Back into Zambia

Days 203/204/205… Friday 13th Saturday 14th and Sunday 15th October

Pancakes and curried potatoes for breakfast. The security guard has washed our car. We gave him some small change. Set off for Tunduma border 3 hours away. Very quiet road and mostly tarred. On one of the dirt roads, a speeding lorry ahead was kicking up a huge amount of dust. Very difficult to see the road ahead and overtake until he pulled over at one of the rural settlements. Topped up the fuel tank and the 2 jerry cans and used the last of the Tanzanian Shillings before the border with Zambia. Usual chaos at the border town with a long queue of lorries pulled up at the side of the road and many ‘Bajaj’ squeezing though tiny gaps. 3 hours at this border – painful! Changed the last remaining TSH into Zambian Kwacha with an informal currency exchange chap. You have to work out the exchange rate beforehand, be prepared to negotiate and know what you are prepared to accept. Simply standing or sitting in the car seems to attract unwanted attention where there are offers for help or those simply asking for money by knocking on the window and they do occasionally get aggressive. I won’t miss these border crossings.  A new road from the border to ‘Kings Highway Rest Camp’ only 1 hour drive.  Set amongst a woodland area, great for shade and very peaceful. No other campers. Stayed for 3 nights. The South African manager was very friendly. Many large moths, crickets and spiders.

Allen’s perspective…

Wow, that was a bad border. We were recommended against doing it but given our planned accommodation heading south we wanted to cross here and do the Great North Road (T2). Just entering the site the signage was all over the place, and only by the help of fixers did we find where we were meant to go. If heading north from Zambia it seems that everything is in one place, but heading south, as most of the lorries are, then you have to go between several buildings all over the border complex. At one point we needed to get some more Kwatcha out and we took a walk over into Zambia to a few ATMs, where at no point does anyone challenge us to see if we are allowed into the country, we can just merrily wander around to our hearts content. Thankfully I kept chipper through this border, even when we had to wait an hour for some chaps to finish their lunch before we could pay for our carbon tax. If it wasn’t for our fixer ‘Bright’ then we would have been hopelessly lost and it would have taken far, far longer. This was by and far the worst border post we have crossed since West Africa, and in our top 5.

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