Monkey business near Dar es Salaam

· 3 min read · tanzania animals

I offer my apologies for no recent updates. Thank you to those who contacted me to see how I am getting on and for the gentle nudge! So, time for a blog post...

Tanzania has been slow paced for me, mostly because a tourist visa is 50 USD for three months. Incredibly good value considering Nigeria was 148 USD for thirty days!

Whilst riding between places, I have noticed many local riders and cyclists carrying very large loads. For anyone living in or visiting Africa, I'm sure this is a common site. These video clips were taken within a few hours on the same day.

A friend recommended a place to stay near Dar es Salaam. Remote and secluded from the tourist hotspots in Dar es Salaam and Zanzibar; this suited me perfectly. I was camped alongside cashew and coconut trees right next to the beach for about three and a half weeks. These few weeks were very memorable for me because of the people I met and partied with. Plenty of monkey business!

Every morning, I woke to the sound of vervet monkeys moving through the trees. The troop moved one direction at sunrise, and returned in the opposite direction at sunset. Many big adults with blue testicles and small babies. How many vervet monkeys can you see in this photo?

Catch of the day is available from the fisherman. I have never eaten lobster until now. I had a plate was stacked high with lobster to the point that I struggled to finish it. All for a fraction of the cost compared to the UK.

Collin and Ken, the owners, are awesome. Many good times were had hanging out and chatting at their beach bar. I also met a lovely dutch couple (visit their instagram here) who had spent time in Kenya and were overlanding in the region before heading home. They had returned for a second visit to the beach, and they gifted a bottle of Malawi gin to share—a fun night! I also met Martijn (visit Martijn's instagram here) and Bart who are also dutch. They are old school friends who have a lot of history in their friendship. It was very amusing to hear stories of antics from their youth. They reminded me of my mates from back home, but ten years older. Here's Bart (left) and myself (right) at another beach, nearer to Dar es Salaam.

One evening, Martijn, Bart, and I were sat outside Martijn's overlanding vehicle admiring the stars, when Bart jumps out of his seat because he could feel something on his arm. It was a large centipede, which I think is a Tanzanian red-headed centipede. Think they can give a nasty bite!

My friendship extended warmly to Kondoo (sheep in Swahili) and Mbuzi (goat in Swahili), the resident sheep and goat. You had to be on your guard because these two love drinking whisky/cognac and eating cigarettes. Kondoo would always follow Mbuzi, and at least once a day, Kondoo would bleat like crazy because he had lost Mbuzi.

Apart from the general monkey business and enjoying myself, I noticed a lot of wildlife in the area. It was hard not to.

One night, Ken and Collin approached Martijn, Bart, and myself holding a bucket with a lid. With smiles beaming across their faces, they asked us to lift the lid. No way—they were up to something! Turns out they'd captured a species of tarantula called a King Baboon spider. Apparently, they can jump quiet far and have a nasty bite. As it happens, Ken and Collin are hunters by profession.

Whilst hanging around at my tent, I saw an Eastern Green Mamba snake four times. On one occasion, I saw the snake eating a lizard. Hard to spot slithering through the trees, but they're fairly poisonous so I kept my distance. Look just above the middle point in this photo, there's an Eastern Green Mamba crawling through the tree.

A fun few weeks relaxing on the coast with some very cool people. It was hard leaving, but I finally escaped!

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