Nungwi to Kendwa beach hike and everything beautiful in between

How it looked on map😁

I have always been mistaken to belong to a younger generation than the one I belong to. In some cultures this is a good thing while in some, it’s quite a challenge because people judge you based on your body size. I applaud those that watch their weight by checking what food contains religiously but that has never been my thing. What has helped me is exercise.

Being a high school teacher, I have sometimes been mistaken to be a recent allumni because well …. some people think that way, not because I still get in touch with my teen self when working with teens at times but because they think I look young. But what has really helped me stay forever 21 in this confused world of stresses?

So basically, this is the thing: though a teacher, I have taken sport seriously. I have always started aerobics and tennis in schools I have been attached to. I have also always been involved in athletics with the teenagers I teach just to lead by example so to me exercise must be doing some wonders!

I would rather work out than diet🥺

When in my personal space without these teenagers I see everyday, I still take long walks mostly around my neighbourhood, which brings me to this beach hike I did in Zanzibar from Nungwi to Kendwa and back to Nungwi and you have got to see the beautiful things I saw!

I boasted an 8km in a day dedicated to beach side hike because the first 4km was done in the morning and I spent the afternoon going back to point A. This walk was not about the speed but the soothing effect of everything I saw in between. Naturally, for experienced walkers, this was supposed to take a total of 2 hours.

I started off with my pink Nike backpack loaded with nothing much but some swim wear cos I knew I would need cooling off somewhere ahead. I packed myself some ‘chewies’ to go. I didn’t carry a water bottle, I knew I would find H2O ahead.

Point 1 : Starting points

Starting point 1

I wanted my starting point to be so clear this was some serious walk and I meant business! The two places that marked my start were Makofi Guest House (Where I took a deep breath knowing I would be back in the evenings) and by another place with a poster you can only find in Nungwi. The beauty with this walk is that I had company and so I was more motivated than if I did this solo.

Like I mentioned before about not ageing, staying young has got to do with attitude as well as “loving what we do and doing what we love” just like the relaxing words I found at the start point of my hike. You will stay young when you do what you love and learn to love what you do. This happens because it keeps you smiling and a smile makes you look younger.

Starting point 2: Makofi Guest House

We walked for about twenty more minutes for the other signature start point I wanted which was the “Hakuna Matata welcome again ” sign post. This sign post spoke the truth to me as this was my second visit to Nungwi, Zanzibar. Again, I fell in love with this sign post because it spoke truth. Many would know this phrase from the legendary cartoon Lion King and this phrase means “no worries” in the swahili language. The reason people think am forever 21 is because I always stay away from worries. I look it in the eye but I get rid of it. I also almost all the time avoid toxic people unless there is really nothing I can do to avoid them.

Point 2: Aren’t horses the cutest?!

We continued walking for a good two hours. Not rushing much caused us to appreciate the turquoise waters of Nungwi! This was a long stretch of beauty only to bump into more of what nature can offer. Horses! I even remembered that the day before this hike, I went to the stables at Zanzibar Horse club in Nungwi and met a cutie called Oreo.

Maybe one of these horses we saw was Oreo at work but it was kinda nice to see horses on water! The two hours paid off obviously. It was clearly time to take pics. The horses looked at peace on duty and cooling off. This reminded me how we should stay calm even in adversity if you want to avoid those wrinkles. Focus on positives.

Oreo

Point 3: The cave lady

After a good time horse viewing, we enjoyed a stretch of nothingness except her majesty, the Indian Ocean.

After about an hour or so, we found a rocky, cave-like area. These caves must be formed by water from the ocean and its force. We paused.

When I saw these caves, I was reminded how caves are actually home to a number of animals and if this was the northern parts of the globe, I was gonna be talking bear stories. We don’t have them on this side of the globe. Nonetheless, caves are a refuge for some creatures and going back to keeping fit and staying young, we all need a refuge when down. The other reason I have also been mistaken to belong to the younger generation is because I have mastered where to go for refuge. When I feel down, I know what to do to snap out of it or go through it but feel safe and rested. I have surrounded myself with people with the right energy and sometimes like an eagle, I have sometimes shut some toxic people out so I energize.

Point 4: No place like home

No matter how much fun you are having away from home, the thought of your home country will cross your mind. After leaving the caves, we were at it again. This next spot felt lonely. We were in the middle of nowhere except for the ocean. I thought of back home.

I missed home but I had something on me reminding me of who I am, Zambian. I have had my flag for a long time now and always find a reason to carry it. You will stay younger when you know who you are and quit being like someone else.

Point 5:Pirate lady

I was exhausted and decided to take a dip in the shallow end of the ocean. The swim wear came in handy. Getting to Kendwa is all I could think of. I heard this was also a cool place where full moon parties are held every month! I shook off the feelings of missing home and decided why not pretend to be a pirate girl on this dhow that I saw. I needed to feel powerful to finish this exhausting walk. Sometimes pretending to be okay is okay and may actually cause you to be okay because your focus is on the positives.

Ahoy!

Point 6: Unfinished buildings

At this point, it was too late to give up on getting to Kendwa. We knew we were close but no sign of it was showing except for the unfinished building on water that was coming up which reminded me that keeping our hopes and faith high can sometimes drive out some negativity which you know will make you experience ageing. A stone throw away from this building was some art I found being sold and just looking at this art was quite refreshing. Always look at the big picture and brighter side to stay young.

Point 7: Kendwa, we are here!!

Because of the faith we had, we finally made it 4 kms to Kendwa! I really wished those much talked about full moon beach parties where happening this night because I was gonna stay at the beach overnight, lol! I saw the sign posts showing us we were in Kendwa and this is where I went into the ocean to cool off a second time. I have learned that finishing small tasks that you can handle is quite fulfilling. The feeling of accomplishment can be found even in the least challenging things like this hike but they do keep you in high moods and looking young.

And the truth is Kendwa does rock!☺️

The 9 things you must do in Mombasa as a solo traveller in 2023

When you think of visiting Africa to get the feel of it, one of the first countries that will cross your mind is Kenya.It is the epitome of Africa. Maybe at this moment, you are planning on doing Kenya or perhaps you even recently got here. You will surely love the Africa it really is. We all wanna visit Kenya for different reasons be it for work, projects, sport, politics whatever…., the fact is, there is that one day you will be up to planning what to do there.

Though this is a thought that could come from a local person as well, the tourist would have to get more knowledge on what this place has to offer. What activities can you do that may involve money (but not always) and still make your stay in Mombasa worth while, well spent and enough reason to wanna tell a story to someone like am doing?

About Mombasa

Mombasa is a coastal city in Kenya along the Indian Ocean. It has been said to be the second largest city in Kenya. This town is one of the coastal touristic spots in Kenya and I discovered it is super rich in history!!

Now that you are here or still thinking to be, not all your days can or should be planned. Sometimes we leave room for spontaneity. The day you choose to just go by a plan, do remember to jot down some of the activities you could do whilst in Mombasa and these are based on what I personally did. Some activities are totally free but some would cost just a few bucks.

1. Take a free ferry

Yes you heard me!! Free! This is a ferry you would enjoy free of charge for a good 10 to 15 minutes and there are a number of trips made in a day. Mombasa being on an island is the reason to enjoy Likoni Ferry which serves Mombasa and Likoni. You will find ferries carrying both road and foot traffic. These ferries are operated by Kenya Ferry Services. It is completely free as a passenger but there is a cost for vehicles, motorcycles, trucks etc. I used this ferry for a necessary move but I must confess because we don’t have a beach in Zambia (what I hate about landlocked countries), I sometimes used this ferry for the fun of it.

2. Enjoy some tennis at Mbaraki Sports Club

Sorry to be specific here but you could actually play other kinds of sport here by making either prior arrangements or just popping up and joining in. This gives you the opportunity to mingle with and get closer to the real Kenya through associating with the locals. I had so much fun having tennis tournaments with the local kids I met at Mbaraki Sports Club.

3. Spend time with camels at Diani Beach

I chose to spend some time at Diani Beach just because a camel is one animal I saw last when I was little…at a zoo and I really did not like the reaction I got from it because I tried getting it’s attention by calling out but it didn’t even bother to look or even move. My impression was camels are not that friendly and my opinions of camels changed when I visited Diani Beach.

To enjoy these camel rides just have about 5 to 10 bucks on you and I guess you could pay more if you keep increasing your hours on its back. I was happy to have met a camel that reciprocated my love unlike the one in my childhood. Laban was his name and my regret is not packing some apples or bananas before this trip. I really don’t know what sort of menu Laban has but I should have shown him a bit of appreciation for taking advantage of him.

4. Hike and hydrate on the beaches while picking shells

I know that heat levels in my country Zambia can be quite high and unbearable but not to the extent I found the heat in Kenya! As you enjoy this overdose of Vitamin D, cool off with some coconut water sold almost everywhere at the beaches and in town.Take a hike on the beach enjoying all the lovely views and you could even make them longer!My favourite of them all is to add to my shell collection!

5. Spend time with locals on the Shelly Beaches

Beaches do differ in vibe and while others are touristic, others aren’t. I must say Shelly beach is a beach you will find locals. I did spend time surveying it but I must say I met many wonderful locals there and ate lots of good local food. Try this place out!

6. Do shopping malls

I don’t know about you but I do like me some shopping! Don’t you? You could shop hop and enjoy some treats. Next to street food, the cheaper places to get your meals from are supermarkets and I recommend Naivas which came in handy when I didn’t have to do restaurant food.

7. See some of the cool landmarks of Mombasa (Pembe Za Ndovu)

Some of the other activities I involved myself in were to get to know my immediate environment and appreciate cool landmarks like the Pembe Za Ndovu or Pembe Mbili monument which is so highly valued and is a story for another day………This monument is a set of elephant tusks you should never leave Mombasa without showing some love to. If it means a lot to the Kenyans, it should be appreciated by tourists. A good 10 minutes was enough love for them.

8. Grace Fort Jesus with a visit

I was here for a tour that I feel in my heart did not really end probably because of time. This fort is the pride of Mombasa and is so rich in history which explains my need to go back because I did not finish reading articles displayed in the museum but if it so happens that I don’t go back, I must say it was amazing to still see this fort. I learnt quite a lot here.

9. Admire the Old Town

Old Town is on the South of Mombasa and I was amazed by the historical buildings that date way back in time and history says it was the main centre for trade between Africa and the Arab world. It was amazing to see in this place the first hotel in Kenya and just walking around In this town made me feel I used a time machine to go back in time

Safari vibes at Chaminuka Game Reserve (Part 2)

The last time I filled you in on this safari trip, I was still on the part where I have a dream to be licked by a baby giraffe in Kenya. I have seen this happen and would like for it to be my experience but anywho this safari got me exposed to lots of animals I mentioned earlier and even the giraffe which I have not been so lucky to spot on my tours.

After seeing the animals I mentioned earlier, I then saw a handful of zebras but tonnes of impala! These animals and it’s relatives,species or look alikes do out number many animals you will see here and in most game parks maybe because the others are more shy , I don’t know but it’s either that or they breed per second!Lol! And it is for this reason that I never have the ‘WOW!’ moment when I see them because I have seen too many of them.They are otherwise a beautiful creation!

If by any chance, Zambia is on your hit list, do drop by this place and enjoy lots of their services like boat cruising, lion feeding, cheetah and elephant interaction, game driving , cheese tasting, fishing, horse riding and lots more!

The other thing I enjoyed as part of the package was the buffet lunch! There was such a wide range of foods like barbequed chicken, variety of sausages, lots of cheese types, potatoes cooked in many ways.You will thank them later but you surely need this heavy lunch after close to two and a half hours game drive and an hour boat cruise.

After the game drive, we got to a place in the game reserve where there was a water body called Lake Kasenga.If you like, you could enjoy some fishing but since this was not part of the package, it will come later I guess. The same group that I went with on the game drive was with me on the cruise. The word ‘cruise’ makes you think of the fancy boats and all but we used an ordinary looking boat that kind of looks locally made but with an engine.It still did the trick. I wish I spotted hippos here but nope. Beauty of the views and some animals coming to refresh themselves made the trip so memorable.

PRICES?

Their price ranges for some activities I recall inquiring on were as follows:

-Elephant interaction -About $30 -Cheetah experience -About $30 -Horse riding – About $30 -Lion feeding -About $12 – Boating – About $10 I did find the prices in this range but do check out their website for more or latest info : https://www.chaminuka.com

LASTING IMPRESSIONS AND OPINIONS

1) REMOTE LOCATION: The place is in the outskirts of Lusaka, Zambia and offers outdoor activities for outdoor lovers and this is one thing I loved about this place.

2) TOURISTIC: It had a touristic touch and of course that is why I am writing about it. Many tourists flock to Zambia to go to the south for the Victoria falls but this place can be described as the hidden gem for those that just don’t want the usual, ordinary or the norm.

3) PRICEY ACCOMODATION:Because it was in the outskirts, accomodation was more on the pricey side and I did a day trip for that reason but if your piggy bank is full then why not spend a longer time? My thought was for the place to consider a backpackers as well.

4) HELPFUL STAFF: The staff, absolutely organized and helpful,very professional and knowledgeable, a reason to stay there longer.

5) WOULD I RETURN? Definitely.

Hiking through the trails near Victoria falls

I totally loved this view

It’s time I headed south of my country Zambia.The south of the country is known for touristic spots the most popular of them being the Victoria falls. When you visit Zambia, try to at least sound one with us by calling it Mosi- oa -Tunya falls which literally means “the smoke that thunders.”

I have been to this part of the country like a zillion times, but every time felt like a new experience. There are many cool experiences one could enjoy there like helicopter rides over the falls to enjoy that awesome view, bungee jumping or zip lining but I have at times just enjoyed taking hikes in the tiny trails found there.

BUT WHEN IS THE BEST TIME TO VISIT?

The weather patterns in Zambia are something like from November to April, we experience lots of heat (well, Africa is always blazing) but it’s pretty much ten times hotter than you are imagining at this moment! With this kind of heat, comes lots of rains. The beauty about hiking at this time is that you receive a bath from the heavens which you will most likely need should the heat and the thirst be unbearable due to high levels of heat.

THOSE VIEWS

The view of the falls during this season is to die for! You can’t visit Zambia let’s say all the way from Europe only to find a falls that resembles a desert! I mean there is Namibia and Botswana for that.The other seasons aren’t exactly the wisest of times to visit this place because the water levels would be too low but it’s worth experiencing for yourselves.

WHAT DO YOU NEED FOR THIS HIKE ?

Assuming I have already inspired you to pack your bags and give this place a shot, start imagining seeing the best of views as you approach the deep crack in the earth they call Victoria falls! It’s amazing!As you head to the entrance, do all that is necessary like payments of about 30 to 40 dollars and do carry some sunscreen or a rain coat ( for that rainy day) but as for rain coats, it is needed all the time you have to pass through a certain part of the falls as there is lots of splashing that will definitely get you drenched.

LOSING THOSE CALORIES

Depending on your pace, who you are with and all, the hike could take a good two to three hours if you have to be very near the falls area.Be ready to lose a bit of those calories because it’s quite a distance. I would advise you to carry food so you replace those calories but there will be one risk in doing so……. You aren’t all alone in that trail.You have company. This company is usually bad company that is after what you are eating or enjoying.Monkeys.

MINGLE WITH MONKEYS

Just a confession here, I find a reason to still be a tourist in my country and this one time I was doing the same with friends. It turned out we became the tourist attraction because we attracted lots of monkeys as we were hiking or hoping to hike sipping on some fanta and eating fruits. it was the dumbest move ever because we got spotted by monkeys and the one lesson I learned was a monkey can open your fanta or water bottle and drink the contents, then throw away the container when done. I couldn’t believe my fanta bottle was taken by a notorious creature. We started seeing camera flashes from all directions.Not cool!

THOSE SOUVENIRS

It’s usually expected to bring a piece of evidence of the place you visited. You will find all sorts of beautifully hand made African pieces of work. My advice to you is don’t fall for the first price that is quoted. Negotiate with the sellers..As a tourist, they see or sense one is not from Zambian soil, it is almost a reflex action to hike the price of a product. All these products are found near the entrance to the falls.

SWIM IN THE DEVIL’S POOL

Are you that daring person willing to take the risk of swimming close to this crack in the earth? Thrill seekers , risk lovers this is your place. Many have taken pictures doing this great stunt. Am not quite sure why I have never attempted to do it!

Two Day Camp and Hike in Kafue

The goal of this hike and camp out was to build endurance and so the guide only helped carry our tents in his car and the really heavy stuff otherwise all those personals like our bags, foods, drinks and all were for us to carry. I can’t stress enough but this load caused a lot of energy from me to be sucked dry. I thought the challenge was just taking that hike carrying nothing but boyyyy was I wrong.

I am not sure what expert campers carry for food, snack, drinks and all but this is not glamping and my sleeping disorder of having ‘earlier nights’ really tried my patience.I am not gonna stay up late cooking up a storm! On our menu which the instructor had us make was 2 minute noodles, canned beans and vegetables.Mother nature did supply us with some mushrooms.We picked some fresh ones and added them to our meal. What a treat it was!

THE HIKE DISTANCE

DAY ONE

The starting point was set for us. Maps were given to us as well. The guide had given us a mini training of how geography works.(Geography was not exactly my fav subject in school…..sooo) but if I could understand the map so can you.

We studied it. We also had never been down this trail but the guide had been and he wasn’t supposed to spill all the beans about where we headed.

Off we went down this endless trail and frankly speaking it was refreshing. We told stories and all until we stopped for water, rest to take a leak or to allow rest for our bodies since they protested against tiredness. We covered both flat and hilly places, stony and watery places. The good news is we managed to cover half the required number of kilometers for the day.

The target was to use this one route that was like 10 kilometers to the camping grounds. We started at about 9 o’clock to 5 pm and found the guide had prepared our camping spot, pitched the tents already and all that was left was to tell some night stories and call it quits for the  day ….. and  we did!

HIKE DAY TWO

I woke up to music from the birds and  the ground was wet from the night showers and I hoped to hike on dry ground.We didn’t need continental or English breakfast but we did stuffed ourselves with some bread, beans, juice and remainders of previous night’s meal. It was perfect to start another day of a 10 kilometers hike.

At this point, I was done enjoying nature. I just wanted OUT!! I picked up my tired pieces with the help of my team and we walked through that trail. The second hike had more of hilly and stony land.Very uncomfortable. My team mates developed blisters on their feet but their drive to want to finish the 10 kilometers fueled mine. Fast forward, we made it!

THE HIGHS AND LOWS

The high of this hike and camp was how I got a certificate to be a Duke of Edinburgh Award and Adventurous journey leader. I also enjoyed the nature and being away from the usual and the normal.

The low was that at one spot which happened to be a picture taking place because of the beautiful scenery, we were stopped from taking pics because it was believed to be a shrine and taking pictures would upset the spirits. Can you imagine!?

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