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Accidentally awesome photos!

CHANDRESH KUDWA

Photography & luck, the eternal duo.

We’ve all been lucky. We’ve all landed up with pictures that we love out of sheer luck haven’t we? One just has to admire the presence of luck in photography. It carries us through some of our most challenging photographic moments.

There are a few per-requisites to getting these sometimes surprising images.

First and foremost:

Well, there’s your camera. You don’t need a so called ‘high-end’ camera, really. What you will need however is a camera which is ready for a shot at all times. Fully charged and ready to roll.

All DSLRs these days have a stand-by mode. Like in my Nikon, the stand-by mode keeps the camera sleeping. The moment I need to take a picture, one press of any button will get it out of its slumber and ready to fire.

What’s even more important is that your camera be configured in such a way that it’s ready for all scenarios. You don’t want to be fidgeting with the settings to get the ISO down and the aperture up in case you need to point the lens at the Sun.

The solution to that problem is to keep the camera set to ‘auto’ or ‘P/Program’, when you’re not shooting something in particular, obviously. Let the camera do the work, it’s faster than your fingers in situations where you may have all but one second to point, compose and shoot.

As this black and white image demonstrates, being unprepared is not always a bad thing. (not that I condone it)

Two faced tide.

Two faced tide, Zanzibar, Africa.

This photograph, taken from the Forhodani Park in Stone Town, Zanzibar, showcases the simple life of the fishing community here. Every morning they head out with their sails open while the sun is still yawning into its rise. They return with the days catch in the evening, fresh and ready to go onto any of the stalls which line the lanes of the Forhodani park.

This is a much adored photograph from my portfolio but the harsh truth about this photograph is that this was a highly over-exposed frame. Shot in RAW, when this image came up in the scroll, there was little my mind could think about doing. The highlights were too bright, the blacks looked as if they came straight out of a can of oil paint.

The first thing that I did was to instantly rid it of all saturation (you know, cut my losses and use what I have). The next step came as a surprise even to me, I bumped up the exposure even more till the ocean looked almost like a sketch. You can even spot the horizon if you’ve got a good pair of eyes. As a result came out this picture postcard image of a Dhow.

Having the camera set to manual and not prepared for this type of photograph actually helped me capture this rather representative image. I was lucky. The unorthodox processing of this image saved the day.

Timing is everything, true.

There’s no getting away from it. Your shutter release has got to be absolutely on the money at that second when it’s all supposed to happen. Miss it and all you’ll have is a photograph which could.

Get it right though and you’ll be jumping with joy after you finish processing the picture. There again is that element which we all love to hate – luck.

The spirit of the desert.

Spirit of the desert. Rajasthan, India.

Easily one of the top 5 favourites from my recent trip to Rajasthan, India. I pride myself on the exquisite timing of this photograph.

I’m feeling lucky:

There have been a few times that I have ended up depending on luck. Some frown upon that but who gives a damn? They say that the photographers who rely on luck are not true photographers, they’re just trigger happy shooters. I think whoever says this is right, only to an extent though.

You see, I started shooting with a manual camera and its bathed in wasted film (and money!) disappointments. Back then it was only those ‘lucky’ shots that kept egging me on to shoot more.

Even the urge to try and better understand the nuances of making a well thought out and calibrated photograph was fueled by those few perfect photos. All thanks to luck.

Kumbhalgarh

A bad photograph gone good. Kumbhalgarh Fort, Rajasthan, India.

I didn’t even know I had taken this shot. I was busy watching the sound and light show at the fort (hence the lighting). The camera was set up on a tripod right next to my seat. With a wired remote-release in my hand I kept clicking, only occasionally changing the tilt to adjust my frame. The reason I love this photograph is that everything in the frame is perfectly out of focus. Yes! Look closely and you’ll see. Yet somehow, this image works. You can even see the milky way!

Light and Luck:

When shooting outdoors, these two factors can mean the world to a photographer. Also, no one has complete control over either. That’s what’s amazing if you actually do end up with a good photograph. Sometimes even the worst hours of light can yield a good photograph. Don’t be apprehensive about shooting at noon or under thick cloud cover. Go for it, regardless.

Oh! Zanzibar.

Living on an island. Zanzibar, Africa.

Shot at the top of noon, this photograph came as a surprise. Background: It was hot, I was sweating it with all my camera gear on my back and I was on a beach with no shade. On a motorcycle ride across the island, I had little control over the time I reached a particular destination. Look at this picture, see the shadows and you’ll know it was shot at 12PM on the dot. This photograph was a stepping stone for me towards realising the possibilities of shooting with harsh light.

Wing it!

Sometimes though, one just has to forget everything and swing for the fence. Like in this photo here, shot at Hampi in Karnataka, India.

The Virupaksha Temple, at Sunset.

Jewel in the crown. Virupaksha Temple, Hampi, India.

Almost 2 kilometers away from my subject and on top of a hill. The place where I was standing had absolutely no space to move around and get the Sun perfectly resting in the Temple’s crown. To get this particular shot, I had to literally hang off the hill and try to shoot with one hand stretched out as far as possible. The Sun too would stay in the correct position for a very short while only, I had very little time to execute. Adding to my problems was the 300mm lens that I was using! It took about 10 shots till I got this photograph. Which could have been taken in a better way, if I had a helicopter or something. (wink!). After I got the photograph and a few other shots, I spent the night ogling at my camera screen!

So there you have it. Go ahead and be lucky!

Go beyond.The Enfield in us. Hedvi.Somewhere I can find peace.

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Flashback Zanzibar.

A much delayed article. A year late, to be precise. There are some things in life that happen out of the blue. Like this brilliant (professional) life starting trip. I got to work with two of the most accomplished and inspiring editors I know. Read on to find out about Zanzibar and my 30 day trip to the island in early 2011.

Flashback Zanzibar!

As a photographer, I had decided that Africa was a place I’d visit only when I felt completely prepared. It’s an overwhelming continent, something I’m sure everybody knows already. More so for a photographer I can report. Thing is, with its grave prospects for downright dumbfounding photography (for the viewer and photographer alike), the continent of Africa had intimidated me for quite some time. I had hence decided within my head that I would venture into that part of the world only when I, as a photographer, was better ready.

All that changed in an instant when I received my confirmation email from Mambo Magazine. Mambo was a travel/culture online magazine based in Zanzibar, Tanzania. Yet again, my life had managed to trump my game plan but I wasn’t complaining! I was to spend a month on the Island of Zanzibar, interning as a photographer and writer. I took off.

When you first reach the Island of Zanzibar, you may feel like this is not the quintessential African destination but rest assured. Zanzibar is as African as Africa gets. There is wildlife, there is culture and there is the experience of a lifetime.

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Getting there

Zanzibar lies about 35 miles off the coast of Dar-es-Salaam, a part of Tanzania in east central Africa. I took a 20 minute flight to Zanzibar from Dar-es-Salaam. One can also opt for the ferry which takes about 2 hours to get you there. Both options invite you into this grove of uniqueness with absolutely stunning vistas. Whether you look at it from the air or while racing across the Indian ocean, this archipelago is a treat for the senses.

Once on land I found that life here is laid back. Nobody here is in a hurry, ‘Pole pole’ as they say, slowly slowly. People here are friendly and are completely at ease with tourists. Tourism being the main industry in Zanzibar, the main town known as Stone Town revolves around the traveller.

In Stone Town one notices how life here is like any other tourist town but with a slight twist. Zanzibar is home to many different ethnicities, right from Indians to people from the Middle East and of course the African Swahili. The various cultures and people here coexist in a beautiful mixture that is bound to catch your attention and keep you enthralled. As you walk through the maze of narrow streets and lanes that is Stone Town, you will see small shops on both sides of your path selling local art and souvenirs. One can find scintillating paintings of the forests and the Masai and even abstract which are capable of capturing the attention of the most discerning connoisseur.

Road side shoppe

Street side!

For the food loving kind, the by-lanes of Stone Town offer authentic Swahili street food in addition to the retro barbeque and grilled preparations of sea food and meats. Make your way to Forhodani park and you will be treated to tens of vendors selling grilled sea food such as fish, shrimp and octopus right off the grill!

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Forhodani Bbq!

A dish called ‘Urojo’ is a local delicacy, it is a savoury soup and is very healthy and filling – perfect for the weight-watchers. Kassava chips are a popular local munch. If you’re a little fussy, almost every cuisine in the world can be found here, right from the best pizza and pasta from Italy to lassi and tava biryani from India. If you’re feeling lavish, head to the Serena Inn, a Stone Town five star, for a pint of Kilimanjaro. Overlooking the ocean, this little escapade will refresh you at any time of the day.

Title Shot for the bar.

A pint of Kili

Stone town is also home to a lot of beach cafes, such as the Livingstone. It sits right next to the ferry terminal and hence is always surrounded by interesting happenings, the staff of the Livingstone will also make sure that your time at the resto-bar is worthwhile and that you leave with a stomach full of grub and a spring in your step.

The Livingstone Beach Cafe.

The Livingstone Cafe

The Swahili culture is a very unique one indeed. The women here wear colourful attires and although shy at first, they won’t mind if you ask before taking a picture. Even the clothes worn by the locals have interesting angles to them. The ‘Kanga’, a type of head gear worn by the local women has interesting quotes printed on them which have a hidden meaning. Women communicate amongst themselves and with their husbands and friends using these Kangas, without speaking a single word!

Let's buy some furniture in Zanzibar!

Vibrance in cloth

Zanzibar is the birth place of Swahili. The language is not too tough to grasp for the average traveller, basic Swahili is easy to pick up. ‘Jambo’ a word which means hello, ‘asante’ which means thank you and for Indians, ‘Pilli Pilli’ which stands for chilli is enough to get you through your vacation in paradise here. Even if you’re not a language person, the cheerful spirit and energetic charm of the locals will coax you into learning a few words. Don’t be surprised if you hear people using some Hindi words, for instance the word ‘bas’ stands for enough, just like in Hindi.

Jambo!

Jambo!

You get the full tourist experience in Stone Town but if you want to see the real thing, head out. I recommend renting an SUV and taking a drive across the island. That way one gets a chance to really gain a feel for Zanzibar. But, even that is a tad touristy if you ask me.

For the hard-core traveller who really wants to discover this place inside out, I suggest you hop onto a ‘Dalla-Dalla’ or a local bus and hang on! These are small Toyota trucks modified to carry a monumental number of passengers. It’ is the perfect way to break the ice between you and the experience. These trucks/busses are the lifeline of the island. Make sure you loose your inhibitions before hopping on though!

Do the Dala Dala!

Do the Dala Dala!

Being the biker I am I took a six day motorcycle ride across the island and its various beaches/villages. A motorcycle ride according to me is the best way to experience the openness and beauty of Zanzibar. The exhilaration of riding along the smooth roads which mostly run parallel to the coast and feeling the cool ocean breeze is incomparable to any other pleasure. Every spot on the island has a completely different feel. I spent a month here and still can’t wait to get back. Read more about my motorbike ride here: The Magical Motorcycle Tour.

Biking it in Africa!

Bikin’ it in Africa!

The villages are a complete contrast to the town. Hardly any shops, empty roads and the sounds of the Ocean. Stay on the east coast for a couple of days and experience the beautiful sunrises over the calm waters of the Indian Ocean.

Go beyond.

Sunrises here leave one speechless.

Party? Make your way to Kendwa – it’s the party king of Zanzibar. A great place to chill out and meet fellow travellers. On the west coast, you will be treated to amazing sunsets every evening. Rest assured, you’ll have a story to tell from here!

The penultimate eve.

Postcard sunsets

Distances are short here, if you’re in a car. In a couple of hours one can cross the entire island from North to South. The roads are good too but once you’re in a village, be prepared to ride through some sandy patches. It is all great fun though.

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Road to nirvana! Wink!

Zanzibar also has great wildlife. The Jozani national park in the centre of the island is home to the African Red and Black Colobus monkeys. If you are lucky, you might even catch a glimpse of the native Blue Monkey. The guides of the park will take you through the forest foliage and past huge centuries old Baobab trees. They will help you track down the whereabouts of these playful tree dwellers.

The African Red Colobus Monkey.Who are you?

The Red Colobus and Blue Monkeys.

If you have the guts, head to the Zala Park. Zala is a reptile sanctuary managed by two inspiring locals who have dedicated their lives to conserving wildlife on the island. The park is home to some of the most dangerous snakes in the world like the Green Mamba and the Cobra. Who knows, you might even get to hold one.

The snake man.Untitled

Zala Reptile Park!

Dolphin tours are also very popular with the tourists here but there is a catch. The excessive tours operated here, some say, are leading to the detriment of the dolphin population. I steered clear of this option to be honest. If you’re lucky, sitting on one of the pristine beaches of this wonder island, you might just get to see the dolphins playing out in the ocean.

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The southern shore

Take the sea safari on the east coast though. That will give you a guided insight into the daily life of the people living in the coastal regions and will take you close to the culture of the real Swahili Zanzibaris. See how the local women make a living by farming seaweed and making rope from coconut fiber. It’s quite the learning curve!

Sea Safari.

Sea Safari!

When you want more, take some Swahili cooking lessons. Learn what they eat, how they cook and help do it. Enjoy a cosy meal with one of the local families, right in their home. Take in the cheerful hospitality while you drink coconut water and talk to the family. On this island, even a month is less time!

Be it for the honeymooners, backpackers or even adventure freaks, with its myriad avenues when it comes to that extra ordinary travel experience, Zanzibar will see you bowled over. Whether you are looking for a week away in a foreign land or even planning to take your family along for a different kind of trip, my suggestion is, head to Zanzibar and let the Swahili vibe take over.

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Perfect mornings

For me, Zanzibar was an eye opener. Mambo and I did a photography workshop on the last day of my trip. It was the first time I was going to be teaching! The workshop was a roaring success! House full!

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Cameras love Zanzibar!

In more ways than one this trip managed to force open my mind and instill in me the confidence needed for the coming year and it’s travel. Africa does that to you. Do visit, it’ll do you a world of good.

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Karibu Zanzibar!

To see more pictures from Zanzibar – Click here.

Links:

Top ten photographs from my trip to Zanzibar – The Zanzibar Post.

An in-depth Island experience: The Magical Motorcycle Tour.

Swahili cooking: Click here to read.

The Sea Safari: What lies beneath.

Travel article in the Pune Mirror on Zanzibar by Nipun Srivastava: Click here to read.

For any further information regarding travel/cuisine/entertainment/safety in Zanzibar, contact: www.Mambomagazine.com


Chasing the Sun..

..could have been the perfect title to this article if it wasn’t for its rampant (mis)use and further transformation into a cliché. Anyway, this article is about the sun and how one goes about capturing it in various different situations.

Let’s start with the situations. Sunsets are relatively easy, since they are in the middle of the day and you don’t necessarily have to wake up before dawn to catch them. It’s the sunrises that can be tough, even before you think about your camera.

Talking about Sunrises, getting up in time is always an issue but that’s your problem. If by chance you happen to be in Africa and on the Eastern side of the continent, make sure you get in early every night and wake up in time for the rise every single morning. Each morning is different and so are the ways the sun chooses to rise every different day. This is true for most places in the world though. The morning mist has a profound effect on the colours you will see. Plus the darks in the foreground will force you to work harder to get that perfect shot.

The Pangong Tso By day.

Rising early in the mountains.

I was there, I didn’t wake up every day and I suffered. I had the chance to shoot around twenty five sunrises but ended up shooting just about ten. Sometimes I wonder what beautiful shots I could have got. So try not to make the same mistake I did, if photography is your aim with travel.

Also, since I assume you are now going to get up early tomorrow morning, make sure you have had your trip to the loo before you head out. Yes, I know, it may sound funny when you read this but there are only a few things worse than knowing that the perfect sunrise is about to happen and then realising that you’ve got to head to the crapper. It has happened to me, more than once, it makes you feel like what you’re ‘doing’.

The day I missed it.

The day I missed it.

Okay, Sunsets as I said are easier but only by way of not having for you to wake up at an unearthly hour. Everything else, while shooting the sun in the evening is more or less similar to when you take a shot at the early morning sun. Here though, unlike early mornings where the light consistently increases you will face the opposite situation. The light will vanish quicker than you can change lenses, so be prepared.

To judge the amount of time I have before the sun sets at the horizon, I use the FFF or the four fingers forecast. It’s simple, hold out your arm with your palm folded in an L shape and line it up between (just below) the sun and your eye. Each fingers gap between the sun and the horizon will give you about 10 to 15 minutes, so you have a rough idea about when it’s going to get over. If you are reading this at the North or South Pole by any chance, do not bother, you probably have other things to worry about. (Carry a Neutral Density filter if you ACTUALLY do happen to head to the poles).

I'm not alone.

When you still have a while.

Many ask me, do you walk around when shooting a sunset or sunrise or do you stay in one place and shoot from there and around?

Well, it depends on the drama. Yes, the amount of drama present in the frame when I’m shooting decides whether I move about or not. Take for instance, if I’m shooting a sunset where the sun is actively playing with the clouds or rain and every second picture has the light of a different shade, then, I would choose to sit tight mostly. On the other hand if the sun isn’t in a mood for dance, I move around and look for subjects which will make the sun a more interesting part of the frame. It’s a personal choice, really. Here is what can happen when you walk around with a plain and clear sunset.

Somewhere I can find peace.

When it’s plain, saunter.

This photograph is being curated by National Geographic Stock.

Shooting on a beach can be rather pleasant as you may encounter everything from crabs to couples and have a good time while at it. Scan the horizon through your camera for any interesting subjects that your naked eye may not deem photogenic. Reflections have an uncanny ability to give great shots, especially on the wet sands, right after a wave retreats. Even flowing water can make for a great photograph.

I see myself.

Inducing reflections.

When in the mountains, hurry! The sun will come up slightly late (for your eyes) and set before you know it. Tall mountains can be a tricky place to take a picture if you know what I mean. Not always will you be able to get a good exposure on the mammoth rock faces. Hang in there and keep an eye on the changing light, as the sun sets, the hues of the sky will change and the mountain faces will gleam with shades of orange and yellow, which is a highly ideal situation.

Himalayan Hues.

Gleaming grandeur.

As anyone who knows their job will tell you, timing is everything. Anticipate shots, try and make good photographs great by using what is around or by changing your position if you can. Go lower, go higher or try something unusual. Making mistakes is an integral learning chapter of photography. Who knows? It may just pay off.

Walk with me.

Walk with me.

Better Photography Magazine, February 2011.

The power of will is a major factor in any endeavour and taking photographs is no different. Persevere and persevere.

Now what?

Its evening and the sun has just slipped under the horizon. Don’t pack up that camera just yet, instead, take out the tripod and get ready for some long exposures. You will be surprised at the low light long exposure images you may capture. Forget the flash. There is a lot of fun to be had, after the sun goes down! If you know what I mean.

Jump!

Jump!

A lot many people who tot cameras will tell you that you should have used this or that filter and other blah blah, the common denominator will turn out to be the CPL or the circular polarizer. Yes it will help you a lot when you do get the hang of using it but let me tell you one thing, it is expensive and can be quite a headache if you decide to shoot the sun or its light with a different lens and end up wanting a CPL for that lens too. So I say, sit tight and use what you have. All the pictures you see on this particular post are shot without the all-important CPL.

Clean that lens before you shoot, okay?


– Nipun Srivastava

Want to see more photographs of the Sun? Click here.


Personifying travel. [Photograph]

Travel is therapeutic, we all know that. For those of us who value its presence in our lives, seldom do we find a way to express it. As far as I can imagine, this picture personifies travel like no other. Enjoy.

Go beyond.

Travel was my dream,
travel is my life.
I travel even if there is nothing to take me there,
and even if there was no other way,
I would just keep walking.

Shot in Africa, on the island of Zanzibar. Sunrise on the east coast here is like nowhere else. Dramatic and fulfilling.

Want to see more pictures from Zanzibar? Click here.


Dunking the cliché

What it means for travel: Nothing of the ordinary, far from it.

In today’s day and age, tourism is full of lavish and luxurious holiday packages, which cater to a select segment of society.

Tourism.

Travel though, contrary to what some people believe, is becoming increasingly easy. It is easier to get around, more independence, more resources and the urge to explore is a common character trait in most individuals. Yet, when it comes to actually pulling all the stops and heading out, most settle for true blue/tried and tested travel planning.

When you sign up for such travels, you make sure (in most cases) that you don’t experience even a bit of the ‘extraordinary’ that this world has to offer. Since everything is researched and surveyed, seldom will you venture out of your comfort zone.

Backpacking is one way the young and vibrant excuse themselves of the cliché and do what they feel like with travel in a budget. A very good practice, that. Though, what about the people who have the money? Who don’t have a pressing need to save on flights and accommodation, what about them? Some would argue that such people don’t really want a special experience, they just want to relax and get away from it all. I disagree.

The majority of people I have spoken to tell me that they would have liked a more engaging vacation. Wanting not just the opportunity to sit in a hot tub and drink beer but also the chance to really get wet with perspiration, leaving footprints at places no traveller has gone before. Wouldn’t you like the same?

Take for instance, the time I spent in Africa on the island of Zanzibar. A foreign land, living among Swahili people, trying harder to speak the language a little every day – everyone does that or can do that. Not to say I was backpacking around as I did get the chance to rent a bike and head out across Zanzibar and stay in the best of hotels too, thanks to the magazine I was working with.

While on tour, one of our contacts in a small village on the coast called Unguja Ukoo, invited me for a rather different kind of get together. Initially he told me it was something like a dance party or the likes of it, I don’t quite remember now. Dance party? I thought to myself, doesn’t sound particularly interesting but I could sense a little hesitation in his voice when he told me that. Mussa, the contact, was a very chirpy and effervescent person and his hesitation in calling it a ‘dance party’ got me thinking – maybe there is more to the ‘dance party’ than just dance.

I asked my editors to speak with him to try and understand what he actually meant. I rode on out and completed the 6 day bike tour I was taking or as my editors at Mambo Magazine named it ‘The magical motorcycle tour’.

The editors did have a chat with Mussa and guess what; we had been invited to an exorcism. Yes, the real thing! In Africa! Some people would make faces when offered this chance but for a travel photographer on a mission, this was like the ultimate opportunity.

On the day, our team geared up and jumped into a 4×4, we made our way to the village. Mussa met us at our designated rendezvous point and then led us to a cave in the middle of the bush. It was more of a big ditch with a huge tree in the middle and a big outcropping of coral rock on one side. Full of local people, dressed up and ready for the ceremonies.

To be honest, I did get an unsettling vibe from the people. But of course, this was going to be no ‘party’. Everybody took up positions around the big tree. There were local women crowded around in the middle, around who I realized was the person for whom this ceremony was being held. On the opposite side of the rocky outcrop were seated five musicians, making music with nothing more than beaten out metal plates and drums along with one very loud trumpet of some sort. The music was, well, loud.

Exorcism in Zanzibar. 3.

The head of the village then called all of us to the cave and asked us to get a blessing from the demons, which to be polite, we did. I am not much of a believer to tell you the truth but at such gatherings, one needs to play along.

Exorcism in Zanzibar.

The ceremony started without warning. The trumpet blew and the cohesive beating of drums entranced the people in the centre with a cryptic melange of sounds. The older women of the village started dancing around, while the men were present on the sides in a periphery.

Exorcism in Zanzibar. 2.

I cracked on with the photography, it was pretty cloudy and the thick bush was tough for the sun’s rays to navigate through, so the light wasn’t too good. With people giving me weird looks all around as they probably wondered who I was and what I was up to, I clicked till I felt I had enough shots.

After a while, the experience actually told me something. If I didn’t have this contact and drove through the village and to the beach like a normal tourist would, there was no way I could have found out about this exorcism. So close yet so far, it would have been.

And there we have it, would I have had this experience on the main road in my air conditioned taxi? Hell no.

A thing that all travellers need to keep in mind is that you have to respect the other person’s turf and culture. No one by virtue of being a tourist has the right to go barging into someone else’s life just because one wants to get closer to the action. Sometimes that tactic may end up backfiring and you will find yourself in a tight spot. It is easier to get invited, most cultures out there respect new visitors and honour guests wholeheartedly and that is the way to go.

Times are changing, also people are too and hence nowadays some hard core travel buffs do take to the road without an aorta of planning. That my friends, is the path to the future of travel. If you’re the kind of person who likes to know where she/he is heading or the kind that like to have a hotel reservation in place before venturing out, move over. The junkies are on their way!

The junkies are coming!


The Zanzibar Post

These are the top ten photographs from my trip to Zanzibar. I Interned in Africa with Mambo Magazine.

Thanks to my editors Rachel Hamada and Jaki Sainsbury, I had the experience of a lifetime!

Enjoy.

Oh! Zanzibar.

Oh!Zanzibar

Vivid memories in my mind,
More special than gifts in kind, you blow me away while holding my hand,
Boy, is it fun living on an island!

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Two faced tide.

Two Faced Tide

This photograph, taken from the Forhodani Park in Stone Town, Zanzibar, showcases the simple life of the fishing community here.

Every morning they head out with their sails open while the sun is still yawning into its rise.

They return with the days catch in the evening, fresh and ready to go onto any of the stalls which line the lanes of the park.

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A day in the life of Zanzibar.A day in the life of Zanzibar

Early in the morning, this sea weed farmer works on her square of the seaweed plantation.

In Zanzibar, the women mostly farm seaweed to sell to pharmaceutical firms from Japan and other oriental countries, where seaweed is used for skin treatments.

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Jambo!

Jambo!

The Swahili children use the phrase to welcome tourists as they venture into the comfort zone of  Zanzibari culture.

The Swahili spirit of cheer and goodwill is every where to be seen and experienced on this African wonder island.

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Early coastal morning.Early coastal morning

A local fisherman embarks on his fishing trip for the day on the east coast of Zanzibar.

The image was clicked just before sunrise from my hotel room on Pongwe beach.

The image showcases the life of Zanzibaris local to coastal villages on the island.

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Seaweed Prowess.Seaweed Prowess

Zanzibari women are experts at farming this crop of the ocean.

Seaweed farming is a small industry in and around Zanzibar and is a slowly vanishing practice.

The new generation of women prefer to work in hotels and other such ventures in the tourism industry as it is easy money.

If not preserved, this form of cash crop production will seize to exist here.

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The Livingstone Beach Cafe.The Livingstone Beach Cafe

THE place to spend dusk sipping on a pint of Tanzanian lager.

A people watchers’ den.

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The penultimate eve.The penultimate eve

Kendwa is easily the most scenic part of Zanzibar.

My second to last evening here was a melange of a great sunset, very beautiful people and amazing energy.

With the cricket world cup on, the party was at a whole new level.

Africa!!

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Riding across the island.Riding across the island

Zanzibar and it’s long, straight, smooth and soulful roads just deserve a ride on two wheels.

This time straight across the island, from Paje to Stone Town and back.

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The African affair

Every day is a new discovery, every minute is a new realization.

Oh Zanzibar, don’t make me fall in love.

With you, every day is a new affair.

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