Kisolanza, 6 to 10 June 2021

  • Barry 
Yet another great recommendation from Lester (Thank you) was to stop at Kisolanza and to meet Nicky Ghaui who manages this farm and the variety of accommodation options from luxurious cottages to bush camping, plus a farm shop, and a spa. What a wonderful place to visit and stay. They, like all in the Travel industry, have been impacted by the downturn in travellers due to COVID an in spite of this the standard of service is very high even though the offerings have changed – the Restaurant has now closed and a farm shop created which opens on Thursday to Sundays – it serves food like tea, cakes and lunches and sells farm produce.
It was a 300km drive for the day. A mix of slow driving under 50km/hr in towns and around 80km on the rest
Kisolanza is in the crisp, cool altitude (1600m) of Tanzania’s scenic Southern Highlands. The farm has been the home of the Ghaui family since the 1930’s. It is still a fully working farm with cattle, sheep, and a range of crops. The Cape to Cairo road (T1) that weaves the length of Africa passes directly through the farm. The Ghaui family led by Nicky have set up “The Old Farm House” to make the most of this ideal stopover spot for travelers – a perfect pause between Dar es Salaam and Malawi/ Zambia. The detail in planning and execution help create this “home away from home”. Nicky has an extensive knowledge of Tanzania and she willingly guided us in our exploration of this amazing country

 Activities on offer include farm walks, swimming and fishing on a nearby lake, visits to the colonial town of Iringa and trips to Isimila Stone Age Site- Tanzania’s “Stonehenge”. There are  useful maps of the farm to guide the uninitiated

On the first night we camped at a site complete with a Boma, electricity, water and a working area

and within minutes of us starting to make camp we had a little welcomer (- called “Carrots”)

The toilets and showers were about 300 meters away through a well worn path

showers and toilets were each in their own separate building

The night was extremely cold

We both did not really have a good night – Jules was cold, uncomfortable and starting to cough , also Barry was still battling tick bite fever headaches.

So next day we upgraded to the stables (Stable #2)

It was really cute with two single beds and nets and own en-suite shower/toilet wash basin.

We soon settled in and got power to Bru’ster as she parked just outside the stables.

Our new little companion came around often to check if we had settled in ok and maybe also to sample some more of that cat food that came up all the way from Cape Town.

On Tuesday (8 June) Barry left Jules to stay tucked up in bed and drove the 59km to Toyota in Iringa for the 100 000 (99 914km) service. We had travelled 8405 km since leaving Cape Town on 15 April.

The service at Toyota Iringa was superb Mr Seif Rashied – Customer Service Manager was gracious and kind – walking me up to the Absa ATM to cash money and helping me with shopping in the Iringa market place. Also met the owner and Dealer Principal Mr Rahim Chegamila. Their contact details are +255 26 2702643. Full details are the Toyota Dealer Network site

The next few days were spent in Kisolanza – it was lovey to stop and just catch up with ourselves after Zambia and the roads. Jules also started recovering nicely – we were not sure if it was COVID , a cold, flu or bronchitis – the best strategy was to stop , rest, stay warm, sleep and stable #2 was the best place for that.

Kisolanza has centralized their wifi station in clever way – satellite communications bring the signal in and there is a seprate boma type room with work stations and power and lots of wifi signal. there are also meeting tables in the shade of the trees.


By Thursday morning Julie had recovered was strong enough to accompany Barry on the 25km drive back to Mafinga to cash some money at the CRDB Bank. We bought lots of fresh veggies at the farm shop, had a walk and then cooked the veggies

Some cows met on the walk:

other scenery on the walk

This is where the shop and cafe are housed

Jules doing some cooking of the veggies, for the freezer, under the trees on the gas stove while Barry braaied

So after some great discussions and planning sessions with Nicky we packed Bru’ster and left Stable Room #2 – with plans to return on our homeward journey.

Our next steps were to drive East and then in Iringa head north to Dodoma in the centre of Tanzania (Capital City) and see how far we could get heading toward Lake Victoria.




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