With loads of useful info on climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro, overland travel and wild animal safaris, the Africa forum is the place to discuss this huge and diverse continent.

Overland in Africa

DeniseD

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  • Added on: July 23rd, 2013
I'm trying to plan an overland trip and though I might gain more information if I posted in each individual area. Can anyone offer any information on travelling overland between Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Tanzania, Malawi, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Namibia, South Africa. Basically fly into Nairobi and out of cape town.

Mainly, is it safe for me to travel solo, (I've always traveled on my own to various places around the world but always good of to know if someone really think I should avoid an area) Can I get visas on arrival to each of these countries (I'm a UK citizen) and is it generally possible to travel between these countries.

Any information you have would be of benefit as I've never been to this part of the world. I will plan to take approx 3 months to do this (minimum) but based on this can you give me an idea of minimum spends required. I realise it depends on what I do during my travels but an approx would be much appreciated. Food/Accom etc (i'm happy to rough it I don't require hotels etc.

Thank you Guys x

larizzle

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  • Added on: July 23rd, 2013
I'm planning a solo trip to Africa beginning in Nairobi and ending in CT myself, but I'm not doing overland the whole way.

I know that there are several inexpensive tour companies that take you on all or part of your journey if you're wary of doing it alone. Try looking up Africa Travel Company or Absolute Africa, their prices are fairly reasonable. Some people mix and match between overlanding themselves and then joining a company for another leg.

I can't speak to the rest of your questions, but hopefully someone else can :)
needle girl, haystack world: tales of a television producer in search of adventure.

Jeanie99

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  • Added on: July 24th, 2013
What is your thoughts in traveling into these countries, most people want to see the animals in the National Parks and Reserves.

If this is your objective you need to know that you can't just catch a bus to these places and apart from that it's not safe and you wouldn't be allowed.
If you want to see the wild life you will need to buy into a group or private safari.
Do your research for this as some of the group safaris are for young people in gap years and if you are a serious traveler or photographer you should avoid these like the plague.

We did a 3 month trip to Africa starting in South Africa taking in Namibia, Botswana, Zambia, Malawi, Tanzania, Zanzibar, Kenya. This was for 6 weeks camping visiting the National Parks and Reserves.
From Niarobi we bought into a private safari traveling to the Masai Mara for 7 days camping again.
From here we traveled on the overnight train from Nairobi to Mombasa and then by taxi to Matamu and stayed with a conservation group for 5 weeks. http://www.arocha.org/ke-en/index.html

If you want to see the gorillas in Rwanda this is extremely expensive, you will need to buy a license I think the cost is about £500 and numbers issued are limited, usually booked up months in advance and you would certainly need to go in a group, numbers of people are strictly controlled. It can be done you just need the money and a travel company to sort this out for you. But remember there is no guarantee that you will see the gorillas.

Africa is like no other place cash is king, ATMs don't always work things don't always go to plan but it is the most amazing continent to visit and if you love a challenge go for it.

DeniseD

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  • Added on: July 24th, 2013
Jeanie99 Thank you for your help, much appreciated. I was planning on joining group things along the way for safaris etc but I wanted to just spend some time wandering as well, it wasn't all about safaris and wildlife. I might consider doing something like you suggested with the link, looked fabulous and a great way to meet the locals.

Really appreciate the tip regarding the tours, it would be my worst nightmare to be surrounding by gap year kids as I do like my photography, maybe more of a private tour for this one :)

Larizzle, thank you, I will definitely look into doing part with a group I might see more given the type if challenge this would be. Would love to hear how you get on with your trip, sounds brilliant. I can't leave until 2016, so its ages away but when it comes to saving not long at all!

Are you buying your visas before you leave or just grabbing them at borders??

Thank you guys so much.

halfnine

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  • Added on: July 29th, 2013
DeniseD wrote:I'm trying to plan an overland trip and though I might gain more information if I posted in each individual area. Can anyone offer any information on travelling overland between Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Tanzania, Malawi, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Namibia, South Africa. Basically fly into Nairobi and out of cape town.


It's been nearly fifteen years since I've done it and even back then it was a pretty standard overland route with plenty of other travelers making the journey. Quite frankly, by the accounts I read each year it seems to be getting easier and easier as well. More travelers, up to date and existing guidebooks, easier border crossings, less civil wars, more ATMs, cell phones, internet, etc. Now, it may not be SE Asia, and it might be one of the harder known travel circuits, but that chunk of Africa isn't way out there either. Although, it wouldn't take much to get off the beaten path either although most people stick to the travel circuit.

DeniseD wrote:Mainly, is it safe for me to travel solo, (I've always traveled on my own to various places around the world but always good of to know if someone really think I should avoid an area)


I met many solo women traveling there. So I wouldn't worry about that aspect of it. For a woman's perspective on solo overland Africa travel search posts on this forum from Emeraldeyes or send her a PM.

DeniseD wrote:Can I get visas on arrival to each of these countries (I'm a UK citizen) and is it generally possible to travel between these countries.


Generally, yes. But it is Africa and things do change from time to time. But, most likely you should be able to get from Nairobi to Cape Town through one path or another and get visas along the way.

DeniseD wrote:Any information you have would be of benefit as I've never been to this part of the world. I will plan to take approx 3 months to do this (minimum) ......


You'll want probably at least another month or two (minimum) if doing it overland by public transport through all those countries. Heck, once you get to South Africa you may decide to spend a month there as well.

As far as safaris, etc. They are difficult to get to on your own but there are always tours to get to those places out of the local town anyway. Just meet up with other like minded travelers and arrange your own.

I would consider taking a group tour through Namibia and Botswana (or ideally self-drive) of the Vic Falls to Cape Town variety. Personally, I don't think either of those two countries has the same charm to explore by public transport. In short...lots of hard to reach natural wonders, long distances, and a subdued local culture relative to the rest of Southern and Eastern Africa. They are great countries...just hard to get a lot out of them on public transport.

DeniseD

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  • Added on: August 1st, 2013
Massive, massive help Halfnine. Thank you



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