Thursday, February 17, 2011

Mali and Burkina Faso

I'm having a harder time planning as my virtual weeks progress. That's because I don't have my passport back yet--it's at the Embassy of Mauritania at the moment. I hope. I don't really know where it is. I should probably look into that.

I am hoping to get more visas before I leave NYC on March 1. I've been collecting visas for months now, but have to get many visas at the last minute or else they'll expire before I arrive in the country giving me the visa.

And because I don't know how many days I'll need to acquire visas en route, I can't plan that precisely after Bamako. Will I be in Bamako a week while I collect visas? Or just two days? And then will I be able to hook up with a small group and a private vehicle when I get there, or will I be spending days on buses?

I won't know until I know, so I'm now into estimating territory.

Let's say I arrive in Bamako, Mali, on March 21. That's a Monday. I could then work on getting visas for Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, then head off to play tourist as of Thursday night.

Then stops I want to make in Mali are:

-Segou (3 hours by bus from Bamako).

-Djenne (that's the home of that big mud mosque you see in photos of Mali).


-Dogon country, via Bandiagara.

I'll just call it ten days, and then I'll head from Mopti to Bobo-Dioulasso (via Bla) in Burkina Faso. I'm estimating arriving in Burkina Faso on April 1, and hoping it's not a joke.

April 2: I'll spend in the town of Bobo-Dioulasso, Burkina Faso.

April 3: I'll take the bus early to Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso. I'll spend the rest of the day there, then I hope to proceed on April 4 to Kumusi, Ghana. Except I might have to hang around a few more days to get more visas.

So that's where we'll start next. With me arriving late to Kumasi, Ghani. The bus website seems to indicate that I'll be traveling from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. So Kumasi. Let's look at Kumasi next.

1 comment:

Miriam Nadel said...

Having been to Mali and Burkina Faso in January, you won't have a visa issue. Both countries give Americans only multi-year, multi-entry visas, at least as long as you do them in advance. I did meet a couple who got visas on arrival in Bamako, but I am less sure of land borders.

By the way, I really liked Bobo-Dialoussou, but the real highlight of Burkina Faso for me was Loropeni, a UNESCO World Heritage archaelogical site.