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sub-Saharan Africa Topics specific to sub-Saharan Africa. (Includes all countries South of 17 degrees latitude)
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Old 26 Dec 2011
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Dakar-Cotonou January 2012

Am taking my first overland trip, solo, from Dakar to Cotonou at the end of January. I am working on getting all my visas in advance in Dakar (am in Dakar now, hopefully mali done tomorrow) so that part should be covered but I do have a few other questions:

-Route, currently i am heading the Bamako, Bobo-Dioulasso and then either through togo or straight down through Benin. I am also returning to Dakar afterwards.

-Sites/places to definitely visit. I am still figuring this out, and also networking with friends in Dakar who have friends relatives between here and Benin which might inform my route and accommodation a little. in the meanwhile I would love any advice.

-Accommodations: at present i was thinking to look for low cost hostile/campement or cheap hotels along the way as the trip is only going to be 6 weeks at most. Is it absolutely necessary i am prepared to camp? i have a solo mosquito net and some basic supplies but the idea for the trip came after i was already in dakar so i am limited to buying supplies here.

-Bike: I am still looking for a bike and posted something on the site but if anyone reads this instead and is heading into Dakar with something solid let me know.

-Any other general advice is welcome. I am an experienced rider, my french is conversational and i have been in Senagal for 2 months now and otherwise live in NYC.

Thanks for any help, if you have links to information i am happy to find the relevant stuff!
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Old 27 Dec 2011
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You will be fine. Take no camping gear, you will find cheap hotels everywhere. How are your offroad skills? From dogon country into Burkina is sandy but not too hard and very beautifull.
If you go to Bobo, where there is a lot of hassle from tauts, go to Banfora and stay at 'canne au sucre' and explore the area.
Maybe we'll meet.

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Old 27 Dec 2011
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Thanks Tony, that is encouraging. My off-road skills are solid but I am still uncertain as to what I will be riding. I am looking for an Africa Twin at the moment (or bmw, maybe tenere) so that might adjust my route a little bit but i am solid in the sand and better on the rocks.

Your trip looks quite amazing thus far, would be great to see you on the road or if you pass through dakar i can be of help with accommodations and local mechanics. the is easy to find here.

happy travels
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benin, burkina faso, dakar, togo

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