We travelled in Chad and West-Africa with an old MAN truck. Because of the dangerous situation in West-Sudan, we couldn't cross Sudan from Chad to Ethiopia. So we had to take a flight from N'Djamena, the capital of Chad to Addis Abeba in Ethiopia and had to leave the trucks behind in N'Djamena.
The blue one, owned by its Belgian driver Philippe, would be sold in N'Djamena. And our driver Laura would drive the yellow one back to its owner in Senegal, accompanied by some paying friends and passengers.
So after the trip north of N'Djamena we had to say goodbye to our trucks, instead of travelling with them a few months more. So we made some official pictures of the two trucks with their drivers on top.
During our trip north of N'Djamena we saw a lot of camels. Near Douguia this man was very curious to see us. First he looked at us for a long time from behind the bushes, sitting on his camel.
Then suddenly he approached our truck at a few meters and gave his show by spurring on his camel. Afterwards he disappeared behind the bushes again, galopping on his camel in high speed.
Transport in Chad is not easy. There are no surfaced road at all outside N'Djamena. There are some not-so-frequent flights with a local carrier. To for instance Iriba or Baha? there are no comercial flights even though there are airstrips there. For the time being they are operated by World Food Programme and the UNHCR hired Air Service.
To travel around north of N'Djamena in the area of Douguia and Lake Chad, you need your own 4WD transport. I didn't see any regular public transport anyway, on the sandy tracks we drove.
We made our tour in an old MAN truck.
Like we were curious to see the villages, the people and their means of transportation, so the local people and kids were very curious, when we entered or passed their villages.
Along the tracks around Douguia we saw donkeys and camels, but a few times we saw also carts drawed by oxes.
In this area north of Douguia we experienced the highlight of our stay in Chad or maybe even in West Africa !
Along the road we met an impressive caravan of an extended nomadic family, moving to another area with their whole household.
Many donkeys and camels, loaded and packed with all the belongings of the family. Some camels had a baldachin of colourful cloth to protect the elder people, women and young kids and babies against the burning sun. The elder kids were riding on the donkeys loaded with bundles of fire-wood. Other kids walked with the huge herds of goats, sheeps and cows.
We were very impressed by this breathtaking and touching spectacle.
In N'djamena I mostly took a minibus from the roundabout near the camping. All minibuses drove to the Grande Marche. So this was rahter easy, because I liked to start my walks in the centre from the market.
South of the market was this street where you can find the yellow taxis, but it was also the place from where the minibuses started their route to the south along the river.
For a ride in a minibus I paid 100 CFA at rush hours and 150 CFA at times the minbuses were not totally full.
It was easy and cheap to take these buses and normally rather safe. Only one time the door just next to me fell down, so we had a ride without the door. At the bends and roundabouts my fellow-passengers took care of me by holding my arm, so I couldn't fell out. It was not scaring, but gave a lot of fun.
For a taxi we paid between 2.000 and 3.000 CFA, for the same ride of about 5 KM to the citycentre.
The donkeys are used for all kind of transport.
So, we saw near Douguia this man and his dog with walking bundles of straw.
At a closer look we saw the donkey under this load of large size. Lucky for the donkey these bundles of straw didn't look really heavy. Anyway he could walk with it.
In the area north of N'Djamena and around Douguia we saw a lot of donkeys.
People used the donkeys mostly for riding theirselves, but also for transportation of all kinds of goods.
These two boys with their donkey we met near the shore of Lake Chad. One was ridning himself, but they also transported a big piece of wood on their donkey.
Quartier Diguel Est, N'Djamena, B.P. 6473, Chad
Good for: Couples
Good for: Business
The rooms are fine but the unmissable aircos can be noisy, bring your earplugs along.more
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