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East Africa touring for Gemstones

I would like to tour Tanzania, Zambia, zimbabwe, Kenya after the lockdown. The purpose of the tour is to explore the Gemstone collections. Do I get any guidance

Please be more specific. Do you want to visit offices or going to the mines?
I go regularly to the mines and have a office in the middle of Kenya. But no travel now as you say due to the corona.
I had it myself and was in hospital for one week. Totally ok now. I was not in Kenya when I got it.

The idea is to visit mines, after the relaxation of lockdown. What is the right time to travel Kenya, as per your opinion.

After lock down the rain season should be over. It’s very difficult to get to any mines without the right contacts.
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Thank you

I would love to join Your company

I have not been there, but know several people that go regularly to the gem market in Arusha, TZ and to other places…a mine or two. Generally it is hard to get to and get into the mines and you need local guides and protection. Altho’ the prices would be higher at the markets a bit further down the supply chain, you would find more stuff and be more assured of quality rough. My friends who go to Arusha regularly have said that it took more than one trip to get the dealers familiar with the idea that they knew their stuff and did not want to look at high priced junk, which is what was brought out at first. After the dealers got the idea that they were going to drop some bucks, but only on quality material, things went better. They have continued to return, so I guess it is worth it. You really must know your stuff if you go, because you could be offered anything, glass, spinel for ruby, garnet for spinel, etc., etc. Roger Dery goes to Arusha with a group and you could contact him. He is a good person to know, as he’s plugged into the scene in Africa and knows his stones, as do those who go with him. They all go with $10K each to spend, which assures that they get shown good rough. He does not take hangers on. I have always wondered whether a trip like this would really be worth it…you spend lots of time going and coming and lodging and eating, days in the markets in the heat and possibly in the bush in the back of a jeep if you do journey to the mines. You would have to buy plenty to make it worth your while and if you are a cutter or a rough dealer, all that cost has to be built into the price of what you sell. I have chosen to allow the dealers to make their money and to buy from my home in the US. With the internet and photography being what it is now, you can buy from dealers who go directly to the mines. I’ve also bought from a few African dealers who live in the US and travel back and forth, so I really don’t know whether you’d get a significantly better price by going there or not.
Just my thoughts…best of luck…royjohn

You are spot on and so right. Its exactly how it was when I started many years ago. Going to the mines you get presented expensive junk.
Now we have a office in Kenya. Better stones when they come to us. And the mine owners don’t show the other mining families what they have found when leaving the area to travel to us. We are so close by.
What you spend money on travelling as a new is the adventure. If it was easy so many would do it over and over again.
You better know who you will meet there. Still you will only have the adventure.
Royjohn are so right.

i will inform you after lockdown restrictions are eased out.

Im living in Cabo delgado Mozambique , nearby Montepeuz ruby mines and Nampula Paribas tourmaline mines. Would love to meet and exchange knowledges.

Are you in the trade?

Yes, but very novice trader. I have my own groups of miners mining several locations in Cabo Delgado, MOZAMBIQUE.

Thank you. We will meet shortly after lockdown relaxations

No . Gemmology is my hobby

Contact Gem-A (or your local gem/rockhound group) as most/many do tours every year or two and they will have ‘fixers’ to sort out everything from travel arrangements to mine access, and there is a good chance some people smarter than you will save you a lot of money by spotting fakes that you didn’t! :wink: (not a knock on your knowledge, but there are some serious gemological geniuses out there!!!)

Gem-A did a trip to Madagascar in 2019

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