Nouakchott Challenge

The Nouakchott Challenge leaves the UK on October 9 2021 and heads South through Morocco, Western Sahara, and into Mauritania. The route travels mostly on tarmac roads, but the highlight is the two-day crossing of the Sahara Desert. The journey is approximately 3000 miles, and can comfortably be covered in 2 weeks (if all goes well). Those in a hurry have completed it in less, but that is missing the point, really. This is NOT a race. There is so much of interest en-route that it makes no sense to rush your travels. The entry fee per car is £399.

The Challenge really starts in Southern Spain, where hotel accommodation is provided. European teams start from here so there is no need to go to the UK. The Road Book provides the clues as the Participants bond over a beer (or two) in the hotel bar, and form into travelling groups for the journey South. Ahead lies Sand, Sea and... even more sand. Experience the heat of the desert sun, and the challenge of nursing a knackered car all the way to destinations that most people would only consider flying to.

This Challenge is only open to all cars: RHD & Left-Hand Drive vehicles. The route can be completed by almost any vehicle, and there is no distinct advantage to having 4×4 drive (except when others are stuck in the sand!).  We have no charity contacts in Mauritania so arrange for your car to be disposed of and it is then removed from your passport allowing you to leave the country. You can hitch off another team and fly home from Dakar which is a better option as you stay in St Louis Senegal which is a real highlight. Hitching works fine as there will be a good number of teams pressing on to Banjul who can help you.

There are security concerns in Mauritania but these have eased of late and tourists are returning in greater numbers. We aim to provide help through Mauritania with our man on the ground who will help with everything from car insurance to organising an offroad route with guide.

The fee is £399, per car, and the date is Oct 9 2021. Applications are now open but most will apply after March 2021 when the covid outlook is clearer. Please note that if you can afford 3 weeks then the Mali or Gambia options are preferable, but this route is for the time challenged. Thus return home from Dakar or Nouakchott, while other teams press on to their finishing lines. The oasis and palm groves of Terjit are worth seeing for those finishing in Nouakchott..

Click here for our Driving Challenges Application Form

Teams for 2019 were:

  • Gordon Mackie / Andrew Mackie / Graham Mackie
  • Steve & Richard Sidebotham
  • Seamus McHugh & Heather Nagel
  • Cyrille Djankoff/Isabelle Blanchott
  • Barbel Lochman Ritter & Gerhard Schilling
  • Chris Gulliver / Mark Hahnel
  • Daniel Church / Lawrence Church
  • Clive Grace & Ton
  • Colm Stynes
  • Sean Gleeson
  • Clive Grace
  • Stephen Howard
  • Philip & Christine Nash
  • Simon & Suneal Smith
  • Justice McDonald & Morian Joy
  • Hans Pfeiffer / Thomas Rothe
  • Andy & Bryan Rolfe
  • Jackie Matthews & Joseph Culver
  • Andy Tyler & Phil Suter
  • Pamela Keck / Jareb Steines