak is the highest point. Spectacular glacier views and a wide crater.It is unforgettable triumph point expedition.
Main tips to take note off.
Tourists need to register and climb with a licensed guide.
Kilimanjaro is not as easy as literature reads out. The trail is steep and sections are filled with boulders that are two foot high
Altitude sickness can affect the fittest.
Knowing all these tips many venturefor the climb again to make it to the absolute top of Kilimanjaro
If you ever make it take a Kilimanjaro expedition, it is the most beautiful place that you will ever reach. It is pushing
The clearest night sky and willowy grass and the second peak loom ominously and untouched as it is an impossible climb.
There is much more along the way to Uhuru. It is about pushing yourself to the limits to gorgeous views from Uhuru, the summit of the Kibo peak. The entire climb takes you into another world.
Get the feel of Motherland Africa, right in your home
Homes are special spaces for all. From ecstatic regular travelers and ambitious wanderers to ‘stay at home’ enthusiasts, all will agree that there is no place like home with a feel,sense and touch of the magnificent continent,our Africa.
There is a growing need to reach out for the best Africa aura of style and comfort in every home or living space.
It should reflect the ultimate retreat, an outlet to peacefully cuddle into peace, embracing every savoring moment, after a long day in the out in the world.
Africa is vast sprawling all the way from Morroco and Egypt in the north to the Southern tip of Africa where the two oceans meet. Each country has a unique style. The common aspect is vibrant earth tones.
The common aspect is earth tones and vibrant color splashes. Decorating African theme homes have so many options available and identifying selections is crucial as it vibrates impact on the energy and feel of individual spaces.
The possibilities are endless from carved napkin holders in animal shapes to rugs with zebra images. Black, brown, beige and white are neutral colors for walls and floors. African artwork or black and white animal photography conjures the energy and feel of virility, strength and power.
There are various textile options available from the motherland of Africa. Hand-painted batiks from Zimbabwe in tablecloths and pillowcases to placemats and table runners. Culturally rich and distinctive Mud cloth, handwoven from Mali.Wall hangings from depicting village lives. Wooden sculptures and Africa artefacts like masks, purses, pouches walking sticks and smoking pipes make decorative pieces.
Africa décor can take the form of tiling with terracotta or sandstone tiles. Concrete floors treated and stained are common in southern Africa and are cool in hot climates.
A home with a twist ethnic African design flair is not an impossible dream. Start with bookstores and visit museums that display Africa objects and textiles. Or travel to Africa and get an authentic feel.
Accent home-style pieces with an antique style create aesthetic living spaces with a unique hint of definition engraved from historic African root marvels. Stepping back into time in amazing energy of appreciation of creation and adds a unique touch and sense to homes.
Antique furniture from Africa has a unique appeal of richness to any home. The solid, sturdy construction define unique touch of splendor to every element of lifestyle space, be it in the form of kitchen cabinets, a dining room table, a home office desk or bedroom space and more.
African antique furniture designs.
Africa vintage furniture adds to the realm of prideful ownership. The aura and style set forth an era of passion, embracing that “once upon a time” realm of authenticity and pureness in home décor.
Koloina Zaza, Koloina Zaza. The melodious tune had an echoing effect , leaving a mind ringtone of peace and harmony in my soul.
I will never forget the day I crossed paths with the KOLOINA ZAZA
(Nurturing Children) campaign.
It reached out to me on travels at so many getaways. I first came across a banner being held up on the streets of Madagascar. I never knew that the person I encountered and assisted in her endeavour to hold up the banner in the strong and persistent winds was none other than Lalah Arielle Lalah Razafimandimby and her sister Lanto Razafimandimby.
Their lyrics fuelled my soul. She told me that Koloina Zaza means nurturing children. She made me aware of the dire need in Madagascar to raise new generations.
Lalarintsoa Razafimandimby hails all the way from Madagascar. She is a keen traveller who took on a mission to bring change to the land of her origin.
She and has lived and travelled to all parts of the world igniting a sparkling awareness of her Malagasy roots Lalarintsoa is a vocal artist, with a talent she inherited from her late father, the legendary Malagasy singer Raindimby.
Lalah has used her skills as a stepping stone into the humanitarian deeds. Her calling to the Malagasy homeland was always rooted in uplifting Madagascar and triumphantly making a difference.
The vision of Koloina Zana was clear-cut, dealing with basic needs like daily health, keeping free from hunger. Furthermore, growth and development of education was the core for developing Madagascar to the deserved utmost.
Social ills that plagued society needed to be eradicated. The Koloina Zaza mission with a purpose launched.
The aim was larger than large. Skilled personnel. equipment suppliers and donors. education campaigns and social awareness of basic human rights
The larger than large mission was not impossible. Lalah joined in unison with Universal Human Rights Network a Washington-based NGO to launch a campaign to raise funds for the youth and children of Madagascar and overcoming the obstacles of hunger, homelessness, exploitation lack of access to education and healthcare, offering Hope to a new generation.
Universal Human Rights Network came on board of the Koloina Zaza programme working together with Malagasy citizens and their families.
The Koloina Zaza mission has launched. A call out to all volunteers, sponsors and fundraising outlets.
Many yearn to travel to Tanzania.There is way too much to do, climbing Kilimanjaro, kite surfing, quad exploring the vast national parks for wildlife, and landscape wonders.
And then there are the beaches. With all the action be sure that a healthy appetite will build up. A fine Tanzania cuisine and palate treat to savour on the ongoing adventure are sure to pass your way.
Here are a few ideas to splash into simmering into the adventure ahead when venturing to explore the heart of Motherland Africa in Tanzania or to re-experience treats after an escapade venture in Tanzania.
Let us start with a popular breakfast dish, Vitumbua. With a warm cup of ‘Chai’, you are sure to set off into an interesting day ahead with a start of taste bud sensations.
1 cup – Rice Flour
4 tablespoons of plain flour
1 cup Coconut milk
1 quarter cup sugar
1 teaspoon ground cardamom seeds
Mix the rice flour, the plain flour, coconut milk and cardamom adding water slowly to thicken the paste. Cover upkeep in a warm area for about an hour until bubbles form on the top and the mixture has doubled in size.
Stir the batter and place in a Vitumbua pan
Give the batter a stirring placing a drop of oil in each section. Pour in a teaspoon of batter and flip until it browns on both sides.
Ndizi Kaanga (Fried Plantains)
Place the butter in a frying pan until melted. Cut the plantains into quarters. Dip in lemon juice and place on the heated pan until they are browned lightly.Sprinkle with some nutmeg
Wali wa Nazi (Rice cooked in Coconut Milk)
2 cups rice
1 and a half cup of coconut milk and 2 and a half cup water
1 teaspoon of salt
Add the coconut milk and water mixture into a saucepan with salt until it reaches boiling point, Add in the rice and lower the heat , cover and simmer for about half an hour. Serve alone or as an accompaniment
2 cups of flour
1 onion chopped finely
Mix the flour salt and onion with hot water to make an elastic smooth dough and fold into a ball, Roll on a surface with flour and cook over medium heat in a frying pan and flip over once browned, The chapatti texture will be supple and soft once completed
Hundreds of miles of tropical golden sand beaches line this tideless inland sea. Relax in the sun on an uncrowded beach with long stretches of totally uninhabited golden sand lakeshore
Malawi's vast variety, overwhelming friendliness great lake, wildlife, landscape and culture makes it an ideal getaway for families.
Formally known as Nyasaland, it's surrounded by Mozambique,Zambia, and Tanzania.
The initial western inception was when David Livingstone entered the shores in 1859. A British wiped out slave trade in 1891.
For such a small country it has an unrivalled combination of Lake, Landscape and Wildlife. From rugged highlands to lowland plains, Malawi has an incredible variety of stunning landscapes.
The unique rolling hills of orchid-clad Nyika; the cool forested plateau of Zomba; the 10000 ft climbers’ paradise of Mulanje Massif; the broad and fertile Shire Valley.
Malawi means the “glitter of the sun rising across the lake”. And this vast inland sea is what we think about when we think about Malawi.
Lake Malawi is the third-largest lake in Africa, the 10th largest in the world and covers 1/5th of Malawi. It’s sometimes called the Calendar Lake because it’s 365 miles long and 52 miles wide.
Or find out more about the country. Karonga has an interesting but turbulent history as a centre for the notorious nineteenth-century slave trade.
Now the town is the site of a new museum focused on both its cultural history and the recent archaeological finds of dinosaur and hominid bones.
At the top of the northerly point of the lake, you will find Nkhata Bay, that was reached by David Livingstone. Its small sheltered harbour is a focus for the Lake’s fishing industry but it is also becoming increasingly important as a tourist centre.
Bandawe Mission was the place that Dr Robert Laws made the second attempt to establish a Livingstonia Mission. Like Cape Maclear, malaria took its toll and the missionaries moved further north to the present site on the Kondowe Plateau. The banked seating and lateral sided pulpit of the church and missionary graves remain
Off the eastern shore of the Lake is Likoma Island: a small piece of Malawi in Mozambican waters. This is where the headquarters of Livingstone’s mission to Central Africa in the 1880s. That’s why Malawi kept it when the Lake was divided politically after World War II. Likoma’s claim to fame is its cathedral (the size of Winchester’s) started in 1903. This vast building is a small piece of England in Africa, including stained glass and carved soapstone.
That’s why Malawi kept it when the Lake was divided politically after World War II. Likoma’s claim to fame is its cathedral (the size of Winchester’s) started in 1903. This vast building is a small piece of England in Africa, including stained glass and carved soapstone.
Visit the world’s first freshwater national park. Lake Malawi National Park, close to Monkey Bay, lies towards the southern extremity of the lake. The park includes a land area around the cape and bay as well as the Lake and islands up to 100 metres offshore. It’s also a world heritage site.
Snorkelling and scuba-diving are increasingly popular here because of the attraction of seeing the brilliantly coloured fish, the mbuna.
Lake Malawi contains more fish than any other lake in the world. Some of the rarest tropical fish in the world are unique to this vast lake. it has about 1000 species of fish. It’s is a true kaleidoscopic aquarium.
The countless thousands of freshwater fish, the mbuna, are more abundant and varied than anywhere else in the world and will feed directly from the hand.
Marine animals include two species of otter and occasional crocodiles.
Away from the lake, the park has baboons, klipspringer, bushbuck and vervet monkeys, antelope and hyrax, and, of course, there is a great variety of birdlife including fish eagles, kingfishers, cormorants and hamerkops. In the North the
In the North the lake is quite extraordinarily deep: 700m, plunging well below sea level. This reflects the enormity of the natural faulting of the Great Rift Valley which is the origin of the Lake itself.
Try out the range of watersports available along the length of Lake Malawi. Swimming, waterskiing, sailing and kayaking are all available along the extraordinarily clear lakeshore.
Because of its rich harvest of fish, the Lake plays an important part in the country’s economy. Fishing villages are scattered along the length of the lakeshore and you’re welcome to visit the traditional industry. Go fishing on the southern lakeshore north of Mangochi and at Senga Bay. There are opportunities to fish for yellow fish, lake salmon and lake tiger. Trout angling is easily arranged at Nyika Plateau or Chelinda as well as Zomba Plateau.
Go fishing on the southern lakeshore north of Mangochi and at Senga Bay. There are opportunities to fish for yellow fish, lake salmon and lake tiger. Trout angling is easily arranged at Nyika Plateau or Chelinda as well as Zomba Plateau.
Mumbo Island and Domwe Island camps offer idyllic island getaways. Malawi is an ideal destination not to be missed in Africa. #ExploreMotherlandAfrica
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Traditional music of Madagascar….Where do we begin to define it? We have the Austronesian influence on one side, and then Arab, African and European populations ingestion.The variety makes it impossible to specify origin of unique Madagascar tunes that rhythmically echo on on for a millennium.
The internet has given the pathway for a refreshing and reawakening of Madagascar music.The sacred and secular music alleys may be the sounds of a ritual or even used for animating teenage games in villages.
The Kingdom era has evolved into current day modern applications of melody replacements and trending pop culture in the cities. The rhythm of Madagascar language is innovative tunes in versions from every direction in the Madagascar landscape.
Local artists in remote villages retain traditional rustic sounds. The music reflects the history of communities and is not strive for stardom. The cities have interposed rhythms on traditional genres and incorporated spectacular innovation in electronic sound.
The complex mosaic of Madagascar is made up of a 22million population with 18 ethnicities. There are six provinces.The culture and common language is spoken throughout the land and the term of ethnicity has been abandoned making way for ‘human group’ gathering in rhythmic unison.
The Sakalava dominated the West in music influence. The Merina in the central highlands and Betsimisaraka in the east mark rhythmic variations. Áfindrafindrao is an ancestral tune that was danced in quadrille adopted in the 19th century by Merina Kins and later influenced every part of the big island.
The strongest group in the South, the Antandroy, preserve musical tradition, the contemporary musicians from this group are the most recognized groups internationally.
In the north, a special contribution was made to Madagascar traditional music by the Antahkarana. The most festive part of Madagascar favoured by vegetation and the climate.
Madagascar musical footprints include the Tanala., Bestileo, Bezanozano, Bara, Masikoro, Tsimihety, Antesaka, Sihanaka, Antemoro, Vezo, and a stream of others.
Traditional music instruments are the Valiha (zither pipe) and marovany (box zither). These are the most played. It is a legacy of the Mlayo Polynesian heritage.
Rice seed filled rattles are next called kantsa, koritsa or korintsana depending on the region.
There are four main categories in traditional Madagascar music. Aerophones, Idiophones, membranes and string. The common basis for traditional singers and musicians come from the influence of European, Arabic, Africa, and Austronesian contribution.
Kabosy* box guitar
Traditional ceremonies at ancestral ceremonies and possession rites are common. Music at funerals, marriages, circumcisions, initiation rites victories and pleasures are commemorated with traditional music where masses gather.
Malagasy soothing tunes (myspace.com/tambatra) by our contributor glamorous soul sister from Madagascar (myspace.com/tambatra myspace.com/tambatra1)
Traditional musicians in Madascar are self-taught, orally and by listening.
Malagasy music is filled with rhythms that rock. Combinations of traditional virtuoso music alight tight harmonies with buoyant grooves in infectious melodies. The wild instruments and energetic dancing along is a groove not to be missed. Malagasy hip hop entered and skyrocketed since mid-nineties and has skyrocketed.
Malagasies take pride in style and appearance and fashion design is in a sense actually indigenous to the island of Madagascar.
Madagascar clothing is unique with spectacular designs and decorated with colourful and bright scenes of daily life. The colours are created from natural dyes like roots, berries and bark. There is a proverb at the bottom of a “Lamba”
Lambas are made with yarn spun by hand from natural silk. The dyed yarn is hand woven and the silk used is indigenous to Madagascar.
Accessories and clothing are palettes for creativity. Every village and town in Madagascar have people sporting the most exquisite traditional garments along with some imported style.
Malagasy indigenous fashions are created from Raffia fabric and Lamba garment and raffia fabric and weave. Extraordinary and versatile made in various brilliant patterns and colours.
The Lamba can be a shirt, a wrap or trouser alternative, used as a baby sling or made into a dress in a moment, This garment is fundamental for women and men as well
The Lamba is traditional dress in Northern Madagascar, “Lamba means cloth but refers to matching fabrics around the waist and around shoulders. Is some sections the Lamba is usually worn by men as ceremonies like offerings and burials. Old men in rural areas on Madagascar plateau areas wear them more often. Unlike men, many women wear Lamba at all occasions.
Traditional Lamba is used to brighten contemporary jackets and pants and as accessories to western style clothing.
A creative outer garment replaces sweaters or jackets and there is a wide variety to creates unique personal style. Malagasy decorative fashion has developed into the Kreole fashion scene. The Malagasy mix of creative indigenous fabrics blending in with accessories from neighbouring African countries and Eurasia.
The distinctive African flair in a Eurasian flavour. Malagasy designs are cutting edge fashion styles with a blending combination of Asian garments and European hairstyles.
Design and textile artists from Madagascar make a bold presence on the global fashion scene.
Madagascar design and textile artists shine out in the world of fashion making a bold trailblazing presence on global fashion and entertainment stage.
The province of Kwa Zulu Natal provides opportunities to experience African culture in authentic first hand Zulu township and cultural tours.
Facts about township matters
The cultural rich etiquette of the soul of South Africa in townships can hardly be rivalled.
Township tours in Durban weave into the rhymes which were pathways for leaders like Nelson Mandela and Mahatma Gandhi. And an adventure to remember with an unforgettable ‘Shisanyama” (barbecue) mouth watering feast.
Townships were initially established under apartheid rule.
Non-whites were forbidden to own or live in property in exclusively designated white areas and confined to underdeveloped settlements.
Townships are this day and age are predominantly black or non-white people. Since democracy, the settlements have been developed and upgraded. They are now kaleidoscope suburbs capturing the essence of resilient people. The social vibe and energy is the hub of creativity and small businesses.
The oldest township in KZN is KwaMashu. Renowned for ethnic arts scene a tour in the mesmerizing location captures the essence of unique culture with a flair.
Experience life of KwaMashu residents and the neighbouring townships of Ntuzuma and Inanda. Get into the vibe and release into contemporary Kwaito style dance moves or varieties of hip hop and pantsula.
Get into the art vibe with drama performances and Mashkandi, the traditional music of the Zulu.
Experience herbalists and healers
Feel the spirit of true ‘Ubuntu’, the spirit if humanity in Umlazi the second largest South African township
Umlazi epitomises “African-ness” with its pulsating energy and vibrant culture.
Feel, taste and see the spirit of Africa in true essence
In 1967, The National Party established it as a black township. In this day Umlazi has emerged into a buzzing township in South Africa filled with shebeens, “Shisanyama” as well as jazz venues, popular for international tourists.
How would anyone define a Cape Town meal? Malay chicken curry? ‘Smaaklik’ potjiekos? Mouthwatering Chakalaka?
Cape Town offers all these meals and a whole lot more. A rich culinary history that delights palates.
The cooking inspiration of our fair mother city Cape town comes from way back in time. The Dutch arrival; in 1652 on the shores added to diversity with farming expertise, harvesting succulent crops and veggies that fed the starving sailors.
Potjiekos, a veggie and meat wine flavoured rice dish is popular meal choice of celebration and ‘Melktert’ (milk tart) as well.
The slave era and arrival of Javanese during the 18th century were often hired as chefs in the Dutch households and the gourmet influences they brought, lives on in Cape town dishes with an African twist spinning out unique cuisine.
The tasty hearty Cape Twon flavours improved with the Italian, German, Chinese, Portuguese and French residents and others. The melting pot of the Mother City is filled with flavours!
There are many circles of enjoying well-cooked home meals in the Cape Malay variety in the bustling Cape Town streets. Discover cuisines of any flavour from Greek, Morrocan, Mediterranean, Moroccan, American or Nigerian and another African cuisine at superb bistros and restaurants. Whether taste buds call for a bobotie or Cape Malay roti and beef curry, there are streams of culinary treats
The national South African snack.One bite gets you hooked. The dried meat gets cured in vinegar with a spicy blend creating and addictive flavour.
Barbecues or ‘braais are common past times. Sosaties are the cape version of kebabs. Meat marinated in chutney and curry skewed with apricots and onions.
Pap is derived from cornmeal and accompanies all cuisines.
Bobotie, a common Cape Malay cuisine is made from minced meat and curry that is baked and topped with dried fruits. It brings out the ethnic Cape Town flavours.
Unique to Cape Town the waterblommetjies is an indigenous flower that is edible and grows wild in the ponds. Bredie is a South African version of a stew and becomes a rich and elegant comfort food.
The sausage of South Africa
Gatsby’s are Cape Town specialities like Bunnie Chows are Durban treats. The sandwich is a basically a hollowed out roll with a curried filling or mixture.
Snoek and Chips
The best fish and chips in the entire world are found in Cape Town.
For dessert Malva pudding, a sweet and savoury spongy dish with apricot jam and a caramelized texture served with ice cream or custard.
Manyara National PARK, SERENGETI, Ngorongoro Crater, SAADANI National Park and ease into island relaxation Zanzibar
An Expedition of a Lifetime!
We take off from Dar es Salaam in early morning hours, and get breakfast as we head towards the northern highlands of Tanzania to the charming town called Arusha, where we spend the night and get ready to launch into a Safari experience of a lifetime.
Manyara National Park
A drive from Arusha to Manyara National park will take approximately two hours. A fascinating unique feature in Lake Manyara National park is a rare feature of lions that climb trees freely.
Lake Manyara is a soft introduction to the Safari journey ahead with scenic beauty, game views, flamingos, baboons elephants, a breathtaking lake that takes up most of the park, leaving a land strip of game concentration.
We take off to Ngorongoro Crater for a full day game drive
Day 6 and 7
We head off to Saadani National Park that is created in the historic triangle of Bagamoyo, Zanzibar, and Pangani. The Tanzania Wildlife sanctuary bordering the sea with a combination of marine flora in a fascinating setting, there are thirty species of mammals and numerous birds and reptiles in a preserved ecosystem including the Wami River, Mkwaja ranch, and Zaraninge forest.
Boat Safari in Saadani River Wami for two hours, we finally head off back to Dar es Salaam and take to ferry to Zanzibar
Drive back to Dar es Salaam and spend the night
Ferry to Zanzibar. In Zanzibar get barefoot on sands of the sea or lay back under the sun, dhow trips or dive.Go snorkelling or kayaking . This is relaxing breakaway on Zanzibar beaches after a magnificent escapade of a Safari in the motherland of Tanzania.
My venture into East Africa, Tanzania was a mind plan for many years and the biggest drawing card? ….Mount Kilimanjaro - The magnetising realm of the highest mountain on the motherland continent of Africa and the highest free standing mountain on earth! The gratifying feeling of being on the top of your world.
Not on the best fitness enthusiast level and having embarked on a raw food lifestyle many around me regarded the Kilimanjaro plan mystifying and found no reason or logic to withstand reaching the risk of a peak.
Until it is actually done, never mind those that frowned, you will personally see lessons learned along the way, not as a mountain expert or travel guide, but pure soul reflection of a climb of note.
My Trip Dates: 9 May 2011- 16 May 2011
Type of travel: Bus from the city centre of Dar-es Salaam to Moshi town. Slept over 9 May for the coming journey ahead.
The group had a wide range and diversity from the youngest of only 12years old ! We paid $1800 per person. There were eight people in total.
Choosing the Route
The planted sub conscious droning on streaming fear of the risk came in handy to factor common sense when it was time for coordination of the final plan of the adventure. Most will climb Kilimanjaro just once, so the path chosen should ensure success to get to the top!
Now statistics can really be unreliable depending on who is consulted. The estimation is that only thirty percent of people reach Uhuru Peak.
There are basically six official routes to get to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro.
Three of these routes, namely Marangu, Machame and Umbwe approach from a southerly direction. Two of the routes Lemosho and Shira from the west and Rongai from the northeasterly side.
Each has s considerations to take note of and differing success rates. I chose the five night Rongai route. It is consistent and gradual except when reaching the final ascent. It is less crowded and has a wider range of scenery.
Each person daring to venture the climb up should choose the best one for themselves or group that accompanies them.
Climbing Kilimanjaro is not a cheap mission and needs to be carefully planned. It is better not to try not cut corners and risk injury as a result.
We hiked for five hours! It was approximately eight kilometres in total. We were picked up in Arusha after an early morning breakfast. We drove to the Marangu Gate.
The trail starts in tall corn fields leading to pine forests. It was a gradual ascent and we enjoyed the surroundings. The Montane forests were spectacular. We had a lunch break halfway up. Our tents were set up by the time we reached 1st caves camp. We were made aware of cold temperatures of the night and served a warm supper!
On day two we hiked about seven hours up to Kekelewa caveat 3600m. We passed the second cave at 3450m and took a lunch break. All was set up by the time we reached the freezing and exposed camp!
On day 3 we ventured towards the Mawenzu tarn camp at 4330m. The trail was short but we got to see some exotic plants in the moorland. The views were just spectacular and we gazed at the sunset splendor.
On Day four we made our way up to the Kibo hut at 4700m. It took about five hours. The area is an alpine desert. It was an early night that evening.
Day Five took about eight hours, An ascent six kilometres up. We were on a mission to reach the summit! We were woken up close to midnight to begin the attempt to reach the summit. Rock and the steep path ahead at the highest altitude ever. We reached the snow covered point until the summit. A lifetime accomplishment!
Descend back down is about 27 km for six hours.We stopped at Horombo Hut at 3720m and finally Marangu Gate (1980m)
The dormant volcano Kilimanjaro comprises of the volcanic cones, Mawenzi, Kibo, this is where the Uhuru summit is .
Kibo is dormant but it is not extinct. The last eruption happened 360000 years back. Volcanic activity occurred two hundred years ago and the ash pit is visible from the Uhuru Peak.
The summit of Mount Kilimanjaro is called Uhuru Peak and stands at 5,895m. Mount Everest, 8,848 meters which are just over 2,950 meters higher than Kilimanjaro.
Depending on which route is taken, it is a walking mountain, so no need to worry if about grappling skills. If you happen to not be an avid hiker, it is best to get some practice trails beforehand.
More preparation will help. Prepare hiking between four and twelve hours each day for approximately six or seven days. You need to be comfortable with endurance bearing in mind the distance as well.
Do a through gear checklist. Get hiking boots. No one needs to deal with blister s and other feet issues.
The temperature and weather can fluctuate dramatically from the start to the end of the trip, so it is better to choose wick fabrics and bring along layers.
Get good quality thermal underwear and a warm hat, gloves, sunscreen and sunglasses, rain protection, a day pack, camel backs and water bottles
This is not a race, not a sprint. Chill out, relax and check out amazing views along the way while your body adjusts. The guides are helpful in pacing out the climb appropriately
Once the days hiking is over get ready to set up camp. Take a short climb up and back down for the body to adjust and acclimatise. Acute mountain sickness can affect the strongest and healthiest. All are susceptible and gender age or fitness does not correlate.
Be aware of the realities
It is an awkward truth that acute mountain sickness causes about ten people to die each year when they attempt to get to the top of Kilimanjaro. Many have to be carried down before getting to the top. The major issue causing evacuations as a result of altitude sickness.
Now success is also about drinking plenty water amounts and eating on a regular basis as well even if there may be a case of appetite loss. Get a guide or a company that provides good meals as well. There is a medication for acute mountain sickness if you feel an onset of symptoms coming up as well as prevention.
Once a certain point has been reached there is no way of curing any acute altitude sickness and at this time it would be best to stop the climb and head back down. It is important to pay attention to the body and never underestimate any signs of dangers.
Amazing sights along the way
The journey up offers travel passing through a rainforest, where there are pep monkeys and other crawlies too and worldly unique vegetation.
Once the top is reached there is not a lot of vegetation, but snow and rock, and the view from above get you viewing the clouds below! It is an amazing planet earth venture of note. Each camp along the way is breathtaking peaceful and beautiful beyond words.
It is the best time to click into a soul connection. Breathe m think and clear the mind. Contemplate your soul purpose, you connect the environment and think about how and why your calling here appeared.
But before delving into headspace do get to know the guides as well as fellow hikers that will accompany you on the journey ahead. There is a lot to learn from each other. Encouragement, patience and support are really needed.
The Mountain is Mind Over Matter
It is not completely true that there is no real challenge, It is a mountain for sure. The highest free standing in the world and the top of Africa!
By mind, over matter, we all reach an awareness level. We program our minds to create success or failure levels. Even if you decide that you are reaching the summit, it takes full energy, focus and total discipline.
I thought that summiting Lion’s Head and Table Mountain in Cape Town meant my mind level has been conquered. You have to work your mind up to not stand in the way of your mission to the Uhuru Peak summit.
The body is capable of the most incredible things. Once self-doubt is dealt with, the mental weariness slips away, new heights of capabilities gets discovered.
In actual fact, the final ten hours are extremely brutal in ways that are not imagined. On the last two nights, you only get to sleep for a limited time before taking off at midnight to keep going up.
You cannot spend much time at the altitude reached so there is a need to go up and down to maximise the hours of sunlight you can capture. You get tired. It is freezing cold! The altitude causes some brain waves to jerk you up a little. Oxygen is so thin and getting enough to breathe is a mission. And the physical exertion is overbearing.
The last miles to the top are steep and the sand gravel is not your best friend this time. Every time you step forward you slide half of a step backwards. It feels like a cruel joke on you. You got to keep holding up and will make it to the top.
And then you get to see the world from the most spectacular and you open your eyes and see that it was all worth it!
You will be at a conquering energy kneeling down in tears of exuberance, and there is a mobile reception on the top by the way. so get ready to Messenger, Tweet a and Skype away!
Once you are on the top, you get fifteen minutes there as the altitude to too tough for the body. You will need to journey down approximately sixty percent back before you can camp again. This can be another mission especially if you struggled to get to the summit.
Nevertheless, it is a well-earned victory. Nobody can really be sure they can make it to the top. Once you exit the gate of Kilimanjaro National park, the realisation hits you. You made it all the way and got the to top of the tallest free standing mountain in the whole world. You travel 50 miles and climb up19300 feet. And you are down to earth!
The human body and strength of your spirit can make you accomplish and handle amazing miracles you never imagined. Pushing yourself to the limits by reaching the peak of this mountain is the ultimate.
Exuberance and pride are intensely overwhelming. It stays engraved in mind archives for any day you may feel down or demotivated. The unparalleled memory of upliftment despite any triumphs you are faced with. Anyone who can afford it and is game should definitely not miss this one!
South African Townships have an irresistible soul and vibe that will welcome you and give you the experience of a life time!
Alexandra, or “Alex” as it’s affectionately known, is Gauteng’s oldest township. It a cut–out section of the affluent suburb of Sandton.
Alexandra was established as a residential area in 1905 by a white farmer who wanted to establish a white suburb and named it after his wife. In 1912 it was transformed into a ‘Native Township’ where black people were allowed to buy land.
When black land owner rights were dissolved by the Native Land Act of 1913, Alexandra witnessed continuous in-migration due to its proximity to employment opportunities in Johannesburg.
Alex is the hub of culture, root culture. It also has its own community radio and TV station. Popular culture like theatres in the townships was a dynamic force which gave life and a dynamic force that gives hope to people.
Soweto is the fifth most popular destination for overseas visitors to Gauteng province. It’s Jozi’s tourism drawcard. One of the biggest attractions is the Mandela Museum, in Vilakazi Street. The former four-roomed home of Nelson and Winnie Madikizela-Mandela is a deeply moving experience, that reminds us of our past, and gives us hope for the future.
One of the biggest attractions is the Mandela Museum, in Vilakazi Street. The former four-roomed home of Nelson and Winnie Madikizela-Mandela is a deeply moving experience, that reminds us of our past, and gives us hope for the future.
The Hector Pieterson Memorial is three blocks from where 13-year-old Hector was shot and died on 16 June 1976. On the day when students in Soweto marched against the repressive imposition of Afrikaans in schools.
A Soweto trip is incomplete without visiting the Regina Mundi Catholic Church, the largest in Soweto. A spiritual haven for many Sowetans and played a pivotal role in the history of resistance to apartheid.
If you’re planning a wedding how about the Ubuntu Kraal? It’s collection of straw-roofed rondavels that form a homestead, popular as a wedding and conference venue.
The Soweto Festival is held annually every heritage day weekend. The venue is the magnificent Walter Sisulu Square in Kliptown, the site of the signing of the historic Freedom Charter by anti-apartheid organisations in 1955.
This is the ideal place for the people of Soweto to congregate over Heritage weekend as the Square is a national monument. The Soweto Festival centres around an exhibition and day-long entertainment events.
The Katlehong township area smouldered with political tension in the early 1990s and the name was associated with violent protests and a low-level civil war amongst factions.
Art Centre has evolved into a showcase of exquisite ethnic artwork are influenced by township emotional turmoil themes.
Wedged between the Kalahari and the South Atlantic, in the south-west of Africa between the Orange river in the south and the Kunene river in the north - Namibia boasts deserts, seascapes, bushwalking and boundlessness. Blessed with rich natural resources, a solid modern infrastructure, diverse cultures and an annual quota of 300 days of sunshine, it is a beautiful country of vast potential.
It’s an arid, rough land, the world’s 34th largest country, a different world, but still inviting, strangely familiar and easy to travel. Namibia is a photographer’s dreamland, a land of contrasts and clear colours. It’s not for those, who like busy beaches and have fun in crowds. It’s one of the most scarcely populated countries on earth after Mongolia. But if you love nature, stillness, grandiose landscapes, desert and expanse, Namibia’s for you.
But Namibia isn’t just silence and wide open spaces. There is dune buggy racing, horse racing, and dune skiing.
Namibia has a colourful and turbulent history. Because Namibia has one of the world’s most barren and inhospitable coastlines, it was one of the last African countries to be colonised. In the mid-19th century, German missionaries opened up the interior, paving the way for traders who came later. The distinctive German traditions and architecture and traditions come from the 1884 annexation of the country by Germany
As a nation, however, Namibia is relatively young, having gained its independence from South Africa after prolonged struggles only in March of 1990
Essentially a desert country, Namibia offers contrasting landscapes. The Namib Desert – believed to be the oldest desert in the world – is a vast swathe of high dunes and desolate plains with an awe-inspiring sense of space. The wind-whipped coast with innumerable shipwrecks stretches all along the hostile Namib desert. The dune fields are approximately 150 kilometres wide with some dunes as high as 300 metres. It is the oldest desert
It is the oldest desert on the earth with a unique flora and fauna. Millions of years ago the Orange river washed diamonds into the sea. Currents, waves and the wind transported them into the sand dunes of the Namib, thus creating a source of natural wealth for Namibia.
You can climb some of the world’s highest sand dunes and a must
Avid rock climbers should venture into Spitzkoppe located betweem Swakopmund and Windhoek known as the Matterhorn of Namibia.
You can visit the Namib Naukluft Park, the fourth-largest conservation area in the world, where oryx stroll over apricot-, ochre- and fawn-coloured dunes tufted with grasses. The oryx antelope has become perfectly adapted to the climate. Springbok, kudu, ostrich, baboon, mountain zebra and leopard are also found here.
Although apparently empty, the Namib teems with life, much of it unique to this landscape. The number of insect species is estimated at 20.000. Also among the reptiles some of the species – like the transparent Palmato Gecko – are endemic. And in Namibia, all the southern African snake species can be found, some of them poisonous like the Puffadder, Black Mamba, Green Boomslang, Cape Cobra and Spitting Cobra.
You can watch rare desert-adapted elephants as they browse the trees in the dry beds of the Ugab and Huab Rivers in northern Namibia, or dig down into the earth with their tusks in search of water.
These trees from the “dead Vlei” have been dead over 600 years. Or you can explore the mysteries of the vanishing ghost towns of the Namib desert.
Because Namibians believe in being up close and personal, you’re encouraged to walk or ride through the desert, but you can also take a bird’s eye view…
Namibia is one of the best game countries in Africa. Early in the 1900s, people started to take the protection of wildlife seriously and game reserves, like the 20.000 SQ km Etosha National Park, was established. Today a total of about 120.000 SQ km, some 15% of the entire country, fall under nature conservation, not to mention the many private nature and game reserves.
Namibia is a gem for those in search of wildlife and wilderness. It’s a country of compelling beauty, abundant sunshine, and unconfined space. This feeling of tranquillity and stillness combines with a landscape which is singular in its colours, full of contrasts of light and shade.
Delve into the mystic wonders of Tanzania with leaping red monkeys,crawling coconut crab, and traces of first human life on earth.
Human life started in Africa-Tanzania.Evidence exists of the very human ancestors on earth in Tanzania, Olduvai on a site called Olduvai Gorge. Stone tools and fossil bones that date back millions of years ago were discovered and this led to the conclusion that the first human beings originated in Africa.
The earliest human skull in the world was discovered in Olduvai Gorge in Olduvai a misspelt Maasai word Oldupai that defines a plant called wild sisal growing in that area. It is located between Ngorongoro and the Serengeti National Park.
Thirty percent of Tanzania consists of National Parks, with twelve parks, thirteen nature reserves and thirty-eight protected areas and many endemic or endangered species including twelve vertebrate species that were discovered in recent years.
Three notable Tanzania species the red Colobus monkey of Zanzibar, flying fox in Oembe and Ader Duike, Africa’s rare forest antelope.
The Tarangire national park has the highest density of large ungulates in the East of Africa as well as kudu, oryx and the highest elephant population.
Wildlife migration is seasonal and they disperse to neighbouring lands belonging to Massai communities and coexist with the herds.
The Kirundi was discovered in the year 2003 and is the first new discovery of monkey genus in over eighty years and is rare with the last population count not exceeding 1,117.
The Ruaha River is Tanzania’s key waterway for fishery and provision of seventy percent of the country’s electricity.
The largest population of the wild elephant is in Tanzania’s Ruaha National park.
Mount Kilimanjaro is Africa’s highest mountain and the world’s highest free-standing mountain. Kilimanjaro represents East Africa’s compelling beauty. Rising in a breathtaking isolation from the coastal scrubland that surrounds it to an elevation of 900m to 5895 m.It is the most accessible high summit in the world.
The coconut crab is the largest crab in the world is found in Tanzania on Zanzibar Island.The BirgesLatro, coconut crab is a hermit crab that is terrestrial. Other popular names for them are ‘robber crabs’ and ‘palm thief’s’.
They are the largest anthropoids living on land in the world. They can grow as large as one meter. They eat coconuts by ripping the husk strips with pincers hitting repeatedly until the coconut cracks open. They are land based and only lay eggs in the sea. They do not have the ability to swim and can drown if they are immersed in water for a long period.Their lifespan can extend over sixty years
6 .Ngorongoro, the world’s largest volcanic crater is nineteen kilometres with a depth of six hundred meters.The crater formed after a volcano exploded and collapsed about three million years ago. It is declared a world heritage site by UNESCO.
7.Freddie Mercury, the popular lead vocalist of the well-known band “Queen” was born in Zanzibar archipelago. Tanzania. Originally his name was Farrok Bulsara.
8.Lions climb trees in Lake Manyara National park, the only lions that climb trees freely in the world
9. Tanzania has over four million wild animals consisting of four hundred and thirty species as well as subspecies. The concentration of animals for every square meter is the largest in the world.
10. The Mpingo trees also known as the African Blackwood tree is the source for one of the most expensive timbers that exist in the world grows in Tanzania. The fine texture, high density and durability make it a preferred type of wood for musical instruments.
World Environment day marks a special day. It highlights the importance of the environment we live in. We need to take the time to always celebrate nature. The environment connects to us and supports us in every essence. We need to support our environment.
Humans are creatures on earth that mold the environment. The environment is for physical sustenance. It is part and parcel of our existence. It molds us. It gives opportunity for moral intellectual and spiritual growth,
The evolution of the human race on the planet with the rapid science and technology acceleration allows man the power to transform the environment in endless ways.
The protection of the environment affects the well-being of people as well as economic development in the world. June 5th was designated as world environment day by the United Nations.
Celebrating world environment day is an opportunity to broaden enlightenment and responsible conduct by enterprises, communities, and individuals. It started in 1974 and is a global platform of a public outreach celebrated everywhere in the world
People and Nature – The ‘true love’ connection
World environment day has a central theme on pressing environmental issues, the theme for 2017 is about connecting people to nature.
It ignites an urge to be outdoors and appreciate the beauty of nature. We intimately depend on nature. We find fun in nature and the experience allows us to cherish the relationship.
Many in rural settings touch base every day close to nature and can appreciate dependence on nature to provide livelihoods with fertile soil and natural water.
Pollution, overexploitation and climate changes alter ecosystems. When ecosystems are threatened, all are affected.
The gifts of nature cannot be valued in monetary terms, clean air is taken for granted until it is scarce.
An East African Community initiative, LVEMP, is a regional initiative that is coordinated by LVBC, the Lake Victoria Basin Commission. It is implemented in the five East African states Kenya, Uganda, Burundi, Tanzania and Rwanda
The main objectives are to improve collaborative management of natural resources of the Lake Victoria basin and improve the environmental management of pollution hotspots for the benefit of the communities that depend on the lake Victoia Basin natural resources.
Raleigh International funded by the OAK Foundation initiated a ‘Youth for Green Growth’ project that supports youth action for environmental and social advocacy in the Tanzania region. This in turn, promotes an advancement for the agenda of green growth, contributing to the global sustainable development goals.
The project involves experiential training and learning opportunities, as well as the support of organization strengthening of youth-led societies that enable the youth of Tanzanian to address environmental and social developmental issues at grassroots and at a national level.
Parc National de L’Isalo is one of the country’s most spectacular regions, perfect for overnight hikes, rock-hopping along cool canyons and spotting lemurs. It’s best to visit during the cooler months (April to October) when the bizarre patchy podiums and periwinkles are in flower on the rock faces and walking is more comfortable.
Tribute to Ancestors
The Sakalava people used to bury their dead in caves high up on cliff faces. Spread across 152,000 hectares, the Tsingy de Bemaraha Strict Nature Reserve has amazing forests, lakes and mangrove swamps, home to a variety of rare and endangered birds and lemurs. With gorges, rivers, and Ancient cemeteries Tsingyis a must visit.
But Madagascar isn't all just animals and conservation.
Madagascar Soul History
There’s a lot of history going on down as well. Ambohimanga is one of the summer palaces of the old Malagasy royal family. Antananarivo, or Tana, has a distinctively French flavor: The city is built on three levels. Dominating the city is the Queen’s Palace and associated Royal Village or Rova. Now a national monument, it was once the
Dominating the city is the Queen’s Palace and associated Royal Village or Rova. Now a national monument, it was once the residence of the Merina Dynasty which, in the 19th century, united all Madagascar for the first time.
There are the museums d’Andafiavaratra and the archaeology museum. On the lowest level is the market said to bee the second-largest in the world. The birthplace of the Malagasy state. Ambohimanga is known as ‘the blue city’, ‘the holy city’ and ‘the forbidden city’. The citadel was an important Merina stronghold and its main gate is an enormous stone disc; 40 men were needed to roll it into position.
Or else you can check out the old pirate colony island of Ile St Marie. Its dense vegetation and the difficulty of navigating the lagoons which surround it made it an ideal base for pirates and, later, a colony for convicts.
There are many clove plantations and several historic sites, including Madagascar’s oldest Catholic church. It’s the perfect destination for those who just want to relax. You can snorkel, sunbath and overindulge on coconut rum punches.
Feel and Taste Madagascar
Buy cinnamon, vanilla and coconut oil from the local children, sip fiery ti-punch and sample the most delicious freshly-caught seafood or sit under a palm tree on a white sandy beach. There’s whale-watching in July and August, and the amazing spiny forest along the road just north of Mangilly is well worth a look.With coral reefs just offshore, sea breezes whispering in the casuarina trees and a relaxed tropical ambiance, who wants to go home?
Malagasy soothing tunes (myspace.com/tambatra) by our conttributor glamorous soul sister from Madagascar (myspace.com/tambatra myspace.com/tambatra1)
Getting around Madagascar
Check this out. Air Madagascar, serves numerous destinations throughout the country, which is a good thing considering that many roads have huge potholes and are impassable in the rainy season. Flights are still relatively inexpensive and they offer a 50% discount on domestic flights to passengers using the airline to travel to Madagascar.
The taxi-be, which is quick and comfortable, and the bush taxi, which is cheaper, slower, makes more stops and generally operates on cross-country routes. Fares should be agreed in advance. It is a flat fee. Alternatively, you can go via bus bonus a flat rate is charged irrespective of the distance traveled. Alternatively, take the House-pousse – the rickshaw.
If you are feeling adventurous, you can grab a stagecoach. A few covered wagons continue to take passengers. Otherwise, you can hire a car or motorbike. You will need a national driving license, and remember they drive on the right-hand side.
Or you can catch a train! Only if you have a lot of time. The Malagasy railway network dates from the colonial period, so breakdowns are frequent, a line may be closed for several weeks.
However, there is nothing to beat messing around in boats. Madagascar has a strong maritime tradition. Ferries sail between the islands. You can travel between coastal villages in dugout canoes known as Pirogues or Lakana. You can also hire Dhows and larger cargo boats.
And if you want to bareboat, a “guide” is usually included in the price of the yacht charter. He will cook, guide you, and protect the boat. A yacht charter to Madagascar is a bit of a “Robinson Crusoe” adventure. Once you embark, you cannot provision again and must live off the fish and seafood you will catch for yourself (or with your guide). So get a good one.
Madagascar is a great place to tour by bike and staying in small towns and villages along the way gives a real sense of what the country is all about. A mountain bike or heavy-duty tourer at least is required as the roads can be in poor to terrible condition.
Generally, there is little to no traffic, which makes cruising a great escapade. The people are amazingly friendly and you will be greeted with crowds of children shouting ‘Vazaha’. There are little or no facilities for cyclists, so be prepared to camp rough (ask if it is somebody’s land and never too near a family grave) or sleep in very basic guesthouses. Though you will generally be invited to stay in people’s houses. Bring a spare tire, puncture kit, chain, brake/gear cable, derailleur, and all the tools you need.
Remember that the law is that the ‘tour’ operators have to have a contract with you with all the details on it including the route. The police do check on this and it protects the tourists.
All visitors must have visas, except for citizens of some African countries. Proof of return ticket is required otherwise a deposit must be paid before arriving in Madagascar, which is equivalent to the cost of a flight to the country of origin. And if you come from Africa, you must have a yellow fever vaccination certificate.
Currency -Malagasy Ariary (MGA) Us dollars needs to be declared on arrival. There are currency restrictions
Electrical Power is 127V/220V, RUNNING AT 50Hz.
Languages Spoken : Malagasy, French, English
Time Zones – GMT/UTC +3:
Country Dialing Code +261:
Hot and subtropical climate, colder in the mountains.
Rainy season: November to March.
Dry season: April to October.
Monsoon season is December to March.
.. And when you've had 16 tracks of Malagasy hospitality, the last thing you'll be feeling is lonely - except perhaps when you arrive back home.
Burnt the rice? No problem. One common Madagascar dish is Ranon ‘apango or rano vda. Burnt rice water.
Malagasy cooks double the quantity of rice they need for the meal. When it’s cooked, they remove most of the rice from the earthenware pan. The remainder (a layer about 1/2-inch thick) is heated until it’s burnt. Then pour boiling water over the rice. Cool, strain and chill.
The beauty of traveling in Madagascar is that you’re never sure what you’re going to hear next. The Madagascar music experience is like Forrest Gump’s ‘box of choc-o-lates’: you never know what you’re gonna get. Music is ubiquitous: The national music scene is booming, with artists from all the major regions turning out serious volumes of quality material. But locals retain a fondness for the usual African favorites: reggae, rap, chart hits, French pop, gospel, music, heavy metal, jazz and reggae Congolese
MUSIC BY LALAH RAINDIMBY OUR MARVELOUS MADAGASCAR CONTRIBUTOR:
The national Madagascar music scene is booming, with artists from with volumes of material of striking quality
The Madagascar music experience is like Forrest Gump’s ‘box of choc-o-lates’: you never know what you’re gonna get.
But locals retain a fondness for the usual African favourites: reggae, rap, chart hits, French pop, gospel, music, heavy metal, jazz and reggae Congolese Lingala and good ol’ country music.
Africa’s biggest homegrown reggae superstar, Lucky Dube is even bigger here than the godfather Bob Marley himself.
The best thing to come out of Madagascar since the lemur is the music. Malagasy music rocks. the rhythms are tight. They combine virtuoso traditional music, tight harmonies, buoyant grooves, infectious melodies, wild instruments, energetic dancing along with challenging, controversial subjects with the energy of punk rock. Malagasy hip hop broke into the mainstream in the mid-nineties and has skyrocketed.
Like the Salegy – a funky, tight, energetic form of dance music dominated by ringing electric guitars. In the kind of touristy clubs where the girls are cheaper than the beer. You’ll find out just how much the Malagasy love to dance. If you’re not a rug-cutter yourself, sit back with a Three Horse Beer and watch all the girls line up and bust their moves in front of the mirror (yes, every club has at least one). And then, just when you think you’ve got a handle on ‘Gasy
If you’re not a rug-cutter yourself, sit back with a Three Horse Beer and watch all the girls line up and bust their moves in front of the mirror (yes, every club has at least one). And then, just when you think you’ve got a handle on ‘Gasy clublife… Glenn Miller – ‘In The Mood’…this happens.in absolutely any club, anywhere in the country, you can guarantee that at some point the music will suddenly segue into jazz dance and the whole crowd will burst into energetic and clearly practiced swing and rock ‘n’ roll routines. Learn a few steps and you’ll probably make friends for life.
And the music isn’t just music. It’s got a big history of political power. Hiragasy troupes were used during the French colonial administration to communicate decrees. Now musos like superstar Rossy’s 1995 song “Lera.”, mobilizes popular support for political efforts.
Malagasy revere ancestors, and ignoring the dead could bring bad luck. Someone who refuses to turn the ancestors denies his identity as a Malagasy. And if the ancestors can intercede with the Creator to bless the living with wealth, health, and happiness or, if mistreated, curse them with unemployment, disease, and misery. People lead good lives so that they, too, will be honored as ancestors some day.
In some famadihanas (funeral traditions), the families take the bodies on a stroll through town, to show the ancestors what is new, and introduce them to children born since they left the tomb. The thinking is that, to help the living, the dead must be familiar with their lives.
Special thank you to Freeway Tours SADC Team: Thandi Brewer, Julie Hall, Jerry Mofokeng (Freeway), Leslie Fong,( SPY) Lalah Raindimby, and MoMo Matsunyane (PADKOS), Neo Matsunyane , Sonto Nhlapo, Alex Mamacos, Makgomotho Ngwasheng, Babalo Mpoyiya
In Memory of W.G Robertson
The winding road lined with palm trees in lush green pathways open up into the oldest town in Tanzania,"Bagamoyo", A UNESCO’s World Heritage Site, the rich cultural heritage of Bagamoyo is an unforgettable exploration discovery in Tanzania.
Strolling down the unpaved and narrow street of Bagamoyo takes you back into time. Way back into time.
In the 19th century, this was an important settlement on the coast of East Africa. It was a route that linked Lake Tanganyika to the sea. Ivory, copra, salt and slaves were offloaded here before being shipped to Zanzibar and everywhere else.
The history of Bagamoyo and the unhurried pace makes it an amazing excursion when in Tanzania.
Bagamoyo dates back to 600-800BC, Bantu-speaking tribes, Kwere, Doe and Zigua lived here originating from the interior Azania. Hunting, fishing, and subsistence farming were the order of the day until family clusters from Persia disrupted in 1250 when they were attracted by fertile land and the multitude of fishing.
Bagamoyo – the Swahili rooted name Bwaga ambiguously meant to lay down. Moyo means ‘heart’ Bagamoyo was unburdening for traders and porters after lengthy journeys and a 'lay down' of hearts for those captured into a destination of heartbreaking slavery. The ambiguity of the name Bagamoyo allows both meanings.
The birthplace of Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete who served as president of the Democratic Republic of Tanzania, Bagamoyo lies about 70km from the capital of Dares-Salaam Little shops and art galleries line up the roadside. The tides slip in the coastal white sands.
The oldest mosque, the ruined Kaole lies to the south-east of the town. A well-worn, old city with a population estimated at 30000, it is lined with historical architecture inspires by various designs.
The once slave market has become the Bagamoyo Art market and is supports by the artist community in the town. Sun-kissed, dusty roads lead to a gallery where local artists who have transformed a wooden pavilion, a slave market of the past into an outdoor gallery featuring sculpture paintings and woodcarving. The gallery expresses a collective artist desire to link to a world economy, in the echoes of historic voices on every road corner.