Flag of Mauritania

Mauritania

The Islamic Republic of Mauritania is a country in northwest Africa, bounded by Algeria to the north-east, Mali to the east and south-east, Senegal to the south-west, the Atlantic Ocean to the west and by Moroccan-annexed territory of Western Sahara on the north-west. It is named after the ancient Berber kingdom of Mauretania. The capital and largest city is Nouakchott, located on the Atlantic coast.

Intrepid travellers will love Mauritania if they're excited by venturing through towns half blanketed in sand, sipping tea with nomads under their colourful tents, crossing plateaus that resemble the moon and looking at prehistoric rock drawings and ancient Saharan architecture.

The biggest attraction Mauritania offers is the very desolation that keeps so many people away. For those with the true spirit of adventure, Mauritania is one of the least trodden spots in the world.

To see more than sand outside the small, staid capital of Nouakchott (which has its fair share of sand too) requires some planning and some luck. There are some good spots for fishing, bird watching and even surfing along the coast, and a few caravan towns in the interior that might be of interest.

Map of Mauritania