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Rabat, Morocco

large_DSC06964.JPGlarge_DSC06970.JPGlarge_DSC06973.JPGlarge_DSC06960.JPGlarge_DSC06978.JPGMy first West Africa trip went overland from Morocco, to Mauritania, Senegal, Guinea Bassam, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Benin, Togo and Ghana. I travelled together with a french friend who was quite in a hurry since he wanted to get all the way to South Africa (he changed planes after his credit card was cancelled after using a ATM).
I went first to Rabat to meet my friend who still needed to get a visa for Mauritania, that was easy, we even got a lift from there to Laayoune in West Sahara. From there we took a bus to Dakhla.

Rabat has a interesting old town and also some Art Deco buildings built by the French.

There is a choice of 2 bus companies, i used CTM which was fairly comfortable, but no toilet in the bus, only once in while a stop for that.
CTM has every day 3 buses from Laayoune to Dakhla. Dirham 160, 8 hours, Supratours has 2 buses.

Posted by UliS 03:31 Archived in Morocco Comments (0)

Dakhla, Morocco

large_DSC07002.JPGlarge_DSC07000.JPGlarge_DSC06999.JPGlarge_DSC07003.JPGThe northern end of the lagoon is a excellent place for Kite surfing.
http://www.auberge-des-nomades-du-sahara.com/ (french only)

Staying in Dakhla is cheaper but you will have a transportation problem.
If you come with a camper there is also a trailerpark.

There is no public transportation from Dakhla to Mauretania, the Hotel Sahara near the Souk offers a shared taxi to Nouadhibou for 300 Dirham and to Nouakchott for 600 (7 am, 10 hours drive and 2 hour waiting at the border).large_DSC07011.JPGlarge_DSC07013.JPG
Supratours (close to hotel Sahara, 150 Dirham) would have a bus at midnight to the Moroccan border (returning maybe after 6 pm) but you have to walk then about 3 km throu no man's land and in the Mauritanian side i did not see a bus, but if you wait there will be a shared taxi leaving when full.

Posted by UliS 03:36 Archived in Morocco Comments (0)

Nouakchott, Mauritania

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Nouakchott was tiny fishing town until 1958 and more than 2 milions today.

The most interesting place, Port de Peche, the fishingboats come back in the afternoon. A few hundred meter north is a beach hotel (Hotel Sabah, bungalow 25000) with restaurant (sandwich UM 700, fish UM 3000, December 2011).
Take a shared taxi from the city center, UM 250.
To Senegal take a shared taxi from Garage Rosso about 7 km south of the city center, to Rosso, it will stop about 500 meter from the ferry to Senegal, UM 2500 and about 3 hours. Harbor fee is UM 40, the car ferry is free for foot passengers.
Buses to Nouadhibou are UM 4000 to 4500, and there are also buses to Mali.
If you go with your own car, try to avoid this border, but there are no problems if you are without car.

Posted by UliS 03:37 Archived in Mauritania Comments (0)

Saint Louis, Senegal

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large_DSC07060.JPGlarge_DSC07059.JPGlarge_DSC07052.JPGlarge_DSC07058.JPGlarge_DSC07050.JPGlarge_DSC07054.JPGlarge_DSC07051.JPGThe Ferry over the Senegal river is free for foot passengers (40 UM Harbor fee), then you have a 1,5 km walk to the bus station (east of the ferry). By bus 1500 CFA and 4 hours, by Sept Place (shared taxi, usual Peugoet) 2500 CFA and 500 CFA for you luggage, it takes about 3 hours (prices from 2011).

Saint-Louis became the first colony of the French in Africa in 1659 and became capital of the French West Africa-Senegal until 1902 (from then on Dakar) and Saint-Louis slowly lost it's impotance.

The old town on the Island of Saint-Louis is a UNESCO world heritage site, interresting is also Guet N'Dar, a fishing village on the Langue de Barberie and further south the Langue de Barberie National Park for bird watching.

Stayed at the Auberge de Jeunesse and by minibus to Dakar.

Posted by UliS 03:39 Archived in Senegal Comments (0)

Dakar, Senegal

large_DSC07092.JPGlarge_DSC07101.JPGlarge_DSC07076.JPGlarge_DSC07075.JPGlarge_DSC07077.JPGlarge_DSC07080.JPGlarge_DSC07088.JPGlarge_DSC07094.JPGThe city of Dakar grew up around a French fort and was founded in 1857, when residents came from the island of Goree. Dakar grew as a port and around the railway line to Saint-Louist. 1902 Dakar replaced Saint-Louis as the capital of French West Africa.

The Restaurant Keur Serigne Fallout has a very colorful decor and excellent local food for a reasonable price (main course 1500 CFA), the self appointed guides which you will have around you will most likely tell you it is closed (no commission for them). Located at Ave George Pompidou 45, first floor.
I had Riz Poisson Rouge.

In case you have a craving for french cheese, wine, etc., the french supermarket chain Casino Supermarché has also a shop in the center of Dakar. Prices are about the same then in France. It is located in Ave Hassan II between Marche Kermel and Place de L'indépendance.
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After getting the Mali visa we went by boat to Ziguinchor.

Posted by UliS 03:41 Archived in Senegal Comments (0)

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