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  #1  
Old 26 Jan 2006
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Libya- Niger

I just returned from a Tunis-Libya-Niger (one-way) trip (2 old cars 4x4).
Al Katrun-Tumu-Dirkou-Bilma-Zoo Baba-Ngourti-Nguigmi and then west to Niamey.
Since, in preparing the trip, I took advantage of the postings on this site and of the helpfullness of other posters, it feels right to offer to share my experiences with everyone who plans anything similar.
Feel free to mail me with any questions you have.

Menno
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  #2  
Old 26 Jan 2006
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Can you comment on the normal questions:
Did the Libyans let you go south to Niger with no hassle?
Was a guide compulsory for this part of the trip (Libya to Niger frontier)?
Was a guide compulsory thru Madama to Dirkou?
Was a guide compulsory from Dirkou to Agadez?
Were there people checking that you had guides at Dirkou or Agadez?
Any comments on security on the piste from southern Libya to Dirkou?
Did you get through to Dirkou and beyond without a laissez passer (spelling?) freedom to travel document?
Did you need to get insurance for the desert part of the piste?
How much traffic on the piste?
many thanks for replies...

cheers,
Richard
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  #3  
Old 26 Jan 2006
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Quote:
Originally posted by Richard Washington:
Can you comment on the normal questions:
Did the Libyans let you go south to Niger with no hassle?
No hassle at all.
Was a guide compulsory for this part of the trip (Libya to Niger frontier)?
We did not try to go without a guide. We got an invitation from 'Four Seasons', and dealt with mr. Farhat via mail, everything very easy and professional, A guide until Sebha who was more an escort because of the tarmac. A local guide for a two day detour to the Awbari Lakes and another local guide for the Sebha to Tumu part. No problems at all.
Was a guide compulsory thru Madama to Dirkou?
No, although many people (with commercial interests) told us it was. Only in SeguŽdine the local Gendarme tried to earn some extra money by telling us a guide was compulsary, but a patient three hour wait, a friendly attutide and not getting in to any negotiating resulted in us getting our passports back and continuing our trip.
Was a guide compulsory from Dirkou to Agadez?
We did not go to Agadez but even for the heavier and rarely travelled route south to Nguigmi nobody said we needed to take a guide, we only came across very friendly gendarmes and people from the prefecture, we did check in and out before and after croossing the Erg, but we had to explain why.
Were there people checking that you had guides at Dirkou or Agadez?
Again about Agadez I don't know but in Dirkou we didn't even report to the authorities even though we hung around town for two days(due to car problems) in a very friendly atmosphere. In Bilma only friendly authorities with graet tea.
Any comments on security on the piste from southern Libya to Dirkou?
Very Safe, at least that was our experience.
Did you get through to Dirkou and beyond without a laissez passer (spelling?) freedom to travel document?
Nothing of that kind, our passports with Visas were enough.
Did you need to get insurance for the desert part of the piste?
No, altough on the way from Nguigmi west to Niamey we were sometimes asked about it but we presented them the green thing from our European Insurance and nodded heavily if asked wheater it had local coverage.
How much traffic on the piste?
We came across one large French group (12 cars 11 bikes, a truck and a local guide) and two small groups of tourists who were driven by localsthrough an agency.

many thanks for replies...

cheers,
Richard
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  #4  
Old 27 Jan 2006
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Many thanks for all the helpful details Mennow, much appreciated.

It is interesting how different people's experience of that part of Niger can be.

For the record and in case I upset anyone from the Jamahiriya, I wasn't wishing to suggest that we should try to avoid guides in Libya....just whether one needed a guide for the last stretch from Gatrun south to the frontier :-)

Thanks again for the details...
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  #5  
Old 27 Jan 2006
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helo.

do you have recorded gps track of your trip?
so, all niger you travel without a guide?
do you need special papers for 4wd cars?- what's obligatory for car: insurance, permit etc..?
costs of libya guide per day?
how many times take you to get libya's visa and all papers for travel?
do you have email?


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Grzegorz Zajac
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Old 27 Jan 2006
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Hi Richard
"and in case I upset anyone from the Jamahiriya"
Do you think to somebody particularly ?
( And a big thank you to Mennow for these infos . )

RR.
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  #7  
Old 28 Jan 2006
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Quote:
Originally posted by gregor:
helo.

do you have recorded gps track of your trip?
From Al Katrun until Madama we used:
http://www.sahara-overland.com/typos/Niger.p601.pdf
For Bilma-Ngourti we had some coordinates but they weren't very usefull. The wells on the french IGN maps(1:200000) and some other recognisable points on the same map functioned as our waypoints, and through the dunes we just used common sense and a steep learning curve in driving skills when we had to decide where to cross the dunes. (We didn't come across any Nissan Patrols used by locals but we found our '87 and'88 LWB Patrols with good tyres very strong, stable and robust for dune crossing. We were able to go south in an increasingly straighter line.
so, all niger you travel without a guide?
Yes we did.
do you need special papers for 4wd cars?- what's obligatory for car: insurance, permit etc..?
In Niger nothing, just car papers. In Lybia all permits and insurance was taken care of at the border.
costs of libya guide per day? Û60 per day.
We payed Û1000,-- for two 4x4 cars, three persons and an 8 day stay in Libya. That is including insurance, plates, formalities and capable guides for off tarmac parts.
how many times take you to get libya's visa and all papers for travel?
One week for Visa in The Netherlands, and a week of e-mailing back and forth to Libya two weeks prior to departure.
do you have email? Yes
mennow_at_xs4all.nl (replace _at_ with appropriate symbol)


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  #8  
Old 2 Feb 2006
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Hi,
Did similar route last summer. Our libyan guide left us at the fort at Al Gatrun (I refused to pay the fortune he asked for a taxi to go down with us to bring him back). We went down to Dirkou, Bilma, then East to Agadez. Didn't have a guide at all in Niger. We were questioned about a Lasser Passer at the first Niger police post, but just hung around till they let us carry on. They said we should have got one in Libya (which was were we got our Niger visas). At first our 'tourist agency' in Libya said it wasn't possible to go South to Niger, but when we eventually found the Niger embassy and got visas, they didn't have any probs.
In Niger, the first bit from Bilma to Fachi was interesting !!! Had to wear sunglasses to even attempt to see vehicle tracks in front of us. When we arrived in Fachi, the locals were amazed that we were travelling on our own. From Fachi it wasn't bad at all, lots of marker posts etc. Though did 'bump' into a military excercise (?) at the new well east of Fachi.
Agadez was a very welcome sight at the end of the desert - though we were ripped off by over zealous hoteliers with the CFA exchange rate.
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  #9  
Old 2 Feb 2006
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>>but when we eventually found the Niger embassy and got visas, they didn't have any probs.

Pete L, Is that the one in Sebha? I tracked it down years ago, is it still there, if yes got a waypoint? How long for a visa - a day?
thanks

Chris S
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  #10  
Old 2 Feb 2006
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No, it was in Tripoli. - Sorry
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  #11  
Old 21 Feb 2006
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Hello. We will carry out a very similar trip at the beginning of the year 2007. I would feel very aforturnado if he/she had the tracks and wpts. if you don't care I will go you carrying out questions about the trip. We want to enter and to leave Niger to trvés of Algeria. If we see that he/she crosses we will change to lybia
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