After a 14-hour flight with two stops along the way, we finally arrived into the busy city of Dar Es Salaam. We spent our first two nights located in stilted hut accommodation in the beautiful location of Kipepeo Beach. We then set off early for a 9-hour drive to the village of Kongwa.
When my grandmother was younger she lived in East Africa and attended Mnyakongo school, known as Kongwa School. For the last 12 years she has raised money in order to add to the school and improve the children’s education, providing books to build a library, toilets and maze when the crops fail due to lack of rain. She has visited the school every year to ensure the work is being completed and plan for future projects.
My grandmother recently had her grant approved for building a borehole on the school grounds, providing clean water for the school and surrounding villages. She and my sister both attended the grand opening, which took place on Saturday 12th October 2019, where my grandmother opened the borehole and made a speech in their native language, Swahili.
After spending a couple of days in Kongwa, visiting the school and providing lunch for over 500 people, from both the school and the villages, we then set off for another 9-hour drive to Ruaha National Park. We spent the next 4 days in stunning lodges, located on the banks of the Great Ruaha River. We were lucky enough to watch the animals come down for water in the early morning and hear the wildlife come to life at night next to our lodges. We went on daily, morning and afternoon, game drives, searching for the camouflaged animals.
During our time at Ruaha National Park, we had the excitement of seeing several animals including elephants, buffalo, crocodiles, zebras, giraffes, ostrich, warthog as well as a lion kill.
From Ruaha National Park we then flew, in a rather bumpy, 12-seater plane to the stunning island of Zanzibar. We spent our first night in the traditional Stone Town, where, by the way, Freddie Mercury was born. We explored the town, visiting the very harrowing slavery dungeons and embracing the culture.
We then went onto a luxurious 5-star resort called Pongwe Beach Hotel, located on a beautiful white sandy beach and piercing blue water. We spent our last 2 days of our adventure relaxing in the luxury of this stunning resort, preparing for our 14-hour flight back to the UK… and back to reality.
For more information regarding my grandmother’s Mnyakongo School Project, please visit www.kongwaconnected.org