Kilimanjaro Region

Many tourists come to Tanzania with the only goal in mind to climb Mount Kilimanjaro. While certainly an adventure for us this is by far too touristic. Instead we continue to explore the Cultural Tourism Program out of Marangu. As there are no places to camp we are looking for something else to stay. The Capricorn Hotel is close by and on the way to the Marangu Gate. While the rooms have seen much better days the common areas are nice and the staff very friendly. They also serve cocktails and so we get our first gin tonic and campari orange on this trip. Live is good! :-)

 

Early in the morning we plan to get out of the house to walk up towards the Marangu gate because from there - if there are no clouds - we would have a great view to Mount Kilimanjaro. It's one of those days. While we manage to get out of bed really early all the doors of the hotel are locked and we can't get out of the building. Shame really. Luckily we get a chance later in the day to see the top of the mountain with hardly any clouds.

At 9 am in the morning we meet up with our guide Hethron from the Cultural Tourism Program. Together we start walking through rich vegetation and along many small houses. We notice that it is very clean here and many of the houses have small gardens. We visit a traditional round Chagga house build from banana leaves and straw. In the past the people lived here together with their animals all in one room with a fire place in the middle which fills the whole place with smoke.

 

We pass by the Kilasiya waterfall and after some further walking use one of the fully packed DallaDalla to get to what they call the caves. These are not natural caves but man made tunnels. Used by the locals in the past while at war with some of the neighboring tribes to hide themselves and their animals. They are quite big but Karin does not feel very comfortable down here and is happy once we breath fresh air again. After another stop by the local smith we make our way back by means of DallaDalla and taxi.

 

It was a long day and we are tired. To our surprise when we come back to our room in the hotel we find a bunch of red roses. Yes, we did mentioned that this is our honeymoon. Very nice gesture but it gets even better. For dinner they surprise us with a really good bottle of red wine from South Africa. As we are the only guests we get together with Deirdre and Sam who are the managers here. We spend a long night talking about the challenges of running such a place here, their fantastic experiences and safaris and many other things. A really nice evening.

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