Life As A Nomad; Alick Chingapi’s Backpacking Journey Across Africa

Published on: May 30, 2019


What did I find in Africa ?

“There is no definitive answer, I experienced a lot but one emotion that resonates is thankfulness / gratitude. I found humanity, ‘ubuntu’, people’s kindness when meeting a stranger. I found the African hustle, the entrepreneurial spirit on the streets of Kampala, Aswan and Nairobi. People pushing by all means necessary to make it happen.
One of the most important lessons I learnt, is that you will find what you are looking for when you are traveling. It might not be in the way , shape or form that you expect it, but it was deeply satisfying to be on this trip.” ~Alick Chingapi


Get to Know our Nomad:

Where are you from?

I was born in Zimbabwe to Malawian parents, so I identify as both.

Where have you been?

Egypt, Ghana, Sudan, Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Uganda, Zambia, Malawi, South Africa, Mozambique, Lesotho, Swaziland, Namibia and Democratic Republic of Congo.

What’s been your favorite place?

I will be biased towards Kenya cause of the vibrancy and having friends who are as good as family. However, Uganda struck a chord with me. The streets of Kampala, the markets, the helpfulness of the people all resonated with me. I enjoyed my time on one of the islands on Lake Bunyonyi in the South of Uganda, it was serenely peaceful.

What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever done?

I found myself heading to a refugee camp in Rwanda. I intended to volunteer only to get a rude awakening when I arrived at the camp, when the authorities told me that I needed clearance to be able to volunteer. I don’t know why I had thought I would be able to arrive at a refugee camp and help out. It was an intense couple of hours with my passport circulating different hands, bag searched thoroughly, every photo in my camera examined. I realized the gravity of my situation as I was being questioned by a third individual and it sounded like I was a spy.

What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever eaten?

Don’t really have, I have eaten a lot of food that in some people’s cultures are crazy. I eat amacimbi (mopane worms), mbeva (a form of field mouse) and some people think that it is crazy.

How long had you been traveling for on your last trip?

I traveled for nearly 5 months before I returned home

How much longer will you be traveling for?

I intend to get back to traveling soon across West Africa once I have my planned out my next trip and hopefully attained sponsorships.

What were you doing before you left on your last trip?

I used to work at a consulting firm as a lead consultant, managing teams on projects in client environments.

Did you ever miss home?

Initially, I missed the familiarity of home comforts such as my bed but after a while, it is a memory of something I can look forward to and appreciate a bit more

We all want to travel around the world, but few of us are brave enough to do. In his book, Through A Black Iris, Alick Chingapi brings us along his journey across Africa. Get your copy here!