Trans Africa - Overland Trip
40 weeks: UK to Cairo (TA40)Our Trans Africa trip is a true Africa overland travel expedition. You must expect a high degree of hardship: digging the truck out of mud, sand matting in the Sahara, and still be ready to participate in the day to day activities such as buying food, cooking and gathering fire wood. You will experience extremes of climate from the heat of the desert, to torrential downpours in the jungles. We will often be isolated from the rest of the world, away from doctors and telephones, and at times food and water supplies will be limited.
But it\'s all worth it! Our Africa overland expedition will allow you to discover a continent that most travellers only dream of, journeying the length of Africa twice from Morocco to Cape Town to Cairo.
Please note that because of the unpredictable nature of this overland expedition it is not always possible to follow the itinerary exactly as set out below. For up to date information about the trip and a more detailed itinerary, please contact us.
Camping based trip
The Local Payment is part of your overall trip price and is used for various costs that cannot be pre-paid from the UK. These include camping fees, transport and some meals. Please contact us for full details.
Itineraries (UK - Cairo)Weeks 1 - 2
Morocco * Chechaouen in the Riff Mountains (We camp on a ridge overlooking this picturesque town with its white roofs and narrow streets. You can wander around this relaxed town and maybe visit one of the old hamam bath houses)* The Roman City of Volubillis (A remarkably well-kept reminder of the Roman presence in North Africa 2000 years ago)* Fez (Wander through its huge covered bazaar with narrow winding alleys is crammed with craft workshops, restaurants, food stalls, mosques, dye pits and tanneries)Weeks 3 - 4
* Rabat * Todra Gorge (A great place for walking & exploring the surrounding mountains) * Sarhro Mountains & Draa Valley * Marrakech (The main square here - El Jema Fna) an overland travel expedition delight, Marrakech comes alive at night with food stalls, storytellers and snake charmers) * Essaouira (A quaint & laidback beach resort on the coast)Weeks 5 - 6
Mauritania (We are now truly into remoteness and unrelenting heat and harshness of the Sahara Desert proper) * Parc d\'Arguin (Renowned for its bird and sea life) * Nouakchott Mali (As we get into the Sahel scrublands, scattered villages, goats, cattle and hardy chickens are part of the road scenery)* Bamako (The capital, is a welcome change with its lively bars, cold beers, fresh fruit and vegetable markets)Weeks 7 - 9
* Mopti and Djenne (These old mud built towns were important trading centres over 500 years ago, the huge mud built mosque at Djenne is one of the largest and oldest mud, brick buildings in the world) * Bandiagara Escarpment (We hike out to visit the Dogon Villages, which are situated along the cliff face. We take a guide and spend a few days of our overland travel expedition hiking along the escarpment & staying in Dogon villages along the way. Our guide will be able to explain some of the history & culture of the area as well as take you to some of the old abandoned cliff dwellings and organise food and lodging over night) Burkina Faso * Ougadougou (The capital, this little heard of nation, is one of the poorest countries in the world. However, it is recognised as having a small thriving film industry, excellent musicians and dance bands and an enthusiastically supported national soccer team. Here we will have time to listen to, and enjoy, some of the best music in West Africa) Ghana* Mole National Park (Game drive in our overland travel expedition vehicle hoping to view some of the numerous elephants that inhabit this park among a host of other wildlife) * Accra (The capital, we rest at a campsite for almost a week on the outskirts and relax on its palm-fringed coastline)Weeks 10 - 12
Togo * (It doesn\'t take long to travel through its only 30 miles wide! Voodoo is the main religion here, basing its beliefs in the power of the dead. You can visit an interesting fetish market as well as some good African restaurants on this leg of our overland travel expedition) Benin * Ganvie Village (Built on bamboo stilts on Lake Nakoue) Nigeria (Africa\'s most populous country with well over 100 million people) * Abuja and Lagos Cameroon* Mt Cameroon (A 3 day climb or just relax on the beach)Weeks 13 - 15
* Pygmy villages * Ambam (We replenish our food supplies here before taking the ferry across the Ntem river) Gabon (A country that consists mostly of tropical rain forest)* Libreville (The capital, where we obtain visas for countries further south & where we can visit some of the laid back local beaches) * Lambarene (8kms away in the forest is the main hospital in Gabon. On this leg of the overland travel expedition you can also take pirogue trips (wooden dugout canoes) up the river into the tropical jungle)Weeks 16 - 17
Congo* Ponte Noire (A very relaxed and friendly city on the coast, which has many night clubs & hosts some top African musicians and bands) * Jane Goodall Chimpanzee Sanctuary Cabinda* A small oil rich province of Angola, whose recent history has been largely influenced by western oil companiesWeeks 18 - 20
Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) (Formerly known as Zaire, the roads here will be the worst we will encounter on the African overland travel expedition) Angola * Luanda (The capital) * Parque Nacional Da Quicama * LubangoWeeks 21 - 22
Namibia * Ondangwa (The country\'s second largest town and one of the main suppliers of beer and supplies to Northern Namibia - hopefully there will be enough left for us!!!!) * Kaokoveld (One of Africa\'s lesser visited areas. On this overland travel expedition we may be fortunate enough to see one of 30 remaining desert elephants who have adapted to the harsh arid conditions) * Himba tribes people (A tribe of nomadic pastoralists who to this day have shunned the advances of the modern world to keep with their tradition of leading nomadic lifestyles. We hope to visit a local Himba village to allow us a greater understanding into one of Africa\'s most visually unique people) * Brandberg Mountain region (Home of Namibia\'s highest peaks. Known as the Matterhorn of Namibia - the Spitzkoppe is part of the Erongo Mt range and was formed over 100 million years ago after the collapse of a gigantic volcano. The scenery is striking from every angle - even more stunning as the granite massifs turn red at sunset) * Windhoek (The capital and our first taste of western civilization in a few weeks!) Botswana* Kalahari Desert (Home of the San Bushmen where we will spot various buck and wild ostrich as well as enjoy camping out in the freedom of the vast desert)Week 23
South Africa * Kimberley (Here we visit the Mine Museum and the Big Hole, an excellent introduction into Kimberley\'s fascinating history. There is also the opportunity to take a trip almost 1km down an operating modern Diamond Mine) * Addo National Park (On this leg of the African overland travel expedition we embark on a Big Five safari. We should spot Elephant, Hippo, Rhino, Buffalo & loads of various types of monkeys and buck as well as baboons and if we are lucky, Lion & Leopard) * Outeniqua Mountains & the Little Karoo * Cango Caves (Recognised as amongst the worlds finest network of Calcite Caves) * Ostrich Farm (Learn more about the world\'s largest bird, as well as have the opportunity to ride one!) * Garden Route * Tsitsikamma Forest (Where you will be able to hike along the coast and maybe spot dolphins and whales in the ocean or hire mountain bikes, try ziplining or attempt the mother of all bungee jumps at Bloukrans Bridge - the biggest in the world at 216 metres! * Cape Agulhas (The southern most point in Africa & the dividing line between the cold Atlantic & the warmer waters of the Indian Ocean. You may be lucky enough to spot Southern Right & Humpback Whales as they feed in the nutrient rich waters of the southern coast) * Cape Town (3 days here to experience the city - climb Table Mountain, abseiling down it, shark diving, great shopping & nightlife, scuba diving courses, a tour to Robben Island, a wine tour, great night life, the list goes on!) Those on the 23 expedition to Cape Town finish here.Weeks 24 - 25
Namibia* Fish River Canyon (One of Africa\'s most sensational natural features - we camp next to this massive gorge, where you can hike along the canyon rim and soak up the sun and fabulous scenery) * Namib-Naukluft Park (A vast expanse of desert which contains some of the highest sand dunes in the world, a highlight for many adventure enthusiast on our African overland travel expeditions) * Sossusvlei (Experience either sunrise or sunset from atop Dune 45) * Swakopmund (Activities here include quad biking, dune sledding, deep sea fishing, sky diving, horse riding or a desert flight) * Cape Cross Seal Colony (where thousands of these mammals - and their accompanying odour pervade the coastline) or the stunning Spitzkoppe Rock formations* Local Cheetah Park (Get a first hand experience & learn more about these amazing creatures) * Etosha National Park (Recognised as one of the world\'s greatest wildlife viewing areas and where we can game watch by night at one of the floodlit watering holes as well as go on several game drives, hoping to spot some of the many and varied wildlife from elephant, giraffe and zebra to rhino and leopard) Botswana * Okavango Delta (Experience an over flight - or a two day canoe safari to spot herds of wildlife which otherwise may seem elusive in the vast extensive waterways of this unique desert wetland)Weeks 26 - 27
* Chobe National Park (Take a cruise on the Chobe River - a less intrusive way to view wildlife, particularly the hordes of elephants) Zimbabwe* Victoria Falls (For some Mosi oa Tunya \'The Smoke That Thunders\' is one of the highlight\'s of their African overland travel expedition. There is something here for everyone, from grade 5 white water rafting and canoe trips, the Flight of Angels or a Sunset Cruise, or even daring the world\'s 2nd highest commercial Bungee Jumps, plus jet boating, gorge swings, abseiling and a whole lot more!) * Bulawayo * Matopos National Park (Take a 1 day safari where you may well see the elusive Black Rhino amongst hordes of other game. There is also the opportunity to visit Cecil Rhodes\'s grave & Ancient Rock Paintings* Gweru (stay at a privately run horse & game ranch, where you can go game viewing on elephant and horseback. There is also the chance to go walking with lion cubs that are up to 10 months old, which is always a thrill and a big highlight!) * Great Zimbabwe Ruins (Once the greatest medieval city in Sub-Saharan Africa and from where the name Zimbabwe is derived) * Harare (The capital)Weeks 28 - 31
Mozambique * Tete Corridor (Known in civil war days as the \'Gun Run\'. Thankfully these days things are a lot different!) Malawi* Lake Malawi (An African overland travel expedition highlight! We spend several days at small laid back campsites on the edge of the lake where most people choose to relax on the sandy beaches or try their hand at snorkelling or windsurfing. There is also the chance to buy some great wooden carvings along the way) Tanzania * Mikumi National Park (It\'s possible to see Elephant, Giraffe, Zebra & Antelope from the roadside!) * Dar es Salaam (the capital) Zanzibar (4 days to experience the bustling streets of Stone Town & its exotic spice markets, old slave forts and dungeons. There is also time to relax on Zanzibar\'s famous white beaches, try scuba diving & snorkelling, and view stunning coral and fish or swim with dolphins! On returning to the mainland we enjoy a seafood BBQ back at camp) * Arusha * Ngorongoro Crater (optional) (spend the day viewing wildlife including Elephant, Lion, Cheetah, White Rhino, Hippo, Antelope, Crocodile and Pink Flamingos) * Serengeti National Park for a day and night, go on several gamedrives and spot a mass of wildlife and also vast herds of Wildebeest which roam the plains.Rwanda* Mountain Gorillas (trek to see these amazing creatures, the closest species related to man)(Note: if we are unable to view the gorillas in Rwanda we will do so in Uganda)Weeks 31 - 33
Uganda* Kampala, (the capital)* Lake Victoria (take a tour out onto the Lake to visit a Chimpanzee Sanctuary and Rehabilitation centre)* Jinja (cross Owen Falls Dam over the Nile River) * Bujagali Falls (Another natural wonder of this overland travel expedition, just downstream from the source of the Nile. This is a spectacular area, and with one kilometre of raging water below Bujagali Falls, a superb place to go white-water rafting. We can also organise quad biking or a visit to a local school) Kenya* Lake Naivasha (We camp near the lakeshore where Hippos sometimes feed at night!) * Hells Gate National Park (cycle or walk through this park - the only one in Kenya you are allowed to!)Or walk through the Crater Lake Sanctuary. Both offer excellent scenery & opportunities to spot hyrax, abundant bird & plant life along with several types of gazelle, impala and eland.* Elsamere (visit the home of Joy Adamson of Born Free fame)* Lake Nakuru National Park (home to a wide variety of wildlife including Black Rhino, Hippo, Lion, Leopard, Hyena, Giraffe and its flock of almost a million Pink flamingos>) * Nairobi (the capital, from here you can leave the truck for a couple of days to relax, visit a local giraffe centre & elephant sanctuary or laze by a hotel pool, drink an ice-cold beer, catch up with the world with english language newspapers)Those on the 33 week expedition to Nairobi finish here.Week 34 - 36
* Marsabit & Samburu National Parks (we spend a day and a night in Samburu)* East African Rift Valley and bone jarring northern Kenyan roadsEthiopia* Addis Ababa, (the capital, where we spend a couple of days)* Bahir Dar on the southern edge of Lake Tana (organise boat trips to some of the small islands which have Monasteries dating back up to 900 years and which are still looked after by monks). * Gondar organise visits to the holy city of Axum and the 12th century rock-hewn churches at Lalibela.Week 37 - 38
Sudan* Gedaref & Wadi Medani* Khartoum, (the capital, visit the Hamed al Nil Tomb and witness the dancing dervishes who perform every Friday as well as the daily camel market or take a boat trip on the Nile)* Pyramids at Meroe to the north of the city and the temples at Naqa* Drive across the Nubian DesertWeek 39
* Wadi Halfa* Lake Nasser (ferry across the lake which takes about a day)Egypt* Aswan (visit Abu Simbel, the stone monuments built by the greatest of all Pharaohs, Ramses II, or organise a 2 or 3 day felucca cruise on the Nile River to Kom Ombo & Edfu)Week 40
* Luxor* Luxor & Karnak Temple* Valley of the Kings, Queens & Workers* Western Desert (visit 3 isolated oases, Bahariyya, Farafra and Dhakla where u can roll down sand dunes, hire a desert guide and some camels and head out to explore this sand sea and walk through the winding lanes of mud houses at the Citadel of Mut)* Cairo (visit the great Pyramids and Sphinx at Giza with our Egyptologist guide and also the Egyptian History museum before our last night party!!)From Cairo it is easy to purchase onward flights to most international destinations, as well as organise travel down to Dahab on the Red Sea coast to spend a few days lazing on the beaches or swimming in warm crystal clear waters or scuba diving or snorkelling amongst the coral reefs that pervade the shoreline.
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