Banul!

Leave the Zebrabar in 15 car convoy with a local Customs Officer to ensure we don’t sell the cars in Senegal! So 6 hours drive turns into 9 hours with pee stops and cars getting lost.

The drive through Senegal for the border courtesy of the Sand Dodgers http://www.sanddodgers.co.uk

Arrive at Gambia border which is a breeze and are told if we put our foot down we should catch the last ferry at 11pm from Barra to Banjul. The next half hour drive makes the Paris Dakar Rally look tame! The Latvian’s set the pace (as usual) and the main highway to the ferry is best described as a dirty track with potholes the size of baths!

Stopped by our final police check point 1 mile short of the ferry and they tell us there’s no way we’ll get on the last ferry – some lorries have been waiting 4 days to get on! They suggest we camp by the side of the road next to them for safety – as we break out the gin and army rations, others are not so happy with the facilities (or lack of) and drive down to Barra, returning swiftly with tales of no electric or water and ‘many bad men’

A 5am start sees lots of bad moods and Chris disappears to buy the ferry tickets – only to return 3 hours later. A sprint for the ferry and for once the organisers and police get us to the front and relative safety from the many ‘characters’ working the waiting cars. A Swiss couple have been waiting 2 days to get on – two ferries later and we arrive in Banjul!

Waiting for the Barra Ferry

On the Barra Ferry – with cows, goats, chickens and half of Africa!

On the Barra Ferry

Find hotel and Sam who isn’t sure about the unsavoury, smelly and unshaven character walking into the hotel reception! Beer, food, shower and sleep and the nerves are restored. Other groups arrive next day with only 4 cars not making it – a Toyota had to be left in the desert!

Official parade yesterday thru Banjul with 30+ cars blowing horns and free beer from the mayor, free meal last night courtesy of the Gambian Olympic Committee – only spoilt by two teams having hotel rooms ransacked and all cameras (with 3 weeks pictures), videos, laptops and phones stolen – some thank you!

Any buyers?

Fantastic experience, but would we do it again? – both agree – NO (mind you if anyone knows for a cheap left hand drive car…)

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5 Responses to “Banul!”

  1. No.4 Says:

    Well done both of you. Back to normality (whatever that is). The Green Sunday (21st) lunchtime? We can have crisps and lashings of ginger beer – rather!! Oh yes, and some cava – x

  2. harvatt Says:

    try and keep me away!

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