We are now safely in Cairo having driven across Libya from Tunisia.
As requested, I have put a summary below. You can read the full details in our blog: aimlessinafrica.blogspot.com
Jill at email@example.com
obtained Business Visas for us. These are probably a bit better for overlanders, as you do not need to have a guide. The cost was $ 400/person.
We picked up our visas at the Libyan embassy in Tunis. The process seems to be that the administration in Tripoli sends a fax with a reference number to the embassy where you want to collect your visa. Unfortunately we were given an incorrect fax number for one of our visas and this took a couple of days to sort out.
You queue at the side of the Libyan embassy in Tunis and talk to the people through an open window. You do not enter the embassy. With the correct fax number the process is simple and straight forward. You need to complete the application form in ARABIC and hand over 2 x passport photos and TD 45. About 1 – 2 hours later you have your visa.
We passed through the Tunisia formalities with little delay.
On the Libyan side there were some questions about our sponsor, so we showed the email from Jill with the details. If there were any further hassles we would have asked them to phone Jill. They also wanted to know where we were staying in Tripoli etc . After ~ 30 min we were on our way.
We elected to get the carnet signed in case the Egyptian side asked about it. This took ~ 60 min, as they did not know what it was and it was not in Arabic. Still, it was finally signed.
We stayed in Sabratha at the Hotel Tellel Complex, a resort on the beach, LD 180 for dinner, bed & breakfast. If you were a little braver than us, there were plenty of places to camp on or near the beach on the way to the hotel.
Day 2– 16/10/12
We visited the Sabratha Roman ruins. Then we had a very hard time finding a bank to get money. Finally, just before the ring road in Tripoli, the Amen bank had working ATMs and currency exchange. We did not stop in Tripoli
We visited Leptis Magna ruins and camped at a clearly marked camp site near the entrance. TD 10.
Day 3– 17/10/12
We drove to Benghazi. A lot of the hotels were full, so we strayed at the Hotel Juliana, LD 220. The braver folks could drive a km or so off the Sirte – Ajdabaya road and camp.
Day 4– 18/10/12
We visited Cyrene and drove along the coast to Tobruk. The drive from Marsa Susah to Darman along the ocean was wonderful. There were plenty of places to pull off the road and camp on a secluded beach/ocean view. There also seemd to be a few resorts, one advertising RV facilities.
Near Tobruk we visited the Knightsbridge War Cemetery. We stayed at the Al Masira hotel, LD 135
Day 5– 19/10/12
On the way out of town we visited the Tobruk War Cemetery. We then drove to the Libyan border. Immigration was competed in less than 60 secs. Getting the Carnet stamped took 60 min! This is probably because they had not seen one before and did not have the stamp at the outgoing border post.
The Libyans we met were friendly and super generous. They invariably went out of their way to assist us in any way. That said, they are the world’s worst drivers, total maniacs.
We did not feel there were any security issues and we always felt safe. However, we stayed in hotels or secure areas at night and did not wander after dark. This added to the cost.