The Tour de France? That’s nothing! Try riding across the entire African continent on a bicycle! Since 2003, a hardy bunch of cyclists has been doing just that, as part of the Tour d’Afrique. The Tour d’Afrique crosses the entire African continent, from Egypt to South Africa, approximately 7,500 miles. While some participants are there to race, many others are just there for the experience and travel at their own pace, so people of all ages are welcome as long as you are in good shape and like to ride.
The Tour d’Afrique takes a good four months to complete, and like most epic-level travel experiences, it’s not cheap. The full tour will set you back €8,900, not including your bike, supplies for your bike, food on rest days, flights or visas. Fortunately, you can also sign on to just do a specific part of the tour.
As far as travel visas are concerned, the requirements vary depending on which country you’re looking at. Here’s a breakdown:
- Egypt: If you’re flying in, you can get a 30-day tourist visa when you arrive at the airport, or apply in advance if you’d like. If you’re entering by land, you’ll need one in advance.
- Sudan: US citizens should apply for a visa in advance at a Sudanese embassy or consulate.
- Ethiopia: If you’re riding in, you’ll definitely need to apply for your visa in advance. Theoretically, if you’re flying in, you can get a visa on arrival, but the US Department of State recommends against it as airport officials sometimes refuse to issue them. So, be a good Boy/Girl Scout and “be prepared!” See Ethiopian Visa Requirements for Tourists for more details.
- Kenya: US citizens need to apply in advance to enter by land. If flying in, you should be able to get a visa on arrival but be prepared to wait for the privilege. See Kenyan Visa Requirements for Tourists for details.