WAF-15 West Africa trip – Niger, Ivory Coast, Nigeria, Equatorial Guinea and Chad (unexpected stops in Paris, France and Douala, Cameroon)
Date of travel: Nov 20 – Dec 7, 2015
On Nov 20 at 4 AM I left Vista in a rented car for San Diego Airport. From there I was to fly via Atlanta and Paris to Niamey in Niger. However, due to terrorist attack in Bamako, Mali on Nov 20 the flight from Paris to Niamey was cancelled. Air France put me in a hotel near the CDG airport with room and board for two days.
The flights resumed on Nov 23, when I departed for Niamey, NIGER. The following morning I had a sightseeing tour of the city. Due to a mix-up with air tickets I left for Abidjan instead on Nov 24 a day later.
In the evening on Nov 25 I came to Abidjan, IVORY COAST. Not booked hotel there forced me to find one myself.
On Nov 26 I am back to the original trip schedule going in a car north from Abidjan to Abengourou. Here I was present to a “voodoo” ceremony and visited a Royal Palace.
On Nov 27 a drive to the country administrative capital, Yamoussoukro. The following day sightseeing of the world biggest Christian cathedral consecrated by John Paul II., Grand Mosque and a lake full of the Nile crocodiles.
On Nov 28 going south to the first Ivory Coast French capital and now the UNESCO site, Grand Bassam. The colonial buildings are empty and dilapidated and it will take a lot of money to make the site presentable.
On Nov 29 flight from Abidjan via Lome (Togo) to Lagos, NIGERIA. The day started with a canceled air ticket and ended with no accommodation in Lagos, which I had to solve again by myself. The following day a visit to a pretty good museum in the city and a drive to the Atlantic cost to once a slave city Badagry. Quite interesting remnants of that era. On the drive back there were unsuccessful police attempts to extort money from me solved by my driver.
On Dec 1 flight from Lagos via Cotonou, Benin, to Malabo, EQUATORIAL GUINEA on the Bioko Island in the Gulf of Guinea. Again a little problem because nobody was waiting for me at the airport. By taxi to the hotel. The next day sightseeing the E.G. modern capital, Malabo with its extremely high humidity. The day after a drive around the Bioko Island with its beautiful green jungle covered mountainous countryside.
Dec 4 should have been flight from Malabo via Douala, Cameroon to N’Djamena, Chad. After flight to Douala the following plane was broken and was delayed until early next morning. All passengers got a hotel and dinner in Douala, CAMEROON.
Dec 5 very early morning departure from Douala to the capital of CHAD, N’Djamena. That day sightseeing of the city which is laying in a flat sandy desert with a monument of independence, some ministerial buildings and few large hotels. The day after a visit to a fish market and a mud house village few miles outside N’Djamena with a collection of excavations by French archeologists.
Before midnight on Dec 6 flight from N’Djamena to Yaounde, the capital of Cameroon to change the flight crew for which sleeping in N’Djamena was too dangerous. Then to Paris and via Los Angeles to San Diego. From there in a rented car home to Vista where at midnight of Dec 7.
Travel office: Spiekermann Travel Service, which gave it to one British company who gave it to a company in Bamako, Mali, where many problems of my trip originated.
Who took part: I was the only traveler, but from Niger via Ivory Coast to Nigeria I had a guide from the Bamako travel agency. In the following places I had guides in the individual countries.