Travel Challenge: From Moshi to Taveta through Lake Jipe

I was very bored, it was disturbingly hot and there was nothing better than scrolling through my FaceBook timeline while listening to my sister’s complaint about being tired of the never changing scenery of the bicycle routes we had already been. I think I may have been unconsciously switched to Google maps or may be  deliberately opened the app but all I know is that without realizing I had already blurted out ‘why don’t we go to lake Jipe?’  I suspect that my sister enjoys planning trips because as soon as I had completed my statement she was already google searching for ways to get there.

It is not easy planning a trip to a place you have never been to. It’s even harder when there is not so much help online. I mean google maps helps a lot, you can even call it your best friend at times like these but it never gives distance measurement for points that are off-road. We were lucky to have found an itenary from a bicycle tour operator that provided us with the initial steps:

1) We had to ride to a village called Kifaru
2) From Kifaru we could then take an off-road route to Lake Jipe
3) At Lake Jipe we can cross by boat to Taveta in Kenya.

We set out at around 6 am, arrived at around 2 pm, riding at an average pace of 6 km/hr.
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It took several inquiries from the locals, dehydration and muscle fatigue to get there but the view was amazing and worthwhile.

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Having a sip at the valleys of Pare mountains.

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Crossing the lake to Taveta.

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It was not without mishaps.

Tips:
1. Have a filling breakfast and carry at least a 1.5 L water bottle once you reach Kifaru; the next shop will be at the village where lake Jipe passes and that’s a long ride.
2. The road in Taveta is rough so have some puncture fixing essentials or brand new tubes and tools.
3. Ride with a cap and glasses on during the hot seasons, it’s really hot.
4. The ride from Taveta to Holili is about 3 km so it is actually possible to get to Moshi if you ride with good speed and have the necessary endurance.
5. If you are exhausted then have a rest at Taveta, getting to a reasonable accomodation at Holili will require riding up some elevations.

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