TAZARA (Tanzania & Zambia Railway)

Catching a two day train from Kapiri Mposhi, Zambia to Dar es Salaam in Tanzania became a memorable highlight for us.

Andy writes about our experience:

“We settled into our cabin, our home for the next 48 hours, and watched out of our small window as we slowly pulled out of the station. The journey became all about the things we’d see and people we’d meet outside our window. Whilst the inside of the cabin remained dull and unchanging, the scenery and vibrant village life outside continually grabbed our attention. Every now and then the train would reach some remote station and this was the signal for a mass of women and children outside to approach us, selling a variety of goods including watermelon, carrots, nuts and bananas. They’d scramble up from the sloping surrounds and shout loudly to get the attention of the passengers. A market would instantly appear with people hanging low out of the windows to buy the wares from these local entrepreneurs.

During the journey we took the opportunity to lighten our rucksacks, dropping soap, a washing line, a scrubbing brush, some playing cards, bananas and oranges into grateful hands, outstretched below our window. We crossed the border into Tanzania midway through our second day, almost immediately seeing the red dirt and matoke plantations alongside the tracks, conjuring up memories of Uganda from months before. The sound of our train approaching seemed to rouse villages into a frenzy, as kids ran out of simple brick houses to scream and wave to us. Some even decided to race along side the train much to the cheer of the crowds! It was a nice way to travel. After midday on our third day, we noticed the regularity of houses and people increase as we passed through the outskirts and then reached the busy centre of Dar es Salaam. The journey had been memorable for the smiles, the sad faces, the waves, the colourful dresses, the fruit-filled baskets, the outstretched hands.

All Images © 2010 Wonky Eye




One thought on “TAZARA (Tanzania & Zambia Railway)

  1. The woman with the child on her back, bananas on her head and bucket in her hand makes me feel bad for complaining about lugging two kids in and out of a car!

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