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Category Archives: Culture

East Africans are so “out of touch”

On a recent flight I overheard a gentleman seated behind me talking about some volunteer work he did in Kenya.  His church sponsors work to build wells in rural locations.  This is a worthy project and one I’m passionate about myself, with most deaths in the developing world a result of poor water sources. But […]

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Join a Kilimanjaro climb…in 1909!

I just heard about this project and HAD to share this story and images! Have you ever been on a flight and looked at a mountain thousands of feet below and wondered what its name is, whether it has been climbed yet, and if so, who was the first to do so? Using the Royal […]

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Kilimanjaro – What does the name really mean?

Over the years Kilimanjaro has become synonymous with exotic adventure. Yet, surprisingly, the powerful name has no agreed-on translation. In the local Chagga dialect it can mean “Mountain of Greatness” or even “Mountain of Caravans.” In Swahili, Kilimanjaro might be “Shining Mountain,” “Mountain of the Cold Devils,” or even the unlikely “Little Mountain.” The nearby […]

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Kilimanjaro legends – Chagga folklore

[This is an excerpt from Kissing Kilimanjaro: Leaving it All on Top of Africa.] A local Chagga legend explains how Kilimanjaro’s 3 great peaks softened from treacherous lava formations to the more hospitable mountain we know today.  Long ago, there were two neighboring giant volcanoes in East Africa: Kibo was the taller and grander, while […]

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Meet Mt. Kilimanjaro…fascinating history of a mountain

[excerpt from Kissing Kilimanjaro: Leaving it All on Top of Africa] One hundred eighty million years ago, the continents as we know them didn’t exist. They were jammed together in one big land mass we’ve since named Gondwanaland. Slowly the continental plates separated and the various land masses ground across the earth’s crust, expelling tremendous […]

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Help Tanzania Celebrate 50 Years of Independence

Tanzania turns 50 this year. Share your story with the people and President of Tanzania. Thousands of people like you and I have visited Tanzania over the last 50 years.  We each have our own stories about climbing Kilimanjaro, wildlife safaris and experiencing this beautiful culture.  On Dec. 9th 2011 Tanzania will celebrate 50 years […]

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The Amazing Kilimanjaro Porters

I was at work the other day and our leadership team was talking about how important it is that people feel empowered to make a difference.  One VP said we needed to see more “everyday champions.”  He meant we needed to see more ordinary people who just did their jobs well and made the company […]

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Tanzania Culture Club

I have to be honest here.  I love Tanzania culture.  Every time I go I get this feeling of coming home after a long time away.  The warmth of the welcome, the breadth of the smiles I see on people faces always seems to amaze me.   Tanzanian culture combines the warmth you might expect from […]

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Kilimanjaro Culture Club

The last time I visited Kilimanjaro and the people of Tanzania it felt like coming home after a very long absence. I felt their warm embrace and laughed with them as we caught up. But there has always been one part of the East African culture that has eluded me, the begging and solicitations. Tanzania […]

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the Serengeti is in Danger!

The Serengeti is in danger from an approved highway project in Tanzania. What should you do about it? Help Tanzania grow their economy in a sustainable way.

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Inspiraton from Tanzania

I just recently heard the story of Tanzanian Olympic marathon running John Stephen Ahkwari.  While competing in the 1968 marathon he fell early in the race and was injured, ending any hopes you might have of winning.  After his leg was bandaged he stood up and continued to limp along the race route.  After all […]

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Tanzania UNESCO World Heritage Sites

UNESCO just finished their annual meeting and added 13 new sites to their list of 890. “The World Heritage List includes 890 properties forming part of the cultural and natural heritage which the World Heritage Committee considers as having outstanding universal value.”I just love the way that sounds. If you’re having trouble deciding where to […]

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Treasures in Kilimanjaro

I tripped across this recent account of a 1978 Kilimanjaro climb. It’s fantastic to read what it was like for Bob McKerrow to ascent the mountain before it really became the adventure tourist destination it is now. But the best part is the folklore he uncovered in Ethopia. I’ve heard some interesting stories before, but […]

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Kilimanjaro; what's in a name

Another Kilimanjaro fact that seems to create a great deal of confusion is what the name actually means. I’ve seen writers define it any number of ways. But the fact is, no one is entirely sure of the origin or even the native language of the name itself.In the local Chagga dialect it could mean […]

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How tall is Kilimanjaro?

I’ve been writing this blog for a few months now and monitoring daily the web conversations and articles about Kilimanjaro to keep up to date. And I’m amazed at the variety of facts and figures people quote about this humble mountain. For the next few posts I think we need to clarify a few things […]

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Kilimanjaro virtial tour

Larry Ferlazzo’s post last week reminded me of the New York Times’ virtual tour of a climb up Kilimanjaro via the Shira route. If you’re looking at another route have no fear. At the Shira plateau the Shira, Lemosho and Machame routes all converge. So after that they’re all the same.I like the details on […]

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Brief History of Kilimanjaro

Roy J Hinde of the Travel Zone blog has posted a nice, short geological history of Mt. Kilimanjaro as well as some of the thoughts on how the name came about. Check it out.

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