March 2012.

We leave the Ethiopian highlands and enter Sudan.

Another world awaits us !

We cross a vast semi-desert zone scarcely inhabited: what a contrast with Ethiopia that we have just left !

In Soudan, we can bivouac without having any visitors !

Matthieu takes the opportunity to cut the hair of the boys.

But Beatrix wants to try as well and Tugdual is used as a guinea pig.

We arrive in Khartoum, Sudan's capital, located at the confluence of the Niles.

The Blue one coming from Lake Tana, and the White one from Lake Victoria.

We are only early March but is already terribly hot !

We meet by chance our Polish friends: they are suffering from the heat and prefer to rush towards Egypt.

But visiting Sudan is not common, and we decide to take our time to discover Khartoum.

We begin with the Sufi dances of Omdurman.

We were afraid about the type of welcome we would receive, but the people are really very nice.

They are amazed to see a French family with so many children !

Some portraits of the members of this somewhat heterogeneous brotherhood.

The Sufis are a bit the "charismatic" of Islam.

They pray by dancing, turning and swaying back and forth for hours, repeating the shahada, the Muslim profession of faith.

The aim being to reach a kind of spiritual trance.

Some take a break to take pictures of the children !

A few characters are providing the show !

There is a clear lack of discipline, but the whole is quite impressive.

We leave the place at sunset, but the dance will end late at night.

In Khartoum, we settle in the city center, at the Blue Nile Sailing Club, a former English club fallen somewhat into disuse.

Girls train to jump rope while the boys have fun with this old boat, a remnant of the conquest of Sudan by the British in the late nineteenth century.

Khartoum is a strange mix between tradition and modernity.

The glass buildings are sprouting up, but the "ladies chay" continue to serve tea in the street.

With the falafels and these large stalls of fruits and vegetables, we feel that Egypt is no longer far away.

The restaurants in the capital are excellent and we can enjoy good food without breaking the bank.

Leaving Khartoum, we are stopped by a police roadblock.

"You do not have the right to take this road without a pass" !!!

It takes us a full day with the help of Magzoub to get this document: what a nightmare !

As we recover from this hell around a good dish of cutlets, we are approached by Darrin and Isabelle.

They have been travelling for 2 years in Africa with their Defender, and they already spent several weeks in Sudan.

"This pass is bullshit. You just need to give them a photocopy of your passport! "

Too bad we did not meet you yestearday !

Finally we leave Khartoum with a stack of photocopies.

And indeed the famous pass will never be needed !

Next page         Road Book