Mauritania Tour – December 6-13, 2024

  • I’m also running my inaugural EYE OF THE SAHARA ULTRA MARATHON in Mauritania in December 2024. If you want to do that, plus the train, book that trip HERE instead.

So we’re doing it again! My yearly group trip to one of the coolest, and least visited countries in the world, Mauritania! Featuring the epic Iron Ore train, where we hitch a ride for 800km through the night and across the depths of the Sahara! We’re back in December 2024, so COME JOIN ME!


For you guys who have traveled with me on my crazy tours to Socotra, Yemen, Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan etc etc you guys know I love this country. And riding the iron ore train is one of the most epic experiences on our beautiful planet. Not only that, but riding off road, meeting nomadic tribes, camping the desert, and meeting the coolest group of travel weirdos ever makes this a trip of a lifetime. So come join!

iron ore train
Riding the famous iron ore train
tour to mauritania

So why now?

I come back to Mauritania time and time again, normally twice a year. I LOVE IT. It’s a privilege to be able to help show you guys such a gorgeous place, off the beaten track.

And for those of you who don’t know me, and you have stumbled across some weird Irish guy running trips in even more obscure countries, then welcome! And get ready for the kind of trip you have never experienced before.

Adventurous, chaotic, one to tell the Grand Kids, and always oh, so fun. And, you’ll get to hang out with an awesome group of people who are also interested in this crazy form of travel.

So without chatting any more nonsense, let’s get into it:

Mauritania Tours
That’s me! And it’ll be you too soon….

Why Visit Mauritania? (And where even is it?!)

Mauritania is a country in West Africa. It’s south of Morocco (and Western Sahara for any county counters out there), and north of Senegal.

Why visit Mauritania? Well, I’ve got a treat for you! I love Thailand, I’ve chosen it as my adopted home. I have friends in Mexico, Bali, Portugal, etc who say the same. And these are places that are great to holiday in. But travel? REAL travel? Those days have gone. Mass tourism. Bloggers (sorry!), YouTubers, etc. It’s hard to find genuine epic travel experiences in our beautiful world.

Well, for people who love REAL travel, Mauritania is one of the final frontiers. One of the least visited countries in the world, home to ancient holy cities, legendary nomadic tribes, sand dunes in the true Sahara, and one of the most hardcore travel experiences on the planet – the IRON ORE TRAIN.

You can check where Mauritania is on Google Map here:

Ok, so Tell Me About This Iron Ore Train in Mauritania?!

I wrote a blog post about the Mauritania Iron Ore Train here. So first, I should say this is quite a hardcore experience. It’s uncomfortable, it’s filthy, it’s disorganized, there’s a chance the train never arrives, it’s in the middle of the Sahara desert, it’s hot during the day, and freezing during the night, it’s loud, and despite all that, no BECAUSE of all that, it’s one of the best things I’ve ever done in my life.

Read the blog post for more info, but the long story short? The longest train in the world runs through Mauritania, through the depths of the Sahara desert. It goes to the iron ore mines in the centre of the Sahara, then returns, full of Iron Ore and runs all the way to the Atlantic Ocean, to the port town of Nouadhibou. We will meet the train at the halfway point, literally climb onto one of the carriages, dig a little whole in the iron ore to rest in, and ride that baby 400km (250 miles) through the night, under the stars, until we reach the Atlantic some point the next morning.

tours to mauritania
That’s also me! You sit atop the iron ore and try (and most likely fail) to get comfortable for the night

My Mauritania Tour Itinerary

DAY 1: Arrival.

Arrive in Nouakchott anytime. Your guide will holding a briefing in the hotel, then your first group dinner to meet the other hard-core adventurers about to embark on this madness.


I’m also organising a 120-150km ULTRA MARATHON in Mauritania at the same time as this tour (both trips run concurrently). You’ll have a local guide (and possibly a western guide, TBC) for the first few days of this trip, then on Day 4 – Dec 9th – you’ll arrive in Chinguetti and watch us finish the ultra marathon, and then both trips will be on the same schedule for riding the iron ore train together!). You can join me on that trip too if you’re also a psychopath who likes to torture themselves with fitness challenges.


DAY 2: Nouakchott tour

It’s your first full day in Mauritania’s hectic capital. Culture shock. This is what travel is all about. We’ll check out the city, a museum, the administrative center.

Lunch on the beach and a visit to the local fish market. One last dinner & sleep in civilization before we head off to the desert.

Nouakchott market

DAY 3: Terjit Oasis

We hit the road today. 450km, so 5 or 6 hours inwards into the Sahara. We’ll reach one of Mauritania’s absolute gems, the Terjit Oasis. Palm groves, cooling water. Like something from a cartoon as a kid. Here we’ll bed down in our tented accommodation, have dinner under the stars and soak up just where we are in the world.

Terjit oasis
Terjit oasis

DAY 4: Vallee Blance, Atar and the finish of the Eye of the Sahara Ultramarathon!

An action-packed day. We start with hitting up the White Valley, via the epic Tifoujar mountain pass. Reaching the Oasis of Toungad, where we’ll stop for lunch. Before heading deeper into the Mhairett Oasis later in the afternoon.

Soon we’ll reach the Ancient Dynasty of Azougoui where we can visit the ruins and chill in the Palm Groves. We’ll then head to Chinguetti, a 2 hour drive, to try to get there in time for the ultra marathon runners to finish the EYE OF THE SAHARA ULTRA, where you’ll meet Johnny (half-dead from the 150km run!)

DAY 5: Chinguetti (UNESCO World Heritage Site)

We’ll join groups – my ultra marathon crew and your group, where first, we check out a little-known secret of Mauritania, the Rupestrian Paintings in Agrour Cave dating back THOUSANDS of years. Then we’ll move on to Fort Sangenne.

Up next is Islam’s 7th Holiest City, and a World Heritage Site, Chinguetti. We’ll visit the Medina, the Ancient City, followed by the ancient Mosque and library of the old city.

We’ll have sunset in the sand dunes of Chinguetti and sleep just outside the town itself.

chinguetti tour

DAY 6: The Main Event.

What can I say? Today we make our way towards the depths of the Sahara, to Choum, and the train tracks that mark our pick-up spot.

After lunch, we’ll prepare ourselves. Lined up, and relaxing. Waiting for the noise of the train approaching. At this point, we’ll hustle. Get your bags ready, your calf muscles prepped. Once the train pulls in, we’ll be hopping up the carriage, 4 to a carriage, to claim our spot for the night. Digging holes in the corners to bed down in. Photo time, earphone time, goggle time. It’s a beautiful, winding, loud, and epic journey through the Sahara. I don’t want to say too much, you’ll experience it soon enough. Just epic.

Mauritania Tour
Join me on my Mauritania Tour!

DAY 7: Arrival in Nouadhibou

Early arrival into the port town of Nouadhibou. Here we’ll have an early check-in to our hotel for a WELL EARNED shower. You’ll be filthy from the iron ore. I mean filthy!

If we have time after the train, we’ll pay a visit to the old mining district, have lunch on the Bay of Nouadhibou, and dinner & overnight in the hotel. And maybe another secret bar to celebrate. Watch this space!


DAY 8: That’s all folks. Hometime.

That’s the end of the line. For the intrepid, you’ll overland north to Western Sahara. For those with return flights from Nouakchott, we have a bus transfer back to the Capital City, it takes about 6 hours or so. Depending on your flight time, you can stay an extra night or leave the same day, we can help organise that stuff for you.

What’s Included in the Mauritania Tour and What’s not?


  • All transport within the itinerary
  • Airport transfer upon arrival
  • All accommodation for the 7 nights (well 6 nights, plus a night on top of a pile of Iron Ore on a moving train!)
  • All meals (except dinner on the first night)
  • All activities and entrance fees
  • Local guides
  • A Western Guide from Day 4 (me!)
  • Price based on per-person sharing (but don’t worry, you can come solo and I’ll pair you up, most people who travel with me come solo).
  • Travel Bragging rights for the rest of your life


tour to mauritania
Filthy after the train!

Mauritania Tour Dates

December 6-13, 2024.

My Mauritania Tour will start on Day 1 on Friday December 6th, 2024 at 6pm in the lobby of our starting hotel. And finish in Nouakchott on Friday 13th when we arrive back in Nouakchott around 3pm.

7 nights/8 days. Please note we drive back from Nouadihbou on the morning of Sunday 29th, so we won’t reach Nouakchott until the afternoon. So only fly late that night, or the next day.

Mauritania Tour Pricing

The cost of the trip is $2349USD.

  • $250 non-refundable deposit to secure your spot to be paid
  • Full payment due 90 days before Day 1. That means full payment is due before September 6th 2024.


You can DM me on, or email me on

Even easier, you can book using the green ‘book now’ button here:

Or, you can go HERE to book too:

FAQs about My Mauritania Tour

Is It Safe to Travel to Mauritania?

Perfectly safe. Islamaphobia is rife, but the people of Mauritania welcome foreigners with open arms. Big smiles, offers of local tea, wide-eyed smiles. For any of you guys who have been to places like Yemen before, expect the same kind of warmth. It’s beautiful.
That being said, many of the older generation in Mauritania have outdated views on women traveling alone and on LGBTQ issues. Everyone is welcome to travel with me, but we would keep our partner choices personal. One day the world will catch up, I’m sure.

Can Americans/Canadians/Irish etc Visit Mauritania?

Mauritania is open to every nationality.

Can Woman Travel to Mauritania?

100% yes. But much easier to travel with a tour group and guide (like us!)

What about getting a visa to Mauritania?

It used to be a nightmare when I first went. Now it’s available in the airport for 55 euro or $60USD. Yaaaay!

How Would I Get To Mauritania to Start the Trip?

You can fly directly into the Capital City, Nouakchott. Normally you fly via either Paris or Casablanca. Tunis and Istanbul are also possible. If you need help with flights, let me know, it’s pretty easy.

What about refunds if I can’t go?

The deposit is non-refundable, and full payment is due 3 months before the trip. After full payment has been made, no refund is possible.

What if there is a problem with the Iron Ore Train?

The train runs everyday, but there are no tickets to hop on board. So there is always a chance that the train doesn’t come! This has never happened with my guy, but just to be aware if there is a problem with the train, it’s out of our control and we’ll take other transport to continue our trip. Rest assured, this should ‘t happen, don’t worry!

What is the accommodation/level of luxury like?

This is an adventure trip. Like real adventure. We’ll be staying in tented accommodation in the desert and basic guest houses in the city, and the night on the train is as basic as it gets! Wifi will be tough to come by, if at all available, and hot water would be a welcome surprise. Certainly don’t expect it. If you want adventure, you’re in the right place. If you’re after what G Adventures or Intrepid Travel like to call ‘Adventure Trips’ then this kind of trip isn’t quite for you. No shame in that 🙂

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