Day 58…Dakar- I think i’ll just camp on the beach!

Hi Guys,

My route over the last couple of days.
Bamako to Dakar

Leaving the Sleeping Camel was an early affair. I got out of Bamako at 7am and filled up the bike and all auxiliary fuel cans. I was taking a new road from Bamako to Kenieba, the border crossing with Senegal. Its a new tar road and not listed on Michelin map. Jolandie Rust also doing her own trip around Africa advised me of this route. Its nice and quite with only a few trucks passing by.

I left Dave in Bamako as he needed a visa so I took the road alone, very excited to get to Dakar. The road was quite boring with good tarmac. I got the bike back up to speed and decided to sit down and get some serious miles behind me. I had 12 hours to get to Tambacounda which was 850km away.

The road was long and the arse was sore. I was only stopping between refuelling stop so sat for 2.5 hours at a time. I got to the border with Senegal and the formalities were quick and no different to the Senegalese side. After 30min I was blasting down the road towards Tambacounda.I settled for the Lonely Planet suggestion Bloc Gadec. It was pricey and basic but clean and had free wifi.

Bloc Gadec
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I got on the road early again, trying to push the last 470km to Dakar. My experience with Senegal wasnt the greatest affair the first day. The people were quite rude at the water stops and the cars drove like absolute idiots on the potholed sections of the road.

I was quite apprehensive about Dakar and didn’t know if I wanted to spend time there anymore. I hate the big West African cities. They are dirty, clogged with traffic and unfriendly people. I thought I’ll check it out and head towards Lac Rose if I didn’t fancy the city.

Well the last 150km before Dakar is terrible, with potholes running across the road. The cars and trucks swerving into you lane to avoid the potholes and temp levels at 40’C. To make it worst the traffic started 150km before Dakar so the journey in took HOURS! I was tired and the bike even more so as the temp gauge climbed at every jam!

After hours of inhaling diesel fumes and bumping busses and trucks with the panniers I was rewarded with the number one campsite on the trip so far! Sunugal Restaurant is on the beach and owned by an elderly french guy. He seems to love overlanders. He charges CFA5000/R100 for camping per night. He has a huge parking area and blocked of a section for campers. Its nice and private and you open youre tent to waves breaking in the distance. The temperature is great, as the cold wind blowing in from the Atlantic is nice and cool and guarantees a good nights rest!

My campsite
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He also made me a deal. “if you eat for CFA8000 the camping is free”… So after making sure I understood him I realised its an absolute bargain. I will eat a 3 course meal every night and camp for free. The nett effect is only CFA3000… Thats what fish and rice on the street prices at!

I settled in and took a drive to the most western point on the African continent Pointe Des Almadies. I had a beer and promised myself to come and try the fish tomorrow for lunch. I sat out there for 2 hours just reflecting on where I am. It felt fantastic!!!

The Western Point
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Some guys playing music came around and tried to impress tourist with their version of Shakira.
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I came back and settled down for my 3 course dinner. It was spectacular to say the least.
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The Dj’s were hard at work setting up huge speakers 30M from my tent!
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Sunugal restaurant
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It’s safe to say at 6am this morning the last party animals left. I am just about ready to grab lunch.

Be ready for another post soon. I am hitting the town today!

Dakar, Senegal

12 responses to “Day 58…Dakar- I think i’ll just camp on the beach!

  1. Hi Riaan. well done once again, your pic’s of Pointe Des Almadies reminds me a lot of Paternoster on the West Coast, anyway I have to complement you on the quality of your photographs in particular the pic’s of the food, so when you return one day use your hidden talent in food photography. 2.5 hour stretches – well done, that’s when your ass really starts talking to you. Your next stretch is probably lots of sand stretches and sand storms so make like Lawrence of Arabia and get one of those turbans. Until the next blog, safe travelling. Regards Erich

  2. Hi Riaan,
    I missed to add a comment in your previous post.
    I like your story and your pics. I continue to follow you, very interesting to know how is the roads.
    Dakar is nice to discover especially Gorée Island.

    I have a question about the shipment you did by boat. is it possible to have more information.

    Continue to blog….

    Regards, Damien

  3. you lucky fish! Been at the southern point of Africa on Prrrfection and now the most western point and pretty soon the most northern point….you sure are living it! well done

  4. Jy vorder goed, ek seker Afrika toets jo geduld party dae tot die uiterstes, maar eks ook seker dat teen die tyd het jy al geleer om meer geduld te he met die stadige sisteme in ons mooi kontinent! Eks bly jyt ‘n reis maat gekry met wie jy jo ervarings kan deel. Jy laat nie stof onder jou band versamel nie ne, jy eet die kilometers vinnig vinnig op! Onthou om goed voorsiening vir brandstof te maak in Mauritanie en die Westelikke Sahara waar die wind mens se verbruik kwaai kan afbring! Baie geluk met jou goeie vordering, ek bid vir jou en my gebed is dat ons mooi kontinent die Vader se skeppingwerke jou sal laat stom staan. Baie sterkte met die volgende stoot, ons kyk vir jou!

  5. Lekker bra! Daai koue windjie in Dakar het my ook verbaas. Eks seker dit werk lekker vir kamp. Dink die Mali son sou ‘n mens vinnig-vinnig uit die tent uit bak. Ek wens ek kon meer van Dakar gesien het toe ek daar was. Jou fotos is heavy cool. Sterkte met die verkeer, daai ouens ry crazy. Geniet ‘n koue Flag en onthou jys ‘n moerse inspirasie vir almal van ons wat ons gat-af wil lewe! To-the-max pappie!

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