My last five days in Africa I decided to spend on Zanzibar, where my friend Mårten Boström is working as a GIS and Database Professional Officer for one year. Sine Zanzibar in only a one hour flight from Nairobi I found this a good chance to visit him and get some nice days there at the end of my trip. Zanzibar is a Tanzanian island at the east coast of Africa, and is known for being a holiday paradise with nice beaches. Mårten is aiming to qualify for the Finish team to the marathon in this summer’s Olympic Games in London, so I was also guaranteed a good training mate.
I travelled together with Niklas Serrander and we arrived late Tuesday after spending most of the day on safari in Nakuru. We were lucky and were able to find his penthouse apartment, even if we showed up one day too early and didn’t have his exact address or locale mobile number. Since it is hot and high air density on Zanzibar Mårten is having his first training at 6 am when the sun is coming up, exactly as we had in Kenya. The second training is normal starting 5 – 6 pm, so he has finished before it gets dark 7 pm.
Wednesday we spent some hours in the old city, Stone Town, which is on the UNESCO’s World Heritage list. It was a challenge to find all the food we wanted for barbequing in the evening, and we ended up with scampi and a lot of vegetables and fruits. I was also running two times 50 minutes with Mårten from his place. In the morning on paths in a forest and in the evening along the beach.
Thursday started with a 10 000 m on track before breakfast. I helped Mårten keeping the right speed, and took a break two times so I ended up running 5000 + 2000 + 2000 m. After the training we went to dolphin safari, where we were able to snorkel just a few meters from the dolphins.
Friday started with a 24 km long progressive run before breakfast. After a short warm up we started running 4.20 min/km, and ended with the pace 3.35. The rest of the day Niklas and I spent on spice safari, where we learned about all the different spices and fruits growing on Zanzibar, before we visited a nice beach. In the evening we got massage before we were eating dinner in Stone Town.
Saturday started with a morning run on the beach, and after breakfast Niklas and I was running a middle distance course from the Zanzibar O-day held in connection with a trip organized by Janne Salmi two weeks earlier. Because the tide was higher then drawn on the map we were running with water high up on our legs more then half the course. (Unfortunately I did not bring my camera during the training since I wanted to keep focus on the orienteering.) After lunch we drove to the east coast of the island and went snorkelling for a few hours. It was very cool, even if we did not see as many fish’s as expected. The day ended with a run along the beach and dinner on an Ethiopian restaurant in Stone Town.
Sunday started with sprint orienteering in Stone Town, which was a nice challenge with all the narrow streets full of people, bikes and mopeds. I was running 3 different sprint courses, with a few minutes break between each. The map Mårten had made held really high quality. After breakfast Niklas and I went on a boat trip to Prison Island, where they had turtles and some nice beaches. The day was ended with barbequing, but unfortunately I got fever so I took an early night and the travel home the following day was a bit tough.
As you can see in my picture gallery it was some really nice days on Zanzibar, filled with a lot of different activities, and I would like to thank Mårten and his wife Matleena for the hospitality and all help during the stay.