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The main crossing from Nigeria to Cameroon on the West Coast of Africa is the stuff that overland legends are made of. The Mamfe Road is only one hundred kilometres long, although it takes most well-prepared overlanders a week of slogging to cover that distance. As the monster mud holes are big enough to bury even six-wheel-drive vehicles to their axles, many lesser vehicles remain stuck until they are dug out by a virtual army of locals, or rescued by tracked Caterpillar machinery. All of that is in the dry season. Traversing the West Coast of Africa in the wet

Adventurer Peter Van Kets and photo-journalist Jacques Marais decided to ride their mountain bikes from Angola to Swakopmund. But before they could crank off on this incredible adventure, they first had to get to the Cunene River … This is one of those journeys that started quite some time ago. I’ve always been keen to get on board one of Peter Van Kets’ amazing adventures, but when we started chatting about a possible adventure collaboration earlier this year, I never expected that we’d launch the first in a series of ‘Beyond Expeditions’ less than six months later. Somehow it all came together

Barefoot Adventurers Club duo, Calum Buckmaster and Willie Badenhorst, have just returned from a seven-month travel fest through eight countries in a 400cc diesel-engined Tuk-Tuk – top speed 40km/h. All to raise awareness for the endangered species of southern Africa. “Eish!” “What are you Mzungus doing?” “From there? To here? In this?” “Barefoot?” “Ah, no, man!” A fairly typical greeting from people we met – including policemen. Friendly, but puzzled and amazed. Fair enough.  It’s not often you see a couple of young blokes in remote Africa in a little cargo Tuk-Tuk. Getting started The idea stemmed from the time

Angus Boswell drives the latest and greatest 190kw, V6 Volkswagen Amarok, pitting its considerable skills against the mountains, dunes and highways of Oman. “This is the new ship of the desert,” exclaims the Omani driver, giving the door panel of his 4.0-litre V6 Land Cruiser 70 Series a solid thump. “We no longer have to rely on camels like we did 30 years ago,” he insists in perfect English, waving toward the load bed of the Cruiser, where a very contented camel is in repose, resting on cushions and surrounded by mounds of green feed. A cheery ma’a salama, another

If I could skip one country while traversing the West Coast of Africa, it would be Nigeria. Overlanders speak of Nigeria only in whispers, and they rarely have encouraging things to say. Big, fast, loud and more than a little unpredictable, Nigeria is not on many bucket lists. I have recently heard a few reports of attacks on the roads involving fake police roadblocks and spike strips. Speaking of police roadblocks, Nigeria is famous for theirs. In their number, their unfriendliness and in bribery, Nigeria apparently holds the record. Skirting Nigeria by land is currently impossible, as it means driving

There is a world of seat time on the Gauteng to Cape run before you reach any sort of 4×4 destination. Best to plan a few stopovers to break the journey… All good adventures begin long before the journey. Their origins are frequently found in a pub over a few drinks. Then comes the planning: poring over maps, gathering magazine articles and travel books, spending hours on Google searches, measuring distances and planning fuel stops. Each trip has its own flavour, and a unique set of challenges. “Oftentimes, the real magic is in the spaces in between, in the pause

In this second series of the Transfrontier Parks programme, which aims to bridge the conservation and 4×4 tourism gap between South Africa and its neighbours, Stuart Reichardt heads to the Maputo Special Reserve in Mozambique and back to the Tembe Elephant Park in SA along that green link between the two areas – the Futi Corridor. There are certain things that can cut a trip to Mozambique short. Taking photographs of three camo-clad border guards relaxing in the shade while discussing matters of urgency such as the vagaries of crypto currencies and overly-demanding girlfriends, is one of them. I had

Adventurer Dan Grec is sending us updates from his two-year trip around Africa’s perimeter, covering 30 countries and 130 000km. He is driving a four-door Jeep Wrangler Rubicon. “Road closed,” the immaculately uniformed officer leaning on a shiny AK-47 says casually.  “The ferry washed downstream last week,” he adds, giving all the explanation I need. Turning back, now, means hundreds of kilometres on muddy, potholed jungle tracks. So much for best-laid plans. As is customary in these situations, I lay maps on the hood, and a crowd of military men and spectators gathers − everyone pointing to a different place on

Thick sand, water crossings, salts pans, rough roads – a Mercedes-Benz Sprinter takes it all in its stride on a Botswana tour from Moremi in the north to the Makgadikgadi pans down south. For more information on this and other Protea 4×4 Adventures, fill out the form at the end of this article. Our radio crackled to life. “Guys, make absolutely sure you have engaged four-wheel drive.” Jannie Rykaart then repeated the message for good measure, and I glanced sideways at my mate Kobus – aka Kabous. We both wore a hint of smirk. For the last hour, we had

Self-drive safaris through Botswana’s wilder regions have become more difficult because of the limiting effects of veterinary fences combined with the growing number of concessions in previously “open” areas. But there are still plenty of places where you can explore on your own. Under the disapproving frown of a leaden-faced sky, our hesitant reconnaissance of the world’s saltiest cemetery was like the final act of a slow gunslinger. Knowing the outcome, we ran away. (In reality, we prayed for gripping wheels, all the way on our retreat from the lonely island to a man at a gate who could not

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