SLOWDONKEY THROUGH AFRICA: Trans-Africa Trip: Anne and Stan Weakley. - Page 12




Page 12 of 16 FirstFirst ... 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 LastLast
Results 221 to 240 of 315
  1. #221
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    UK
    Age
    48
    Posts
    461
    Thanked: 19

    Default

    Hey Stan

    Glad to see you online again.

    Ethiopia can be hard work I know. It was the only country which I was actively looking forward to leaving (though this was in the rainy season and with car issues...) but in retrospect it was definitely one of my favourites. I suspect you may feel differently on your leg South. Tigray and Lalibela are just awe inspiring. Do treat yourself to a stay at Gheralta Lodge. Anne will thank you for it... I'd use their guide for the churches too. You won't get monument fatigue visiting those churches I promise you. Their breathtaking locations (literally) and the priests make it a unique experience (and returning to a 5 course gourmet Italian feast helps too). I also think you would really like Harar, very little tourist type hassle but fascinating architecture, markets, customs.

    Sad to hear about Wim, he was a character and yes, the Ritz it's certainly not.

    I can also understand your decision about Egypt. A real shame though. Perhaps another time. Or have you thought about leaving the car with Mazar (very trustworthy, deals with overland trucks and rallies etc) and taking the ferry over to Aswan on foot? Hotels are dirt cheap and you could do day trips by taxi to Abu Simbel and perhaps also Dendara and Abydos (amazing). And squeeze in a quick felucca ride on the Nile. The vast majority of the hassle in Egypt is car related. Or you could even just do a day trip to Abu Simbel from Wadi Halfa. I think there is a ferry direct now isn't there? Or splash out on a hotel room overnight and then go and see the sunrise over the temple, one of the most magical experiences I've ever had. Because tourists visit from Aswan by convoy twice a day for an hour or so the rest of the time it is completely empty.

    Anyway enjoy Sudan. The desert camping a little further north will be just up your street. You can get right off road into some lovely locations. When you get chilly think of us there in August, still 38 degrees at midnight and moonlight you could read by.

    Enjoy yourselves,

    Best wishes,

    Lisa

    Really enjoying the blog by the way.

  2. #222
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    UK
    Age
    59
    Posts
    751
    Thanked: 262

    Default Tigray et al

    Hi Stan and Anne

    I agree with Lisa about the Gheralta Lodge in the Gheralta area of Tigray. It is one of the few competently run hotels in Ethiopia, but I would suggest you will need to book it. Contact Mark Chapman of TESFA Tours in Addis (I gave you his contact details). For Axum, we stayed in the Yeha Hotel which is fine and has a great view over the main stelae field. In Lalibela, we stayed in the Tukul Village Hotel which was fine too. Hotels aren't that expensive in Ethiopia and makes a change from carpark camping! If you end up back in Gondar - which is quite likely on your way back - try Faisil Lodge. Secure parking, a garden, decent rooms, restaurant and wifi. For Debark, the Simien Park Hotel looks ghastly from the road, but it is fine with clean rooms, secure parking etc. We left our Land Rover at the Simien Park Hotel for 10 days when we went trekking in the Simiens. I can also give you the contact details of an excellent trekking company who gave us a memorable 10 day trek, but I realise that you and Anne aren't trekkers, but Wayne might be.

    Every day and every country is so different. Enjoy Sudan, but I guarantee you will be glad to get back to Ethiopia after a few dry weeks!

  3. #223
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    East London
    Age
    64
    Posts
    3,562
    Thanked: 925

    Default

    Lisa, again you and our other mentor WW are coming to our rescue. We are becoming a little pushed for time and Egypt will need to be sacrificed. Geralta Lodge it will be. We are well below budget and thank goodness as we need to upgrade our options on places to stay.


    Thanks WW, excellent advice as usual and just the tonic we will be needing. I am sure each will be a coconut as has been the case all along!
    Landcruiser 76SW.

    “Great journeys are memorable not so much for what you saw, but for where you camped”.

    At least "Once a year go someplace you have never been before" Delai Lama.

    TransAfrica 2015/2016 blog www.slowdonkey.com

  4. #224
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    UK
    Age
    48
    Posts
    461
    Thanked: 19

    Default

    Here you go - a couple of pix of Gheralta to cheer Anne up! About $80 for a double (that's B&B). Dinner a very reasonable $12pp. Check availability at info@gheraltalodgetigrai.com.

    Highly recommend the dirt road via Sekota when heading from Hawzien to Lalibela. A real slice of rural Ethiopian life and stunning views.

    Agree with WW that Tukul Village is fine (lots of European tourists). Website says $67 but we got a much better rate turning up on spec.
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  5. #225
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    UK
    Age
    48
    Posts
    461
    Thanked: 19

    Default

    Whoops, didn't both load. As you can see from the previous picture you stay in private rondovels with wonderful views. Enjoy!
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  6. #226
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    UK
    Age
    59
    Posts
    751
    Thanked: 262

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by itchyfeet View Post

    Highly recommend the dirt road via Sekota when heading from Hawzien to Lalibela. A real slice of rural Ethiopian life and stunning views.
    .
    Quite agree. It is stunning. It will take you at least 10 hours - many many ups and downs. We left Gheralta just on dawn and got to Lalibela with a reasonable margin of daylight.

    And also take the scenic route from Axum via Adwa, and then on the dirt road to Hawzien where Gheralta Lodge is - effectively cutting the corner. It ought to all be on T4A as we uploaded our Ethiopian tracks to them.

    But if you are going to the Danakil, then you won't be going from Gheralta/Hawzien to Lalibela but to Mekele (or wherever) to organise the Danakil, I presume. Thereafter, you can do the route via Sekota to Lalibela.

    I think you will love Tigray. It is like Tuscany in an African setting.

  7. #227
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    East London
    Age
    64
    Posts
    3,562
    Thanked: 925

    Default

    I must say that we feel very privileged to have this sort of live destination by destination guidance. Thanks so much. We definitely intend to up our game for the return to Ethiopia otherwise we risk it being the major let-down of the trip.


    We are thoroughly enjoying Khartoum, looking through old trip reports I note that we are far from alone in enjoying it more than Addis Ababa. Thus far have seen the whirling dervishes (weird and astounding), the confluence of the White and Blue Niles, the impressive National Museum and wandered along the banks of the Nile stopping to drink delicious Sudanese coffee with half of population of Khartoum. They are lovely gentle, mannerly people. Unfortunately could not see the traditional Nubian wrestling as this is also on a Friday at the same time as the dervishes.


    Today is hopefully vehicle service day and our alien registration and photo permits should come through. We plan to visit the souk (market) in the ancient part of the city, Omdurman for some people watching later today.


    Hope to post more updates later this evening Inshallah!
    Landcruiser 76SW.

    “Great journeys are memorable not so much for what you saw, but for where you camped”.

    At least "Once a year go someplace you have never been before" Delai Lama.

    TransAfrica 2015/2016 blog www.slowdonkey.com

  8. #228
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Cape Town
    Age
    38
    Posts
    354
    Thanked: 64

    Default

    This is awesome.

  9. #229
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    East London
    Age
    64
    Posts
    3,562
    Thanked: 925

    Default

    I have posted again. This portrays our first three days in Khartoum.


    We plan to leave for further north in Sudan on Tuesday morning, Inshallah. Here there are many historic ruins to visit, the desert with wild camping there and on the Nile to look forward to.


    Thereafter we will turn back south after almost 7 months heading north. No Egypt for us regrettably. Will probably only be able to post again when back in Khartoum.


    Until next time then!
    Landcruiser 76SW.

    “Great journeys are memorable not so much for what you saw, but for where you camped”.

    At least "Once a year go someplace you have never been before" Delai Lama.

    TransAfrica 2015/2016 blog www.slowdonkey.com

  10. #230
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Mtwalume, South Coast
    Age
    62
    Posts
    1,192
    Thanked: 26

    Default

    Enjoy Stan...you have had a wonderful trip so far and it will remain so...


    BMW X3 2.0D

  11. #231
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    East London
    Age
    64
    Posts
    3,562
    Thanked: 925

    Default

    Posted another update just now. The luxury of decent internet is great. Planning on leaving Khartoum tomorrow so am not sure when will be able to post again.


    Heading for an interesting time on the Nile and in the desert in northern Sudan, may steal some time to snorkel in the Red Sea, but quite a diversion.
    Landcruiser 76SW.

    “Great journeys are memorable not so much for what you saw, but for where you camped”.

    At least "Once a year go someplace you have never been before" Delai Lama.

    TransAfrica 2015/2016 blog www.slowdonkey.com

  12. #232
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Pinetown
    Age
    68
    Posts
    1,244
    Thanked: 278

    Default

    What an epic trip you two are having! Glad to see that all is going well.
    Pity that the road less travelled is so hard on the vehicle, but I think that was to be expected. You have been so lucky not to have had trouble in any really remote area and it's great that you are travelling together with another vehicle now.
    Your blog is amazing - you should consider writing a book after this trip. You have accumulated so much detailed information - half the job is done already.
    Go safely.
    Peter and Erica
    Answering the call of the wild is just so much beter than answering the telephone.
    ISUZU KB 280 DT LE NOW POWERED BY THIS AMAZING COMMUNITY
    Modified Glider Hunter trailer fitted with RTT.
    Platkar = Chevy Spark 1.2

  13. #233
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Location
    East London
    Age
    64
    Posts
    1
    Thanked: 0

    Default

    Hi Stan & Anne

    Good to hear you are having a super trip with a few challenges I hear from Graham and Carol.

    Regards
    Dave and Janet Bands

  14. #234
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    East London
    Age
    64
    Posts
    3,562
    Thanked: 925

    Default

    Hi Dave and Peter, good to hear from the 2 of you. Dave, well done on joining an excellent forum.
    Landcruiser 76SW.

    “Great journeys are memorable not so much for what you saw, but for where you camped”.

    At least "Once a year go someplace you have never been before" Delai Lama.

    TransAfrica 2015/2016 blog www.slowdonkey.com

  15. #235
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    East London
    Age
    64
    Posts
    3,562
    Thanked: 925

    Default

    Back in Khartoum, Sudan and have decent internet again. I have posted further updates on the www.slowdonkey.com blog.


    We have been doing the slightly unusual for a change. Wild camping in the desert, snorkeling the Red Sea and visiting ancient ruins in the desert.


    We are now beginning our southbound route and have 10 weeks to get back home. We will next be in the northeast of Ethiopia. Here's hoping we have a second crack at enjoying Ethiopia as we had hoped we would. We will have time to explore the eastern areas of Kenya and Tanzania including the coast.


    Keep well, we are fighting fit!
    Landcruiser 76SW.

    “Great journeys are memorable not so much for what you saw, but for where you camped”.

    At least "Once a year go someplace you have never been before" Delai Lama.

    TransAfrica 2015/2016 blog www.slowdonkey.com

  16. #236
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    JHB
    Age
    63
    Posts
    712
    Thanked: 33

    Default

    Hi Stan. It's been great following your blog. Thanks for posting the link to Wayne's blog. Although not as detailed as yours it makes for riveting reading. Being young certainly makes for more impetuous behavior. I knew his late dad well and have known Wayne since his early years as he is more or less the same age as my kids. He is certainly not your usual Johannesburg northern suburb kid.

    http://journeytoafricajoburgto.wordpress.com/

  17. #237
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    East London
    Age
    64
    Posts
    3,562
    Thanked: 925

    Default

    Back online again and have posted some updates over the last few days.


    At present in Mekele in northern Ethiopia, the gateway to one of the most extreme environments on earth. I am referring to the Danakil Depression and the Erta Ale volcano. This is one of the hottest places on earth and is well below sea level. The volcano has one of a very few active volcano lava lakes, which you spend a night viewing. Apparently it is awesome. If you want to read a great recent report of a visit to these extreme places read here, http://blog.tracks4africa.co.za/the-danakil-depression-part-one/


    We have felt more settled in Ethiopia and have really enjoyed the north. I am very excited at leaving tomorrow for the 4 day expedition to a land of salt lakes, salt mining, camel trains carrying blocks of salt and the prospect of seeing lava bubble away in an active volcano lake.


    Wolf, yea Wayne is a great youngster and despite the age gap we have built up a lasting friendship.
    Last edited by Stan Weakley; 2015/11/24 at 06:16 PM.
    Landcruiser 76SW.

    “Great journeys are memorable not so much for what you saw, but for where you camped”.

    At least "Once a year go someplace you have never been before" Delai Lama.

    TransAfrica 2015/2016 blog www.slowdonkey.com

  18. #238
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Cape Town
    Age
    60
    Posts
    9,075
    Thanked: 853

    Default

    Hi Stan and Anne, you must read Wilfred Thesiger's "The life of my choice". Part of it is about his 1933 expedition into the Danakil when Emperor Haille Selassie assigned him a substantial armed escort.To quote from the chapter, "...at Bilen, they had given me alarming accounts of the ferocity of the Asimara in Bahdu. It had been evident that while both sections of the Danakil were murderously inclined, the Asaimara were the more formidable... people in Addis Ababa had been saying that I would not have one chance in ten of survival if I entered Aussa."

    Happily, times have changed! Enjoy the desert.
    Last edited by Tony Weaver; 2015/11/24 at 06:39 PM.

  19. #239
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    East London
    Age
    64
    Posts
    3,562
    Thanked: 925

    Default

    Hi Tony, good to make contact again. Yes these are the same people who collected their victims genitals as trophies after victories.


    Hope to let you know soon if I have retained mine!


    Thesiger's books were one of the things I meant to do before leaving on the trip. They were not easy to get hold of, will have to make a decent search on our return.
    Landcruiser 76SW.

    “Great journeys are memorable not so much for what you saw, but for where you camped”.

    At least "Once a year go someplace you have never been before" Delai Lama.

    TransAfrica 2015/2016 blog www.slowdonkey.com

  20. #240
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Cape Town
    Age
    60
    Posts
    9,075
    Thanked: 853

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Stan Weakley View Post
    Thesiger's books were one of the things I meant to do before leaving on the trip. They were not easy to get hold of, will have to make a decent search on our return.
    My copy was published by Flamingo, an imprint of Harper Collins - should be available as an e-book. It is a fascinating read.

Page 12 of 16 FirstFirst ... 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Zambia Forum trip 2012: Feedback & photos
    By MikeAG in forum Zambia
    Replies: 435
    Last Post: 2017/04/09, 09:35 PM
  2. Zimbabwe Trip Report Sept/Oct 2010
    By Stan Weakley in forum Zimbabwe
    Replies: 19
    Last Post: 2012/04/22, 03:04 PM

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •