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Route Planning Where to go, when, what are the interesting places to see
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  #1  
Old 2 Jan 2008
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Best route down to Cape Town

I am planning a RTW trip, starting in Australia in February, up through south and central America, then over to Europe. This final leg involves riding from the UK down to Cape Town (between the beginning of August and the end of November) before the bike is popped onto a boat back to Perth.

My problem is Africa. I would dearly like to come down through Turkey, Syria, Jordan and Egypt and head south, but despite hours spent poring over the HUBB and other resources, I cannot seem to find a suitable route coming south out of Egypt which seems do-able (Sudan-Eritrea-Djibouti-Ethiopia-Kenya or boat it from Egypt to Djibouti).

Another option could be simply to take the western route through Morocco, Mauritania, Senegal, Mali, northern Nigeria, Cameroon etc.

I also am very aware that I need to be getting my carnet organised soon. Can the eastern route be achieved sans-carnet? What's the situation regarding South Africa?

Regarding visas; I have two UK passports, so would be to have leave one getting a visa whilst travelling on the other.

I am aware that the situation changes on an almost daily basis, but would be grateful of any advice.
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Old 2 Jan 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlueAbyss View Post

My problem is Africa. I would dearly like to come down through Turkey, Syria, Jordan and Egypt and head south, but despite hours spent poring over the HUBB and other resources, I cannot seem to find a suitable route coming south out of Egypt which seems do-able (Sudan-Eritrea-Djibouti-Ethiopia-Kenya or boat it from Egypt to Djibouti).
Africa is not a problem, it's the best there is! Skip the other continents! :-)

You can go: Turkey, Syria, Jordan, Egypt, Sudan, Ethiopia, Kenya and then south.
The only problem might be to get the visa for Sudan, it’s worth to check if you can get it before you leave because from time to time it’s hard to get it in Cairo.
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Old 2 Jan 2008
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Thanks for your positive reply - I really do want to go via Africa in preference to my fall-back route via Iran, Pakistan and India.

I appreciate that a Sudanese visa my be difficult. Do you know of any decent agents/fixers? I looked at all the travel advisories - where would you suggest crossing into Ethiopia?

Kenya is looking very chaotic at the moment too, although I am not going to be there for another 8 months.
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Old 2 Jan 2008
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Originally Posted by BlueAbyss View Post
Thanks for your positive reply - I really do want to go via Africa in preference to my fall-back route via Iran, Pakistan and India.

I appreciate that a Sudanese visa my be difficult. Do you know of any decent agents/fixers? I looked at all the travel advisories - where would you suggest crossing into Ethiopia?

Kenya is looking very chaotic at the moment too, although I am not going to be there for another 8 months.

Most people (like me) cross the border between Sudan and Ethiopia at Gallabat/Metema. I don’t know any reliable fixers, some people have got it in Cairo without problems and other people have had huge problems.
I would have tried to get it at home before you leave; it’s usually easier to renew a visa then getting one from scratch…

Sadly Kenya is a mess right now, but hopefully it will be better soon!
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Old 4 Jan 2008
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sudan visa

No problem for us(Irish) or dutch/british friends we met to get visa in cairo for sudan (2005). No need for fixers etc. However, if you are american you may experience more problems. We met people in Ethiopia who were finding it a nightmare to get a sudan visa from there and in many cases, flew to cairo, got the visas returned to ethiopia and then drove from there. Met other who had tried fixers in Ethiopia and it was a waste of time and money.
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Old 5 Jan 2008
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Sudan Visa

Hi,

As of December 2007, the Sudanese visa continues to be a bit of a crapshoot in Cairo. best bet is to rock into Cairo as soon as you arrive in Egypt, apply for you visa and they will usually tell you come back in one week to two weeks as they have to send to Khartoum for aproval. As far as I could tell, there was no form being forwarded but after this waiting period they were pretty good about issuing. Of course the person applying before me got it same day, a couple from the same country as me applying the next day got it same day, and in the end it took mine four days. Some people applying the next week were told wait ten days. I would apply at home first, if no chance to get it then do the quick trip to Cairo and then see the rest of Egypt while you wait. Much to do in Egypt so not much of a pain.

The route to Ethiopia is through Gallabat as mentioned and it is all paved to the Sudanese border. Soon as you cross into Ethiopia, it's about 180km of gravel to Gonder but this is being worked on by the Chinese as we speak (Jan. 08) so the road will continue to get better.
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