Algeria has land borders with Tunisia, Libya, Niger, Mali, Mauritania and Morocco. At the time of writing many of Algeria's borders were closed to tourists and the only possible crossings were at Taleb Larbi and Souq Ahras with Tunisia, In Guezzam with Niger and Deb Deb with Libya. On arriving at the border you will normally fill out an immigration card and a currency declaration form and get a passport stamp. If you're driving you'll also fill out a registration form for your vehicle and buy motor insurance.
With any of the following overland routes, you'll need a thorough update on the security situation before setting off. Anybody planning Saharan travel should check out the excellent website www.sahara-overland .com put together by Chris Scott.
There are two main overland routes you can take from Algeria to Libya: from Djanet on the Algerian side to Ghat on the Libyan side, or from Deb Deb on the Algerian side to Ghadames in Libya. At the time of writing it was not possible to cross into Libya via Ghat. However, if the border reopens anytime soon, shared taxis leave from Djan-et's main street to the border at the crack of dawn every day. At the time of research it was possible to cross into Libya from Deb Deb to Ghadames.
An invitation from a tour operator is necessary to obtain a visa for Libya and at the time of writing it was compulsory to travel with a guide if driving in the south. It is not possible to cross the border using public transport. If driving you'll need to get your passport stamped, rent number plates and buy a Libyan carnet and motor insurance.
The Malian border crossing is on the Route de Tanezrouft, running through Algeria and Mali, via Adrar and the border at Bordj-Mokhtar, ending in Gao. The security situation in northern Mali has been unstable for some time, meaning that the Tanzerouft trans-Saharan route has been effectively closed to travellers. The situation has improved somewhat recently, but the route is still considered dangerous and cannot be recommended. If you must undertake this route, you'll need to be accompanied to the border by an Algerian guide from a reputable tour company.
To get to Mali overland from Algeria your best bet is to go via Niger, crossing the border at Labbenganza, southeast of Gao. You can pick up a visa for Mali in Tamanrasset, but it is also possible to pick one up at the border for CFA15,000.
Crossing from Algeria into Mauritania is currently not advised due to safety concerns in that corner of the country.
All borders between Morocco and Algeria were closed at the time of writing.
The only viable border post between the two countries at the time of writing was between In Guezzam (Algeria) and Assamm-aka (Niger), a bit more than 400km south of Tamanrasset. If driving you will need an Algerian guide to accompany you to the border (or pick you up), as it is currently illegal for tourists to drive cars unaccompanied in the Algerian Sahara.
Formalities are carried out at the Algerian border post from where it's another 18km or so to the Nigerian authorities at Assamaka. To enter this region of Niger you'll need a licensed guide and a feuille de route (official itinerary), which you'll need to arrange through a Nigerian travel agency.
It is not recommended that you use public transport to cross the border into Niger. However, should the situation improve, getting to In Guezzam from Tamanrasset is reasonably straightforward. There are 4WD taxis that leave on a daily basis and it'll cost you DAI 500 for a seat. There's not much point doing this though as you'll then have to find a ride to the border post and then onwards to the Nigerian border post at Assamaka and from there to Arlit. From Arlit south, things are very straightforward though and buses run south to Agadez, Zinder, and Niamey. If there's a group of you its possible to hire a 4WD taxi in Tamanrasset to take you all the way to Arlit for around DA40,000.
Most overland travellers enter Algeria via Tunisia. Take the ferry from Tunis and then go overland from Nefta in Tunisia to El-Oued in Algeria via the border at Taleb Larbi. If coming by public transport, you can get a shared taxi from Nefta to the border post at Hazoua. It's a few kilometres between the Tunisian and Algeria border posts, but you should be able to get a lift across. After completing formalities at the Algerian side, there are shared taxis that go on to El-Oued. You can sometimes change money at the border, if not you'll be able to at Debila, the first main town after the border.
The other main border point with Tunisia is between Souq Ahras on the Algerian side and Ghardimao in Tunisia. On both sides the journey can usually be made by taxis collectifs (shared taxis), or there are direct air-conditioned buses between Tunis and Annaba or Constantine.
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