Join YPT for the ultimate Sudan experience! Visit the unknown land that is Sudan, with its magnificent yet very seldom visited pyramids. We’ll head back to civilization in Khartoum before boarding a flight taking us to Sudan’s breakaway offspring: South Sudan.There, we’ll be hanging out with Mundari herders, mingling with Dinkas and chilling with the Lotuko people!
During this tour, we will visit the capital city, Khartoum, and its numerous temples. We will then cross the white Nile and visit the second-biggest city, Omdurman, where we will explore the recent history of the country and the mahdist state which ruled before colonization by the British.
We will then leave the cities in our hired 4WD cars to explore ruins of former glorious empires, including the Christian Kingdom of Makuria, the Necropolis of Napata and last but definitely not least, the pyramids of Meroe. While the pyramids in Egypt are now visited by thousands and thousands each years and can get very crowded, the pyramids of Meroe will be all ours! We shall camp right by them for a truly memorable night!
It will then be time for us to head back to civilization, towards Khartoum airport to catch our flight toward Sudan’s southern breakaway brother: South Sudan. This tour includes a direct flight on one of the very hard to book semi-chartered flights from Sudan to South Sudan, allowing us to avoid transferring in Addis.
Our trip there starts with a full tour of the strange boom-town capital that is Juba. We will take in its limited sites but also witness the full melting-pot of cultures that is South Sudan.
Our trip then takes us to the incredible Mundari tribes, herders who literally live in the wild in symbiosis with their cattle. They are unmistakable by the fact that they cover their whole body in chalk-like makeup, making them look like ghosts. After visiting the Mundari, we will visit the Dinka, which are a majority in South Sudan. The Dinka’s contribution to the struggle for independence was enormous, and here too we will spend a day mingling with them and truly seeing what their life is like. For those wishing to stay longer, Group B will have us encounter the Lotuko and Boya people. The Boya people are known for their beautiful scarification and piercings.
Own arrival into Khartoum to be met at the airport by our guide and transferred to our hotel.
Meet at 8pm for a pre-tour group dinner and meet your fellow travelers.
Overnight in Khartoum.
Tuesday 16th November – Khartoum & Omdurman
Up early for breakfast at hotel before we start the day with a city tour of the Sudanese capital city.
We’ll visit the national museum, which contains various objects dedicated to Nubian history. This Nubian area of the southern Nile was home of Africa’s earliest ancient civilization.
We’ll also take in the beautiful temples saved by UNESCO from lake Nassir and rebuilt entirely inside the museum.
Visit the Ethnographic museum. Sudan has 597 different ethnic groups that speak over 400 different languages and dialects, we’ll get a taste for the incredible diversity here.
Cross the White Nile for a trip to technically Sudan’s second largest city – Omdurman. We’ll have a short stop at the Mahdi tomb and tour around the Khalifa house museum. The house served as the HQ of the Mahdist state. This was a short-lived religious and political movement that ruled Sudan until the British reconquered in 1898.
Lunch stop in Omdurman.
Visit Omdurman’s beautifully colourful market before making our way back to Khartoum.
Dinner and overnight in Khartoum.
Wednesday 17th November – Khartoum/Old Dongola/Kerma
Very early morning breakfast before beginning our journey to Northern Sudan.
We travel 500km north of Khartoum. On the way we’ll stop at Old Dongola, the capital of the Christian kingdom of Makuria. Today it’s a deserted city with the population having moved downstream in the 19th century.
We move onto the cemetery of the Sofi holy men (lunch on the way).
Take the ferry across the Nile and drive for a further 40km arriving at Kerma, a 3800 B.C archeological site.
Overnight in a traditional Nubian house with a wonderful local feast.
Thursday 18th November – Tombus/Soleb
Another early rise to visit the site of Tombus. Here there are many Egyptian inscriptions and a huge granite statue dedicated the famous black Pharaoh – Taharqa.
We continue 50km to the north where we stop to take in the amazing panoramic view of the rock art from the prehistoric period at Wadi Sebu.
Lunch stop at a local tea house.
Cross the Nile to its west bank and drive two hours up to Soleb; an ancient Nubian town home to a vast necropolis of which we can visit the tombs which haven’t been destroyed by colonial “archaeologists”
Dinner and overnight at a traditional Nubian house.
Friday 19th November Soleb – Karima
Today we head back south driving for 320km before reaching the city of Karima, the location of ancient Napata.
We visit the holy mountain of Jebel Barkal (Together with Napata, a UNESCO heritage site) and the numerous temples at the foot of Jebel Barkal.
We then visit the impressive Kurru, the royal necropolis of Napata. Here we go deep underneath the pyramid to see the amazing painted tomb of the black Pharaoh Tanutamani. You won’t find such vivid painting anywhere else!
Dinner in a local restaurant.
Overnight at Merowe Tourist Village hotel.
Saturday 20th November – Nuri/Meroe
Early morning visit to the nearby Nuri pyramids. There are over 60 burial places here.
We continue crossing though the Bayuda desert up to Meroe. We’ll pass through and stop at desert settlements such as Ad-Damer before reaching the famous Meroe pyramids. A perfect setting to witness the sun go down.
TRIP HIGHLIGHT: Overnight camping in tents near the Pyramids!
Sunday 21th November – Meroe/Khartoum
Rise and shine for an early morning visit to the royal city of Meroe.
Set off on an off-road/on-road adventure to visit Mussawart. This is a complex of temples dedicated the local god Apedamak – the lion god. This was the biggest construction in the history of Nubia.
After a local lunch we continue up to Naqa 20km from Mussawart. This was once a vital trading post between the Mediterranean world and Africa. It houses a wonderful collection of buildings dated to the first century AD.
Visit the Roman kiosk, which represents the intersection of various cultures both European and African.
Visit the Among temple.
Group A hits the road for Khartoum 150km from Naqa.
Dinner in Khartoum as we celebrate our crossing, tomorrow, into Sudan’s younger brother, South Sudan.
Overnight in Khartoum
Monday 22nd November – Juba
We catch our flight to Juba (not included in the price of the tour, you can either take the direct flight with a local airline or take the more reliable Ethiopian airlines red-eye flights from Khartoum to Addis to Juba). Our local partners will greet us once we are through immigration.
we will spend the morning in South Sudan’s biggest market: Konyo Konyo. It is an incredible place where the immense ethnic diversity of South Sudan can be witnessed. The market is a real myriad of different traditional dresses, tattoos and body scarifications like non other in the world.
Our next stop in our Juba city tour is the Presidential Palace, the residence of South Sudan’s colourful leader, the man with a cowboy hat, Salva Kiir Mayardit
We then head to John Garang Mausoleum. John Garang is famous for leading the revolution but also promoting the concept of Sudanism, where all Sudanese should go beyond the divisions (animists, christians, muslims, arabs, blacks) but instead embrace all cultures of South Sudan and unify under the fact that they are all Sudanese.
Our next stop is Jubek Tomb, the tomb of the man after whom Juba was named. Jubek is one of the most important figure of the Bari people and his history is linked to lots of underlying tensions.
Lunch at the Da Vinci Lodge
We finish our city tour with a stop by the craft market for those who would like to bring back souvenir of one of the least visited countries in the world!
Dinner and drinks by the Nile at the AFEX camp.
Overnight at Royal Palace Hotel, or similar
Tuesday November 23rd – Mundari Villages
After a hearty breakfast at our hotel, we head out of Juba to Terekeka, four hours away.
Upon arrival, we head out for our compulsory visit to the state government authorities. Although they will have been told of our arrival well in advance, they really do not get visitors often and will be extremely interested in meeting us.
Lunch of local South Sudanese food
We arrive at a Mundari cattle camp, where we will spend the night.
The evening is a great time to get our cameras out and take photos of the cattle herders, in their ghastly make up, coming back from grazing.
Dinner mingling with the Mundari
Overnight camping in a Mundari Village
Wednesday 24th November – Mundari Cattle Camp
Wake up early to catch sight of dawn and the sunrise over the plains of South Sudan.
We’ll then get an opportunity to see how the Mundari people wake up with their cattle, truly living in symbiosis with the animals. For Mundari, cows are more important than anything, they provide food and milk but are also the most common currency and status symbol amongst members of the tribe.
We will get to see the, erm, highly “interesting’’ way Mundari milk cows by increasing pressure in the animal by blowing air into… well, you’ll have to come to know!
We then head to Nyikabor village another Mundari.
We have lunch in Nyikabor village made up of traditional South Sudanese fare.
TRIP HIGHLIGHT – Our afternoon and evening will be made up of visiting this traditional village being shown around by the Mundari, who will introduce us to their lifestyle which couldn’t be any more different then what you are used to at home! Extremely few people have been here with this tribe.
As we are out of Juba, we can get our cameras out and take memorable photos
Dinner in Nyikabor village
Overnight in camping tents within Nyikabor village
Thursday 25th November – Juba
After breakfast, it is already time to bid farewell to the Mundaris with whom we have spent the last two days in order to see more of the country and drive back to Juba
Arrival in Juba around lunch time
The afternoon is there to allow you to enjoy the nice facilities of the hotel and relax from the last camping days as well as catch up with the world by using the WIFI. The most adventurous amongst us can also explore more of Juba.
Dinner at Royal Palace Hotel
Tonight, we sample Juba’s nightlife by heading to Bedouin Lodge, a popular outdoor club for the locals
Overnight in Juba, Royal Palace Hotel or similar
Friday 26th November – Dinka Cattle Camps
After our breakfast at the hotel, we will drive for at least four hours to a Dinka cattle camp along the eastern bank of the Nile.
Here, we will be able to spot the differences in culture and cattle husbandry between Dinkas and Mundaris. The Dinkas are nicknamed the World’s tallest people, and you’ll quickly see why.
We have lunch in the camp
The afternoon is spent interacting with the Dinka as they come back from grazing.
Dinner at the camp alongside the Dinka
Overnight camping in the cattle camp.
Saturday 27th November – Dinka Cattle Camps
After breakfast, we head out to learn more about the everyday routine of the Dinka people.
It is time for us to head back to Juba, we stop at the village of Bangachorot, famous for its beauty and location.
We stop to eat our packed lunch in Mangalla.
We stop by Pan Wel to find out remainders of the civil war, in the form of tank ruins!
Arrival in Juba, where we check in at Royal Palace Hotel
Dinner at the AFEX camp, absolutely the best restaurant in the country with gorgeous riverside views
Overnight in Royal Palace Hotel, or similar
Sunday 28th November – Juba/Torit END OF GROUP A
For people of GROUP A: Airport drop-offs according to each and everyone’s flights. End of trip, with YPT able to arrange everything in the region from flights, transportation and tours in Africa and beyond.
For GROUP B, we leave for Torit town in the early morning. The drive to Torit, at best, can take us 5 hours.
City tour of Torit Town, seeing how life happens were extremely few foreigners have been!
Dinner at Torit Hotel.
Overnight in Torit Hotel
Monday 29th November – Illieu village on Imatong Mountain
Today we will take what should be a three hour drive to the Latuko village of Illieu which is strategically built on a hilltop.
The villagers are Latuko-speaking people with a complex socio-political system based on age groups which shall be explained to us by our guide. We will tour the village after which the chef will have prepared our lunch.
We will take a short break after lunch before we resume the tour of the village.
The day will be spent interacting with the Latuko people.
Dinner cooked for us at our camp by the village
In the evening, we will get to spectate traditional Latuko dances and listen to their music
Tuesday 30th December – Camp 15
This morning we will leave our new Latuko friends of Illeu village and travel to Boya/Larim village at camp 15. The area is inhabited by the Boya/Larim tribe. Here you will be amazed by the architecture the Boya people are renowned for, consisting of grass thatched huts. While Mundaris are known for facial scarifications, the Boya are renowned for an abundance of both body and facial scarification among others as well as the ornaments and attire worn uniquely by them.
Lunch upon our arrival at camp 15
The afternoon will be spent in the village where locals will introduce us to their way of life.
Dinner at Camp 15
Wednesday 1st December : Boya Hills – Kapoeta
Today we leave the Boya hills behind a head to our last stop, Kapoeta town. Located on a hilltop, Kapoeta is home to the Toposa tribe.
There, amongst many other spectacular things, we will see how the women of the tribe carry water from down the hill up to the village on their head.
In our day dedicated to Kapoeta, will go for a full village and market tour.
Check in at Mango Camp today, which has WIFI and showers. A treat after all this camping!
Thursday 2nd December: Kapoeta/Juba
After a good breakfast at Mango camp we head out to benefit of the morning light and take stunning photos of the Toposa villages as they slowly come alive.
We then head to Kapoeta airstrip (which can’t really be called an airport just now, similar to what Juba airport was a couple of years ago) for an incredible aviation experience as we’ll check in from a tent straight into a plane.
We fly to Juba.
Check-in at Royal Palace Hotel were we can enjoy the well-earned luxury of this nice and new hotel.
Lunch at La Corte Tuscana Hotel.
The afternoon is left free to visit sights in Juba related to everyone’s interest such as, for example, the Youth Culture Club, where young people take all kinds of parascholar activities or Juba university to mingle with some fresh intellectuals.
Dinner at Afex Camp.
Overnight at Royal Palace Hotel (or similar).
Friday 3rd December
Breakfast in Royal Palace Hotel
End of tour with airport pickup organised according to each and everyone’s flight details. YPT can arrange other tours, accommodation and transportation in Africa and beyond!
– Hotel accommodation in Khartoum at 3 stars bed & breakfast bases
– Accommodation outside Khartoum as per program and based on full-board.
– transport in AC 4WD cars 3 persons in a car
– Local english speaking guide and YPT guide
– Entrance fees
– Passport registration
– Photo permit and tour permit
– Mineral water
– Invitation letter for visa purpose
– Accommodation in twin share basis in Khartoum
– Camping equipment outside of Khartoum
– Breakfasts in Khartoum
– All meals outside of Khartoum
– Letter of Invitation and visa support for Sudan
– All transport by 4WD
– Entrance Fees
– English Speaking local guide and YPT Western Guide
– Photo permit and tour permit