Trip Report - Moz, Niassa park, Malawi - p. de Wet

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I will send this report to Overland.co.za where it will get published with photos


Mozambique, Niassa Reserve and Malawi – Aug/Sept 2010 - Pierre and Christi de Wet

General:

In the December 2007 edition of the SA 4x4 magazine an article on the very remote Niassa Reserve in Northern Mozambique was published. Since reading that we wanted to visit the reserve and our first chance came this year. The trip would be a solo trip with only Christi and me. We are fairly familiar with the southern part of Mozambique, from Ponta do Ouro, the Maputo Elephant Reserve and north up to Pomene which we have visited a couple of times. We made use of all the border posts between SA and Mozambique over the years and the decision was made to enter Mozambique this time at the Pafuri border post and to cross the Limpopo River here instead of at the more regular used crossing at Mapai. Then to drive the lesser used track on the eastern bank of the Limpopo towards Mapai where we join the main track east to Vilanculos. From Vilanculos we turn north, at Pemba turn west and visit the Niassa Reserve. Next to Lake Niassa (Malawi) on both sides in Mozambique and Malawi, visit a few places in Malawi and to return home via Mozambique and perhaps Zimbabwe.

Information on Mozambique and Malawi is easy to get via books, forums on the Internet, web sites of resorts etc. A basic trip plan with dates was set up and changed over time as more information became available. We were not sure about the condition of the road between Montepeuz and Marrupa in the north of Mozambique and also did not really know what to expect in Niassa Reserve. Paper maps from Info Map were used and on the PC, Map Source with Waypoint Manager and T4A (Tracks for Africa). I worked out routes with alternatives in some places, viewed them on Google Earth and by the end downloaded 45 of them to my Garmin GPS 276C.

To enter Mozambique and Malawi as a SA citizen, you only require a valid passport. Vehicle registration papers, permission from the bank to take the vehicle out of SA if the vehicle is still financed by them, 3rd. party insurance, a reflective jacket and warning triangles must all be available in case someone at the border or at a roadblock asks for it. Your SA drivers licence is valid. Take preventative measures against Malaria. The US dollar is widely accepted and in many places in Mozambique the SA Rand is also accepted. We took both and changed dollars for local currency at banks as required. In local currency it is easier to pay for fuel and day to day items. ATM’s are also an option and is available in most of the larger towns. The exchange rate in SA was R7.49 to the dollar inclusive of all bank costs. In Mozambique we got 37 Metical for one US $ which gave us a Rand to Metical exchange rate of almost 1 to 5 making calculations easy, take a zero away and multiply by two. In Malawi we got 147 Malawi Kwacha for a US $ which worked out to a Rand to Kwacha rate of almost 1 to 20, in which case you take away a zero and divide by two for the rand value.

Our vehicle is 2007 diesel Toyota Land Cruiser Pickup with an Alu Cab Canopy and Hannibal Impi rooftop tent. We took 200L of diesel fuel, 120L of drinking water, two National Luna 52L fridges and 2 deep cycle batteries – 215ah in total excluding the vehicle battery as well as two spare wheels and all our meat for a month. Cold drinks, beer, vegetables etc. was also included but stock was added during the trip as needed. We also had all the normal camping gear and clothing required for such a trip as well as a variety of tools, limited spares like fan belts, fuel filter, fuses and bulbs. As we use drinking water from our four 10L containers, we replace it with washing water, only when we started to use water from the 70L tank did the weight of water in the vehicle started to come down. Added together it makes up for quite a load which left us with a heavy vehicle. I took the mud terrain tyres and wide rims that I had on the Cruiser off and used the original 7.50x16 8PR tyres on split rims. This proved to be the right decision as the tyres are very tough leaving us with no tyre problems on the entire trip.

There were many highlights on the trip, the crossing of the Limpopo River at Pafuri, the bush drive to Vilanculos, nice camping sites at Vilanculos, Gorongoza, Nacala, Pangane, Pemba, Nkopola Lodge and Steps. To drive in Gorongoza early in the morning and see the animals in the mist, the crossing of the 3.2km bridge to the island, Ilha da Mozambique. To stay almost on the beach at Pangane with a view very few hotels can match and the excellent fish and rice Hashim served for dinner there, the rough road between Montepeuz and Maruppa, the remoteness of our bush camp on the bank of the Rovuma River in the north of Niassa Park, the beauty of Lake Malawi with Baobab Trees going right to the shores, to relax in Kruger before returning to the busy city life and many more. We met like minded travellers at most of the sites we stayed over and enjoyed sharing the travelling experiences. The trip was relaxed with some days of hard driving and long distances but plenty of rest days and not a single problem with the vehicle, our equipment or at border crossings and roadblocks.

Low points were few of which a shortage of diesel in Malawi was the only one to mention. This prevented us to visit the Liwonde National Park and Mt. Mulange but at the end gave us time for 3 relaxed days in the Kruger Park in SA. It was not pleasant to see a truck being reduced to melted steel by a fire and was a wake up call of how easy a disaster like that can happen.

Both countries are well geared for tourists with camping sites all over. In Mozambique ablutions at some places are not up to standard but in Malawi we found it to be very good. Fuel stations are widely spread over the countries and was it not for the countrywide shortage of diesel in Malawi, fuel would not have been a problem. Roads varied between tar, gravel, sand and 2 spoor tracks as well as some tracks where low range was needed. In my mind good gravel is gravel where you can travel 60 km/h for most of the time, fair where you need to slow down often but mostly allows for 50-60 km/h and bad when you average between 10-20 km/h. After that you start getting to low range donga type terrain or heavy bumpy sand tracks. Diesel in Mozambique cost app. R6.50 per litre and in Malawi R11.20.


Our day to day progress, activities and route was as follows:

20/08
Departed from home at 14h30 in Pretoria and drove via the N1 toll road north to Louis Trichardt. Filled up with diesel and drove to the Tshipise Holiday Resort 35 km south of Messina where we arrived at 19h30 – 475 km on a good tar road.

21/08
Spend the day at leisure at Tshipise, again filled the Cruiser with diesel and bought wood. Met a group of 6 Cruisers, all
Prado’s except for one 100 Series VX and with a trailer behind one of the Prado’s. They were on their way to the Gonarezhou
Reserve in Zimbabwe and were also planning to cross the Limpopo at the Pafuri crossing the next day.

22/08
Left Tshipise at 05h00 and arrived at the Pafuri gate at 06h15. Entered Kruger Park and took a leisurely drive to the Pafuri Border Post with a stop at the Pafuri Picnic spot for coffee. Saw lots of game and thought of the old days when we spend many happy holidays in Kruger. Border crossing was a breeze but there was no 3rd. party insurance for Mozambique on sale there, perhaps because it was a Sunday. It left us with no choice but to buy it in Vilanculos. The group of Cruisers also arrived just before we left for the crossing. I walked the river which was around 400 to 500 meters wide at this point but with firm sand and only 70cm deep at the deepest point. Deflated the tyres and drove through with no problem at all. Christi sat on the roof rack and recorded - footage. On the other side I was busy inflating the tyres when the group arrived. They walked the river, I showed them where I crossed but they seemed not happy and looked for an alternative. We had coffee and waited but after almost an hour nobody from the group has driven through so we moved on.

The track to Mapai is rough on this side of the Limpopo, overgrown and with an error on T4A indicating an old unused track which led us into thorn bushes. Turned around after giving the Cruiser lots of scratches we found the correct route. In the wet one or two crossings may not be possible on this track. Arrived at Mapai around 15h00, took photos of the point where most people cross and then drove east for 12km where we called it a day, found a nice spot in the bush and set up camp for a well deserved rest - 270 km on tar, gravel and rough track.

23/08
Like most of the days we planned to travel long distances, we started early as we wanted to get to Vilanculos today. The road is a mix between gravel, 2 spoor tracks in Mopani bush and eventually tar on the last stretch. The going was quite easy and besides a few slower patches we made good progress. Enjoyed the drive through the bush and arrived late afternoon in Vilanculos. We booked in at Blue Water Beach Resort for 3 nights – 430 km.

24/08
In Vilanculos we had to exchange dollars for metical, buy bread, fill the vehicle with diesel and buy 3rd. party insurance. This proved to be a real mission to accomplish, first the insurance company give you a bank deposit form, you queue in BIM Bank for an hour and a half, pay in the money, go back to the insurance people who walk 3 blocks away to the nearest fax machine to fax your application to their head-office in Inhambane. You then drive around in town for 2 hours, do your shopping, enjoy excellent Pao (bread) and see what there is to see, go back, complain after which they phone Inhambane on a cell phone, run to collect the fax and then only are you insured for a month. In future I will buy it in SA prior to leaving. We were under the impression that it was available at Pafuri so one mistake not to be made again. Spend the rest of the day at leisure at the resort – 30 km travelled

25/08
Blue Water Beach Resort is an oasis with palms, green lawns, restaurant, clean ablutions and a sparkling pool right on the beach. We spend the day at leisure doing nothing in particular. Bought a Rock Cod fish from local fishermen and had a fish braai the evening.

26/08
I am always on the lookout for interesting alternative roads and saw a sand track on T4A going from Vilanculos to Inhassoro. This proved to be a very enjoyable track and gave the Cruiser a chance to do some 4x4 work in fairly deep sand. I was very impressed with the narrow 7.50 x 16 tyres in the sand, deflated to 2 bars in front from 3 and to 3 at the rear from 4.5. The road became gravel about halfway to Inhassoro. We had a look at the camping in town at Hotel Seta as well as at Goody Villas south of town. Goody Villas will be our choice but it was still early and we decided to drive on to the Gorongosa Reserve. It is quite a distance but on a good tar road except for gravel the last 27 km. We arrived there late afternoon and paid for 2 nights as well as entrance fees into the reserve for the vehicle and 2 adults – 515 km on sand, tar and gravel.

27/08
Up very early and we were the first visitors through the gate into the reserve. The whole place was covered in a thick mist and it was very special to see all the animals and birds in this cosy damp atmosphere. Saw lots of animals and covered most of the roads on the outskirts of the reserve except the south eastern part which was closed. Later the mist cleared and we could see more of this beautiful park. We stopped for coffee at a viewpoint and a young man and an elderly lady arrived. We offered them coffee and found out that the young man is a Frenchmen who rented the vehicle in Maputo. The lady, Teresa, is from Lissabon and a retired schoolteacher who teaches French and Portuguese. She was a backpacker, travelling with public transport with only a rucksack and was picked up at a crossing by the guy the previous day. He was returning to Maputo and she was on her way to Ilha da Mozambique up north. We invited them for a braai the evening which Teresa accepted. Christi said to me that we can give her a lift but I was sceptical as 3 people in a single cab with two bucket seats will be a problem. She said they would take turns to sit in the middle on pillows and blankets so we offered Teresa the lift which she gladly accepted. Gorongosa is a real gem, the reserve is a must visit for travellers in the area. They have a fine restaurant, a pool and a shady campsite. Ablutions are not 5 star but good with warm water so next time I will stay longer - 103 km in the reserve on gravel and 2 spoor tracks.

28/08
We left Gorongosa at 06h30. First it was misty but it cleared before Mt. Gorongosa and we could admire the scenery. At Caia we paid the minimal toll fee and crossed the fantastic new bridge over the Zambesi. Thinking of reports from travellers who spend days there to cross by ferry, I was feeling a bit guilty on how easy it has become. After Caia the road became gravel for app. 50km which was in a fair to bad condition allowing a speed of 50-60 km/h. With no specific place in mind for the overnight stop and the two ladies suffering in the single cab, we could not drive into the night and decided to go to Zalala Beach, 25 km east of Quelimane. We first drove through Quelimane where Teresa draw money at an Atm and took the tar road to Zalala Beach. This 25 km was bad, very narrow, the sides breaking up and lots of potholes. There was many local people, bicycles and small motorbikes so it took us the best part of 45 minutes to get to Zalala Beach. We went to the camping site indicated on T4A but it was merely a piece of sand next to a noisy restaurant. Local children then directed us to another site just next to it which we missed. This is a new development with a shower and toilets but no running water yet. They provided buckets of water which was fine and we had a stand out of the eyes of the local population. We could find no affordable accommodation for Teresa so the only option for her was to sleep in the cab of the Cruiser. Christi made her a bed as comfortable as possible but I don’t think she had a very good night though she said it was fine – 550 km on gravel and tar/bad tar.

29/08
It was still a long way to Ilha so we started early. This time the 25 km to Quelimane was far easier, we were well rested and there was almost no traffic. The road to Ilha is on tar and we made good progress. Re-fuelled at Nampula and enjoyed the scenery of this part of Mozambique which is much different to that of the southern parts. We arrived around 15h00 at Casuarina Bridge Camping which is on the beach next to the land side of the bridge to the island. The setting on the beach is on sand, beautiful with palm trees but the ablutions were filthy with no running water. Dirty water was provided in a bucket but we opted to wash next to the vehicle with our own water. A towel was used for cover and to provide some privacy. This time Teresa got a bed in a bungalow so at least she would have a more comfortable place to stay. We got ourselves clean, made a fire and enjoyed a braai. This was the last night with Teresa as she would stay behind on Ilha the next day – 757 km on tar

30/08
We started the drive over the bridge just after 08h00. The bridge is a narrow single lane with quite a few double stretches where oncoming vehicles can be passed. Road works were in progress making the going slow but it gave us time to admire the scenery, to take photographs and to record - footage. The island is old, run down and over populated but very interesting to visit. From the outside you cannot see the inside of buildings so when we arrived at the Casa do Gabriel guesthouse, we were pleasantly surprised. It is clean, restored and looked like a real nice place to stay. In future we will definitely make an effort to stay there and to see more of the historical buildings of the island. We drove around the island, the ladies spend time at the local market and then it was time to say good bye to Teresa. We took a gravel road north to Nacala, over Mossuril, Cabaceira Penquena, Chokas, Matibane and Murrupela. We arrived at Libelula Dive Centre which has a small campsite that was quite full and we could not see how we could fit in there. We were disappointed and looked for other camping in the area but found nothing so we went back to Libelula. The owners were in town at the time but the other campers told us that they are very relaxed and that we must stop between two empty bungalows. Three of the other vehicles would be leaving the following morning after which we could move to another stand – 213 km mainly on sand and gravel.

31/08, 01/09, 02/09
Libelula is a place where you can relax, snorkel or just enjoy their beautiful beach. We managed to get the Cruiser onto a stand under a tree and decided to stay for four nights in total. For two days we did not start the vehicle and with electricity on the premises we had no issues to keep the fridges running. On the third day we drove into town to buy bread and supplies - 45 km

03/09, 04/09
We would have loved to stay longer but it is time to move on. One of these days we hope to have enough time on hand to make it possible to stay much longer at lovely places like this. Today we are going to Pangane, 200 km north of Pemba which will be our highest point north up against the coast. The road is tar all the way to Macomia where it becomes a gravel road towards the coast and the last 15 km is sand. The setting at Pangane is one of the most beautiful I have seen so far. Camping is almost on the beach under palm trees, ablutions clean but very basic and the sea temperature 30 degrees. The place belongs to Hashim, a friendly person who can communicate in English and who prepares the best fresh fish served with cocoa rice we ever had at a mere R28 per serving. Here I will stay for two weeks but our time was limited and with no electricity we had to move after 2 days or at least take the vehicle for a drive to charge the batteries. Solar panels are now very high on our wish list – 530 km on tar, gravel and sand

05/09, 06/09, 07/09, 08/09
We departed from Pangane around 08h30 towards Pemba which was the last stop at the coast before moving inland. To avoid travelling the same road again, we took the gravel road towards Mahate where we turned south to Pemba over Pawpaw. I regretted this move, the road was in a fair condition but there must be hundreds of ditches preventing you from getting into any gear higher than third. Turned off to Pemba Dive and Bush Centre and immediately decided to stay. This is a lovely place, clean ablutions with a beautiful beach. Archery, trampoline, kayaking, mud bath and nature walks were all included in the price. We enjoyed our stay and relaxed, did some kayaking, reading, visited Pemba for sightseeing and shopping and had a look at Russel’s Place, the alternative for camping in the area. Not a bad place to stay with a nice bar but not on the beach so we were glad we chose the other option – 244 km on sand, tar and gravel plus 75 km around Pemba the following days.
09/09
Sad but true, it is time to move on again towards out main goal for this trip, the Niassa Reserve. Left Pemba early on a perfect tar road towards Montepeuz where we arrived at 08h00. Filled with diesel and started the rough road towards Marrupa. Construction work started here and the first 25 km was not too bad, from there the going got very slow. It was not serious 4x4 but you need a vehicle with good clearance and 4x4 to get you through certain sections. There were numerous pole bridges which looked very suspect but they all lasted. The last 15 km the road got better and we reached Marrupa at 15h15, 7 hours for the 205 km. Camping sites in this part of the world is a rarity but we heard about a new site at Marrupa which we found quite easily. Nothing much, an ambitious local man started a new development with a restaurant, bar and campsite. The ablutions and bungalows were not completed yet but we had a secure place to sleep which was all we needed, for the rest we had everything with us. There is also a new filling station at Marrupa where we again filled with diesel prior to entering Niassa Reserve. Previously no diesel was available there necessitating one to take enough fuel to cover 1200km. This makes a visit to the Niassa Reserve more accessible for many people – 427 km on tar, gravel and bad gravel roads.

10/09, 11/09
The entrance gate of the Niassa Reserve is 100 km from Marrupa on a fairly good gravel road. The scenery in this part of the country is beautiful with many Inselbergs (loose standing mountains). We enjoyed the drive towards the gate which one reach after the crossing of the Lugenda River by bridge. At the gate you sign a register and proceed towards the camp headquarters, 46 km inside the reserve. There we paid for 3 days, a total of R160. The road in the reserve was still in a fair condition. What we saw however was quite a large population of local people living next to the road and it seemed that they still deforest the area to make charcoal like in almost every Africa country we visited. Even if they were recently stopped to do so in the reserve it will still take a very long time for the bush to grow back. So far we saw no game and we decided to get off the main track and followed a 2 spoor track north towards the Rovuma River north of the Park headquarters. This track is overgrown in places and slow going but there you are really in the bush and almost no local people was seen. It is Mopani bush limiting your view but we saw no animals at all.

While having a brunch a local man on a bicycle with two small boys on the steel frame bar, a suitcase on the rear carrier and his wife on her bicycle also with a suitcase stopped. With the language barrier communication was a bit difficult but we made out that they were on their way to Marrupa, 160 km on. That made us aware of how fortunate we are, they were still smiling and were friendly and on the two bicycles most probably was all their earthly belongings. We gave them cold drinks and sweets for the children before they moved on.

We reached the end of the track on T4A where somebody else bush camped but it was next to the house of a local, still 800 meter from the Rovuma River. There is no chance that we stay here, luckily we saw a faint 2 spoor track going out on the other side and took it. This was 4x4 low range terrain with steep dongas and low bushes. After 14 km we eventually found a spot right on the bank of the Rovuma River with a view to Tanzania and decided to camp there - 231 km

The next day we followed the track further west and hoped that we would find another track that would take us back to one of the main tracks. The going was rough but we had splendid views on the Rovuma River. We moved at a slow pace and passed a camp, Masese River Camp, got stuck in a mud pool but thanks for the winch and a tree we got out easily and eventually ended up in a village, Mbunjo. After the village the track became a bicycle track which we followed but turned around after 3.5 km and followed another track south west which forked out of the track towards the village. After 15 km this track ended after a very steep crossing through a dry riverbed. It was now clear that the only way back to the main tracks was via the one we came so we turned around and moved back to the site we camped the previous night – 130 km on rough tracks. I was feeling very good at the 65 km of new tracks recorded for T4A.

12/09
After a quiet night we left early and decided to move on. We saw almost no game in the park, a few baboons, kudu, 3 Sable, 1 Elephant and all of them were very wild and ran away. There are many hunting concessions in and around the park which I believe scared the animals. Saw spoor of Lion in the riverbed but at night it was very quiet. Large areas in the park were also burnt. If you visit this park you do it for the remoteness and not to see animals. Drove to Marrupa, filled with diesel and from there on a good tar road to Lichinga where we arrived late afternoon. Booked in at Quinta Camp which is run down – 527 km tracks, gravel and tar

13/09
Drove through Lichinga, got diesel, bought pao and took the tar road to Metangula. You are at almost 2000 meter above sea level in Lichinga and go down to 490 meter at Metangula which provided for a scenic drive. There is a new filling station and the setting next to the lake is beautiful. Chuanga lies 7 km north where we booked in at the rest camp. The setting is fantastic and on the lake but there are no ablutions except for a filthy toilet next to the restaurant. We washed in the lake and enjoyed the sunset over the lake – 132 km on tar and good gravel.

14/09, 15/09, 16/09
Time again to move on to Malawi, drove back to Lichinga, got diesel (thanks for that), drove to Mandimba on a corrugated gravel road, tried for diesel but no luck and entered Malawi. The border crossing was quick and we changed some US $ for Malawi Kwatcha, bought vehicle insurance at the border and moved on. Not really in need for diesel we moved on to Palm Beach Resort on the lake. They have a nice setup but they were busy renovating the ablutions so we moved to the next resort, Nkopola Lodge. Here we chilled for the next 2 days, taking photographs, enjoying the setting and wish we could stay longer. What a luxury to have warm water in the ablutions, showers and toilets that can be flushed. The last day a German couple on motorcycles arrived and told us of the countrywide shortage of diesel – 358 km on gravel and tar.

17/09
Visited Monkey Bay, checked out the campsites at Chembe in Cape Mc Clear where Eagles Nest is our choice and moved on to Nkhotakota. We stopped at every filling station but no diesel to be found. We have a range of 1400 km with the fuel on board but had to be careful so I drove slowly. Christi bought pottery at Dedza Pottery south of Nkotakota before we drove back to Senga Bay. We looked at the camping at Cool Runnings but preferred the setup at Steps and booked in there for one night – 483 km

18/09, 19/09
The Steps campsite is a beautiful place where the entire beach is swiped every morning. The shortage of diesel however worried us as we have a tight schedule and could not afford to stay in Malawi for more than a few days. We made the decision to move on and left at 09h30 for Lilongwe hoping that we would find diesel in the capital city but also no luck. People complain about Zimbabwe but I feel Malawi is not much better off. We stopped at every filling station on the way to the border at Mwanza with no luck besides of getting a R250 speed fine for travelling at 69 km/h in a 50 zone close to Dedza. Needless to say, at this stage we had enough of Malawi and even after getting diesel 3 km before the border at Mwanza, we decided to get out of the country back into Mozambique where we felt far more at ease. Diesel available everywhere and no more of the people who want money for nothing and swarm you the moment you stop. We crossed into Mozambique at 19h00, reached Tete at 20h30 and waited for 1h30 to get over the bridge over the Zambesi due to road works. Christi counted 350 trucks waiting to cross on the northern side with about the same amount south after we crossed. Luckily light traffic got preference, one lane is open, 30 min to the south, then 30 min north with the bridge closed from 23h00 to 06h00. We drove till 23h30 after which both of us were very tired. Stopped next to the road, sleep for 4 hours in the vehicle and continued towards Vilanculos. On the way we saw a truck burnt down to melted steel and eventually reached Vilanculos at 15h00 on 19/09, that after 29.5 hours on our butts in the Cruiser. Booked in at Blue Water Beach on the same site we had almost 4 weeks before for a well deserved rest – 1417 km.

20/09
We must be getting driving fit. Decided we will try to get a few days camping in Kruger Park and left Vilanculos a bit late. We enjoyed the drive through Mozambique on excellent roads besides for some road works south of Vilanculos and a bad stretch north of Xai-Xai but got to Maputo at peak hour causing us to be too late to get into Kruger Park. No problem, filled the Cruiser with diesel in Komatipoort, booked in at the local caravan park and retired for the night – 805 km.

21/09, 22/09, 23/09
At 06h00 we entered Kruger Park at the Krokodil Bridge gate, saw a lots of game all the way up, by 11h00 we saw 4 of the big 5 and by 15h00 we saw lions to complete a sighting of the big 5 in one day. At Lower Sabie we visited the park offices where they were very friendly and efficient and managed to book us for a night each at Satara, Letaba and Maroela, exactly what we wanted. The 3 days in Kruger were relaxed; we saw a lot of game, excellent campsites and ablutions at a cost cheaper than any other game reserve we experienced so far in Africa. SA citizens are very quick to complain about our parks but after visiting many parks on the continent we can only say that none of them come close to what we have on our doorstep – 507 km.

24/09 – Left Kruger Park at the Orpen gate at 08h30 and arrived home in Pretoria at 14h30, exactly 5 weeks after we left – 503 km.
Cost Breakdown: - Prices converted to SA Rand, Vat incl:

Accommodation and entrance fees into Parks:
Tshipise R400 (2 nights)
Kruger Park (Day fee to drive through) R80
Blue Water Beach Vilanculos R675 (3 nights)
Gorongoza (Camping + entrance into reserve) R737 (2 nights)
Zalala Beach east of Quelimane R80 (1 night)
Casuarina Bridge Camp at Ilha R70 (1 night)
Libelula north of Nacala R480 (4 nights)
Hashim’s Place, Pangane R200 (2 nights)
Pemba dive & Bush Camp R750 (4 nights)
Marrupa R40
Niassa Reserve (entrance and bush camping) R160 (3 nights)
Lichinga R70
Chuanga R70
Nkopola Lodge R225 (3 nights)
Steps in Senga Bay R100
Vilanculos R225
Komatipoort R150
Kruger Park (Camping + day fees) R705 (3 nights)
R5217

Border Costs+3rd. party
Mozambique (Pafuri) R58
Vilanculos (3rd Party) R150
Malawi R370
R578

Toll Fees
SA Roads and Bridges in Mozambique R200

Food & Beverages
Beer, Cool drink, Wood, Charcoal, Vegetables, Groceries, Ice Cream
Fish etc. R910

Restaurants
Hashim, Gorongoza, Kruger R316

Fuel
South Africa R2492
Mozambique R6918
Malawi R1120
R10530

Service of Cruiser
Done by myself R750

Grand Total for Trip R18501

Total fuel used 1379 litres
Total Distance as per GPS Log 9757 Km

Average Fuel Consumption 7.08km/L


The fuel cost saving for a month’s commuting at home as well as the saving on water and electricity work out to be roughly the same as the extra cost we paid for cell phone calls on roaming and the sending of SMS messages.

Food taken with us would also been consumed while at home, other extras are already added to the above costs.

The wear and tear on the vehicle and tyres are not included.

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mozman replied the topic: Trip Report - Moz, Niassa park, Malawi - p. de Wet

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Hi Pierre

Thanks for the rivetting trip report - lots of great tips and info:

So far two things stand out - quotes from your report:

3rd Party vehicle insurance: "In future I will buy it in SA prior to leaving." Yep if going via Pafuri get in SA from the AA or Outdoor Wharehouse before you go.

Quelimane to Iha de Mocambique in a day: "It was still a long way to Ilha so we started early. This time the 25 km to Quelimane was far easier, we were well rested and there was almost no traffic. The road to Ilha is on tar and we made good progress. Re-fuelled at Nampula and enjoyed the scenery of this part of Mozambique which is much different to that of the southern parts. We arrived around 15h00 at Casuarina Bridge Camping"

So the roadworks between Nicoadala and Mocuba and Mocuba to Alto Molocue are all complete? Please clarify this.

Still reading...

Mike

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PierredW replied the topic: Trip Report - Moz, Niassa park, Malawi - p. de Wet

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<blockquote id="quote"><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica" id="quote">quote:<hr height="1" noshade id="quote">Originally posted by mozman

Hi Pierre

Thanks for the rivetting trip report - lots of great tips and info:

So far two things stand out - quotes from your report:

3rd Party vehicle insurance: "In future I will buy it in SA prior to leaving." Yep if going via Pafuri get in SA from the AA or Outdoor Wharehouse before you go.

Quelimane to Iha de Mocambique in a day: "It was still a long way to Ilha so we started early. This time the 25 km to Quelimane was far easier, we were well rested and there was almost no traffic. The road to Ilha is on tar and we made good progress. Re-fuelled at Nampula and enjoyed the scenery of this part of Mozambique which is much different to that of the southern parts. We arrived around 15h00 at Casuarina Bridge Camping"

So the roadworks between Nicoadala and Mocuba and Mocuba to Alto Molocue are all complete? Please clarify this.

Still reading...

Mike
<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"></font id="quote"></blockquote id="quote">Mike to my shame I can't tell. I remember the gravel north of Caia but can't remember any gravel on this stretch. Some bad stretches of tar and better parts but nothing that really delayed us. If there was some major roadworks I would have remembered as we were pushing to get to Ilha. Sorry for this, perhaps Tony can remember better though he did the trip about 2 months before us and things could have changed in the time.

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PierredW replied the topic: Trip Report - Moz, Niassa park, Malawi - p. de Wet

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The report was added to the Overland Forum including photos. The direct link is:

www.overland.co.za/travel_reports/Pierre...Malawi_Sept_2010.pdf

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mozman replied the topic: Trip Report - Moz, Niassa park, Malawi - p. de Wet

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Dankie Pierre

Mike

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