Hanging in Dar (es Salaam) – 2 of 2

In part one of this two part series, I introduced you to three things I will never forget about Dar es Salaam.

I have always been a very curious child who is always searching and asking questions. That is why visiting and touring Africa is of definite interest to me. The dream is to visit all African states before I leave earth. This is a dream I intend on trying to achieve.

On that note, here are more things I will never forget about my trip to Dar es Salaam in Tanzania.

(4) Public transport

They have such a beautiful public transport system. We hardly had any trouble getting around. The city of Dar es Salaam is well named everywhere; you won’t get too frustrated if you get lost. We used the maxi taxi from the airport, tuk tuks to get around, the ferry to cross over from Kingamboni to the central business district, and a boat to get to an island. They also have mini buses. Most of these modes of public transport were so affordable; they were so so cheap.

The affordable public transport really assisted a lot with our stay in Dar es Salaam.

(5) Islands

Everyone wants to go to Zanzibar when in Dar es Salaam. So, we also asked about it.  I was not keen on Zanzibar for financial and commonplace reasons. I am not a fan of places that everyone knows and visits. Our enquiries had us board a boat to a small island called Bongoyo, it was a 30-minute ride. I will never in my entire life be able to articulate the beauty of this island to anyone. It has no human population, is green forest and has a beach that comes in at night and opens up during the day. The government has built one restaurant and some coverings for all who visit.

We were on this beautiful piece of island from 10am to 5pm; it is by far one of the most stunning experiences of my life.

(6) Language

Everyone speaks Swahili. By everyone, I mean everyone, foreigners who live there too.  All races. But of course, there are other languages we did not come in contact with, languages not recorded in books. The schools teach Swahili first language and French second.  English is a thing they hear about. You can imagine the amount of hand gestures we had to make everywhere for communication purposes – in English! To me, Swahili is literally all of South Africa’s languages in one.

The day we left, I could understand most of what I read on boards and heard from our taxi driver.  It was beautiful.

(7) Dar es Salaam is definitely still developing

And that is the beauty.  It reminds me of watching the changes in South Africa when I was young. The transition from wells to taps, bad roads to tarred ones. While in Dar es Salaam, we were staying in a lodge located in a village, slam dunk with the villagers. We had light and taps in that building, and people were getting water from wells around us. The contrast is mind boggling but beautiful.

You get the feeling of wanting to hold on to the old but the new also makes life a bit easier. I am sure the day I return to Dar everything will be different.

 (8) The beach

In Dar es Salaam, the beaches are not just warm; they are geyser warm water in a bath! Just beautiful. I made it into the water at Coco Beach.  I stayed in there for hours just having too much fun. The water is warmer than the water in the KwaZulu Natal beaches in South Africa.

It was a dream I had for what felt like forever, wondering what those clear blue waters feel like. The water was amazing, too amazing!

The last point I want to make is that I made a friend in Dar es Salaam.  A friend I believe will be around forever. This is such a testament of Africans. Our neighbours are our friends; we help them and love them. This friend has already visited us in South Africa, and we plan to go see her and her family again one day.




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