Tanzania Trip- Part Three:
Zanzibar (Stone Town)
To get from our hotel to Stone Town we had two options: private taxi or the local transportation. A private taxi to Stone Tone was 50,000 shillings ($33) but taking local transportation, a dala-dala bus, was only 2,000 shillings ($1.33) each. When I looked up the spelling online I came across this definition on Wikipedia, “Dala dala are minibus share taxis in Tanzania. Often overcrowded and operated at unsafe speeds, these minibuses developed as a response to an insufficient public transport system in the country.” That sounds about right based on our experiences. They are nice to ride in because they are open-air but the ceilings are really low so I pretty much had to crawl on my knees to get a seat in the back, which was rather embarrassing considering it was already packed full of locals who just watched with amusement as I tried to make myself a few feet shorter than I actually am.
The group was so excited to visit Freddy Mercury’s house. I of course had no idea who this man was since I have never really been interested in learning the names of bands or singers. Not wanting to seem uncultured I pretended to know who he was and then turned to my faithful friend Wikipedia to fill me in. Should you be in the same boat as me (the boat of music history ignorance) then here is a quick bio:
Freddie Mercury was a British musician, singer and songwriter, best known as the lead vocalist and lyricist of the rock band Queen. As a performer, he was known for his flamboyant stage persona and powerful vocals over a four-octave range.
So, we went and saw his house. It was cool, although given the fact I had no personal attachment to this particular singer it wasn’t my favorite activity of the day.
Cool fruit- the inside tasted like a slimy grape covered in white goo.
We were looking for a restaurant and got very lost and a nice man sent his son (this cutie) to show us the way.
View from the top of the restaurant.
We had lots of fun sampling different wines while we waited for the sun to go down so we could venture to the night market for dinner!
One of my favorite things about the night market was the sugar cane juice- here is the press they use for the sugar cane.
Afterwards they add ginger and lime and the final product is absolutely delicious!
Zanzibar Pizza was also a favorite dinner for our group. This particular one had cheese, onions, tomatoes, and egg. They start with a little ball of dough and flatten it out into a circle. A second smaller piece of dough is added in the center where the ingredients go- I guess it adds to the structural integrity of the pizza. After this part they start adding the ingredients you want and then crack an egg over it, wrap it up into a secure little pouch and toss it over the fire. A few minutes later you are handed a delicious pizza for only 2000 shillings ($1.33). They also do magnificent dessert pizzas with ingredients like Nutella,bananas, and mango. For obvious reasons we were huge fans of the night market! 🙂
The close proximity of the market to the sea offers visitors an abundance of options when it comes to fresh seafood. Unfortunately I happen to have a refined palate that could be likened to that of a picky toddler (although I am getting better about this since moving to Africa) so my involvement with seafood was limited to taking pictures and rejoicing over the fact that Rwanda is a landlocked country which means I don’t have to refuse people on a daily basis who want to force feed me fish and other creatures that are better off left to lurk about in the depths of the ocean.
Three blogs in one day- that is a new record. The next installment will cover adventures from Dar es Salaam, Moshi, Arusha, and Kahama- so stay tuned!
PS- I had a box full of letters today- thank you to all of my friends and family who continue to support me on this journey. You have no idea how much one little letter means to me- thank you from the bottom of my heart!