Mali Suggestions

Old Mar 3rd, 2007, 05:39 PM
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Mali Suggestions

Going to Timbukto, Mali. What do you suggest to take in the way of clothing and other items of necessity? I hear lodging is basic, sometimes you can't shower for days, being told I should take a sleeping bag, etc. Would appreciate any tips on how to enjoy two weeks in Mali, spending time on the Niger river and being a part of a camel caravan near Timbuktu.
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Old Mar 4th, 2007, 04:53 AM
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That information is not true regarding Timboukto. Or at least it was not my exerience. Ten years ago I spent about 20 days in Mali which included a few in that city. We stayed in a decent hotel with showers, beds, regular rooms. I think it may have been a French chain outpost. Of course you can go much cheaper.....

If you are doing a trip along the Niger, that is another story and yes, you will need sleeping bags and all the other camping provisions. I did a few days from Mopti and it remains one of my most enduring travel memories. I adored Mali..the people, the landscape, just about everything about that trip was magical.

I always wonder why there is almost nothing about Mali on this forum.....
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Old Mar 4th, 2007, 06:23 AM
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I hope you will do a trip report-Mali is a country I'd love to visit also.
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Old Mar 4th, 2007, 11:41 AM
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Thanks for the info. Yes, I will be spending 3 days on the Niger, so I suspect I sleep along the river bank. Look forward to posting a trip report, as I haven't seen much about Mali in this forum. Would appreciate any other suggestions.
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Old Mar 4th, 2007, 01:06 PM
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Suggest you post on the Lonely Planet Thorntree board for additional feedback on this destination.
 
Old Mar 5th, 2007, 05:23 AM
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Agree about LP.

Dundee, are you going as part of a group or on your own? That will affect the amount of provisions and equipment you will have to take along...the Niger camping nights were so absolutely fabulous, I could not be more enthusiastic. PLEASE post a report when you get back.
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Old Mar 19th, 2007, 04:14 PM
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We recently returned from 2 weeks in Mali and Senegal. We stayed at the Hendrina Khan in Timbuktu and found it to be basic but comfortable. They had showers and the food was ok. I am assuming you are going into Dogon country. We had a guide which is necessary and enjoyed climbing through the hill villages. The weather in January was hot--one day it was 104 so we would try not to be outside during the heat of the afternoon. Also be sure you have enough bottled water. I'm sure you are also looking at Mopti (and it's ancient port) Dejenne and Segue. All worth spending time in. Mali is a tribal culture and we were able to spend time in several villages and meet the chiefs and their families. Enjoy your trip--let me know if you have any further questions.

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Old Mar 19th, 2007, 05:23 PM
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We went on an overland trip with Guerba about 7 years ago. It was my one and only group tour and we had a fabulous time...after all you have to ask who is signing up to go to Mali?

WE spent three days travelling up the Niger from Mopti to Timbuktu and did a trek in the Dogon country. The hotels were modest but clean and comfortable. WE didn't shower when on the trek or while camping on the banks of the Niger but there was no problem in any of the hotels.

The food was very plain and we lost weight.

Mali is a fascinating country and we particularly loved the mud mosque and buildings in Djenne.

In terms of what to bring we enjoyed the boiled sweets we brought from home which helped break up the time on the river. Lots of reading material for the hours in the boat! It's very hot and I found a hat and a fan invaluble. I wished I had brought a polaroid camera so we could have given the photos away to the people we met in the villages.

Mali is a magical place and a great place to join a group as it's a big country with limited resources.

Have a great time
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