Normally, it takes me more than two months to plan a single trip. From looking for special offers to familiarising myself with the place.
But I didn’t get a change to do proper planning for Zanzibar because I went there two weeks after my birthday trip to Portugal. And as you know, if you fail to plan then you plan to fail.
Since this was just a weekend trip to a resort in Jambiani, I thought that I had it all figured out.
Arriving to the hot and humid airport in Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania was finally a relief. My beach vacation was long overdue. I had spent the previous year chasing snow from the Alps mountain in Munich, Germany all the way to Iceland and even had a white Christmas in New York.
The plan was to use a ferry from the mainland to Zanzibar, but couldn’t because there was not enough time to get to the harbour. The last ferry was departing in 30 minutes time.
Blunder number 1, I didn’t check the ferry timetable.
Clever me opted for a flight, but when I got to the flight counters, I was told that all flights are fully booked due to a music festival that was to begin that night in Zanzibar.
Blunder number 2, I didn’t check activities happening that weekend.
So my only option was to use a charter flight,
I didn’t even know what a charter flight was, I had to google it on the spot, which was departing in the next 3 hours. I bought a return flight ticket from the one agency. He told me that he doesn’t have a speed point so I had to use cash.
As I was withdrawing from the machine, my friend and I kept debating on how much money we should withdraw, then suddenly a message popped on the screen saying my ATM card has been swallowed.
Blunder number 3, I only had one card with me.
I honestly have no idea what I was going to do if I was travelling solo because when I called for assistance, I was told that they can only help me on Monday, while I had to fly back home on Sunday morning .Thank God for my friend who came to my rescue.
After buying the tickets, the agent told us to take a pic of the reference number and then off we went to terminal 2 to wait for the charter flight.
We were told that the flight was going to leave at 17:30,
by the way it was my first time using a charter flight. So we sat down and waited.
At 17:35 some random guy came to me and asked ” are you waiting for the chatter flight? it’s gone. Look at the time now. These guys robbed us, they didn’t even give us flight tickets”.
My body just went cold, I looked at the reference that we were given and it was only for our Sunday morning flight. I was just speechless.
The guy sitting in front of us told us that we must relax, he uses the charter flight all the time.
Apparently you don’t get a flight ticket for a charter flight, strange ne!
15 minutes later we were called by name
class register format, a guy came to collect our luggage and the chatter flight was finally here. I walked out of the airport building to my worst nightmare. I had a serious phobia of small aircrafts. But there was no turning back, I had to conquer my fears.
Man, these flights just fly on top of people’s houses. I couldn’t even take selfies or look out the window, all I did was pray. The flight was a very long 15 minutes flight across the Indian ocean and the thought that I still have to use the same mode of transport on Sunday morning was killing me.
We landed safely;
thank God ! Now our biggest challenge was to withdraw money for the taxi to the resort. Tanzanian shilling is a bit confusing, I still haven’t figured out how it works. I think the biggest challenge was, I use ZAR and they were telling me the price in USD and I had TZS notes and no internet connection to use the currency converter.
And to make matters worse, we didn’t even know how much we withdrew since we had no internet connection in Zanzibar. So we had to ask locals to help us. Only to realise that we wanted to give the taxi driver R4000.
Insane, I know.
Waking up to such beauty made up for the chatter flight experience. The weather was just so perfectly warm. Reality matched the pictures I would see on the internet.
PEACE AND TRANQUILITY
Need I say MORE?
This was exactly the kind of a vacation I have been yearning for. Just to be away from all the city noise and get that inner peace.
Guess who went snorkeling, me, undoubtedly . This was more of a lip of faith because firstly, I’m not a good swimmer and secondly this is no swimming pool where you can stand on the floor.
But there was no ways I was gonna let my poor swimming skills hinder me from seeing the beauty of the underwater world.
So brave me decided to put on a life jacket and jump into the ocean. Well, I used the swimming board as an extra safety measure. Boy it was fun.
Spent the evening watching the Maasai dance.
The Maasai tribe are a semi-nomadic African tribe mainly residing in Tanzania and Kenya. Very friendly people and extremely tall.
So I really enjoyed watching them dance and got a chance to mingle with them and bought a few souvenirs
And ended the night playing a game with the waiters, well my friend was playing and I was just watching.
My Maasai friend that I’m still in contact with.
Well that’s the beauty of travelling, making long lasting friendships that will last a lifetime. The sad part of it is, you might not meet your friends again.