SD1 NORTHERN SUDAN TOUR

SEARCH TOUR

With Ethiopia & Djibouti

TOUR HIGHLIGHTS:

Khartoum City Tour & Dervish Ceremony; More pyramids than Egypt! Nile Cruise; Meeting local nomads; Djibouti: up-and-coming destination; Lowest point in Africa, lunar landscapes; Unique and fascinating Harar; Addis Ababa city tour

  • DATES & PRICES
  • FULL ITINERARY
  • MAP & HOTELS
  • TRIP INFORMATION

Dates & Prices

To book this tour, please refer to the sidebar ►

Prices are in US Dollars (USD), before any applicable taxes. The pricing reflects twin-sharing, per-person costs without airfare to/from the tour; however, we can book flights from your home airport for an added cost. Contact us for a no obligation quote.


Start DateEnd DatePriceMore Info
Wed 23 Jan 2019Sat 09 Feb 2019 $7550 USD Limited availability, please contact us
Wed 30 Oct 2019Sat 16 Nov 2019 $7550 USD
Wed 22 Jan 2020Sat 08 Feb 2020 $7550 USD
Wed 28 Oct 2020Sat 14 Nov 2020 $7550 USD

Optional Single Supplement: $1406 USD (number of singles limited).
This tour may require a mandatory single supplement charge of $703 if you join our share program and we are unable to pair you.


Tour Overview


This bold and unique new adventure travels the road MUCH less travelled, to three fascinating and friendly neighbours with much to offer the intrepid traveller. Northern Sudan enjoys good roads, security and stability, and some of the most dramatic, yet least- visited archaeological sites in the world--more pyramids than Egypt! Our European hosts own their own vehicles, accommodation outside the capital, and ensure top quality service and comfort well beyond expectation. Djibouti is touted as "Africa's Dubai," and is regarded as a major up-and-coming destination with much to see and experience. And our foray into Ethiopia covers a unique corner of the country not covered on our regular tours of the country.

Regions visited: North And West Africa and East Africa
Countries visited: Sudan; Djibouti and Ethiopia


Testimonials


I particularly enjoyed the archaeological sites in Sudan and the walking tour of Harar. Our local guides were excellent. The four wheel drive vehicles were ideal. The food especially in the Sudan far exceeded my expectations. Our tour leader was excellent, he really wants to make sure everyone enjoys the tour. The hotels were also very good. A very enjoyable tour.

Everything in Sudan was great. I really liked that we started in Khartoum with the Archological Museum even though we had no context to fully appreciate it. I returned for another visit when we returned to Khartoum at the end and it was a fantastic capper to the whole tour - suddenly, much of what I had seen before in the museum made so much more sense! The local guide we had in Sudan was absolutely the best I have run into on any tour. He was VERY knowledgeable, spoke very clearly (even if a bit of an accent), his enthusiasm knew no bounds and he was very generous with his time and information.

All of the sightseeing was excellent. We were very lucky to get a tour from an archaeologist in Old Dongola. We enjoyed the driving (particularly the dessert driving). Djibouti was worth the trip. The local guides were excellent - particularly in Sudan. He was open, informative and patient! The meals were better than expected. After the ET1 tour, this was a good opportunity to see Djibouti and Sudan - both interesting when contrasted with Ethiopia. This was a level 2 tour and should be rated that way - lots of tough driving, plumbing challenges and varied accommodation. We enjoyed the tour.

I loved the pyramids and Dervish ceremony. The guide in Sudan was phenomenal. The transportation used was excellent and comfortable. The food was far better than I expected and the plan suited perfectly. Our tour leader was always approachable and ready to lend a hand. He was incredibly well-informed and encouraged discussion. The hotels were far better than I expected. Loved the trip!

Full Itinerary

To book this tour, please refer to the sidebar ►

Day 1 Arrival in Addis Ababa
Arrival at Addis Ababa Airport. Welcome to Ethiopia!

Overnight in Addis Ababa.

Included Meal(s): Dinner

Day 2 Addis Ababa: City Tour
This morning we have an orientation tour of Addis Ababa, including visits to both the National and Ethnographic Museums. Addis Ababa is the largest city of Ethiopia and its capital city at the same time. Situated in the center of the country, Addis sits at 2400 meters above sea level, making it one of the highest capital cities in the world.
A visit to the National Museum introduces us to one of the cities most famous residents -- Lucy, a proto-human skeleton discovered in Ethiopia in 1974 and believed to be 3.5 million years old. The Ethnographic Museum, on the university campus of Addis Ababa, displays many items important to daily life in rural Ethiopia. A brief section also pertains to the life of the late Haile Selassie, Ethiopia's last emperor, crowned in 1930.

Today we will also visit the Holy Trinity Cathedral, the second most-important place of worship in Ethiopia and the final resting place of Emperor Haile Selassie.

Overnight in Addis Ababa.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner

Day 3 Addis Ababa - Awash National Park
Today we travel by road to Awash National Park, located in the northern part of the Great Rift Valley at the point where the rift widens out into the Afar depression. This National Park was the first to be established in Ethiopia mainly on advice given by UNESCO on account of the great numbers and varieties of wild mammals and birds. This will be a full day of very scenic travel. Located at the southern tip of the Afar Region, this park is 225 kilometers east of Addis Ababa. The south boundary of the park is formed by the Awash river which swings north soon after leaving the park and eventually disappears into the Afar (Danakil) region.

In the late afternoon we will make a foray into the park with the hope of seeing some African wildlife and to enjoy the unique topography and vegetation.

Overnight at Awash.

Overnight at Awash.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 4 Awash - Dire Dawa: Town Tour
Early this morning we'll have another foray into the park before continuing our full-day journey to Dire Dawa.

Dire Dawa was founded in 1902 when the railroad from Djibouti reached the area, and its growth has resulted largely from trade brought by the railroad. Dire Dawa is also an ideal site of ethnic variety whereby the diversified cultural styles of Oromo, Somali, Afar, Harari, and others are easily observed.

On arrival this afternoon we'll have a look at Dire Dawa and it's French era railway station and interesting spice market.

Overnight at Dire Dawa.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 5 Dire Dawa - Harar: City Touring
Today our journey continues further east to the ancient city of Harar. On arrival we begin our sightseeing program.

The medieval walled city of Harar stands amid green mountains on the eastern wall of the Great Rift Valley, with wonderful views of the vast Danakil Desert to the north, the fertile Harar Mountains to the west, and the cattle rich Ogaden plains to the south. Situated near the Somali border, Harar's heritage is almost entirely Muslim and Oriental; with its mosques and shrines. This is considered by many to be the fourth most sacred center of the Islamic world, and its Islamic character is best expressed in the Grand Mosque (AL JAMI), which dominates the town. It is rightly renowned for it's intricately worked filigree jewelry of silver, gold, and amber.

This evening we will visit the town's most enduring attraction: a "hyena man show," where you can get a chance to stretch out your hands and feed the hyenas.

Overnight in Harar.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner

Day 6 Harar Sightseeing - Dire Dawa, Ethiopia - Djibouti City, Djibouti
Today we explore the walled city of Harar, with the Christian and Muslim markets, the former residence of the French author, Arthur Rimbaud, and the Harari Museum that depicts the interior architecture and decoration of the homes of the Harari people.

Harar is the provincial capital of Ethiopia's largest administrative region, Hararge. Once fiercely religious, Harar was a forbidden city and closed to visitors until 1887 CE, when King Menelik restored central rule. Harar has much of its 16th century CE architecture and city walls still intact, and with its 99 mosques, including the 16th century Grand Mosque. Harar is unlike anywhere else in Ethiopia and has played a pivotal role both historically and contemporarily in the current excellent relations between Ethiopian Muslims and Christians.

Harar's Megalo Gugo Market is a center for beautiful baskets of woven grass, decorative wall-mats and bright shawls, as well as all the fruit, vegetables, spices and grains of the province. Harar's five gates -- the only means to enter or leave the city center -- have been guarded over the years. One of the gates of the city happens to be the impressive 'Shawa Gate', which for centuries served as a bridgehead for the entry of Islamic ideas into Africa from the nearby Arabian Peninsula.

Later we drive back to Dire Dawa in time to connect with our late afternoon flight to Djibouti City where we'll have dinner upon arrival.

Overnight in Djibouti City.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner

Day 7 Djibouti City: City Tour - Tadjoura & Sables Blancs
Djibouti City is the capital and largest city of Djibouti, located in the coastal region on the Gulf of Tadjoura. Home to around 600,000 inhabitants, the city contains over 60% of the nation's population. The settlement was founded in 1888 by the French on land leased from the ruling Somali and Afar Sultans. During the ensuing period, it served as the capital of French Somaliland and its successor the French Territory of the Afars and Issas. Under its veneer of urban bustle, the city remains a down-to-earth place, with jarring cultural and social combinations.

This morning we will enjoy a panoramic tour of the city during which we plan to see the colourful market, the railway station, the main port and the central mosque.
Later we will take a private boat across the Gulf of Tadjoura to Tadjourah, the capital of one of the six regions in Djibouti (+/- 1.5 hours). Upon arrival we will head straight to our hotel which is situated right on the beach at Sable Blancs!

You will have some free time to relax in the afternoon before dinner at our hotel.

Overnight at Tadjoura.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner

Day 8 Tadjourah - Lake Assal - Djibouti City (or Khartoum)
Today we travel by road southwest to Lake Assal, located in the North-Central part of Djibouti. Shortly after our departure from the beach area we will make a brief stop in Tadjoura - known as the 'White City.' The Sultanate of Tadjoura has many white buildings and is a historic city. This was where the French colonization started when the sultan granted a piece of land to the French. Soon Djibouti City became the most important city of the country. Nowadays Tadjoura serves as an important port and fishing settlement.

Lake Assal is a saline lake, which lies 155 m (509 ft) below sea level in the Afar Triangle, making it the lowest point on land in Africa and the second-lowest land depression on Earth after the Dead Sea. Situated in the Danakil Desert, the lake is bounded by hills on the western region. No outflow occurs from the lake, and due to high evaporation, the salinity level of its waters is 10 times that of the sea, making it the most saline in the world after Don Juan Pond, Antarctica. Salt extraction by the Afar nomad tribes of camel drivers and Issas from Lake Assal's salt bank established the ancient caravan routes. These linked the lake with the mountains of Ethiopia for barter trading such items as sorghum, coal, and other commodities. Salt was also bartered with South Abyssinia for items like coffee, ivory, musk, and also (historically) slaves. It was a source of wealth for the local tribes.

After a day of scenic stops and short walks we will continue our journey back to Djibouti City.

PLEASE NOTE: Due to changeable flight schedules, it is possible that we will need to depart Djibouti City this evening and arrive in Khartoum very early tomorrow morning. We will have hotel rooms waiting for us in Khartoum if this is the case.

Overnight in Djibouti City.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 9 Djibouti City, Djibouti - Khartoum, Sudan
Today (or last evening) we fly from Djibouti City to Khartoum, Sudan.

Because of a lack of air connections in the region, today's journey might be somewhat convoluted, with stops possibly in Dire Dawa and/or Addis. Due to such uncertainties, we don't have any activities officially scheduled for today, but your Tour Leader will determine the group's energy and interest levels and possibly suggest something to do today after some rest. Admittedly, there are not a lot of "attractions" in Khartoum in a touristic sense, so our time here may be somewhat free-form and unstructured.

Overnight in Khartoum.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner

Day 10 Khartoum: City Tour & Dervish Ceremony
This morning we start our Khartoum city tour. First will be a visit to the Archaeological Museum, which features, among other things, two beautiful temples rescued by UNESCO and moved from the Lake Nasser area when it was flooded in the 1970's. We then cross the confluence between the Blue Nile and the White Nile near the Presidential Palace where, in 1885, General Gordon was beheaded by the Mahdi's troops. Later we reach Omdurman, the old capital of Sudan, where we see the Mahdi's Tomb from outside.

In the afternoon we will visit the interesting Khalifa's House which holds a small museum about the Mahdyia. We then visit the colourful souk of Omdurman where we experience a large, colourful and lively local market and interact with the friendly locals.

Just prior to sunset we will head to the tomb of the Sufi leader, Ahmed al Nil, in order to observe the Sufi Dervish Ceremony, held only on Fridays. This is not the ‘formal’ kind of ceremony that one may have seen in Turkey with actual whirling as such, but rather a very casual and informal "dancing" and moving to beat-driven music. The atmosphere is celebratory and the locals get involved and vistors are made to feel very welcome.
After sunset we will return back to the center of Khartoum for dinner and our overnight.

Overnight in Khartoum.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 11 Khartoum - 6th Cataract - Meroe
This morning we begin our road journey northward. After about 50 km, we get into a desert area covered with huge round granite boulders; these are the last offshoots of the rocky formations of the 6th Cataract of the Nile. We have a picnic lunch in the area and then return to the main road continuing north.

Suddenly more than 40 pyramids located on top of a hill come into view, some of them perfectly-preserved. This is the Royal Necropolis of Meroe. We'll stop a distance away to enjoy the view and for photos before arrival at the Meroe Camp, also with a beautiful view of the pyramids.

THE MEROE CAMP
Meroe Tented Camp is located in Bagarwyia, (about 230 km north of Khartoum) overlooking the beautiful pyramids of Meroe. Accommodation consists of 22 twin-bedded tents (4x4m), tastefully-furnished. Each one has its own private separate bathroom hut with shower and toilet (located a short walk from your tent). The camp is located 2 km from the Royal Necropolis. Each tent is equipped with a veranda with two comfortable chairs to relax in front of the astonishing view of more than forty pyramids. The electricity in the tents is supplied by a generator working till 11:00 pm. The camp is managed by an Italian manager with the help of well-trained Sudanese staff.

Please note that occasionally we operate this section with two nights in Meroe and four in Karima. In this case, overall sightseeing content remains the same, but will occur in a slightly different order.

Overnight at Meroe Camp.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 12 Meroe, the Necropolis & Royal City of Meroe
This morning will be dedicated to visiting the pyramids of Meroe. The Royal Necropolis of Meroe is located at about 3 km from the Nile on some hills covered by yellow sand dunes. Several pyramids stand out with their sharp shapes against the clear sky. Each one has its own funerary chapel with the walls fully decorated with bas-reliefs that show the king's life and offerings to the gods.

In the afternoon we move along the Nile in order to visit the ruins of the royal city. Excavations that have taken place here confirm that the town of Meroe once covered a large area, and the royal city was located in a central position surrounded by suburbs and a boundary wall. Most of the area where the city is located, formed by many small hills covered by red clay fragments, has yet to be excavated.

Overnight at Meroe Camp.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 13 Meroe: Temples of Naga & Mussawara
Today we will drive for about 30 km on a desert track among many camel thorn acacia trees to visit two archaeological sites.

The site of Naga is one of the two centres that developed during the Meroitic period. In Naga, in a typical Saharan environment with rocks and sand, we find a temple dedicated to Apedemak (1st century AD), a wonderful building with bas-relief decorations depicting the god with a lion's head, the Pharaoh, noblemen, and several ritual images.

A few metres away there is a small and odd construction with arches and columns, named "kiosk", in which we can notice Egyptian, Roman, and Greek styles all at the same time. Not far away we reach another temple dedicated to Amon with many statues of rams and beautiful gates decorated with bas-reliefs.

We then continue to Mussawarat, not far away from Naga. This settlement is located in a beautiful valley crowned by hills. Here the ruins of a very large temple are visible. This temple once played an important role, and its main characteristic, the "Great Enclosure," is comprised of many constructions and boundary walls which surround a temple built in the 1st century AD. The large number of elephants represented on these walls has led many archaeologists to believe that this animal used to have an important role in this area. Beyond the big wadi (dry riverbed) there is another temple -- restored by a German archaeological mission -- dedicated to the god Apedemak.

Overnight at Meroe.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 14 Meroe - Bayuda Desert - Karima
After breakfast we will leave Meroe and travel a short distance across the desert before we cross the Nile via a 'pontoon, ‘local ferry boat’, and enter the Bayuda Desert. These small ferries are often a hive of activity, and we may find ourselves sharing space with people, donkeys, and goats!

The Bayuda Desert is an area bounded by the loop formed by the Nile between the 4th and the 6th Cataract and characterised by sharp black basalt mountains, most of them volcanic and typically cone-shaped. They alternate with level pebble stretches and large valleys crossed by dry wadis where only little vegetation survives and gazelles can sometimes be seen. We are likely to meet isolated groups of Bisharin nomads, who live in family groups in small huts made of intertwined branches close to the rare water wells, with their caravans and herds of camels and donkeys.

In the first part of the crossing we drive among sand dunes. After a few kilometres on the asphalt road, the adventure continues as we follow the Wadi Abu Dom, driving on a sandy track among many acacia trees and some wells where it is possible to meet nomads. Arrival at Merowe (not to be confused with Meroe), on the Nile, where we cross the bridge to the west bank in order to reach the comfortable Nubian Rest House.

The Nubian Rest House: Karima is a small town located on the right bank of the Nile, close to the famous archaeological site at the foot of Jebel Barkal, south of the 4th Cataract. The town is a small, dusty and calm village where a big market takes place in the morning. The Nubian Rest House is a charming small hotel built in the typical Nubian style just at the foot of
Jebel Barkal, the holy mountain of the old Egyptian and Nubian Pharaohs. It is surrounded by a large private enclosure, with a nice garden and leisure area. Each of the 22 A/C rooms is characterized by a peculiar Nubian door with its own private bathroom and a pleasant veranda. The decor and finishing have been carefully selected. A reception area, restaurant and lounge with decorated walls complete the wonderful setting. All the buildings are made with local bricks covered by hand-spread clay plaster as used in the Nubian area. The hotel is Italian-managed with the help of well-trained Sudanese staff.

Overnight in Karima.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 15 Karima: Jebel Barkal & the Necropolis of El Kurru
A landmark in the Nubian Desert, Jebel Barkal ("Jebel" means mountain in Arabic) can be seen from several kilometres away. At the foot of this wonderful and isolated red sandstone mountain, considered holy since the ancient times, stands a large temple dedicated to the Pharaohs of the New Reign and to their patron, Amon. Amon's ancient "Pure Mountain", the Olympus of the Nubians, was the religious Nubian heart for more than 1,000 years. Besides the ruins of the big temple, there are still several sculpted granite rams that were supposed to border a long avenue that probably led to the pier on the Nile. In the mountain wall there is a large room decorated with bas-relief.

The Jebel Barkal archaeological sites are listed on the UNESCO World Heritage list. The royal necropolis of the ancient city of Napata, the Nubian capital (from 800 to 400 BC) before the Meroitic period, had a large number of pyramids located in three different places: a few hundred metres north of Jebel Barkal; a dozen kilometres southwards from the holy mountain, in El Kurru; in Nuri, located on the other bank of the Nile.

After lunch we will travel southwards to the village of El Kurru where we find one of the necropolises of the ancient capital, Napata. Here we can visit one tomb, which is excavated in the rock under pyramids -- partially collapsed -- and totally decorated with images of the Pharaoh, the gods, and multicolour hieroglyphic inscriptions. Not far from here there is an interesting site of petrified wood, an ancient forest with hundreds of huge trunks. In the late afternoon we return back to Karima.

Overnight at Nubian Rest House.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 16 Karima: Cruise on the Nile & the Necropolis of Nuri
After breakfast we will visit the market Karima, where we have the chance to witness and experience the real life of Sudanese people. We then board a small covered motorboat for a relaxing cruise along the Nile where we enjoy the beautiful sand stretches and cultivated islands along the river. A little further northward there used to be the beautiful granite rocky formations of the 4th Cataract, which prevented the Nile from flowing slowly and formed many rapids that obstructed navigation. In 2008 the Dam of Merowee was completed and the flooding of the artificial lake started. We may enjoy a picnic lunch in the area, or we may return to the Nubian Rest House for lunch.

After lunch we will visit the archaeological site of Nuri where we will see many pyramids, including the pyramid of the great Taharqa. These pyramids are quite weathered and some have fallen apart or disappeared altogether, but the atmosphere here and interesting stories associated with this spot are well worth the effort.

Return to the Nubian Rest House for dinner and overnight stay.

Overnight in Karima.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner

Day 17 Karima - Old Dongola - Khartoum
Today is a long day on the road but full of interesting encounters and visits. Early in the morning we will follow the Nile until we reach the archaeological site of Old Dongola. Here we discover the ruins of a Christian Coptic temple with marble columns as well as the ruins of several churches situated on the banks of the Nile.

This area is the central part of the Nubian region. Here the population lives in small villages amongst yellow sand dunes and palm trees, and they speak a different language from the Arabs. Here Islam is not as "strict" as in other regions of Sudan. Many women don't cover their faces, and they are often more willing to speak with foreigners. Some houses in the Nubian villages are painted with patterns of flowers, but most of them are completely white.

We will stop for lunch in a simple "chai house" (a roadhouse where the local truck drivers stop for food and to rest) and in the late afternoon we will reach Khartoum in time for our farewell dinner.

Overnight in Khartoum.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 18 Departure from Khartoum
Departure from Khartoum.

RHLAH S'IDAH (BON VOYAGE!)

Included Meal(s): Breakfast

Tour Map

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*The red tour trail on the map does not represent the actual travel path.


Hotel List


The following is a list of sample hotels at some locations included on this tour. The hotels shown here are meant to provide a general sense of the standard of hotel we usually aim for; they are not necessarily confirmed for your chosen departure.


Grand Holiday Villa


Location: Khartoum
Country: Sudan

Built in the late 1800, the Grand Holiday Villa Hotel & Suites Khartoum's historical building exudes an old world charm
... the colonial era. Centrally located in the heart of Khartoum's commercial hub, this hotel features 160 guest room, in addition to office suites, a shopping arcade and an exclusive recreational club. With royal visitors of the past including Thomas Cook, Sir Winston Churchill and Queen Victoria, rest assured of 5-star conveniences and modern facilities to ensure a memorable stay in the grand city of Khartoum, Sudan.
Read More.

Meroe Camp


Location: Meroe
Country: Sudan

Meroe tented Camp is located in Bagarwyia, (about 230 km north of Khartoum) overlooking the beautiful pyramids of Meroe.
... consists of 22 twin-bedded tents (4x4 m), tastefully-furnished. Each one has its own private bathroom hut with shower and toilet (a short walk from your tent). The camp is located 2 km from the Royal Necropolis. Each tent is equipped with a veranda with two comfortable chairs to relax in front of the astonishing view of more than forty pyramids.
Read More.

Nubian Guest House


Location: Karima
Country: Sudan

The Nubian Rest House is a charming small hotel built in the typical Nubian style just at the foot of
... Barkal, the holy mountain of the old Egyptian and Nubian Pharaohs. It is surrounded by a large private enclosure, with a nice garden and leisure area. Each of the 22 A/C rooms is characterized by a peculiar Nubian door with its own private bathroom and a pleasant veranda.
Read More.

Atlantic Hotel

Rating: 3 Star Accommodation3 Star Accommodation3 Star Accommodation
Location: Djibouti
Country: Djibouti

Modern, Elegant the Atlantic Hotel is one of kind located in the city center, an unbeatable location for easy access
... most interesting area of the city.
Read More.

Samrat Hotel

Rating: 3 Star Accommodation3 Star Accommodation3 Star Accommodation
Location: Dire Dawa
Country: Ethiopia

Samrat is a four star hotel located in the heart of Dire Dawa Kezira at the gateway of Addis Ababa.
... hotel is just ten minutes from the Aba Tena Dejazmach Yilma International (Dire Dawa) airport.
Read More.

Awash Falls Lodge


Location: Awash
Country: Ethiopia

The Awash Falls Lodge is located in the most southwestern limit of an ancient conservation area, the Awash National Park,
... only nearest Park to the capital Addis Ababa, with 205 km in the East. The location of the Lodge in the surrounding fantastic diversity of nature and related entertainment activities provided by the Lodge has been called by many as 'The Little Paradise'.
Read More.

Wassamar Hotel

Rating: 4 Star Accommodation4 Star Accommodation4 Star Accommodation4 Star Accommodation
Location: Addis Ababa
Country: Ethiopia




Trip Information

To book this tour, please refer to the sidebar ►

Inclusions

Breakfast and dinner daily; most lunches (most will be picnic lunches). Bottled drinking water provided. All transport (including internal flights), accommodation, sightseeing and entrance fees for sites noted as 'visited' in the detailed itinerary. Gratuities for drivers, restaurant staff, porters (where available), local guides. Airport transfers for land & air customers and for early arrivals / late departures if extra accommodation is booked through us.

Exclusions

International airfare to/from the tour. Tour Leader gratuities, some lunches, drinks (other than water, tea / coffee), personal items (phone, laundry, etc), domestic and international (if applicable) air taxes, visa fees*, and any excursions referenced as 'optional'. Airport transfers for Land Only customers. Optional trip cancellation insurance (you are required to be medically insured). Our post-reservation trip notes offer further guidance on shopping, not included meals, visas and locally-paid departure taxes.

* Sudan visa: US$135 in advance (we bill you); Canadians pay US$100 cash on arrival in Khartoum; USA passport holders pay $150 per person cash on arrival.

Djibouti visa: Available on arrival for US$90 / Euro 70

Ethiopia visa: US$50 available on arrival.

More details on visas provided upon reservation.

Seasonality and Weather

This tour is planned for the coolest and most comfortable time of the year in the entire region. That said, we will still encounter dry heat and humidity near water and at lower elevations. Rainfall is unlikely. Our January date can actually be quite chilly in some locations, especially at night.

Transport and Travel Conditions

This tour visits the safe areas of Northern Sudan which enjoys good security and stability (we do not visit South Sudan). Our local partners at destination own and operate our accommodations and vehicles outside of Khartoum and take security very seriously.

City tours in Khartoum, Djibouti City, and Addis Ababa are conducted by a single touring coach / bus; elsewhere, our ground transport will be provided by multiple, modern and spacious, air-conditioned Toyota Landcruiser 4x4 vehicles (or similar).

Most roads travelled in Sudan are paved, though some are in rough shape and there may be some unpaved stretches. Roads in Djibouti and Ethiopia are mixed paved and unpaved, and some sections are rough and dusty (please refer to the tour itinerary for more detail).

We have rated this tour a "Level 2" largely because the length of some travel days, the rough roads, the heat and dust, the basic nature of some accommodation (baggage handling not available), and the remoteness of locales visited. This is an ambitious adventure that requires a sturdy constitution, flexibility, and a spirit of adventure.

Accommodation

Our hotels in all three capital cities are clean and comfortable, Western-style and modern 4-star properties. Elsewhere, our accommodation is surprisingly comfortable and atmospheric (click on 'Map & Hotels' tab for more information). All accommodation has en suite bath, with the exception of Meroe camp where you will have your own bath/toilet in an adjacent building.

Due to the nature of accommodation in some locations in Sudan, we limit the number of single supplements to 2 (additional single may be accepted on a request basis). If you'd like to pay a pro-rated single supplement that guarantees single accommodation in Khartoum, Djibouti & Ethiopia, but sharing for the remaining 6 nights in Sudan, please contact us.

Staff and Support

Tour Leader throughout. Local guides will also accompany in Sudan, at various locations in Djibouti, and in Harar and Addis Ababa. Local expert and highly experienced drivers in all locations.

Group Size

Maximum may be 14 or 16 depending on accommodation availability.