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Long term travel in Africa.

Have you travelled in Africa for 6 or more months, or are you planning to? If so, ask and answer questions on this thread.
13 years ago, February 24th 2009 No: 1 Msg: #63989  
B Posts: 14
I am an American woman leaving in August 09 to travel through Africa for 6-12 months, I am looking for advice from travelers about buying tickets and securing visas.
1. Can I buy a one-way into Morocco and plan to travel south to Senegal, fly to Cameroon and then to Madagascar? How do others manage to keep an open itinerary but satisfy the legal requirements?

I would love to hear how you planned out your trip, please, please share your stories with me.
Reply to this

13 years ago, February 26th 2009 No: 2 Msg: #64128  

My brother and some friends drove from Germany through to West Africa recently. They had all their visas arranged before hand through the Embassies in Germany.

Eko Tracks Reply to this

13 years ago, February 26th 2009 No: 3 Msg: #64208  
Hi Chicadea!

I'm a British woman currently in Togo- I've been to a few African countries before but on this trip I arrived in Ghana from London and will be heading to Burkina Faso tomorrow- as long as you have plenty of passport photos with you for visas from my experience it seems much cheaper to get the visa on the border before entering a country- and if that isn't possible try the embassy for that country wherever you are before getting there.
This sort of information can be found in a good guide book- I have been going by the Rough Guides for West Africa which was published in 2007 or 2008 so it is fairly updated but there are many out there! In some countries you won't even need a visa- but I can guarantee whatever the situation is it will be more expensive if you try to arrange it before getting to Africa- it depends on your time limits and flexibility!

Hope that helps!

Wandering Hippy Reply to this

13 years ago, March 3rd 2009 No: 4 Msg: #64636  
B Posts: 23
Hi Darlene,

When I travelled from Paris overland to Mali and Senegal over the summer I booked my flights through Expedia, which allows for one free change on your flight time. Useful if you are travelling long distances between flights and want to keep a flexible itinerary.

Travelling overland from Morocco to Senegal: As far as Dhakla (Western Sahara) there is public transport. In Dhakla you'll have to look into getting a lift with some overlanders / renting a taxi to take you the remaining 500kms to the Mauritanian border. From the Mauritanian border you'll have to get a taxi either to the Nouakchott junction (about 10kms - buses will stop here for you) or into Nouadhibou (50kms). I would recommend getting the freight train from Nouadhibou into the desert at Choum, from where there are pickups and trucks travelling on to Atar and the oases.

I would recommend the Southeast of Senegal if you have time to get there - it's a beautiful, laid back area with lovely hills, rivers and villages near the border with Guinea. Dakar is a great town too - you'll be able to get visas and flights for Cameroon here. The airport is good, just make sure your luggage gets onto the plane with you!

Good luck!
Luke Reply to this

13 years ago, March 6th 2009 No: 5 Msg: #65128  
B Posts: 26
Get a water filter. REI has one of the best. Eat only well cooked food. or peeled fruits and
Take antibiotics along and get all recommended shots. I did the route in the '70s.
Entered then the Spanish Sahara from Canaries with forged docs, and the
adventure stated. It was cut short by amoebas . I entered Africa at
185 and left 125 lbs.
Crossing the Sahara was one of my better ventures. I really liked Dakar, one of the
better West Aftrican cities.
Tim Reply to this

13 years ago, March 6th 2009 No: 6 Msg: #65144  
B Posts: 14
I appreciate everyones thoughtfull responses. Thank you so much for the kind advice.
Most people on all the blogs seem to agree caryying on once in Africa is not a problem. And I love the advice- take your inititial email notification for arrival into Africa, forward it to yourself, alter the dates and destinations, forging a round trip ticket if needed. Excellent!
Keep the advice coming 😊

Travel on friends,
darlene Reply to this

13 years ago, March 6th 2009 No: 7 Msg: #65151  
I only spent 7 weeks there and agree with the previous posts. Most countries allow you to obtain visas on arrival at the airport or the border - this is cheaper and easier than organising it in advance. However, some countries do require advance purchase (i.e. Rwanda for Australian citizens) so you need to check what your requirements are.

I always scan my passport, travellers cheques, credit cards and itinerary and keep them in my hotmail account - thus if they happen to get lost - the information is there. This also applies for my travel insurance policy and important contact numbers.

Definitely get your immunization before you go and take the required medication - don't mess with malaria - it is not worth it. Only drink bottled water, choose you eating places carefully (those with many people and a fast turnaround of patrons are generally safe), and bring anti-diarrhoea medication - one type to stop the runs if they strike, and the second type is an antibiotic if your problem lasts then more than a couple of days.

Africa has a different pace of life - and if you are prepared to be patient and take things slowly - you'll will fit into the rhythm of the continent just fine. Reply to this

13 years ago, March 25th 2009 No: 8 Msg: #67034  
yo, i also found all your tips useful, i just booked my one way ticket to africa 31st august, starting in cape town. working my way up to kenya. perhaps we could meet up along the way?! Reply to this

13 years ago, April 5th 2009 No: 9 Msg: #68278  
Hi Chicadea

I spent 12 months travelling in Africa from 2004 till 2005 and I also spent 3 months there in 2008. I would endorse the advise that everyone else has given. I have never obtained Visas in advance for my trips to Africa. I've always got the Visa in the neighbouring country. The only place were this was a problem was Eritrea. Despite what my Lonely Planet guidebook told me, the Embassy for Eritrea in Djibouti told me I would have to apply for a Visa in my home country.

I would also try to avoid flying too much within Africa - flights within Africa tend to be relatively expensive, although there are some budget airlines based in South Africa. Your best bet for getting to Madagascar is therefore to fly from South Africa.

I endorse the advise about Malaria and would stress that if you do get it anyway get to a doctor as soon as you can. I also carried with me a small quantity of a different drug from the prophylaxis to treat myself if it wasn't possible to get to qualified medical assistance.

I also have all my documents scanned into my Yahoo account.

Finally, I'm sure you'll have a great time wherever you chose to go on the African continent Reply to this

13 years ago, June 30th 2009 No: 10 Msg: #77955  
1 posts moved to this new topic: Botswana Reply to this

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