Thursday, December 23, 2010

Trip Complete!

So yesterday we arrived in Capetown for lunch, followed by a very scenic ride around the coast to the Cape Point, also known as the cape of good hope. The trip is all but over. Around about 13,000 miles in total. The old Honda has been a trusty companion, especially given its age and mileage (it began the trip with just under 60,000 miles on the clock). With the exception of a new battery in Tanzania, and the odd bit of altitude sickness, it hasn’t missed a beat. Just shows that you don’t need to spend the earth to do this trip. It can be achieved on a very modest machine and budget.

In the last two weeks we have passed through Namibia, visiting the sand dunes at Sosusvei, then heading south to the Fish river canyon, before hitting the South African border. The roads have been a mixture of tar and smooth gravel, the later taking a bit of time to master, but certainly great fun. The roads in Namibia are some of the best we have encountered on the trip, including the loose gravel sections.

The border crossing into south Africa was smooth and efficient, proving that we really are back in a developed civilised country. We followed the coast road down to Cape town, camping for an extra couple of nights along the way. The ride was quite boring to begin with, just hot dry deserted land, and long straight sections of tarmac road. Then we rode into wine country, and the temperatures fell as we neared the coast. With all the campsites booked out, we were offered a backyard to camp on by a local Afrikaans man who noticed we were in trouble. Turns out he was another keen over Lander himself. He also worked in the wine industry, so we had a constant supply of South African Sauvignon Blanc ‘forced’ upon us! So thanks to Stavi for making our first night in SA an accommodating and enjoyable one.

So now we are going through the process of sorting shipping and flights back to England. Actually its proving to be easier than we anticipated, due to us accumulating a few contacts along the way. Our flight back to England is booked for the 29th of Dec. Back to the cold dark damp England. I think we will make the most of our last few days in the sun, by organising a vineyard tour! Not a bad way to celebrate

Monday, December 13, 2010

Livingstone to Namibia

Quick update. We are now in Namibia at the coast. So we've officially crossed Africa, now we just have to do north to south. Capetown is near.

From Livingstone we ducked into Botswana where we did a flight over the Okavango Delta. Pretty cool, with plenty of game to be seen. We have been travelling with Max and Jacob, a couple of Germans travelling on KTM's. Good guys. Tommorow its off to meet Craigs girlfriend Eve in Windhoek. Almost out of Internet..... more later.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Tanzania to Livingstone, Zambia.

Since the last update we have been putting in some big riding days. From Arusha, Tanzania we have been travelling south fairly quickly, crossing the border into Malawi, and then across into Zambia. Highlights along the way; Lake Malawi, a huge blue fresh water lake that seems more like an ocean with golden sand beaches. Great chill out spot. Livingstonia; A very rough steep and winding 4wd track that rises above the lake to a small town with old colonial style buildings. Worth a look. The church has a stained glass window of David Livingstone, the great explorer. The ride up the road was also good fun.

So now after a few more long days (MP3 music player essential kit) we’ve reached the town of Livingstone and the Victoria falls. The backpackers (Jolly boys) here is a great setup. Seems very popular with over Landers as we have been reunited with some familiar faces from further north (Namely Peter in his Landrover and the Irish trio of Podge, Jane and John. Today we visited the falls, and tomorrow its white water action on the Zambezi River!

9000 miles travelled. About 2000 to go. We’ve been lucky so far with no major breakdowns. I’m still running the original tyres (Craig and Neil changed their rears in Nairobi. Not even a puncture to repair yet - touch wood. The bikes had there final service a few days ago. Hopefully its smooth sailing down to Capetown.