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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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Desert Travels - Motorcycle Journeys in the Sahara and West Africa!

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  #31  
Old 10 Dec 2012
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Join Date: May 2009
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The young touareg I talked to in Tam said they do still have a few tourists coming in to visit Assekrem.
In May 2009, we were all set to go with Rasta and a chap named Tahar to Kidal, having worked out the details. Or so I thought. The morning we were leaving, Rasta showed up dressed as an arab (he was touareg until then - "my father is arab and mother touareg, so I can choose!") and started talking money. Tahar refused to go with us to see the gendarmes for the renseignement - turned out his papers wasn't in order. Rasta made a phone call and with a big grin said "I am planning the ENLEVEMENT" which I thought was particularly bad humour considering the situation!
So more than a little agitated I went back to the agency (Walene) and asked WHAT THE XXXX! And he found us another guide right away, who turned out to be superb (but doubling the fee...) - he was known to everyone we met between Tam and Kidal, all the way to Gao.
I got a lot of references on him in Tam before we left. Everyone said the same thing - he's the best guide you can have for Kidal.
There were a good number of utterly bizarre moments on that trip.
And now Rasta is in jail. Wow.
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  #32  
Old 16 Jan 2013
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Visas

Visas just obtained from Alg consulate in London for the whole of my Feb group.
Took less than a fortnight from application (all submitted together) to collection.
No original invitation required, fax only. Whom in Alg you work with matters, a lot
(nor does it hurt to ensure the itinerary you provide goes nowhere near to Mali!)
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  #33  
Old 16 Jan 2013
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Anywhere In Amenas?
BBC News - Foreigners 'abducted' by Islamist militants in Algeria
I'm guessing they were after French not Brits and obviously there are a lot less tourists floating around at present. Quite a long way from Mali border though, eh?
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  #35  
Old 4 Feb 2013
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Our trip last October...

Somewhat eclipsed by recent events, but the account of our October 2012 trip to the Central Tassili is now complete and online.
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