Bearing east out of Harare, this time our destination was near the border between Zimbabwe and Mozambique in the highlands, to the dense forests of Nyanga. Heading along the Mutare road (the town which sits on the border next to Mozambique) we passed many people selling various fruits and vegetables positioned with stalls and baskets on the side of the road. In this direction, the produce available was strawberries, carrots, apples, potatoes, sweet potatoes and tomatoes. Prices here are greatly cheaper than in Harare so we decided to stop and buy some gorgeous strawberries that cost 0.50US cents per cup (a cup being approximately 200 grams) Now pulling over to purchase any of these products is an experience in itself because every single one of the sellers sprints in your direction hoping to be the first to reach you so that they may benefit from your custom. Luckily for the delightful lady selling her strawberries(Jane) had no contest as that was all we wanted which the other sellers were most put out by. With our succulent strawberries loaded we continued on our journey.
Nyanga is 270kms(168miles) from Harare and took around 4 hours to drive there. Thankfully the road there is gloriously smooth and mostly pot hole free which makes the drive a very pleasant one.
Mom and I stayed in a beautiful little cottage nestled against a hillside and surrounded by forests of predominantly pine trees. With the scent of pine in the air and the noise of bird song all around I felt immediately at peace. Nyanga is such a tranquil environment and holds a special place in many Zimbabweans hearts.
As the area is at a higher altitude than the rest of the country, it holds its own, very unique climate which is much cooler than the rest of Zimbabwe hence one of the best elements whilst visiting is to ensure a fire which one can huddle close to with a good book.
Nyanga is home to some truly beautiful waterfalls and rivers which Mom and I took the chance to visit. Though it is the dry season, these waterfalls were thunderous in their capacity of water that rushed by us.
At one of these falls (The Pungwe) I was brave enough to take a dip in the cool waters which collected at the base of the falls. I felt like my soul had been cleansed after swimming through these crystal clear waters, there was something healing about the experience.
The tax for the beautiful vistas and stunning waterfalls which we laid our eyes upon were the disastrous roads which led us to them! I have included some pictures of the roads but they simply do not have the same effect. Trust me when I tell you that after driving on these ‘roads’ I wanted to cry in relief upon reaching tar road that would lead us back home!
Nyanga is such a precious place that is definitely worth a visit although I would highly advise a 4×4 vehicle in which to go in!
* Images by Mary Snook.