Accra to Freetown Trip Notes

Accra to Freetown

Last Modified: 27 Sep 2016
Accra to Freetown
Trip code: DDOF
Validity: 01 Jan 2017 to 31 Dec 2018
Encounter mountains, beaches and mud roads on this epic West African adventure. Explore Ghana's buzzing capital Accra, walk among tree canopies in Kakum National Park and travel along the stunning Altantic coast to the beaches of Elmina. Cross the border into Cote d'Ivoire and appreciate colonial architecture in the old French capital Grand Bassam, with its own bevy of beautiful beaches, and stop in at bizarre Yamoussoukro. Journey onto Guinea and explore mountainous forested regions, incredible scenery, lush forests and villages famed for their vine bridges. Get off the beaten track in Sierra Leone, fall in love with cheeky primates and be surrounded by dense rainforest at Tiwai Island Wildlife Sanctuary before ending the adventure in historic Freetown. This challenging adventure showcases the best of West Africa.
Table of Contents
StyleAccommodationFinish point description
ThemesAccommodation NotesEmergency contact
Why we love itMeals introductionVisas
MapMealsWhat to take
Itinerary disclaimerMoney mattersTravel insurance
Physical ratingGroup leaderA couple of rules
Included activitiesSafetyResponsible Travel
Important notesJoining pointThe Intrepid Foundation
Group sizeJoining point descriptionFeedback
Your fellow travellersFinish point
Explorer, Overland
Why we love it
- Visit and explore the historic Elmina Castle
- Relax and unwind on the stunning Brenu Beach on Ghana's Gold Coast
- Visit Kumasi, the capital of the Ashanti kingdom and culture
- Visit the stunning jungles of Kakum National Park
- Get to know the forested region of Guinea on foo
- Nature walk through Tiwai Island Wildlife Sanctuary
- Discover how Sierra Leone's capital Freetown became a centre for freed slaves

Day 1 Accra
Border information: if you are joining in Accra, then you will most likely enter Ghana at Accra Kotoka International Airport (IATA code: ACC).

There will be an important group meeting at 10:00am at the joining hotel - please look out at the hotel reception for a note from your leader with more details about this important meeting. Your leader will collect your kitty and check your passport, visas, and insurance details at this meeting.

The afternoon will be free to explore the city of Accra.

Please note that many of the options listed below will only be possible for those with extra time in Accra before the start of your trip with us - please contact the Sales team if you would like to book pre-tour accommodation with us to have extra time exploring Accra.

In Accra we will stay in a comfortable hotel with good facilities.

Hotel for the night: Niagara Plus Hotel
Niagara Plus Hotel
14th Lane (Behind Koala Osu)
Tel - +233 21 772404

Please note that in Accra there are 3 Niagara hotels: Niagara Hotel, Niagara Inn and Niagara Plus Hotel. The Niagara Plus is located in an area of Accra known as Osu, and this is where our groups stay. 


Visit the Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Park, dedicated to the founding father of independent Ghana : GHC 5

Learn all about the history and culture of Ghana in the National Museum : GHC 40

Visit the famous Labadi Beach situated on the outskirts of Accra : GHC 5

Visit the outside of the famous Osu Castle, the seat of power in Ghana since the 1600s : Free

Freely explore the area of Jamestown, Accra's oldest district and a vibrant fishing area : Free

Freely explore the huge Independence Square and Black Star Arch in Accra, where independence was celebrated in 1957 : Free

About Accra:
Ghana's sprawling capital of Accra is a bustling coastal city boasting a lively atmosphere and some busy urban beaches full of musicians, acrobats and souvenir sellers.

The Perpetual Flame at the Cenotaph in Revolution Square is worth a look, and the National Museum houses one of the best collections in all of West Africa. Next to the museum you will also find a good craft market, perfect for a bit of souvenir shopping.

In the evening you can sample Accra's lively nightlife, heading out to one of the many bars and restaurants that can be found all over this surprising city. 
Hotel (1 nt)
Day 2-3 Kumasi
" Day 2 to 3 "

Leaving Accra behind us, we journey north through Ghana's interior to the historic town of Kumasi.

Estimated Drive Time - 6-7 hours (please note that all drive times given here are the approximate number of hours that the truck will be in motion only, and does not include any time taken for coffee or lunch stops, border crossings, photo stops, activities en route, comfort breaks, shopping stops, toilet stops, etc. The times given are approximate estimates only and whilst given with the best of intentions, the drive times are heavily dependent on traffic, road conditions, weather, police roadblocks, and many other factors - flexibility is essential on any overland trip!).

On the following day, we will have lots of time for free exploration of the fascinating town and its museums. Kumasi is the home of West Africa's largest market and was the centre of the Ashanti Kingdom.

In Kumasi we will stay in a local guest house.


Learn all about the life of a modern Ashanti ruler at the Manhiya Palace Museum, and see many of the evocative artifacts and photos on display : GHC 10

Freely explore the bustling and colossal centre of Kejetia, the largest market in West Africa : Free

Visit the National Cultural Centre and the Prempeh II Jubilee Museum to learn all about the history and culture of the Ashanti civilisation, of which Kumasi is still the capital : GHC 5

Find out all about the British-Ashanti Wars of the 19th century on a guided tour of the Ghana Armed Forces Museum in Kumasi : GHC 8 

Escape the city and explore the shore of Lake Bosumtwe, a circular lake formed by a meteorite crash 100 million years ago : GHC 30 

About Kumasi:
Kumasi is the ancient capital of the Ashanti Empire, once one of the most important powers in Africa and a well-studied military power that dominated the area between 1700 and 1954. Now it is a thriving, bustling, provincial city with a lively atmosphere, and enjoys semi-autonomous status as the centre of the modern Ashanti culture.

The locals are proud of their Ashanti heritage, and you can learn all about the fascinating history in the Prempeh II Jubilee Museum and Manhiya Palace Museum. Kumasi also boasts the labyrinth-like Kejetia market - it is the largest market in the whole of West Africa, and well worth exploring. 
Guesthouse (2 nt)
Day 4 Kakum National Park
Today we will drive south to the rain forests of Kakum National Park. On arrival we will head out on an included evening walk through the forests in search of wildlife, bugs and snakes! We may also have the chance to visit a small animal sanctuary en route.

In Kakum National Park we will camp in the grounds of the Park HQ.

Estimated Drive Time - 6-7 hours. 


Head on foot through the stunning jungles of Kakum National Park at night in search of wildlife : Included in Kitty

About Kakum National Park:
Kakum National Park is a protected area of dense rain forest in southern Ghana, just inland of Cape Coast. The forest contains some very rare wildlife such as pygmy elephants, forest buffalo and an incredible array of bird life, which we may be lucky enough to spot on a night walk through the winding maze of paths that criss-cross through the trees.

We will also take an early morning walk along the canopy walkways that are set up amongst the tops of the trees, which offer a unique and unobtrusive way for travellers to experience the forest.
Included Activities
  • Entrance and Rainforest canopy walk, Kakum National Park
    Camping (with facilities) (1 nt)
    Day 5-6 Kakum National Park, Cape Coast, Elmina
    " Day 5 to 6 "

    Today we have an early start with an included morning visit to the Kakum National Park canopy walkways. These are a long series of hanging bridges at the forest canopy level that gives us a unique perspective of the rain forest - and at that time of the morning we will have the place to ourselves! 

    We will then head back south to the Atlantic coast and into Cape Coast for a fascinating and moving tour of the old slave fort there.

    We will then move to our stunning beach resort in Brenu Akynin near the town of Elmina.

    Estimated Drive Time - 2-4 hours.

    On the following day, we will get involved with the currently community projects being run in the Elmina area by the SABRE Charitable Trust. The Trust does very valuable work in developing educational projects across Ghana, with a focus on providing early-years education - Dragoman has been visiting their projects and providing a day of help and a donation for many years, allowing us to give a little back and to experience a wonderful bit of community interaction. The exact experience will depend on what the Trust has a need for at the time, but we could be asked to help to paint a classroom, do a bit of gardening in one of the schools, or simply come and play some games with the kids!

    We will also have time for an optional visit to Elmina Castle and to relax on the beautiful beaches on Ghana's Atlantic Coast.

    In Elmina we will camp at a stunning beach resort. 


    Explore the incredible rain forest canopy from the unique suspended bridges in Kakum National Park : Included in Kitty

    Learn all about the appalling history of the Atlantic slave trade with a tour of the historic Cape Coast Castle : Included in Kitty

    Participate in a fantastic day of volunteering and community interaction at the Sabre Trust School project, a charity set up to provide early years education to kids across the Elmina region : Included in Kitty


    Freely explore the historic Elmina Castle, the oldest European building in sub-Saharan Africa built by the Portuguese in 1482 : GHC 20 

    Learn all about the area's sting less bees and their importance to the local ecology at the International Sting less Bee Centre near Kakum National Park (if time allows) : GHC 10

    Visit the Monkey Forest Resort Animal Sanctuary near Kakum NP, a sanctuary for animals rescued from poachers (if time allows) : GHC 15

    About Cape Coast: 
    The bustling fishing town of Cape Coast is home to a huge old fort, one of many built by Europeans along the Atlantic coast in the 17th and 18th centuries. These forts were built to protect the various nations' interests in the trading of ivory, gold and slaves.

    The Cape Coast Fort is the largest and one of the best-preserved of these forts - originally constructed by Swedish traders in 1653, it changed hands between Danish, Dutch, and eventually British powers, and was steadily extended into the huge structure that exists today. It became primarly used for slave trading throughout the 18th Century, until the British abolished slavery in 1807 and the fort became a base from which the Atlantic slave trade was fought against. A visit here is very thought-provoking and harrowing, seeing the same cells where unfortunate slaves were held in appalling conditions before being loaded onto ships to the New World. 

    About Elmina:
    The beaches along the Ghanaian coast near the town of Elmina are some of best in West Africa. The local people here rely heavily on fishing and cultivating coconuts, pineapples and groundnuts to make a living.

    Over the last few years Dragoman have been involved with the Sabre Trust, a local grass-roots charity which is working to improve education for all of the children here. Originally the school here was in a terrible state of disrepair and extremely under-resourced, but gradually this is beginning to improve largely due to the work of the Sabre Trust.

    On Dragoman's overland trips through Elmina, we get involved with a variety of projects at the school. Depending on your group's skills and the school's needs, you could be getting your hands dirty helping out with small building projects, participating in educational workshops, or even helping with the teaching. Getting involved at the school is a great opportunity to lend a hand and give something back to the local people here, albeit in a small way. It's also a great chance to experience everyday Ghanaian life at first hand, getting to know the local children and their families.
    Included Activities
    • Sabre Trust School project, Elmina
    • Elmina Castle
      Camping (with facilities) (2 nt)
      Day 7-8 Grand Bassam
      " Day 7 to 8 "

      Border information: Exit Ghana at Elubo, enter Côte d'Ivoire at Elubo.

      Today we will follow the Atlantic coast and cross into Côte d'Ivoire, arriving at the old French colonial capital of Grand Bassam situated east of Abidjan.

      Estimated Drive Time - 7-8 hours.

      On the following day, we will have a free day to explore the old colonial town and to relax on the beautiful beaches around our hotel.

      In Grand Bassam we will stay in a local hotel on the beach.


      Freely explore the stunning beaches and old colonial buildings of Grand Bassam, the original French capital of Côte d'Ivoire : Free 

      Visit the National Museum of Costume, which showcases the cultural dresses of the different tribes of Côte d’Ivoire : XOF 2000 

      About Grand Bassam:
      The tiny town of Grand Bassam was for a short time the French colonial capital between 1893 and 1896, before a bout of yellow fever forced them to move the capital up the coast to Bingerville. Grand Bassam is a pleasant town with a small old colonial centre, and is a great place to kick back and relax on the serene beaches.
      Hotel (2 nt)
      Day 9-10 Yamoussoukro
      " Day 9 to 10 "

      Today we will drive to Yamoussoukro, the tiny and bizarre capital of Côte d'Ivoire. Yamoussoukro was the birthplace of Felix Houphouët-Boigny, the first president of independent Côte d'Ivoire, and is also the unusual location of the colossal and breathtaking Basilica of Our Lady of Peace, the largest Christian church in the world.

      Estimated Drive Time - 7-8 hours.

      On the following day we will have an included visit to the Basilica of Our Lady of Peace, and then have free time to further explore the small city.

      In Yamoussoukro we will stay in a local hotel. 


      Visit the opulent Basilique de Notre Dame de la Paix, the largest Christian place of worship in the world : Included in Kitty 

      About Yamoussoukro:
      The tiny town of Yamoussoukro is the official capital of Côte d'Ivoire - although being much smaller and more isolated than the huge coastal city of Abidjan, Yamoussoukro was the hometown of the long-serving post-independence President Félix Houphouët-Boigny, who decided it should be the country's capital and proceeded to spend exorbitant amounts of money on developing it. Most of that money was spent on his showpiece project, the Basilique de Notre Dame de la Paix. Despite such a low percentage of the population actually being Catholic, the President spent hundreds of millions of dollars on this grand basilica - based on St. Peter’s in the Vatican, the basilica is the largest Christian place of worship in the world! The tiny town itself also boasts six-lane highways that lead nowhere, a bizarre 1960s-futuristic hotel, and the secretive Presidential Palace - Yamoussoukro is a surreal place that has to be seen to be believed! 
      Included Activities
      • Le Basilique De Notre Dame De la Paix
        Hotel (2 nt)
        Day 11-12 Korhogo
        " Day 11 to 12 "

        Today we will drive through the lush countryside to the northern Ivorian town of Korhogo, famed for the multitude of crafts that are made there.

        Estimated Drive Time - 6-7 hours. 

        On the following day, we will head out on an included tour around many of the handicraft workshops in the area, visiting painters, bead makers, wood carvers and cloth weavers. We will also have time to freely explore the town and its surroundings.

        In Korhogo we will stay in a small local hotel. 


        Head out on a half day trip exploring the many local handicrafts from the area, including a painter's collective, a woodcarver's shop, a bead-making workshop and a cotton-weaving community : Included in Kitty


        See a performance of drumming and acrobatic dancing in the villages near Korhogo : USD 5 

        About Korhogo:
        The town of Korhogo in the north of Côte d'Ivoire is famed for its various traditional handicrafts. On a tour around the area surrounding Korhogo, we will gain a fascinating insight into the life of the local Senoufo people and see some of the traditional crafts being made. We will usually visit a collective of painters, a ceramic jewellery workshop, a district of wooden mask carvers and a village of cloth weavers. It's a wonderful place to search out some souvenirs - be prepared to haggle! 
        Included Activities
        • Guided tour of the local cloth weavers
          Hotel (2 nt)
          Day 13-14 Western Côte d'Ivoire
          " Day 13 to 14 "

          Over the next 2 days, we will drive through central Côte d'Ivoire and then cross its western border into Guinea. This journey will take us through some very remote areas and some very poor-quality dirt roads, so a great deal of flexibility is needed as our progress will largely be determined by the state of the roads.

          Both nights will be spent wild camping en route.

          Estimated Drive Times - 7-9 hours each day. 
          Bush camp (no facilities) (2 nt)
          Day 15-16 Forested Guinea, Nzerekoré
          " Day 15 to 16 "

          Border information: Exit Côte d'Ivoire at Gbapleu, enter Guinea at Gbakoré.

          Today we will cross the border into Guinea arriving in the small far-eastern town of Nzerekoré in the heart of Guinea's Forest Region.

          Estimated Drive Time - 6-9 hours.

          On the following day, we will have free time to relax after our journey and explore the town, the nearby villages, and the surrounding forests.

          In Nzerekoré we will stay in a basic local hotel.


          Trek to the Pont de Liana, one of the phenomenal old vine bridges in the forested region of Guinea : Included in Kitty


          Freely explore the forested region of Guinea and the market town of Nzerekoré on foot : Free

          About Forested Guinea:
          Forested Guinea (Guinée Forestière) is a forested mountainous region in south eastern Guinea, one of four natural regions in Guinea which covers around a quarter of the country. The region is known for its diverse ethnic population, including the Toma and Lissi groups, and also became a shelter for large numbers of refugees from the Sierra Leonean, Liberian, and Ivorian civil wars of the 1990s and 2000s.

          The area is also famous for its traditional vine bridges that are dotted around the area - the bridges are masterpieces of utilising the natural environment, using only the vines to make sturdy crossings that span the wide rivers of the region. We will attempt to find a traditional 100-year old vine bridge on our journey through the beautiful area.
          Hotel (2 nt)
          Day 17-18 Macenta, Guéckédou, Faranah
          " Day 17 to 18 "

          Over the next 2 days we will travel through the central region of Guinea, stopping for a night in one of the towns en route (depending on how the drive goes, this may be Macenta or Guéckédou), and then arriving at Faranah near the Sierra Leonean border. En route we will stop to visit one of the region's famous vine bridges (Pont de Liana).

          In Guéckédou and Faranah we will stay in small locally-run hotels or guest houses.

          Estimated Drive Times - 7-9 hours each day

          Guesthouse (2 nt)
          Day 19-20 Gberia Fotombu, Kabala
          " Day 19 to 20 "

          Border information: Exit Guinea and enter Sierra Leone at Gberia-Fotombu.

          The next 2 days are spent travelling from Guinea over to Sierra Leone through the remote border near Kabala, driving through scenic areas very rarely visited by tourists.

          The road conditions in this area can be pretty tough going and unpredictable, and progress can be greatly affected by the weather conditions, so flexibility is very important over these days.

          Kabala is famous for a being an oasis of cool air in the hills of northern Sierra Leone, and for its traditional Ronko-dyed clothes - shirts or gowns made of strips of cloth, typically dyed a rusty reddish-brown using local pigments. We will have free time to explore the area on arrival.

          We will wild camp en route for the first night, and stay in a local guest house in Kabala on the second night.

          Estimated Drive Times - 5-8 hours each day


          Freely explore the markets of Kabala or walk to the top of the nearby Gbawuria Hill : Free 

          About Gberia Fotombu:
          The roads between Faranah in Guinea and Kabala in Sierra Leone can be a serious challenge. Taking on narrow dirt forest roads, deep ruts and corrugations, fording rivers - this is rugged over landing at its best, truly off the beaten track in a remote part of West Africa!

          About Kabala:
          The small town of Kabala is up in the cool Wara Wara hills of northern Sierra Leone, and its cool atmosphere can be a welcome relief from the heat of the coast! Surrounded by forests and hills, it has a serene atmosphere and some pleasant walks around the area. It is famous in Sierra Leone for the traditional red fabric-dyeing technique known as Ronko. 
          Bush camp (no facilities) (2 nt)
          Day 21 Makeni
          Today we start our journey south through Sierra Leone towards the Tiwai Wildlife Sanctuary.

          We aim to wild camp near the town of Makeni en route, or we may stay in a local guest house depending on the size and wishes of the group.

          Estimated Drive Time - 6-8 hours. 
          Bush camp (no facilities) (1 nt)
          Day 22-23 Tiwai Island Sanctuary
          " Day 22 to 23 "

          Today we will arrive at the Tiwai Island Sanctuary, one of Sierra Leone's largest inland islands.

          Estimated Drive Time - 6-8 hours.

          On the following day, we will enjoy various nature walks through the web of trails that weave through the Tiwai forest. We'll be in search of the rare and colourful primates that inhabit the sanctuary, and if we're very lucky we may spot a very rare pygmy hippo!

          In Tiwai we will stay for 2 nights sleeping in tents perched on covered platforms. 


          Visit the Tiwai Island Wildlife Sanctuary, home to one of the densest populations of primates and pygmy hippos in Africa, and enjoy several included walks around the web of trails on the island : Included in Kitty


          Take an optional canoe or motor boat tour through the Tiwai Island Wildlife Sanctuary (if available) : USD 10 

          About Tiwai Island Sanctuary:
          Tiwai is a small island on the River Moa in southern Sierra Leone, and is home to one of the highest concentrations of primates in the world. The island contains many rare and endangered species such as the Diana monkey, Red and Olive Colobus monkeys, as well as many wild chimpanzees, who use stones as hammers and tree roots as anvils to crack open hard nuts. There are also around 135 different species of birds, including 8 types of hornbills and the White-breasted Guinea fowl.

          Webs of trails weave through the Tiwai forest, allowing visitors and researchers to explore up to 50kms of walking paths. If you move silently through the forest, you may be lucky enough to spot some of the island's colourful primates or even the unique and elusive pygmy hippopotamuses! 
          Included Activities
          • Nature walk
            Camping (with facilities) (2 nt)
            Day 24-26 Freetown Peninsular
            " Day 24 to 26 "

            Today we have a full day drive across Sierra Leone to the stunning beaches of the Freetown Peninsular, where we will spend 3 nights.

            Estimated Drive Time - 9-10 hours.

            There are a few different options for which beaches we could choose to visit, our favourites being Bureh Beach at the south of the peninsular and River Number 2 Beach in the western part.

            On the beaches there will the be chance to go fishing, take a boat to explore the Banana Islands, get to know the local communities, and of course relax on the beautiful beaches!

            On Freetown Peninsular we will camp on the beach, with some options to upgrade to basic guest houses.


            Relax on some of the best beaches in the world dotted along the Freetown Peninsular : Free

            Take a boat trip to explore the beautiful and overgrown Banana Islands off the coast of the Freetown Peninsular : USD 25

            Visit the orphan chimpanzees at Tacaguma Chimpanzee Sanctuary outside of Freetown, a wonderful organisation that rehabilitates rescued chimpanzees for their return to the wild : USD 15 

            Head out with the locals in their traditional wooden boats to try your hand at fishing : USD 10

            Hire surfboards to take out onto the waves of Bureh Beach, one of West Africa's best surfing spots : USD 10

            Head out on a diving trip around the reefs and shipwrecks off the Banana Islands : USD 180

            Snorkel through the idyllic waters off the Banana Islands near Freetown Peninsular  : USD 120 

            About Freetown Peninsular:
            Sierra Leone's capital city of Freetown is perched on the northern tip of a mountainous peninsular on the Atlantic coast. The peninsular is one of the most beautiful areas of Africa, and features some incredible tropical beaches - the beaches are lined with palm trees, have stunning white sands and glittering blue oceans, and are dotted with lively beach communities and fishing villages.

            We will normally camp on Bureh Beach, an idyllic stretch of coast on the southern peninsular which features some excellent surfing and boat trip opportunities. One highlight of a stay on the peninsular is to take a trip out to the nearby Banana Islands, a serene and historic island dotted with old buildings and ancient cannons. 
            Camping (with facilities) (3 nt)
            Day 27 Freetown
            Today we will have a short drive up the western side of the Freetown Peninsular to arrive in the Aberdeen district of the city of Freetown, the capital of Sierra Leone.

            We will have plenty of time to head out and explore the sites in and around Freetown, before heading out for a final group meal together!

            in Freetown we will stay in a comfortable hotel with good facilities.

            Estimated Drive Time - 2-3 hours. 


            See the Freetown Cotton Tree, the city's most famous landmark and home to hundreds of bats that fly out at dusk : Free

            See the King's Yard Gate, where the ancestors of all modern Creole people will have passed through on their way to a free life after their rescue from illegal slaving ships : Free 

            Learn about Sierra Leone's traditional history and cultures at the National Museum : Free

            Visit the Sierra Leone National Railway Museum, a remarkable collection of old trains that was hidden from destruction for 30 years : USD 5

            Take a boat to the overgrown ruins of the old slaving fort of Bunce Island, from where the ancestors of most modern African-Americans were shipped to the New World  : USD 150 

            About Freetown:
            Freetown, the lively capital of Sierra Leone, is steeped in history and culture. In 1787, British philanthropists founded the "Province of Freedom" which later became Freetown, a British crown colony and the principal base for the suppression of the slave trade. By 1792, 1200 freed slaves from Nova Scotia joined the original settlers, and the city began to grow as the new home for freed slaves. The city became the capital of British West Africa between 1808 and 1874, and was the base for the Royal Navy's mission to enforce the ban on the Atlantic slave trading.

            In more modern times, Freetown saw a lot of fierce fighting during the Sierra Leonean civil war, and in ultimately unsuccessful attacks from the rebel armies. Today, Freetown is a thriving and bustling city and the centre of Krio culture in West Africa. There are some wonderful highlights nearby, including the famous Tacugama Chimpanzee Sanctuary in the mountains overlooking the city
            Hotel (1 nt)
            Day 28 Freetown
            Border information: if you are leaving in Freetown, you will most likely exit Sierra Leone at Freetown Lungi International Airport (IATA code: FNA).

            Today is the end day for passengers finishing their trip in Freetown. Please note there is no accommodation included on the trip tonight - please contact the Dragoman Sales team if you are interested in booking extra nights of accommodation in order to fully explore and take part in some of the optional activities listed below.

            Airport information - the fastest and most reliable way to the airport from Freetown is by water-taxi, as Lungi is across a bay from the city. Our hotel in Freetown is a 200m walk to the jetty where the water-taxis depart from - the departure times for the water-taxis are linked to every flight in and out of Lungi airport (usually around 4 hours before the time of the flight). We advise that when the trip arrives in Freetown, you go to the jetty to check the timetable for the water-taxis for your flight and purchase a ticket in advance (USD40 or EUR35) - your trip leader will be able to assist with this. The ticket counter at the jetty is open 24 hours a day.

            You should arrive at the jetty 30 minutes before the departure time, as you have to check in your large bags and take a luggage ticket. The water-taxi takes approximately 30 minutes, then you take a minibus for another 15 minutes to arrive at Lungi airport. Your large bags will be waiting for you at the water-taxi office on the left-hand-side of the airport entrance, just hand in your luggage ticket to get them back. 
            Itinerary disclaimer
            We've allowed plenty of room for freedom and flexibility in our trips. In fact, flexibility is one of the ingredients that makes each of our trips so exciting. This style of travel offers us some unexpected circumstances at times, for example, bad weather and road conditions, technical defects of transportation, inconveniences caused by local operators and authorities, and other circumstances beyond our control. Changes in the program may be required to make the best of the unique situations that we encounter. Overnight stops and driving distances each day may vary to best suit the needs of the group. Our described itineraries are to be used as a general guide only.

            OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES: A selection of optional activities are listed in the day-to-day itinerary. This isn't an exhaustive list and should be used as a guide only. Prices are approximate and are for entrance only and don’t include transport to and from the sites or local guides unless indicated. All activities are subject to availability and it may not be possible to do all the activities listed in the time available at each destination. Where activities are considered medium or high risk, we work with operators whose safety and credentials we have sighted and assessed. This means that it is possible that you may find the same activity cheaper with another operator on the ground, however we cannot vouch for the safety or quality of that operator. Activities not listed above have not been assessed by us and as such our staff and leaders are unable to assist you with booking these activities. The decision to partake in any activity not listed is at your own discretion and risk.
            Physical rating

            We recommend that you undertake regular aerobic exercise in the weeks before you travel, particularly if you are not in the habit of regular exercise. Walking, jogging, swimming or riding a bike are all good ways to increase your aerobic fitness, which will allow you to enjoy the trip to its fullest.

            The step up into the overland truck, while not overly high, can become tiring, as can the constant setting and packing up of camp. You need to judge yourself to be physically fit enough to haul yourself up and down at least 8-10 times a day.
            Included activities
            Entrance and Rainforest canopy walk, Kakum National Park
            Sabre Trust School project, Elmina
            Elmina Castle
            Le Basilique De Notre Dame De la Paix
            Guided tour of the local cloth weavers
            Nature walk
            Important notes
            1. Please note that this trip requires minimum numbers to depart, and may be cancelled up until 56 days prior to departure. The places showing on the dates and availability page are an indication only so please contact Intrepid to check if your preferred date will depart before making any final arrangements, such as booking non-changeable flights.
            2. A single supplement is not available for this trip.
            3. This trip is run by our experienced overland partner Dragoman

            Group size
            Maximum of 22 travellers per group.
            Your fellow travellers
            GROUP TRAVEL
            As you travel on a group trip you will be exposed to all the pleasures and maybe some of the frustrations of travelling in a group. Your fellow travellers will probably come from all corners of the world and likely a range of age groups too. We ask you to be understanding of the various needs and preferences of your group - patience with your fellow travellers is sometimes required for the benefit of everyone's travel experience. Remember too that you have responsibilities to the group. If you are requested to be at a place at a certain time, ensure that you don't keep the rest of the group waiting. We have found time and time again that the very best trips we operate are those where the dynamics within the group work well - this takes just a little effort on your part. Due to privacy reasons we are unable to provide you with contact details and any personal information about your fellow travellers booked on your trip prior to departure.

            Our group trips are designed for shared accommodation and don't involve a compulsory single supplement. Single travellers share with people of the same gender in accommodation ranging from twin to multishare. Some of our itineraries have accommodation booked on a mixed gender share basis and where applicable this will be specified in our Trip Notes. On a selection of our trips, you have the option to pay a single supplement to ensure that you have your own accommodation (where available). Please note that this only applies to accommodation during the tour - pre-trip and post-trip accommodation will be booked on a single room basis.
            Camping ( 12 nights ), hotel / hostel / lodge / cabin ( 15 nights )
            The type and variety of accommodation is determined by conditions on each of our routes. Each route is different - on some we use a mixture of campsites and wild camps; on others we also use hostels or hotels. Where it's not practical to camp (ie: in towns and cities), we use hostel or hotel accommodation and eat out in local restaurants. The frequency and regularity of hostel and hotel stops depends on the route and area.

            Campsites will range from rather basic to those with excellent facilities, including swimming pools, restaurants and bars. In some cases it may also be possible to upgrade locally to bungalows, lodges or even tree-houses. One of the highlights of overlanding is that in more remote areas we will wild camp. This allows us to get far away from the tourist crowds to some beautiful, secluded spots. On some of our trips we are able to stay in villages or local homestays, which allows us to get close to indigenous populations and ensures our money stays within local communities.

            Please note that camping is participatory, which means you will be expected to set-up and pack down your own tent.
            Meals introduction
            On an overland journey you are more than just a passenger - you're part of the crew. You are expected to pitch in to set up camp, shop for food, cook and generally help out. As part of your trip you will be assigned a truck job which could be collecting water and firewood, sweeping out the truck, loading the back locker, etc. You will be divided into smaller units of 3-4 people and take it in turns to cook for the whole group according to a rota system. When it is your turn to cook you will have to plan the meal, shop for the ingredients in local markets or supermarkets and then prepare the meal for the whole group. The secret to cooking for 20+ people in a basic camping kitchen is to keep it simple!

            If you have any dietary requirements please tell us at the time of booking and also remind your crew at your welcome meeting. An example of a typical camp breakfast might be toast with spreads, fruit and cereal as well as tea and coffee. When time allows it will also be possible to serve something hot such as eggs or pancakes. Lunch is almost always a sandwich heaped high with healthy salad and assorted fillings, with fruit to follow. Dinner might be a BBQ, risotto or pasta dish and there is always the chance to try some local cooking. Generally our passengers find the more they put into a trip, the more they benefit from it.

            A typical camp breakfast might be toast with spreads, cereal and something hot such as eggs or pancakes as well as tea and coffee.

            Lunch is almost always a sandwich with healthy salad and assorted fillings, sometime with fruit to follow. There may be a chance on occasion to buy your lunch.

            Dinner might be a BBQ, rice dish, pasta dish and there is always the chance to try some African food such as pap / ugali and stew.

            One thing is sure: you definitely won't go hungry or lose weight on your safari! When you're not camping you'll have the freedom to decide where, what and with whom you eat.
            No meals included
            Overland expedition vehicle, Pirogue (dugout canoe)

            There are many long hours spent driving on rough roads on all African itineraries. While most people love the chance to watch the changing landscape and daily village life, feedback shows that long periods of inactivity does not appeal to all clients. We provide the approximate distance covered each day and how many hours this normally takes to drive so that you can choose the safari experience which is right for you.

            African conditions are extremely tough on vehicles. While we fastidiously maintain our vehicles at our workshops, you should not expect Africa to be your traditional touring experience. While it's certainly our aim to avoid them, it's important that you set off on your trip knowing that the occasional breakdown can happen and are best treated as part of the African adventure. Due to wet weather there may be times when we have to take an alternative route which will mean longer travel times.
            Money matters
            On this trip it's compulsory to contribute to a kitty. The kitty is an on-ground payment put into a central fund and overseen by travellers and the crew. It helps fund accommodation, camp meals and all included activities. Kitty amounts are subject to change to reflect local price increases.This Kitty price indicated on the trip notes below is indicative only. Please refer to the 'Check availability' page on the website for the up-to-date amount 48 hours prior to your trip commencement.

            Your kitty will be collected when you arrive for your trip, either on day 1 or, if on a combination trip, in stages throughout your trip.

            You may pay your kitty in a mixture of Euros cash and the rest in local currency (amount and type of currency to be agreed by the leader at the start of the trip). Most of our travellers chose to bring a cash passport with them for withdrawing local currency (you can visit for further information on these). This is a very secure way of carrying your money whilst travelling. You treat them exactly like an ATM card and draw out local currency from an ATM to give to your leader within each country.

            If you do choose to pay part in local currency your trip leader will confirm the current exchange rates with you so you will know exactly how much to hand over.

            Travellers cheques have become increasingly difficult to change around the world with passengers and our leaders experiencing huge frustration and numerous hours spent trying to find a bank which will change travellers cheques. For this reason we no longer accept them on our trips.

            In West Africa we generally use Euros and not US$. Please note that although we quote kitties, personal spending and other items in US$ (because we operate globally), for trips passing through these countries you will want to use Euros and NOT US dollars for the kitty, tipping and personal spending. As the exchange rate is variable, the trip leader will confirm the exact exchange rate between US$ and Euros to be used for the kitty at the pre-departure meeting.

            KITTY CHANGES:
            We constantly monitor local price changes and exchange rate fluctuations that could affect kitty expenses. Final kitty contributions are likely to be different from those quoted in the brochure or at the time of booking so you must check the final amount just before departure.

            It is not really worth trying to buy local currencies before you travel. Do also bear in mind that many countries have strict regulations about the amount of their own local currency you are allowed to import - if you are found with amounts in excess of the allowed amounts, it may well be confiscated!

            For obvious security reasons we hesitate to recommend you bring lots of cash with you, but in West Africa travellers cheques are almost impossible to change so for that reason we recommend a mix of cash and ATM cards. Please note that most ATMs only take Visa cards NOT Mastercard.

            You should take a mixture of denomination notes. Banks and moneychangers in most countries will now only accept bills with a metallic strip running top to bottom of the bill and which are dated from 2003 or later. You should not take worn or damaged notes, or any that have been written on. Cash machines are readily available in most areas but are not always reliable therefore we recommend that you do not rely on them as your only source of cash. Credit cards such as Visa, MasterCard and American Express are the most commonly accepted, but be prepared for very high commission charges. Please do not rely on cards for daily use, as they are not always accepted outside of larger towns and cities. Please bring a mixture of small and large denominations as in more remote areas it can be hard to change amounts over $50.

            SPENDING MONEY:
            When it comes to spending money on the trip, every traveller is a little different. You know your spending habits better than we do, so please budget a sensible amount for things like meals not included, drinks, shopping, optional activities and laundry. It's always better to bring a little more than you think you'll need. Also make sure you've read your trip details thoroughly so you know what's included in the trip price and what isn't. This should make budgeting a little easier. You'll find this info in the Inclusions section of your Essential Trip Information (that's this document).

            If you are happy with the services providing a tip - though not compulsory - is appropriate. While it may not be customary to you, it is of great significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels, inspires excellent service, and is an entrenched feature of the tourism industry across many Intrepid destinations.

            The following amounts are based on local considerations and feedback from our past travellers:

            Restaurants: Please check the bill and if there’s an addition of 10% service charge, there’s no requirement for tipping. Otherwise, 10% of the total bill amount is appropriate.
            At local markets and basic restaurants: Leave the loose change.
            Local guides/Porters: Throughout your trip you may at times have a local guide in addition to your leader. We suggest US$1 per person, per day for local guides/porters.
            Your crew (including the leader and driver, and perhaps cook depending on your trip): You may also consider tipping your crew for outstanding service throughout your trip. The amount is entirely a personal preference; however as a guideline US$2-3 per person, per day can be used. Of course you are free to tip more or less as you see fit, depending on your perception of service quality and the length of your trip. Remember, a tip is not compulsory and should only be given when you receive excellent service.
            In total, we recommend you budget approx US$5-US$10 per day of your trip to cover tipping.

            Over the years we have found that many of our travellers find the need for tipping to be both tiresome and embarrassing, especially if they don't have the correct small change. To overcome this, we have established a tipping kitty system. At your group meeting, your tour leader may discuss the idea of running a group tipping kitty, whereby everybody contributes an equal amount and then your tour leader pays the tips while keeping a running record of all monies spent (except restaurant tips). The record can be checked at any time and any money remaining at the end of the tour returned to group members.

            Please don't tip with coins, very small denomination notes, or dirty and ripped notes. This is regarded culturally as an insult

            Please budget for additional meals and expenses while on your trip. Our suggestion is based on past traveller feedback but you may choose to spend more or less.

            EMERGENCY FUNDS:
            We try to plan for every eventuality, but there are still some things beyond our control. Please make sure you bring an extra USD500 for emergencies (e.g. natural disasters or civil unrest). Sometimes these things necessitate last minute changes to our itineraries, and we can’t guarantee there won’t be some extra costs involved.
            Group leader
            On all of our Dragoman-operated Overlanding trips you will be accompanied by two Western crew members who are responsible for the group and the overall organisation of the trip.

            While not being guides in the traditional sense you can expect them to have a broad knowledge of the places visited and to offer suggestions of things to do and see. Dragoman trips use local guides who may stay with us for just a few hours or will actually travel with us for some or all of the journey. In these cases they become a third crew member and are able to offer their local knowledge as well as a real insight into the lives of the local people. Our crew are chosen for their leadership skills, and most importantly have a passion for the region and its people.

            We endeavour to provide the services of an experienced leader and crew; however, situations may arise where your leader is new to a particular region or training other group leaders

            On any Overland trip, there are a number of tasks that need to be done. Our overland trip leaders will organise the group into smaller groups of two or three who will take turns in the daily shopping and cooking, vehicle cleaning, disposing of rubbish, etc. There are also a number of other jobs that need doing e.g. collecting water and firewood, luggage loading, supervising the kitty and food stores, which may be assigned to particular people or on a rota system according to group size, make-up, and so on. You must come prepared to 'pull your weight' and share in these duties; you will become very unpopular with other group members if they have to do your share. The more you put into a trip, the more you'll benefit.
            Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest travel information before departure and ensure that your travel insurance covers you for all areas your itinerary covers. Please refer to our website's safety page for links to major travel advisories and updates on safety issues affecting our trip.

            We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe-keeping of your passport, air tickets, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewellery at home - you won't need it while travelling. Many of our hotels have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage.

            Your leader will accompany you on all included activities, however during your trip you'll have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy or explore at your leisure. While your leader will assist you with the available options in a given location, please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your Intrepid itinerary, and Intrepid makes no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgement when selecting an activity in your free time. Please also note that your Leader has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it's deemed necessary due to safety concerns.

            For more details on the type of conditions and safety standards you can expect on your trip, please refer to Intrepid's operational safety policy on our website. We recommend that you take a moment to read through this information before travelling, and would appreciate any feedback on how well it's being implemented in the field:


            TRAVEL ADVISORY:
            Where we use a local partner to fully operate one of our itineraries, we use the travel advisory of the country where that operator is based rather than the Australian DFAT advisory. This itinerary is operated by our local partners Dragoman, and as such will follow the British Government (FCO) Travel Advice. To view these travel advisories please log on to:


            NATIONAL PARKS:
            On some trips may find yourself staying in unfenced camp-sites within National Parks. While this is a fantastic experience, there are a few safety rules to follow. It's important that you listen to any advice given by your tour leader and the park rangers regarding responsible and safe behaviour whilst in these National Parks.

            While travelling there is always the risk of pick-pocketing and petty theft, particularly in the more touristy cities. We recommend that you exercise caution when walking alone at night and encourage you to walk together and only on main, well-lit thoroughfares. Be particularly vigilant on public transport. Simple measures like carrying your day pack on your front, not hanging your bag over the back of your chair or on the floor and wearing a money belt will reduce any chance that your valuables should go missing.

            The vehicle has fully lockable doors and windows, which is an obvious advantage, but it will probably be necessary to guard it at times and everyone should be prepared to share in this responsibility.

            In most areas there is very little to fear from the point of view of violence. But in all areas 'tourists' are a tempting target for pickpockets and con-men. Always be aware of this and be especially careful when leaving banks or money-changers, in any crowded areas, etc. NEVER leave things lying around - they will almost certainly get stolen. We cannot emphasise enough how important it is to always be security conscious and to take all necessary precautions. Great inconvenience and distress can be caused by having your documents or possessions stolen.

            A few of our past group members have had the unhappy experience of having their belongings stolen before the trip starts. Beware of carrying your passport and other valuables around with you in cities. We strongly suggest you deposit your valuables in your hotel safe on arrival.
            Joining point
            Niagara Plus Hotel
            14th Lane
            Joining point description
            Our hotel is located in Osu, a trendy area of Accra with plenty of shops, restaurants and cafes causing the main street to be nicknamed 'Oxford Street'.

            Rooms have private facilities, 24-hour hot water, TV and bar fridge. There is also a restaurant on site.
            Finish point
            Raza Guesthouse
            62 Sir Samuel Lewis Road
            SIERRA LEONE
            Phone: 0011 23233506305
            Finish point description
            Raza Guesthouse is located in the small town of Aberdeen with easy access to Freetown. All rooms have private bathrooms, air conditioning and TV. Hotel facilities include bar, restaurant and Wifi access.
            Emergency contact
            Dragoman have a dedicated 24 hour telephone number which should only be used once you have left home and in the event of a real emergency. Should you need to call the number, we will do what we can to help but please bear in mind that real progress or action may not be possible until normal office hours.

            If your flight is delayed or cancelled, please let us know and then make your way to the joining hotel as instructed in these trip notes. If you cannot get through leave a message and a contact number as these will be regularly checked and the crew informed if necessary.

            Emergency Number: +44 (0) 7985106564

            For further contact details please use the following page:

            For general contact details please use the following page:

            While we always endeavour to provide the best possible holiday experience, due to the nature of travel and the areas we visit sometimes things can and do go wrong. Should any issue occur while you are on your trip, it is imperative that you discuss this with your group leader or our local representative straight away so that they can do their best to rectify the problem and save any potential negative impact on the rest of your trip.

            We recognise that there may be times when your group leader/local partner may not be able to resolve a situation to your satisfaction - if this is the case, please ask the leader to speak to their direct manager.

            You may also choose to provide details in your online feedback, which we ask you to complete within 30 days of the end of your trip. But we do ask you to be aware that it is very difficult for us to provide any practical help after the trip is complete.

            Dragoman: +44 (0) 7985106564
            Visas are the responsibility of the individual traveller. Entry requirements can change at any time, so it's important that you check for the latest information. Please visit the relevant consular website of the country or countries you’re visiting for detailed and up-to-date visa information specific to your nationality. Your consultant will also be happy to point you in the right direction with acquiring visas. Visas can take several weeks to process, so familiarise yourself with any requirements as soon as you have booked your trip to allow for processing time.

            Visas for this trip can take many weeks to be issued so book early. The process can be quite complicated and you are urged to read the information provided carefully, as well as do your own research. The process of getting a visa can be further complicated if you are doing further travel before this trip, so we suggest booking this trip on its own, or doing it at the beginning of your broader travel plans.

            Australia: Yes - in advance
            Belgium: Yes - in advance
            Canada: Yes - in advance
            Germany: Yes - in advance
            Ireland: Yes - in advance
            Netherlands: Yes - in advance
            New Zealand: Yes - in advance
            South Africa: Yes - in advance
            Switzerland: Yes - in advance
            United Kingdom: Yes - in advance
            USA: Yes - in advance

            Visas need to be obtained before arriving, these allow for a stay of up to 60 days and can be a single or multiple entry. A Yellow Fever certificate may be required for the application. Visas must be used within three months of the date of issue. There is a Ghana consulate in Australia, and visas can be purchased through Visalink. For Australians it will take 10 business days and cost AUD 140.00. 4 copies and 4 passport photos needed. If you are entering Ghana on an overland trip please contact your local embassy to do this as it's no longer possible to obtain these visas en route.

            COTE D'IVOIRE::
            Australia: Yes - in advance
            Belgium: Yes - in advance
            Canada: Yes - in advance
            Germany: Yes - in advance
            Ireland: Yes - in advance
            Netherlands: Yes - in advance
            New Zealand: Yes - in advance
            South Africa: Yes - in advance
            Switzerland: Yes - in advance
            United Kingdom: Yes - in advance
            USA: Yes - in advance

            British citizens must apply directly to the embassy for this visa rather than through a visa agency. Australians can apply for this visa through their visa agency. All other nationalities must check with their respective embassies/consulates and visas agencies for the application procedure. Please check early and allow plenty of time.

            Visas for Cote d’Ivoire require quite a lot of documentation, generally including 2 visa application forms, 2 passport photos, Employment letter, proof of departure showing round trip travel and onward flight, plus a copy of confirmed hotel reservations is required.

            Dragoman will be applying for the hotel reservation letter for you approximately 3 months in advance of the trip and once received, we will forward this to you. In order for us to be able to do this you must provide us with your passport details in advance. The application for this letter can only be made once we have received passport details from everyone in the group so any delay in us receiving these details will delay when this letter is received. Please note that this letter can take some time to issue and we cannot guarantee a specific date for receiving this letter. We therefore recommend that you wait until you have received this letter before making any appointments at the Cote d'voire Embassy or consulate.

            Australia: Yes - in advance
            Belgium: Yes - in advance
            Canada: Yes - in advance
            Germany: Yes - in advance
            Ireland: Yes - in advance
            Netherlands: Yes - in advance
            New Zealand: Yes - in advance
            South Africa: Yes - in advance
            Switzerland: Yes - in advance
            United Kingdom: Yes - in advance
            USA: Yes - in advance

            Most nationalities require a visa for Guinea. We recommend that you check with your respective embassy, consulate or visa agency for the latest information.

            It is recommended that you obtain this visa in advance.

            IMPORTANT NOTE: If you are on an trip that continues to Accra, you must obtain a double entry visa to Guinea.

            SIERRA LEONE:
            Australia: Yes - in advance
            Belgium: Yes - in advance
            Canada: Yes - in advance
            Germany: Yes - in advance
            Ireland: Yes - in advance
            Netherlands: Yes - in advance
            New Zealand: Yes - in advance
            South Africa: Yes - in advance
            Switzerland: Yes - in advance
            United Kingdom: Yes - in advance
            USA: Yes - in advance

            Please apply for your visa in advance at your closest embassy or consulate. You will most likely be required to supply a completed visa application form, 2 passport photos, a copy of your itinerary, a copy of hotel bookings, your passport and payment. Dragoman will supply the hotel confirmation letter.
            What to take
            What you need to bring will vary according to the trip style you have chosen, the countries you are visiting and when you are travelling. Generally speaking you should pack as lightly as possible. On the vast majority of our trips you are expected to carry your own luggage, although you won't be required to walk long distances with it (max 30 minutes).

            Most travellers carry their luggage in a backpack, although an overnight bag with a shoulder strap would suffice if you travel lightly. Smaller bags or backpacks with wheels are convenient although we recommend your bag has carry straps. You'll also need a day pack/bag to carry water and a camera etc for day trips.

            Below we have listed the essentials for this trip:


            LOCKER SPACE:
            The size of baggage that can be brought on this tour is limited by the locker space on the truck. Different trucks have different sized lockers however to be safe we recommend that your bag be no larger than: length 15 inches, height 9.5 inches and depth 26.5 inches. You will need to bring your own lock for your locker. We recommend a 20-30mm sized padlock with a long shackle.The weight limit for luggage on all trucks is maximum 20kg. Backpacks shouldn't have an external frame unless it can be easily removed and stored separately to avoid damaging other people's luggage.

            A sleeping bag (we recommend a 3–4 season). It can get very cold at night in winter months in desert and mountainous regions. If you're travelling during the hot season you may wish to also pack a sleep sheet so you will be comfortable no matter the weather. Pillows are NOT provided so please bring a travel pillow along.

            We don't provide a mattress so please bring your own (a Thermarest / inflatable mattress is recommended).

            A simple plastic bag / waterproof toiletry bag (that can hang on a nail on the back of a door) will be useful to keep your clothes dry inside basic camp shower structures.

            You will need to bring a mixture of lightweight clothing, some warm items for the evenings, and long shirts and pants for protection against mosquitoes in the malaria areas. Clothes should be easy to wash and dry. Some people like to take jeans for evenings out but they can be tough to dry and should not be used for trekking. Avoid nylon and other synthetics, which can be very uncomfortable in hot weather. Ex-military or military style clothing and equipment is NOT recommended.

            CLOSED-IN SHOES:
            As this trip includes camping and/or bush walking we highly recommend that you take a pair of comfortable, closed-in walking shoes. Closed-in shoes will help to protect your feet from cuts and scratches when walking through bush/grass-lands, and will also act as a barrier protection in rare cases against bites or stings from dangerous animals in this environment.

            WATER BOTTLE:
            Consider bringing your own water bottle to refill along the way. We recommend at least a 1.5litre capacity. The sale of bottled water contributes to an enormous environmental problem around the world. In addition to the water in bottles, the production of a 1 litre plastic bottle takes 2 litres of water and 200ml of oil. A large proportion end up in limited landfill or discarded in waterways and natural environments.

            Most of our trips have access to power to recharge batteries for phones and cameras every couple of days. We always recommend that you carry an extra battery for your camera just in case. Your vehicle will be equipped with a 12 volt “cigarette lighter” socket which may be used at the crew’s discretion, however, do bear in mind that only one piece of equipment can be charged at a time and it will not be allowed if there is a risk of running the vehicle’s batteries low. Batteries may also be recharged from hotel room wall sockets. Hotels and many campsites have electricity and charging of batteries is advised before checking out the following day.

            Please try to avoid bringing unnecessary valuables, and use your hotel safe and the safe on the overland truck to store the bulk of your money, passport, and airline tickets. It’s also a good idea to purchase a money belt or pouch that is easily hidden.

            We strongly recommend that you photocopy all important documents e.g. air tickets, passport, vaccination certificate, etc. and keep the copies separate from the originals. While not valid, a photocopy makes it very much easier to obtain replacements if necessary.
            All Intrepid travellers need to be in good physical health in order to participate fully on this trip. When selecting your trip please make sure you have read through the itinerary carefully and assess your ability to cope with our style of travel. Please note that if, in the opinion of our group leader or local guide, any traveller is unable to complete the itinerary without undue risk to themselves and/or the rest of the group, Intrepid Travel reserves the right to exclude them from all or part of a trip without refund.

            You should consult your doctor for up-to-date medical travel information or for any necessary vaccinations and anti-malarial requirements before departure. We recommend that you carry a first aid kit as well as any personal medical requirements (including a spare pair of glasses) as they may not easily be obtained at the locations on this trip. For legal reasons our leaders and guides are prohibited from administering any type of drugs including headache tablets and antibiotics. Please ensure that you are adequately prepared.

            YELLOW FEVER:
            A valid international certificate of vaccination against Yellow Fever is required in many countries. You may need to present this on arrival at the airport or border crossing. Some countries will refuse entry if you are unable to present your certificate. It's also quite common for your home country to request a Yellow Fever certificate on your arrival back home.

            It is your responsibility to check with your doctor well in advance of leaving home about the Yellow Fever requirements for the countries you'll be visiting.

            The World Health Organization (WHO) has confirmed an outbreak of Ebola virus in West Africa, initially identified in forested areas of south eastern Guinea in March 2014. There are a large number of confirmed cases in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone and multiple unconfirmed cases in Mali. We recommend that passengers closely monitor the advice provided by local health authorities and the WHO.
            Travel insurance
            Travel insurance is compulsory for all our trips. We require that, at a minimum, you are covered for medical expenses including emergency repatriation. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects.

            When travelling on a trip, you won't be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance and the insurance company's 24 hour emergency contact number has been seen by your leader.

            If you have credit card insurance your group leader will require details of the participating insurer/underwriter, the level of coverage, policy number and emergency contact number rather than the bank's name and credit card details. Please contact your bank for these details prior to arriving in-country.

            A couple of rules
            Illegal drugs will not be tolerated on our trips. Possessing or using drugs not only contravenes the laws of the land, but also puts the rest of the group at risk. Smoking marijuana and opium is a part of local culture in some parts of the world but is not acceptable for Intrepid travellers. Intrepid's philosophy of travel is one of respect towards everyone we encounter and in particular, the local people who make our destinations such special places. The exploitation of prostitutes is completely contrary to this philosophy. Our group leader or local representative has the right to expel any member of the group if drugs are found in their possession or if they use prostitutes.
            Responsible Travel
            We believe strongly in low impact or rather positive impact tourism. Broadly speaking this means that we try to minimise the negative aspects of tourism on the local cultures and environments that we visit and highlight the positive aspects. Please visit our website for further details and suggestions on how you can be a responsible traveller.


            When packing be aware that dress standards can be conservative in some parts of Africa. To respect this and for your own comfort, we strongly recommend modest clothing. This means covering shoulders and no short shorts in culturally sensitive areas: Mosques, small villages, etc. We recommend a mixture of loose, lightweight clothing and warm clothing for the evenings. Topless sun bathing is unacceptable through out the whole of Africa.

            The Intrepid Foundation
            Since Intrepid Travel commenced operating in 1989 we've been committed to giving something back to the communities we visit. One way has been through our support for local humanitarian, development and conservation projects. Many of our travellers want to contribute something too. Whilst it is often tempting to give hand-outs to those less fortunate, this has the potential to promote a culture of begging and dependency. Handouts are not a sustainable way for individuals or communities to live. That’s why we established The Intrepid Foundation – to make it easier for travellers wishing to give back to communities in an effective and meaningful way.

            The Intrepid Foundation is a not-for-profit fund offering a selection of excellent grassroots organisations which you can contribute to. All donations to The Intrepid Foundation will be matched by Intrepid Travel dollar for dollar (up to AU$1,000 per donor and a total of AU$400,000 for all donors in each financial year, excluding emergency appeals). And every cent gets there as Intrepid Travel pays for all the administration costs. Donating is simple and secure. Please ask your leader for information on the projects we support through The Intrepid Foundation or go to our website:


            After your travels, we want to hear from you! We rely on your feedback. We read it carefully. Feedback helps us understand what we are doing well and what we could be doing better. It allows us to make improvements for future travellers.