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North Africa Topics specific to North Africa and the Sahara down to the 17th parallel (excludes Morocco)
Photo by Josephine Flohr, Elephant at Camp, Namibia

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Photo by Josephine Flohr,
Elephant at Camp, Namibia



Trans Sahara Routes.

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  #91  
Old 16 Jan 2022
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Originally Posted by Chris Scott View Post
I bet you can get a PCR in Zouerat and imagine you could arrive at Hassi 75 on the 3rd day without rushing too much.
Plus I like to think they would give you some slack if you were a bit late, seeing as it's desert all the way.
Have you taken into account the escort/CdH requirement for DZ, or with your nationality is it possible to get a visa without?
As of a few months ago it was possible to get a PCR in Zouerat near to the Bank for International Trade (BMCI) - they will know where. Done in a couple of hours maximum, if not sooner. I would like to think Algerian immigration would not be too much of a problem if it was a little late but better to not test luck...!

To clarify, I did not use PCR test or know what the story is with the border crossing as of now, but the PCR is definitely offered in Zouerate as of a couple of months ago.
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  #92  
Old 17 Jan 2022
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Originally Posted by 2cvfred View Post
Algeria seems to require a PCR test of max 3 days old for entry. This is also the case one the recently reopened land border to Tunisia. This mogjt be logistically impossible for the Tindouf crossing?

TheWarden: which Facebook groups?
Overlanding West Africa and Morocco, theres some folks stuck in Morocco looking at it as a possible route back to Europe (a risky exercise as crossing into Mauritania is a one way deal at them moment).

Then there are a few looking to head south over the next few months via Tindouf. 1 is near departure date I believe but every thing is a little vague on if its possible to cross at the moment.
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  #93  
Old 21 Jan 2022
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The first travellers trying the south bound since 2019 route depart in a few days. Visas have been granted and their submitted itinerary detailed crossing the border to Mauritania at Tindouf.

Another group are planning a March departure
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  #94  
Old 21 Jan 2022
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Thanks for update.
Do you know their nationality and whether they have had to organise an agency escort from the Med port?
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  #95  
Old 21 Jan 2022
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Hi Chris,

Spanish nationals I believe, travelling on bikes. They've not mentioned the need for an escort
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  #96  
Old 22 Jan 2022
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More turning up on this route.

1 French couple on the ferry to Algeria today heading to Mauritania and another party planning to try from the south.

So far theres
1 French - on route
1 Spanish - starts in a few days
1 Romanian - starts March

And 2 potential attempts to head north into Algeria from Mauritania.

Quite a lot of finger crossing by some and unknowns about COVID requirements, any issues with the tense situation in the Tindouf region and also vague news that the Mauritanians may have tightened up on access to the NE of the country.

Its going to be interesting to see how they all get on
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  #97  
Old 24 Jan 2022
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"And 2 potential attempts to head north into Algeria from Mauritania."

any info on these ones?
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  #98  
Old 24 Jan 2022
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Not yet they are still planning

The French (actually 1 French and 1 Belgium) report they needed a hotel reservation for the visa application, no guide. They made it very clear on the application and on arrival in country that they plan to leave via Tindouf. On arrival the Algerians just gave them a load of advice about being properly equipped for the desert

PCR test 36 hours before departure and antigen test on arrival were required. This may complicate things for those thinking of the route north.

Last edited by TheWarden; 7 Feb 2022 at 15:17.
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  #99  
Old 29 Jan 2022
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French have arrived in Tindouf and managed to avoid an escort.

The Algerians have told them they need a letter of authorisation to enter Mauritania but nobody seems to know where to get it.

They have also reported some Spanish crossed last week
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  #100  
Old 29 Jan 2022
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Thanks for update.

Do I take it they managed to dodge the free but fast military escort from Abadla checkpoint (near Bechar), as this is the start of the military zone to Tindouf. (As well as dodging a 'guide' from the port).

I wonder if the Spanish were the bikers you mentioned.
Would be quite a reach without a support vehicle.

Last edited by Chris Scott; 29 Jan 2022 at 21:28.
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  #101  
Old 29 Jan 2022
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Yes they dodged the military/police escort, they had some queries from authorities in Tindouf how they had managed to do it. Not sure of exact route but I think they got PCR tests in Bechar after Mauritania introduced new requirements last week.

The Spanish who crossed isn’t the bikers I mentioned.

The letter of authorisation is a bit of a mystery as well. The Algerians have suggested their embassy can help. I wonder if it’s related to news reports a few weeks ago that NE Mauritania is a security zone required authorisation to access.

Last edited by TheWarden; 7 Feb 2022 at 15:20.
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  #102  
Old 30 Jan 2022
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The letter of authorisation was introduced during covid. At the Senegal-Mauritania border at Rosso both Mauritanians and Senegalese customs ask for it. In this case it means the Mauritanian embassy in Algeria should issue writen permission that you are allowed to enter at Tindouf (as during covid only people with good reasons were allowed to go abroad). Officially the letter is skipped now, I think. I managed to enter Senegal at Rosso without, last november, after a lot of haggling
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  #103  
Old 30 Jan 2022
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Not heard that anyone who crossed from Morocco to Mauritania since November needed one. A guy crossing from Sengal to Mauritania was asked recently but confirm that it wasn’t necessary.

No update on the guys at Tindouf today, their PCRs must be close to expiry now.
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  #104  
Old 6 Feb 2022
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It seems the Tindouf border is posing some problems.

A short post today reveals the French guys are stuck in Tindouf requiring permission from both the Mauritanians and Algerians to cross. So far they have been unable to get things sorted out.

Last edited by TheWarden; 7 Feb 2022 at 15:16.
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  #105  
Old 6 Feb 2022
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheWarden View Post
It seems the Tindouf border is posing some problems.

A short post today reveals the French guys are stuck in Tindouf requiring permission from both the Mauritanians and Algerians to cross. So far they have been unable to get things sorted out.

EDIT

The Spanish bikers are also now in Tindouf. Similar problems to resolve but I hear they are getting more support from the embassy.

Well who'd have thought that might happen? Bravo to them for trying, but a border that is only sketchily open at the best of times, added to pandemic chaos... what could possibly go wrong?
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