Tanzania Overview

We spent 3 months in northern Tanzania. This was another great experience – wildlife, people and scenery. We stayed for extended periods in the various National Parks – Taranagire, Manyara, Ngorongoro and Serengeti.

The north is dominated by the fascinating Kilimanjaro with its volcano-like crown and ice caps. It overlooks the plains below, where the native and athletic Masai go about their business. The countryside is fascinating-plains, rocky overlooks and often dense foliage. The wildlife has to be seen to be believed. And the birds, what birds! – large birds of prey, ground birds (such as the leggy secretary bird!), water birds, and fascinating colourful birds, such as weavers, etc.

In the Taranagire there was an abundance of wildlife. We have a great love of elephants. We had the absolute pleasure of living amidst a large herd. This was led by a big mama elephant whom we christened “The Wonderful Lady” because of her sheer majesty (see painting). A particular bonus is that she had twins – a one in a thousand event! To observe the interactions between all the members of the herd, which had at least 4 generations was a joy to behold. There were several ages of siblings from newborn to adult. It was amazing how they looked after each other, example at river crossings. They also having overcome their curiosity, became quite used to us and would regularly approach and sniff, etc (Don’t try this at home!). We were really sorry to depart but will always remember. This area also has very plentiful monkeys and baboons – whose curiosity and behaviour is always fascinating

Manyara was partly closed due to floods, this also caused us some tremors, but there was still opportunity to paint. The unique scene was tree climbing lions, hard to spot but we got them. We had great interaction with the wildlife and people.

There was one particular overview where we could see the animals congregating and psyching themselves up for the crossing of a raging river. This appears in one of the paintings. A humorous incident was a ranger came along and stood watching – with his rifle he seemed to be standing guard also visited Ngorongoro and Serengeti – we will do separate note.