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The Wonders of Sudan and What It’s like to Experience it by Bike
Ethan Weil, content creator for the first part of the Tour d’Afrique, shares this post before he flies home from Khartoum (Mats Fredrix is now in Nairobi and will be posting photos and words for the rest of the tour as it winds its way down to Cape Town).
Starting from the northern tip of Sudan after crossing the border, the flat paved roads take you through a beautiful Nubian desert between pockets of mountainous dunes blanketed by black rocks. It’s a peculiar place with a changing landscape to let the eyes wander.
Sudan has many different kinds of rocks and minerals throughout the country with an interest between locals and foreigners alike to explore mining deposits of those resources. What’s mostly being mined are petroleum resources for fuel but Sudan is also in the top 10 countries for gold mining. Riders can expect to cycle through small mining villages and operations along with meeting local or foreign gold seekers. While visiting one of the villages for a coke stop some of the riders, Emily, Jan, and Sharon got a photo with almost the whole village!
The first camp we head to is Wadi Halfa. It’s just us out in the desert and at night it’s a great spot to see the stars. Wadi Halfa is an area that is known to be one of the hottest places on Earth. Luckily for us the temperatures are more reasonable in the winter, but at night it can get quite cold too.
One thing to watch out for is what I call the ‘desert stampede’, which is a caravan of tour buses that fly down the small roads at high speeds. They come by in a group in the mornings and late afternoons as they start their day. Riders particularly need to be cautious when they come through. One rider on our tour, Bernd, captured a great image of fellow riders Peter and Vlademir that depicts the reality of the buses passing by.
As for animals to see while riding, there’s a high chance of seeing camels, both wild and not, as well as donkeys! Camels roam the desert and eat off the native Acacia trees that are scattered across the desert!
Sometimes if you’re lucky you’ll come across a Bedouin riding a camel as he navigates the desert. We met this guy who came by as we were packing the lunch truck!
Like anything there are positives and negatives but all in all Sudan is full of natural beauty as well as rich history that is still very much unknown to the western world. The cuisine is good, especially the Sudanese bread and falafels. The people are friendly, and curious to learn more about you. The history is interesting, from Nubian Pyramids to the relations between the Egyptian and Nubian Societies, there’s a lot to learn about the culture and history of Sudan.
Our original trans-continental journey and flagship expedition crosses Africa from north to south, covering 10 countries in all. Beginning at the...
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