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Saturday, October 20, 2012

Drive to Marangu, Kinukamori Falls and back again to Moshi

Yesterday we drove from Moshi to Marangu. Marangu village is the point at which you begin a steep drive up to the gates of the Kilimanjaro National Park.
 
 Kilimanjo National Park is in the green shaded area above.


After arriving at the gates to the national park (we weren't going in as it was too expensive!) we were rushed at by a group of men, all wanting to 'show us the falls'. We had been warned about this in the Rough Guide to Tanzania, and so were prepared for this onslaught.
In the end we ended up going with a gentleman by the name of Benedict, who guided us back down to Marangu village and then onto Kinukamori Falls for the princely sum of $20 USD.


It was a short steep walk down to the bottom of the falls from the car.

 
The water flowing from the falls and downstream was icy.






After the kids had enough of paddling in the water, we walked back to the top to look at some displays about the Chagga people.
The Chagga tribe occupy the southern and eastern slopes of Kilimanjaro and are among East Africa’s wealthiest and most highly educated people. Their wealth – and that of Moshi – stems from the fortunate conjunction of favourable climatic conditions with their own agricultural ingenuity.


At the top of the falls we saw the statue of the woman whom the falls are named after. Apparently she was running away from her village as she had become pregnant and was going to be killed. A leopard came up behind her and she jumped to her death. There is also a statue of the leopard a little further behind her in the forest.


The air on the slopes of the mountain was so much cooler and the country side was very green and fertile, and the road to and from Marangu is very pretty.


As the land levelled out again it became dustier and hotter.


All the soil around the region is rich in volcanic minerals but unfortunately erosion is a problem due to over grazing and the lack of trees, which unfortunately have mostly been cut down due to poor farming practices and the making of charcoal to sell.



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