Hiker's trail

From 1538 $ or 1261 € (course May 2021) $ per person, for 4 people

Level: Expert

Difficulty:

The "Hikers" trip will introduce you to the terrestrial fauna and flora of the mountainous areas of Djibouti through two superb hikes between three charming camps in the Goda Mountains. Bring a pair of walking shoes!

This tour will also allow you to discover the "must see" places of Djibouti, first of all the city of Djibouti itself, but also those of Obock and Tadjourah.

You will be captivated by the colourful rings of Lake Assal, well described by the writer-adventurer J Kessel.

You will spend an unforgettable night at the Abbot Lake where you will enjoy the amazing sunset and sunrise in the middle of a lunar landscape where the first version of the movie "Planet of the Apes" was shot.

A pirogue ride will take you into the Godoria mangrove north of Ras Bir and the eponymous lighthouse.

You will have a picnic at Le Goubet in front of the worrying Devil's Island.

With a simple mask and snorkel, you will enjoy the wonderful spectacle of the underwater fauna and flora at Ras Ali, Korambado, and Maskali Island; unless you prefer to snorkel in the deep waters around the nearby island of Musha.

And maybe you will have the chance to meet the whale shark, in season, off Arta... don't forget your fins, mask and snorkel!

 

   Djibouti 
Centre-North-South
  Sea & Forests
  Itinerant stay
  12d/11n

DAY 1 : Arrival day - Visit to the DECAN shelter

Arrival Djibouti city - transfer from the airport to Africorne Travel accommodation

Africorne Travel offers you a comfortable air-conditioned apartment to stay overnight, where you can have a breakfast prepared according to your wishes. Of course, if you prefer, hotel accommodation can be booked.

Lunch at the restaurant in the port of Djibouti

Afternoon: visit of the DECAN refuge. It is an animal park near Djibouti, where animals from Djibouti and also from other parts of Africa live.

Evening meal: restaurant in Djibouti

Night: Africorne Travel apartment

 

DAY 2  Excursion and beach in Arta - 55 kms

Morning: Hiking from the hikers' house adapted to the level of each one. For the more experienced, walk to the beach (about 2 hours)

Lunch: picnic on the beach of Arta

AfternoonFins, mask and snorkel on the drop off of Arta beach

In season from mid-November to January The whale shark outing option is possible; although they are sociable animals, it is not possible to arrange a meeting with whale sharks; therefore an encounter with them, even if probable, is never certain.

Return to Djibouti at the end of the afternoon

Evening meal: restaurant in Djibouti

Night: Africorne Travel apartment

 

DAY 3 From Djibouti to Day camp via Lake Assal - 230 kms

MorningDeparture from Djibouti early in the morning. About 40 km before reaching the Assal lake, we will stop to admire the imposing landscape of the Dimbio canyon nicknamed the "Grand Canyon of Djibouti" ....

A few kilometres further on, another stop at the stele of J. Borrel, a French magistrate whose partially burnt body was found at the bottom of the cliff on the morning of 18 October 1995. The "Borrel affair" has poisoned the relations between the Djiboutian and French states for several years.

Then we leave the road to take the "access ramp" to Lake Assal. Located 153 meters below sea level, Lake Assal is one of the saltiest lakes in the world (over 300 grams of salt per liter of water). This fact, combined with the high evaporation rate due to the intense heat, explains why salt has been mined here for hundreds of years. No living organism can survive in the waters of Lake Assal. If the weather is good, we will be able to swim there; plastic shoes are necessary to avoid hurting ourselves on the sharp salt crystals.

The very high temperatures that prevail in this place do not make it very hospitable, but its legendary beauty, described in particular by the adventurer writer J. Kessel, makes it a site not to be missed.

Lunch: picnic on the beach at Le Goubet in the shade of a hard stand, facing Devil's Island

Afternoon: we will visit the lava field located between Assal and Goubet, where we will observe the rift fault on a few meters, which at this place is only a few centimeters wide.

Then we take the superb Day trail leading to the camp at 1500 m altitude.

The Day camp is equipped with Daboytas (traditional huts) arranged on a nicely terraced area with trees. Its sanitary facilities are very satisfactory. From this place, it is possible to make excursions in the eponymous primary forest or to hike to the other camps of the Goda Mountains, provided you are a good walker. This camp is also the ideal starting point to go to the Abourma rock engravings site.

Evening meal and night at the Day camp

 

DAY 4 Trek to Ditillou camp

Morning: Hike from the Day camp to the Dittilou camp (about 4 hours) - possible link by 4×4 vehicle

The Ditillou camp is made up of about twenty daboytas (traditional huts) built on a terraced area. Located in the middle of a green setting at an altitude of more than 600 m, the place breathes serenity. The sanitary facilities are very clean and functional. A colony of green monkeys ensures the animation. Hiking is practiced here. It is possible to join the other camps of the Goda Mountains if you are a good walker.

Lunch at Dittilou (watch out for the green monkeys)

Afternoon: Visit to the village of Dougoum near the Dittilou camp

Evening meal at the camp and night: Dittilou camp

 

DAY 5 Trek to Bankoualé camp

Morning: Hike from Dittilou to Bankoualé (about 4 hours) - transport possible in a 4×4 vehicle - Superb "roller coaster" ride.

The Bankoualé camp is located in a green setting on the hillside. It is a charming place, where a pleasant coolness reigns; it is famous for its terraced gardens. The village is in front of the camp on the other side of the wadi that must be crossed to reach the camp. Shortly before Bankoualé, there is the village of Ardo with its craft cooperative and its school.

Lunch in Bankoualé

Afternoon: Visit the village Ardo

Evening meal and night at the Bankoualé camp

 

DAY 6 Visit the gardens of Bankoualé and drive to Ras Ali via Randa - 60 kms

Morning: walk in the gardens of Bankoualé

Visit of Randa with its impressive strangler fig tree before reaching Tadjourah.

The camp of Ras Ali is located after Tadjourah, at the very edge of the sea, at the end of a track of about ten kilometers. The sanitary facilities are rudimentary for a European, but very adequate and clean. The food is excellent and the site is a paradise for snorkeling. You can also practice kayaking.

Lunch at Ras Ali camp

Afternoon: swimming, snorkeling, kayaking on Ras Ali beach

Evening meal and night at Ras Ali camp

 

DAY 7   From Ras Ali to Ras Bir - 100 kms

Morning: visit to Tadjourah

Lunch at Ras Ali camp

Afternoon Departure to Ras Bir camp after Obock

In Obock we will visit the house of Governor Lagarde, a vestige of the French colonization that started in Obock and we will go to the marine cemetery which gathers the graves of French soldiers who died of fevers between 1885 and 1889.

Evening meal and night at the Ras Bir camp located on the seaside, less than ten kilometres after Obock

 

DAY 8   Walk in the mangrove of Godoria and return to Djibouti (1)

Morning: visit of the Ras Bir lighthouse - don't go too fast, more than 200 steps have to be climbed before reaching the top.

Then we continue the trail north to the Godoria mangrove where a pirogue ride awaits us.

Return to Ras Bir camp for lunch

Afternoon: return trip to Djibouti (1)

Evening meal in a restaurant in Djibouti

Night: Africorne Travel apartment

 (1) depending on the day of the week, it is possible to organize a return trip by ferry

 

DAY 9 On the planet Lake Abe - 200 kms

Morning:  From Djibouti to Dikhil we take an asphalt road on 120 kms; it is the main road taken by Ethiopian truckers from the port of Djibouti to Addis Ababa, for the import of goods necessary to the economy of the country.

We will cross the semi-desert expanses of the Petit Bara and the Grand Bara where we will observe mirages, whirlpools and .... gazelles with a little luck.

Lunch at La Palmeraie restaurant in Dikhil

Afternoon After Dikhil, we leave the road to travel 80 km of sometimes sandy tracks. We will cross the villages of As Eyla and Toubacouta. At the end of the journey we will be able to see warthogs.

Abe Lake is a border site between Ethiopia and Djibouti, with a unique panorama. Its limestone chimneys offer a lunar landscape, very popular with photographers from all over the world, especially at sunrise and sunset. The first version of the movie "Planet of the Apes" was shot at Lake Abe

The sulphurous scents escaping from the numerous fumaroles gave the lake its name. Indeed, Abe means "rotten"!

The unique landscapes of the chimneys, which can reach 50 metres in height, would almost make us forget the presence of the lake, on whose shores pink flamingos can be observed!

Arrival at the Abé lake camp in the evening, to watch the sunset

Evening meal and night at the Lake Abe camp

 

DAY 10    Lake Abe - Djibouti - 220 kms

MorningWe will have to get up very early to see the sunrise in the middle of the chimneys! Then we will try to approach the pink flamingos at the edge of the lake, which from year to year withdraws more and more far. We will also observe some boiling water sources.

Then we take the way back to Djibouti.

Lunch in Arta at Sunny Hill or at the Maison des Randonneurs run by an ex-French legionnaire, who fell in love with the country and is a real celebrity in Djibouti.

Arta is a charming locality, "perched" at 600 meters above sea level, where the notables of Djibouti have a second home to enjoy its mild temperature, 4 or 5 degrees lower than Djibouti.

Arrival in Djibouti at the beginning of the afternoon, which will allow us to visit the city: in particular the animated sectors such as the Mahamoud Harbi square, starting point of the public transport, the Menelik square, the Ethiopia street, the shopping street of the Caisses...

Evening meal: Restaurant in Djibouti

Night: Africorne Travel apartment

 

DAY 11 Day trip to Moucha or Maskali Islands

With only a few inhabitants, these two coral islands located at the entrance of the Gulf of Tadjourah are ideal for relaxation and idleness.

We reach these islands after only 30 minutes by boat.

With a bit of luck, we will meet some dolphins...

Snorkelers will prefer to observe the underwater fauna and flora at Maskali.

For an additional fee of 30 $ per person, a day of scuba diving with oxygen tank can be offered on Moucha Island.

Lunch will be taken on the island.

Return to Djibouti at the end of the afternoon

Evening meal: restaurant in Djibouti

Night: Africorne Travel apartment

 

Day 12   Relaxation day in Korambado -15 kms

Snorkeling on the program for this day

Lunch in a straw hut on the beach

You need a good 4×4 vehicle to go down to Korambado. Not far from Djibouti, the site is interesting for snorkeling (east side). Some "local color" straw huts, installed on the seafront, provide the shade and the meal necessary to spend a very pleasant day.

Evening meal in a restaurant in Djibouti. On the menu Yemeni fish; the fish you choose yourself, is cut into two slices and placed in a circular oven....

In the evening transfer to Djibouti airport

 

 

Note: unpredictable events can lead us to modify the program (ex: flooded wadi on the way).

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