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Even within the African continent, Sudan is known as the great unknown. This vast country was once the land of the legendary Nubia – an Eastern Saharan civilisation and culture that rivalled ancient Egypt in power and prosperity. As of 2011, the southern swathe of the country officially became the Republic of South Sudan, it is hoped that the atrocities have been laid to rest, though skirmishes still exist on the border areas.
Whilst Darfur and the southern regions carry travel warnings, many parts of the country, particularly in the north, have been given the green light. A rare optimism reigns on the streets of the capital Khartoum these days. Possibly, there has never been a more exciting time to go to Sudan.Read more
The Sudanese have always had a reputation of being overwhelmingly welcoming. A population of 41 million people are divided into hundreds of ethnic groups, the majority living in rural areas. Life here, which is agrarian based, is incredibly difficult, with many families scratching out a living in the sand with a few camels. Despite this, don’t be surprised if you get invited in for dinner, or at least a cup of shai saada (black tea) and are treated to other small random acts of immense generosity. These humbling experiences will probably be your fondest memories of your trips to Sudan.Â
Western and northern Sudan are dominated by flat, sandy terrain and golden dunes. The mystical Blue Nile cuts diagonally through the northern rim of the Sahara and meets the White Nile at Khartoum, before heading south to Lake Victoria. The east and west are the most mountainous regions, whilst Port Sudan on the Red Sea is renowned for its scuba diving and beaches. The North contains a wealth of architectural ruins left by the Nubian ancients, on par with those of neighbouring Egypt but little visited. Â
Places of interest in Sudan
Situated some 400kms north of Khartoum on the banks of the Nile, most travellers come to the dusty market town of...
Khartoum is three cities in one. It also the place where the Blue and White Nile meet, though photographing the point...
Situated 200kms north of Khartoum in the Nubian Desert, Meroe was one the capitals of the Kingdom of Kush – an...