A mind bending rollercoaster ride though 5 African countries: Morocco, Western Sahara, Mauritania, Senegal & Gambia. Crossing the largest desert in the world and experiencing the vivid culture change from North Africa to 'real' Africa. A road trip to top all other road trips. Get on board for the classic Trans-Sahara!
Day 1/2 - Marrakech - There is no better way to start this road trip than on one of Africa's most diverse,chaotic and truly beautiful cities. In at the deep end here so take your time getting accustomed to the souks and charmers of Marrakech before we head south.
Day 3/4 - After a possible day/night trip to Rabat to pick up Mauritanian visas (depending on formalities) we take a short hop south to Dakhla on the windswept Atlantic coast half way across the Sahara desert. A mecca for kite surfing due to the massive enclosed lagoon here, Dakhla is a great spot to chill out and begin to drift into the African mind set that will become so apparent as we head further into Western Sahara.
Day 5 - The drive out from Dahkla resembles that of driving across the moon as we cross the Tropic of Cancer at sunrise and edge closer to the border of Mauritania.
Day 6 - Mauritania - Time is a relative term here. 'In Africa when one is asked what time does the meeting start, the answer is simple: when everyone is here.' (R.K) Remember this and you may never get impatient in Africa. Staying in the bustling capital of Nouakchott for 2 nights there is one major site here you have to see, the infamous Atlantic coast fish market. Be amazed but don't swim in this area. Just take it all in with the senses.
You have now officially crossed the largest desert on earth.
Day 8,9 &10 - Senegal - Rosso is often mentioned among overlanders through Africa as the worst crossing in the whole continent. Having experienced a few I would disagree. But it is nonetheless a fascinating, cajoling and long border crossing. 'When asked what time does the bus leave the answer is simple 'When it is full'. Time takes on a different meaning here.
The Senegal river runs between the two countries and we'll cross this by ferry, canoe or any other means that makes itself available. Ideally not Crocodile though.
Zebra Bar and St Louis - After succesfully crossing what some say is the hardest border in Africa I dare anyone to not be in need of a drink. Zebra bar down the coast is a beautiful camp site on the edge of a lagoon. Celebrate crossing the largest desert in the world in style here and upgrade to a beach house. Either way you are now in a much greener sub-Saharan Africa. Let the fun begin.
St. Louis is the gem of Senegal and one could argue one of the gems in the whole of West Africa. Old colonial hotels and buildings as well as some really great Africa food makes this visit the first real culinary adventure since Morocco.
Dakar - A sprawling mass of chaos, Dakar has some interesting sites but is not really worth the chaos it oozes out in my opinion. We may have to make a stop here for various vehicle documents - or we may bypass it altogether.
Day 11- 13 Gambia - white sand beaches, massages, great restaurants and cocktails. You have arrived at the pot of the gold at the end of a desert rainbow. Gambia has something for everyone. As well as the great beaches to lounge and wander along collecting shells and the odd - sometimes unwanted - massage. There is also a nature park where monkeys will run all over you if that's your thing, luxurious hotels and spas and real African adventure can still be had inland.
3 nights included here but you would be advised to spend more time here if you have it. Lots more adventures to be had.
Fly home from here direct to UK or via Canary Islands with cheap flights through Binter Canarias airlines.
19th January - 3rd February - 2021
- £595 (includes flights to departure point in Morocco from London and accommodation)
Return flights from Gambia not included
Visa costs - £50
Marrakech to Banjul (Gambia) Overland.
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