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About Sudan

Sudan is situated in north-eastern Africa bordering Kenya and Ethiopia. Sudan backpacking tours offer a glimpse into one of the region's most fascinating desert cultures.

Sudan Budget Travel

Below is a list of Sudan's top destinations, click on the link to view all details and tours.

Fast Facts

Currency
Sudanese Pound (SDG)

Dialing Code
249

AIDS

Sudan HIV/AIDS precautions include the following:
• Don't ever share needles or syringes
• Practice safe sex at all times
• Equipment should be sterilized
• If you require self-administered injections, take an adequate supply of your own needles
• Avoid tattoos, acupuncture treatment or body piercing

Airports

Sudan airports include the following:
• Port Sudan New International Airport
• Khartoum International Airport

Birdlife

Sudan birdlife includes a small number of endemic species and a larger range of migratory species. There are 22 Important Bird Areas (IBAs) found within Sudan, sadly many of these are unsafe to visit due to the instability in the country. Hotspots within the city and surrounds include Tuti Island, the Sunt Forest, Haj Yusif and Omdurman Hills, with a range of species which total over 200, spanning from water birds to birds of prey.

Conservation

Sudan conservation is a major concern, given the long-standing civil conflict across the country. Wildlife, birds and habitats face major threats from war, land abuse, desertification, deforestation, flooding and drought. There are a number of key game parks including Dinder National Park, Radom National Park, Royal Natal National Park and Southern National Park, all of which offer protected areas for wildlife, as well as nature reserves and protected areas across the country.

Culture

Sudan cultures include the following:
• Music plays a key role in traditional cultures as well as modern influences
• Food and drink plays an important role in rituals and social gatherings
• Arts and crafts have a wide range of influences
• Traditions and customs have a strong Islamic influence

Customs

Sudan customs allows for free import of the following by passengers over 20 years:
• 200 cigarettes, 50 cigars or 1 lb. of tobacco
• Reasonable quantity of perfume and toiletries for personal use
• Reasonable quantity and amount of gifts
• Firearms: by special permission from the Ministry of Interior

Health

As a third world country in the midst of major conflict and poverty, Sudan health care is very below standard and travellers are advised to take basic health precautions to ensure a healthy and risk-free travel experience. Travel insurance is essential, and a first aid box with basic medicine and supplies is highly recommended.

Innoculations

Sudan inoculations include the following:
• Hepatitis A & B
• Typhoid
• Yellow fever
• Meningococcus
• Polio
• Rabies
• Measles, mumps, rubella (MMR)
• Tetanus-diphtheria

Languages

Sudan languages include the following:
• Arabic (official)
• English (official)
• Nubian
• Ta Bedawie

Malaria

Sudan malaria medication includes the following:
• Mefloquine (Lariam)
• Doxycycline
• Atovaquone/proguanil (Malarone)

Money

Sudan money and banking information is as follows:
• Sudan's currency is the Sudanese Pound (SDG) and qirush or piastres
• It is best to travel with US Dollars or local currency
• Banking hours are from Saturday to Thursday 08h30 to 12h00
• Keep receipts when you exchange currency
• Credit cards and travellers cheques are seldom accepted

People

Sudan people include the following groups:
• Indigenous tribes 52%
• Arab 39%
• Beja 6%
• Foreigners 2%
• Other 1%

Phrase

Sudan local phrases in Arabic include the following:
• Greeting (peace be with you) - As-salaam alaykom
• How are you - Kaifa haloka or Keefak? (men) Kaifa halok (women)
• I am well (praise God) - al-Hamdo lillah
• How is the family? - Kaif al-usra?
• Yes - Ay

Plants

As you would expect from a country mostly comprised of desert, Sudan plant life is mostly shrub and grasslands, with acacia woodlands making up the largest vegetation of the country. In the more tropical south-west areas, broad-leaf woodlands can be found, while along the Nile River a number of date palms are found. Other plants within the country include elephant grass, rubber, cotton, ebony, papyrus, baobab and castor-oil plants.

Population

A July 2002 United Nations estimate puts the Sudanese population at 37,090,298.

Religion

Sudan religion includes the following groups:
• Islam 70%
• Indigenous beliefs 25%
• Christian 5%

Safety Tips

Sudan safety tips include the following:
• All but non-essential travel to Sudan is advised due to the high level of conflict and danger to tourists
• Avoid travel to the southern areas, especially Darfur and the areas near the border of Kenya
• Avoid large crowds and street demonstrations, which could turn violent
• The crime rate is fairly low, however basic precautions such as keeping valuables safe and out of sight are advised to prevent petty theft or pick pocketing
• Alcohol is forbidden in Sudan, and drinking could result in heavy punishment such as lashings

Transport

Sudan local transport options include:
• Car
• Bicycle
• Taxi
• Bus
• Train

Travel Books

Sudan recommended travel books include the following:
• Sudan: The Bradt Travel Guide by Paul Clammer
• Short History of Sudan by Dr. LL.M Mohamed H. Fadlalla
• Sudan Map by ITMB Publishing
• Sudan in Pictures by Francesca Davis Dipiazza
• Sudan: The Land and the People by Timothy Carney, Victoria Butler, Michael Freeman and Jimmy Carter

Visa Requirements

Sudan visa information includes the following:
• All foreign nationals require a visa to enter Sudan
• Visas are very expensive and difficult to acquire, especially from outside Africa
• A valid passport of 6 months minimum is required
• Return plane tickets plus proof of sufficient income during stay is also required
• Borders can close at any time and conflict is high around border areas

What To Buy

What to buy for Sudan safaris:
• Backpack or soft luggage plus a decent moneybag for valuables
• Sleeping bag and camping mattress is you are overlanding
• Sudan guide book and map plus Arabic phrasebook
• First aid box with basic supplies including malaria pills
• Travel kit with toilet paper, wet wipes, waterless hand-wash and a water bottle

What To Pack

What to pack for Sudan safaris:
• Lightweight, long sleeved clothing in loose natural fabrics
• Long skirts, long sleeves or t-shirts as well as head scarves for women
• Comfortable walking shoes as well as sandals
• Sunhat, sunglasses and high factor sunscreen
• Camera, batteries and spare film or memory card (permit is needed for cameras)

When To Go

Best time to visit Sudan:
• September to April is the best time to visit Sudan
• Northern temperatures are the hottest from April to July
• The heaviest rain falls between July and August in Khartoum
• Port Sudan has a small rainy season between October and December
• Haboob dust storms blow occasionally from July to August and November to January

Wildlife

Sudan wildlife is surprisingly diverse and includes some 287 species of mammals, including elephant, chimpanzee, dugong, monkey, bats, dolphin, pangolin, sand cat, African wild dog, lion, caracal, leopard, fox, jackal and many other species. A number of desert-dwelling reptiles and insects can also be found. There are a number of game parks and reserves, offering fairly good game viewing opportunities.

 

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Left quoteThe highlight of my trip had to be Gweru in Zimbabwe, it was my idea of paradise. So much to do there with the animals and the location of it was just beautiful!Right quote

Anne B (27) from Ireland

Left quoteThe trip was great! A very relaxed ride in a mokoro, followed by camping in the Okavango Delta and watching the animals on the islands was awesome!Right quote

Michael & Silke from Germany

Left quoteI loved every millisecond of the entire trip... Guess what I did in Swakopmund? I skydived out of a plane - woohoo was that AWESOME :-)Right quote

JoJo E (61) from Switzerland

Left quoteFinally home and had a great time…. I loved the shark diving, Sossusvlei and Himba people. Saw Lions, a Leopard, Elephants, Giraffes, everything really! Thanks for…Right quote

John E from Canada

Left quoteI did not believe in god till i visited Chobe National Park.Right quote

Juca from Uruguay

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