Don’t assume the list of dodgy countries and regions on p.24/25 of First-Time Africa will be as long (or as short) when you start your own trip, but at the time of writing at least nine countries were experiencing problems severe enough to give you pause for thought before contemplating a visit – either a visit of any kind, or a visit to a particular region. All except Somalia/Somaliland/Puntland are, however, covered in the country profiles in the book. Several of the countries highlighted in the list of those with purely regional problems are mainstream tourist destinations that are safe outside the regions in question.
Note that the “terrorist” threat in the Sahara (affecting Mauritania, Algeria, Mali and Niger) appears to be growing, although it is impossible to know how many active members Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (or AQIM) actually has, or how much its activities merge into simple banditry, kidnapping and extortion. There’s a post about safety in northwest Africa on the The Rough Guide to West Africa blog.
This page last edited 9 June 2011 © Richard Trillo and Emma Gregg