There aren’t a lot of travellers out there at the moment – so it is always a special treat to meet up with other adventurers.
We first met Dan & Kumi in Rabat in December last year when we were all sorting out visas for Mauritania. I noticed Dan on his bicycle because he had a little South African flag flying – not something we came across before or again. We stopped and had Moroccan tea together before going on our separate ways again.
Despite our different modes of transportation, we all ended up in Dakar at about the same time. It was wonderful to catch up again – and compare our very different experiences of travelling from Rabat to Dakar. These guys are legends – make no mistake. However tough it was for us in a vehicle, it paled in comparison to their cycling through the heat, wind and sands of the Sahara.
Although we weren’t staying in the same hotel, we managed to meet up a few times. One day – before Kumi flew back to the UK – we took the 20min ferry out to Ile de Goree. The Island is a UNESCO World Heritage Site off the coast of Senegal opposite Dakar. It is a symbol for the slave trading during 15th to 19th centuries, and reports seem to differ on the size of the salve trading from there. We opted not to take a guide, so perhaps missed out on the detailed history of the tiny island, but still enjoyed wandering around. It seems frozen in time – no major construction in the last while, but still inhabited. It is hugely touristy, and you can’t move without being hassled by a guide, a lady selling jewellery or an artist peddling his paintings. We wandered up to the top of the lookout hill with its large gun, wandered through the art display near the port and strolled thought the history on display in the old fort (unfortunately all in French). We enjoyed a traditional Senegalese lunch (yassa) before catching the ferry back to Dakar. All in all, an interesting day.
It was so lovely to spend relaxed time just chatting – about Life, the Universe and everything in it! We lazed on the beach (their hotel had a stunning beach) or sat drinking coffee. Other adventurers are always so interesting to chat to – and Viking Explorer and I really enjoyed their perspectives on the world.
But all good things come to an end. Kumi’s adventure was done. She caught a flight and returned to the chilly weather of the UK. Dan has also left now, packing up his bike and flying to Windhoek in Namibia. His adventure is not done yet – he still has a 1,600km stretch to cover from Windhoek to Cape Town before flying back to the UK. As I said – a legend.
We so look forward to meeting up with our new friends again.
(PS – if you want to see about their amazing, inspiring adventure, head over to their blog: london2capetown.net)
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