To be honest, we couldn’t enjoy that much in Tanzania because of people behavior or had a lot of problem on the road with our motorcycles.
First stop was Tukuyu
Border crossing took almost two hours because of paper works. We just leaved from the border the rain and wind started to go crazy. We were going to Tukuyu which was 50 km from the border therefore we didn’t bother the rain that much and we got totally wet.
We stayed in a little village where they made a little camping next to an old school garden. We changed closed set up the tent and played with the kids for a while. The night was cold, foggy and so much humid. I couldn’t sleep well because I suppose I got cold and my stomach wasn’t good. In the morning, we were planning to see “The bridge of God” and “Ngozi Crater Lake” but we skipped it and decided to go Mbeya to find a hotel to get rest and change the clutch pads from my motorcycle.
So hard to understand people sometimes
We arrived to Mbeya and find a nice African style hotel. We just entered and started to rain again. That moment we were lucky. J A couple of hours later, the rain stopped and we went out to find a place to work on our motorcycles. Land Rover service was so friendly. They told us “Come here and work. We like to help you.” Next day, we went there to work on the motorcycle but couldn’t finish in a day because we never change clutch pads before. Everything went good but the clutch wasn’t good. The mechanic guy, from Land Rover, called his friend to look motorcycle who knows motorcycle well. Of course not! We opened and closed many times my motorcycle after that he said just tied to cable from clutch. Fine, we already know that! They told us our motorcycle could stay there because they have security and safe.
Next day, we went back closed all parts of motorcycle and got ready to leave. When we were saying bye and thank you to help they said that we must pay for mechanic. Pardon! They said that they don’t charge for night parking but that wanted 60.000 TSH because we worked there. Also, we must pay 60.000 TSH to motorcycle mechanic who came and look…. Are you crazy? He didn’t do anything. We were really surprised because when we were in Western Africa people were really helpful when we asked them how much we need to pay, they were getting upset about it because they want to help not for the money.
After barging about the price we paid 60.000 TSH only and than we left there. Before leave from Mbeya we went to the local bazaar to buy some fruit and got ready to hit the road. They were looking us and saying more than double price. Before Tanzania, we never have experience like that in Africa except in Morocco.
When we were talking each other one person came and told with us friendly and said sorry to people behavior. What he told us we were surprise because “we are white, it means we have a lot of money!”
Going to Iringa
Next day morning we woke up and got ready to hit the road. We decided to put everything behind what happened in Mbeya, start again. J
We were only far 50-60 km from Iringa He said that something happening on his motorcycle, he can’t see total km, time or speed anymore. Everything got disappear. How is that possible! We stopped and turn of-on motorcycle again. Everything was working well only total km wasn’t there anymore. He made 56.500 km but motorcycle was saying he made only 24 km! We couldn’t understand what is going on. Just keep continue to camping site to check motorcycle. Of course so hard to have guess for us how and why total km can turn back zero.
In the night, the rain started and didn’t stop. It was 11 am when we could leave from the tent. The rain didn’t stop just it was light. We collect everything well before get wet.
And than he turned on the engine but motorcycle didn’t work. It was look like battery finished. I pushed him two time but we couldn’t turn on the engine. I was already sick and I got more because I got totally wet again when I was trying to push the motorcycle. We wanted help from some people who was working in there. Finally motorcycle worked. After change our clothes we hit the road again. Normally, we were going to Dar Es Salam and than Zanzibar. But we were upset for the motorcycle and we didn’t know how long it would take to fix the problem. We didn’t want to be rain season in Eastern Africa. So, when we were riding and talking on intercom we suddenly changed our road to Dodoma.
By the way, we paid 10 USD pppn for the camping side, just set up the tent on the grass, no ablution block, hot shower, cooking area….etc also wanted to 2 USD for an hour wifi. Crazy!
We got a little happy in Dodoma J
After one and half hours, we stopped motorcycles to have a break. Our imagination was the battery could be charge in that time. We turn on his engine but didn’t work. I pushed him and than we were on the road again. We did same thing every break to turn on the engine and than finally we arrived to Dodoma before sunset.
We found basic local hotel, which was clean and only 12 USD one room. When you compare to Iringa camping it was nothing with private bathroom and hot shower. Next day we started to search in Dodoma where we can find odometer to calculate volt on the motorcycle. But we couldn’t find anywhere. Our other option was find a charger cable. So, we could start his motorcycle with my motorcycle battery. They had only for car, which is so big for us and it was 15 usd. We found a little motorcycle shop. We told them what we were looking for. Of course they didn’t have but they were so helpful. I was in front of the shop he went somewhere with another guy to find the cable. They didn’t find but they came back with cables and some other stuff. The guy made for us what we were looking for and didn’t want to take any money from us. It was just help! After a couple of days experience in Tanzania we were surprise for it and happy.
Actually, people were more friendly in Dodoma and happy to see us in their city. We stayed there two days and than decided to go Arusha where we can find some stuff to fix motorcycle or go to Nairobi from there is only 280 km.
I was on the phone and talking with my brother to explain what was going on with the motorcycle. My brother came with an idea. Change the batteries! We couldn’t find odometer so if change the batteries we could understand what is wrong because my motorcycle was working well. If his battery empty I could charge. So, the problem can’t be from his battery. If my battery gets empty means his motorcycle starter relay doesn’t work well. We can try it!
Going Arusha became a nightmare for us…
We changed the batteries and started to ride. We didn’t stop engines two hours and than had a break time. It was look like his battery dead because when I turned on the engine my motorcycle didn’t work. Also, it was look like a problem with his started relay because his motorcycle didn’t work with my battery. Pushed two motorcycle and ride again to go Arusha. 🙂
The road was full Masai people and villages but we couldn’t stop. We were just trying to keel continue. L Last 30 km to Arusha, my motorcycle stop suddenly when I was riding and than turn on engine again. Also I lost my entire panel to see speed, time, km…etc. It means the battery dead. But it was coming sunset and we can’t stay on the high way in the night. After 10 km later, my engine stopped. We were looking where we can go? What we can do? We saw a camping site only 7 km far from us. But I didn’t want to push my motorcycle and try to ride again. Because feeling was my baby suffering with the pain and I don’t want to see it like that. So, we changed to motorcycles. I was riding his motorcycle; he was riding mine. He opened the gas, didn’t stop checkpoints and arrived to the camping site.
We were so tired and upset. We must find somebody who can help us to go Arusha and fix motorcycles. Our Indonesian friends were there whom we met in Swaziland and travel together in Mozambique. They gave a number to us from Moshi. They already talked with him who name is Sam (The garage Moshi) he was ready to help us. We took his phone number and called him. Sam was upset to here we stuck somewhere and welcome to help.
Before keep continue to our problem I would like to write about camping side. 10 USD pppn and nothing to give only a grass to set up the tent. Camping sites are so expensive in Tanzania and they don’t have good ablution block and no electricity… etc. We really miss South African campsite. They were amazing and so cheap when you compare to Tanzania.
In the morning, he took my motorcycle and went to Moshi, which is 100 km from the camping site. At the same time Mario and Lilis (Indonesian couple) came to stay with me. He came back in two hours with one of Sam’s motorcycle and with my battery.
We put the battery his motorcycles. I ride his motorcycle, he rides Sam’s motorcycle and Mario was riding his motorcycle. J We searched everywhere in Arusha but couldn’t find battery. After that we went to Sam’s place, which is called The Garage Moshi. He has a garage but at the same time has ‘bed&breakfast’. He has a garage right, so has odometer. J We knew that his battery already dead but we must find the problem why did total km ‘zero’ and why the battery went dead. To be honest, we couldn’t find anything wrong. Look like something happened but passed.
Sam found a new battery for us from Dar Es Salam and said that somebody brings it to Moshi on the weekend. Means, we must wait 5 days. I wrote before I was sick and couldn’t get rest with all problems. That’s why my body collapsed and I stuck to the bed three days there. I suppose that I wasn’t still well but we decided to climb Kilimanjaro, which was my dream. It is another story and we will write in other article.
When we turned backed from the Kili his battery was arrived to Moshi. We charged it and than went for a test ride. Actually, we went to a Oasis to get enjoy a little. We stayed with Sam total 10 days. He was so nice and we are so happy to have a good friend from Tanzania now.
We had a lot of funny things there. Sam was going to market and buying a something that is 1.500 TSH. We were going to buy same thing and is 2.000 TSH for us. I don’t want to say more about it J
What do we want to do more in Tanzania?
I was planning to go Serengeti when we started to travel on November 2016. Finally we were around Serengeti. But we didn’t go. L It was already the 6th of February and we had only 3 weeks more to travel Rwanda, Uganda and Kenya before go to Ethiopia. The rain season starts middle of March on Lower Omo Valley and we want to visit tribes there. Therefore we must be there latest time 2-3 of March. Also, Serengeti is crazy expensive. Only stay in the park 24 hours is 110 USD (park fee and public camp price only) for each person. Actually, it was hard decision for us but I told him “We have a reason to come back Tanzania one day to visit Serengeti, Mafia and Zanzibar Islands”
We leaved Moshi and ride trough to Rwanda. It was more than 1000 km. So, it took 3 days for us. We stayed in Singida, Nzega and Nyakanazi. We paid each motel-hotel 7 USD per night. All of them were clean and with private bathroom but no hot shower. They also had their small restaurant and bar so, we ate nice cheap delicious food.
It was so nice for us to see a little local people behavior in Tanzania who has been living out of the touristic areas.