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Sahara Travel Forum Topics specific to North Africa and the Sahara down to the 17th parallel (excludes Morocco)
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  #1  
Old 8 Jul 2007
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Smile North Africa Coast

Hi chaps,

Planning a quick trip down into North Africa in September for about a week or so - I have three weeks and was planing on heading from London, down into Spain, across into North Africa, then across Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia, and get a ferry over to Scilly and then back up across the Alps.

Nice little trip - I've had a good search through HUBB for information on North Africa, and have found a lot of very useful stuff - thanks very much :-)

I can't find anything about this specific route though - has anyone done it (of course they have!) and does anyone have any advice? I'm hoping to hug the coast line all the way.

Visas and things are all sorted I'm happy with pretty much everything - except the coastal route and ferries from Tunisia.

Cheers in advance all.

m
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Old 8 Jul 2007
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As far as I'm aware the border from Morocco to Algeria is closed (and has been for years) so it's not possible to do your route without detouring via west africa or eg flying across.
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Old 8 Jul 2007
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ahhh see I knew I must be missing something!

So it's either ferry direct into Algeria and then across or divert around.. which I don't think I have time for - what about the border with Tunisia?

m
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Old 8 Jul 2007
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No way

You have no chance of driving from Morocco to Algeria as the borders are closed. Northern Algeria is not a good place to travel and the coast road is nothing special being as uninteresting as Tunisia. In three weeks you could do a trip through Spain in into Morocco with the latter being very interesting and worth tree months let alone three weeks. If you really want to see the world and see it properly you need to slow down a bit..............................
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Old 8 Jul 2007
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Thanks for that Mike - I know 3 weeks is limited - but I'm trying to do stuff bit by bit as I can't quite afford to give up work yet :-)

This one is a bit rushed as I was originally off to Russia (Journey To Russia) but the chap I was going with has broken his leg so we've postponed to July next year... so I'm at a lose end as was just wondering what I could do - Africa appeals!

So perhaps it would be better to blat down through France and Spain then spend a couple of weeks in Morocco before coming back up?

I do appreciate your feedback guys - thank you.

m
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Old 8 Jul 2007
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Guide Book

Okay so I'm getting quite excited about a week in Morocco.... anyone got a suggestion for a good guide book? Or shall I do a little run into town and my favourite shop in the world? Stanfords?
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Old 10 Jul 2007
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This book is quite good and the chap who wrote it appears on this forum fom time to time!

Sahara Overland ~ the book and online resource

There are some cracking routes in it.
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Old 11 Jul 2007
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Matt,
I guess you have seen:
Morocco GS Knowledgebase - ::. UKGS'er.com .::

but just in case you haven't, there it is!! (courtesy of Tim Cullis).

Also, there are a number of other threads about the borders you mention, especially Maroc/Algeria.
The accumulated wisdom is that this particular border is closed; this ties in with info from a mate of mine who works in the oil industry in A regularly. Basically, he says it is best to stay away from the coastal routes of A - the further south you go the better the people become (historically, there has been a lot of "trouble" in the coastal transport routes).

Dave
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Old 11 Jul 2007
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Thumbs up I like Morocco

Hi,
I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to ride through western Africa a couple of years back—I rode from Nigeria to Ireland, along the western route through the Sahara, taking in Morocco on the way.
I heard a lot of 'horror-stories' about Morocco, mostly talking about the level of petty, and not-so-petty, theft in the country. I arrived in Morocco, from Mauritania, not looking forward to it all that much, and hoping to escape unscathed. I left wishing I had more time to spend there, and completely enchanted by the place! I'd go as far as to say it was the highlight of the trip. It's definitely on my list of places-to-be-revisited. I just found the place captivating. The people are friendly; there is beautiful scenery; the cities are mystical; the moutains are alluring. Morocco, for me, has a huge amount to offer. As Mike already pointed out, Morocco has three months' worth to explore—I concur!
It does sound like your proposed route is going to be be a tad pressurised if you're going to fit it into just three weeks. I remember our trip being a 'little bit tight' every now and then, and I swore, if I were ever doing an over-land trip again, I'd make sure I had enough time not to give a toss how long I decided to stay in any particular place in which I felt the need to linger.
Time is precious, but racing through a trip just to tick off all the countries/places visited is a false economy. Just my opinion.
Regardless, you'll have a great time in Africa. If it's your first trip there, you'll feel the excitement and anticipation all the more. Whatever way you decide to do it, you'll enjoy it immensely.
Good luck, and don't forget to report back to us how you got on!

Ken.
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Old 11 Jul 2007
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Thank you.

Thanks for the info guys - the GS page is brilliant, I'm printing out documents as I type :-)

I also bought the Cadogan Guide last night, along with maps for Spain and Morocco (got to love Stanfords!) - I think you're all right, so I'm looking at getting the Ferry down to Santandar, then down to Gibraltar nice and quick so that I can spend as much time in Africa as I can - as you all say it really doesn't look like the sort of place you should blast through, so in theory I'll have at least 2 weeks to wander around... I'm thinking down through the mountains to Marrakech, then drop down onto the coast and back up via Casablanca.

Thanks again guys :-)

m
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Last edited by mattcbf600; 11 Jul 2007 at 08:19. Reason: spellig mistake
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