Well the trip has started! After so much planning and telling people about the adventure it was kind of a relief to get going. We have to admit that we had a tough start. But the truth is that there are so many things you have to think of before embarking in one of these trips. The house had to be emptied top to bottom for the new tenants, the dog had to find a host family, taxes had to be paid… and the list goes on. Another challenge was to fit all the things you are going to need for a trip like this in a 45l backpack. Luckily enough, we managed to take care of all these things and we reached the flight with no real problems.
First stop was Johannesburg, but before we had to through customs and head to the AVIS rental office located at the airport. To our great surprise, the car we were going to rent was not allowed to cross the border with Mozambique, where we were planning to spend most of our time. After 4 hours of discussing and negotiating they made an exception; it had been an error of AVIS Spain and they had to respect the original contract.
First thing that surprised us was the cold. I mean we knew it would be fresh, but we never expected it to be so damn cold! And the nights get worse! It took some time for Oyvin to get used to driving in Southern Africa, where most countries drive on the other side of the road.
On our way to Nelspruit it was interesting to observe the fact that mostly either white people or black people frequented the gas stations. After that we crossed the border to Mozambique with ease. The conditions of the roads were the biggest change. Big holes and cracks are usual when driving.
We also visited the fish market of Maputo, a must when visiting the capital of Mozambique. You first have to buy the fish and then they will prepare it for you. Be aware when they bring you the receipt. They will most likely give you the local price times 3 or 4. They tried to charge us 6900 Meticales (almost 220 Euros!). Taking into account that we had already payed for the fish and that that we only ordered some rice and local bears on the side, we found the price to be outrageous. After letting mona discuss with the waiters though, we manage to lower the price to 2600 Meticales.
And now some pictures.
Running in the beaches of Maputo, capital of Mozambique.
The beach at Bilene, a small coastal town a little north from Maputo.
A three day expedition in the natural Park of Limpopo (Parque du Limpopo). We were lucky to see a great range of animals (including a huge elephant!).
Praia du Xai Xai.
The roads of Mozambique, heading towards Praia du Tofo.
We will keep you updated!