NouadhibouJanuary 8, 2017 in Mauritania
So I've arrived in mauritania. The adventure really begins. A short 3.5 hour border crossing. No corruption just spectacular bureacracy. One person gives you the form. Move forward into the compound. Complete form. Get form checked. Show form to police, they sign it. Take form to passport office get stamp. Show policeman stamp, go to customs get different stamp, show police etc etc ...and that's the Moroccan side. Mauritania includes a 1.5 hour wait for the visa while they finish lunch.
Most spectacular though is I just pass the border and reach a military roadblock. Fiche demanded, then followed with a first question of "where are you coming from?". I've come half a mile from the border and either side of the road is meant to have landmines! If my French was good enough I would have been so sarcastic.
I'm now in Nouadhibou the second city, but a not very exciting place. The only redeeming feature was some really tasty street food. I also found out that the only campsite in the city closed after a German guy was robbed and killed a few years ago. Time to leave I think 🤔
Good news is I've met some fellow bikers (Ferry and Gülçin) heading in the same direction, to Atar. First plan was to ride the desert piste there, but on more research none of us think we're good enough on sand. So we tried to ride the longest train in the world there, but when we turned up, we were invited into the train chief's office. The title of his department being 'Exploitation'! However they can't unload the bikes where we want to stop and we'd have to go to the end of the line and ride an equally sandy piste. Instead, we're off to take the tar road via a 500km detour!Read more