Sunday, February 06, 2011

Gambia to Mali

I've been distracted by the incredible events in Egypt. At first I thought the protest would be put down quickly, and then it wasn't, and then the Internet went off. Blip. Just like that.

That's when I realized that this wasn't just another protest. I tuned right into Al Jazeera English online, and was riveted for days.

But MariesWorldTour 2011 is only 23 days away, and I need to get back to planning. I booked my first night in Malaga, my ferry ticket, and my second night in Melilla. There's no way to book the train tickets in Morocco from here, so I have to hope I get a couchette rather than having to spend the night in a reclining seat. And then I'll be in Essaouira.

So far, I've found good hotel rates on,,, and even Expedia. I have some various point balances that will help me get a room here or there, but once I am south of Morocco, I won't be using many pre-booking sites.

Last we checked, I was planning the end of Week Three.

Well, I was obviously tired when I was working on March 20th, because it doesn't work the way I had it at all.

Here's the right way to get to Mali from Georgetown, Gambia.

March 20:
-Ferry off Georgetown back to highway. Catch shared taxi or minibus to Basse Santa Su, Gambia. (One hour drive.)
-Basse Santa Su to Velingara, Senegal. One hour.
-Velingara to Tambacounde. 2.5 hours.
-Tambacounde to Kidira border. 3 hours. Cross border to Diboli, Mali. Border closes at 6 p.m.
-Diboli to Kayes. 2 hours.

Easy in theory, right? The problem is that there is bound to be a lot of waiting for various forms of transport en route. So I may not make the border by 6 p.m. The guidebook does list a hotel in Kidara, so I'll just have to see how far I get.

Perhaps I will be in Bamako by the end of March 21. I'll look at that tomorrow.

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