The route is far from set in stone due to the nature of overland journeys, especially those undertaken by bike! There will inevitably route changes but that is very much part of the adventure.
Our approximate route is roughly 4,072 miles and will take us through 9 countries.
Please explore the map below for greater detail of the planned route.
The Route Elevation
Start altitude: 17 metres
End altitude: 1,524 metres
Maximum altitude: 2,744 metres
Minimum altitude: 1 metres
Distance: 6,359.3 km
Total ascent: 55,803 metres
Total descent: 54,295 metres
The Counties We Will Visit
The journey will begin on the 4th of January 2016 at Cape Town harbour as we make the first of many millions of pedal strokes. Initially we will head North West through Stellenbosch, Paarl and Worcester on the 1000 mile journey to Botswana. As we cycle further North we will pass through the diamond mining city of Kimberley, before crossing into Botswana at the border town of Ramatlabama.
The route through Bots will allow Carl to say hello to a few friends made on a trip there in 2014. From the boarder we head North to Gaborone and then take the long journey to Francistown near the Zimbabwe border. Botswana will provide great expanses of African wilderness and hopefully the chance to spot some wildlife.
Zimbabwe is a country that both of us have been desperate to visit for many years and the CWB message of AIDs/HIV and cricket should be particularly relevant here. The small town of Plumtree, in South-Western Zimbabwe will be our first stop and marks the watershed between the Limpopo river basin to the south and the Zambizi basin to the north. From Plumtree we head East towards the second city of Bulawayo before reaching the capital Harare. From Harare we head towards the border at Nyampanda to cross into Mozambique.
Our stay in Mozambique will only be for a few days, with Tete being the main town on our route. Tete is the largest city on the Zambezi River, and is the site of two of the four bridges crossing the river in Mozambique.
By all accounts Malawi is the most beautiful country in Africa in which to cycle, and the images conjured up by riding along the banks of Lake Malawi are breathtaking. We cross into Malawi at Dedza which is located about 85 km south of Malawi’s capital, Lilongwe. From there we will cycle along the banks of Lake Malawi socking up the views and culture.
Tanzania is a massive country and will be a couple of weeks hard cycling. We will experience large plains, game reserves and stunning views of Africa’s highest peak, Kilimanjaro. The first city we encounter will be the former gold mining town of Mbeya as we cycle through a narrow highland valley surrounded by a bowl of high mountains. The route then heads North through the heart of Tanzania, towards Arusha, the home of the East Africa Community.
Both of us have visited Kenya several times for CWB and we are looking forward to having some Kenyan riders cycling with us. From the capital city of Nairobi we will head towards the Great Rift Valley and Nakuru and Kericho, before arriving at the Kisumu on the banks of Lake Victoria.
We will head West into Uganda towards the town of Jinja, which is world famous as the source of the Nile. After a stop for some Nile Specials and a spot of white water rafting at the rapids we will have to negotiate the chaos of Kampala and head towrds the final country of Rwanda.
Rwanda is the final country on our epic journey and while the distance between Rushenyi and Kigali is nominally only 100 miles, we are fully aware of Rwanda’s reputation as the land of a thousand hills! The finish line for our 4000 mile journey is the École Technique Officielle in Kigali. The Technical College is a significant spot in the history of Rwanda and its cricket. On April 11, 1994, during the 1994 Rwandan Genocide, over 2,000 Rwandans were murdered by extremist militia at the college but it is now a venue for hope and importantly sport. It will be a fitting and poignant finishing point for us.