Daniel, one of our drivers, went off in the early morning to pick-up our truck. However, he was not able to get it until 2pm since a vehicle was blocking the exit of the ferry boat. So everybody needed to wait until the owner of the blocking vehicle showed up. In the meanwhile customs searched our truck for alcohol which is strictly forbidden in Sudan.
As soon as we received our truck we headed south towards a little town called Wawa. Also from now on our tour is accompanied by a guide called Nasser. He works for a Sudanese travel agency which seems to be the only one in the country. Nasser will guide us to places of interest and help us to deal with government officials.
I spent the travel time reading the German weekend newspaper “Zeit” which I downloaded during the hotel stay in Aswan. It’s pretty amazing that Amazon offers free 3G / GPRS access to their Whispernet service over which you can search, purchase and download books, magazines and newspapers. You are only required to pay the price of the Kindle edition, e.g. 2.99 EUR for an issue of the “Zeit” compared to 4.00 EUR for the print edition. There are no additional costs for browsing the Amazon catalogue and downloading your purchase. This makes it very convenient to read a German newspaper while being abroad. However, I was only able to connect to the Whispernet in larger cities such as Cairo, Luxor and Aswan. There was no Whispernet access in Wadi Halfa.
The road between Wadi Halfa and Wawa is in a very good condition so as all major roads in Sudan which were constructed during the last years. We arrived at 5pm and set up our bush camp. Since todays cook group was not able to purchase meat in Wadi Halfa we had a nice vegetarian dinner consisting of potatoes with pan-fried vegetables.
During Dinner we discussed our planned route in Sudan. Based on the information of our Sudan guidebook, our Sudan map and our guide Nasser we decided to travel along the river Nile and visit some more historical sites as well as to do an exploratory drive towards Port Sudan at the Red Sea. Exploratory drive because Dragoman didn’t travel to Port Sudan in the past so as any other overland tour operator. The reason behind were the road conditions which used to be very bad so it just took 2-3 weeks to cross Sudan. With the significant road improvement we now have enough time available to do this exploratory drive. However, to travel towards the Red Sea a special permit is required which Nasser will help us to obtain.