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Cape Town to Cairo


81 Days

Ride Grade


Ride / Rest day

55 / 26

Sealed / Dirt

90% / 10%


16,500 km / 10,300 mi

Cape Town, South Africa to Cairo, Egypt: Ride this diverse and rugged continent that has drawn explorers and adventurers the world over for centuries and become part of the adventure

South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Tanzania, Kenya, Ethiopia, Sudan & Egypt: Africa is a continent of dreams, the stuff legends are made from and riding this incredibly diverse, sometimes challenging continent is what life changing experiences are all about. If incredible wildlife encounters, world-beating antiquities, ever-changing landscapes and utterly fascinating diversity of peoples, all experienced through a motorbike tour is your thing, then Africa is your continent.

In 2023 the African Expedition will run Cape Town to Cape Town - Please contact us for an updated itinerary

No info kit available

Dates and Pricing

18th Aug 2023 to 7th Nov 2023

Tour code: CTC/180823

from US$33490

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Rider / BYO Bike



Rider / BMW F750 GS



Rider / BMW F850 GS



Rider / BMW R1250 GS



Pillion / Support Vehicle



Tour Highlights



Joining Day: Your Cape Town airport transfer will take you directly to our joining hotel, ready for an early start tomorrow. Today you will meet your crew for your tour briefing and welcome dinner.

Week One: We start the expedition at the spectacularly located Cape Town then ride south via a stunning cost road, to stand on the very edge of this magnificent continent at Cape Agulhas where you cannot help but contemplate the upcoming 11 weeks of amazing riding across this ancient and wild land. Riding north we visit one of South Africa’s premier wine growing towns of Stellenbosch for an overnight stay at this university town. We enter the spectacular Namaqualand area in the Northern Cape province before crossing the Orange River in Namibia. We hit the dirt arriving at the renowned Fish River Canyon to explore the rim and watch a spectacular sunset at what is claimed to be the second largest canyon on earth. We visit the amazing Luderitz, a town being slowly consumed by the desert sands before riding into the Namib Desert seeing the week out at the absolutely wonderful Burgsdorf Goat Farm

Week Two: Leaving Burgsdorf it’s a short ride to the remote Namib-Naukluft National Park where we take the trip in to visit the famous Dune 45 and the staggeringly beautiful Deadvlei in this remarkably scenic desert region. Our next stop is Swakopmund for a rest day and the chance to try any of the numerous adrenalin activities from sand boarding to Parachuting or dune buggies in the many nearby sand dunes. Riding the Skeleton Coast we turn inland and stay overnight at the private game reserve at Omaruru where you can get up close and personal to a rhino and numerous other animals. We visit the Iconic ‘Etosha National park’ for an evening and morning of game viewing drives. We reach the Caprivi Strip and stay at a lodge scenically located on the Kayova River.

Week Three: From Kayova we continue onto the town of Maun, the gateway to the Okavango Delta. We take, Mokoro’s, “modeled on traditional dug out canoes” into the wilderness of the Okavango Delta for a half-day excursion and a flight over the delta (optional). Leaving Maun we visit Planet Baobab where we spend two nights amongst the Baobabs, our free day at Planet Baobab we shall embark on a wonderful Meerkat safari. A short trip will take us across to Botswana and the Chobe National Park where we will take an evening game cruise on the Chobe River, hoping to catch a glimpse of some of the 70,000 plus elephants in the park. We close the week out at the incomparable Victoria Falls; a sight you will not forget in a hurry, you will have a chance to visit the park and enjoy these amazing falls, and you will see why it is listed as one of the Seven Wonders of the World. You will also have the chance to partake in some of the many adrenalin activities in this great town.

Week Four: From Vic Falls we ride good paved roads amongst the forests through to the “Antelope Park” on the outskirts of Gweru. This beautiful establishment has a conservation focus on the protection and breeding of Lions with the plan to release them back into the wild to help reduce the decline of the Lion population. Riding east we visit the Great Zimbabwe Ruins, the palace for the Royal Monarch from the 12th to the 15th centuries. We eventually reach Zimbabwe’s capital of Harare where we spend two nights. We cross into Mozambique for a change of language and culture to stay at the town of Tete located on the mighty Zambezi River.

Week Five: Crossing into the beautiful verdant Malawi we reach the capital of Lilongwe for our two-night stay. We reach the shores of the spectacular Malawi staying two nights at the wonderful Ngala Bay Resort on the shores of Lake Malawi. Skirting the freshwater Lake Malawi we ride north and spend a night on the beach in rustic cabins at Chitimba Beach Camp before reaching the Malawi / Tanzania border. Riding through tea plantations we descend to Mbeya before arriving at our luxury accommodation at the Old Iringa farmhouse, a century old cattle station located in the Southern Highlands of Tanzania.

Week Six: We ride due north to Dodoma before reaching Arusha, a township spectacularly located in the shadow of snow capped Mt Meru. Arusha is also our jumping off point for our 3-day, 2 nights, all-inclusive Safari to the Ngorongoro Crater and epic Serengeti National park, an absolute must for any visit to Africa. The Serengeti is your best chance to see “The big five” game from the back of specially constructed safari vehicles led by experienced guides, this simply is the quintessential African experience and nothing compares to listening to the roar of lions from your permanent safari tent at night. From Arusha we ride into Kenya’s capital of Nairobi where we will stay four nights to refresh, repair and unwind.

Week Seven: We start the week off leaving Nairobi for a short ride north to Niavasha, on the shores of beautiful Lake Niavasha and site of the old home of Joy Adamson, of Born Free fame. We have a rest day to visit some of the local wildlife and enjoy the sounds of the hippos grazing at night only a short distance from our lodge. From Niavasha we continue onto the superb Solio Rhino Conservancy staying overnight at the wonderful Rhino Watch Lodge, a real highlight of the expedition. We spend our last night in Kenya at the remote Henrys Camp in Samburu territory then cross into the “Rooftop of Africa”, Ethiopia.

Week Eight: Via a series of Mountainous roads we reach the bustling capital of Ethiopia, Addis Ababa, where we spend two nights allowing us time to explore Africa’s largest open air market and the renowned fossilized Skeleton of “Lucy” and of course Africa’s finest coffee!! Leaving Addis we visit Ethiopia’s largest lake, Lake Tana, before we arrive at Lalibela, which is home to the Ethiopian Orthodox Christian churches that were built around the 12th and 13th century. These churches are unique in that they were carved from single monolithic rocks that only have the top surface on ground level, so the churches have been carved from the roof down. You have to see them to believe them.

Week Nine: From Lalibela we head north into the Simien Mountains National Park, this world heritage site is home to the Gelaba Baboon, Walia Ibex and the Ethiopian Fox, all extremely rare species. Aside from the wildlife, the scenery is jaw droppingly magnificent and the endless twisties are often the highlight or the entire route. We leave Ethiopia via Gondor and enter the mysterious, remote Sudan. Our personal cook team will meet us at the border and prepare an evening meal in our only wild camp during the entire expedition. It’s a great introduction into the culture of the super friendly Sudanese. We continue due north to Khartoum, a surprisingly modern city and the chance to visit the confluence of the White and Blue Niles

Week Ten: Leaving the Sudanese capital we ride due north into the Nubian Desert before stopping off at the superb Meroe Pyramids, staying at a wonderful permanent tented camp that overlooks the pyramids. Riding into the northern region of Sudan that is made up mostly of the Nubian Desert and is full of spectacular desert-scapes, star laden nights and glorious sunrises we visit the little known & remote Pyramids of Jebel Barkal, a deserted and empty landscape dotted with ancient pyramids that pre date the pyramids of Giza. Crossing the Nubian Desert we reach the remote dusty border town of Wadi Halfa before crossing the mighty Lake Nasser the following day and into legendary Egypt home to pharaohs & kings. We overnight at the outstanding antiquity of Abu Simbel before riding onto Aswan located on the Nile, to see our penultimate week out

Week Eleven: We start our last week in Aswan where we take a leisurely Felucca ride on the majestic Nile River observing a Middle Eastern lifestyle and soaking up the culture from Pyramids to modern day Mosques. Leaving Aswan we follow the Nile to Luxor where we will visit the 3500-year-old Temple of Karnak and the awesome Valley of the Kings & Queens before riding the Red Sea resort town of Hurghada where we spend two nights in a 5 star resort. Reaching Cairo we have plenty of time to visit the legendary Pyramids and Sphinx at Giza & the unbelievable Egyptian Museum. Our last ride will be to Alexandria founded by Alexandria he Great where we spend our last two nights, allowing us time to clear our bikes from Customs and visit the WW2 cemeteries nearby at El Alamein and celebrate the end to this most epic trans African ride.

Departure day: Spend some time in Cairo or fly home, the choice is yours.



    Not Included



      All accommodation is twin or double share, if you would like a single room there will be a single supplement: US$ 3,840
      (please note, you will likely to be required to share a room and perhaps a bathroom at least once on this trip).

      Our motorcycles are insured and have a damage excess of US$ 6000, you can reduce the excess by taking advantage of our Excess Reduction Policy: US$ 20 per day


      Ride Details book now JOIN THE WAITLIST

      Ride Profile

      Occasional stock, wildlife and constant pedestrians are a hazard on African roads, some countries are worse than others. The road conditions vary wildly on this expedition.
      The roads in Egypt are generally reasonable tarmac, but the traffic in major centers is busy and at times hectic. If we take the Desert road in Sudan there will be sections of loose sand and gravel, but further south is good tarmac and sparse traffic. Ethiopian roads can be good tarmac, as well as some reasonable gravel roads. In the Simien Mountains we will come across some rough smaller dirt roads. Kenyan pavement varies greatly, from potholed, rutted to quite well constructed rural roads, the most challenging section will be the first 500 km / 312 mi in the north, as the roads are potholed, rocky, dirt and gravel that can become mud if recent rains have fallen. Tanzania, has reasonably good tarmac in most places, the biggest hazard being the local bus drivers. Malawi has reasonably good roads with some great twisties around the lake, very little traffic. Zimbabwe and Botswana have good, well made paved roads and Namibia has excellent pavement and a lot of very well made gravel roads as well as some limited sand, while South Africa will be all great pavement.
      Please note all riders should have had some experience in off road riding, not extreme but some, an off road course in your country pre-tour is highly recommended

      Tour Start/End

      Tour Start: Cape Town, South Africa
      Tour End: Cairo, Egypt


      The challenge with Africa is that it is such a long continent from South to North that it covers a lot of weather zones, our itinerary has attempted to get the best of the seasons in as many countries as possible but will hit some less than optimal weather conditions at some point. We shall be leaving Cairo early March and will be anticipating warm, clear weather through Egypt then warmer weather in Sudan before cold weather at the higher elevations of Ethiopia. Kenya & Tanzania will be WET but rarely does it rain all day, we are at the end of the “long rains”. The rains will have ended in Botswana & Namibia and temps will be pleasant, it will also be beautiful and green with new born wildlife and predators nearby. South Africa will be perfect riding weather with little rain and cool temperatures

      Important Information

      • You will need to be in Cape Town prior to start of expedition to collect your bikes.
      • All riders must have a valid motorcycle license and at least two years riding experience.
      • It is a requirement that all clients have appropriate insurance for this type of expedition. 
      Ride Grade

      Ride Distance
      16,500 km / 10,300 mi


      Sealed / Dirt
      90% / 10%


      • 81 nights Hotels/Lodges/camp huts up to 4 star
      • 1 or 2 nights of camping may be required
      • A flexible attitude is needed as services in these extremely remote regions may not be what you are accustomed to.
      • All accommodation is on a twin share basis. If you are traveling alone we will pair you up with another solo traveler.However, if you prefer single accommodation a single supplement is available: US$ 3,840.00 (please note that you may be required to share a room and a bathroom at least once on this trip)


      • On every day of the tour we include breakfast: 81 Breakfasts
      • On ride days we provide a picnic lunch that we prepare ourselves from our mobile kitchen, on occasion we will lunch at local restaurants: 55 Lunches
      • We include mentioned dinners reliable restaurants we have used many times before: 20 Dinners




      BMW R1200GS
      • 1200cc Twin cylinder boxer engine
      • Seat height 90cm (35In) Approx.
      • Inner Leg Curve 195cm (78in) Approx
      • Heated Hand Grips
      • BMW style accessory power socket
      • Top Box
      • Engine protection bars
      • Bash plate
      • Dual purpose tyres



      BMW F800GS
      • 800cc Parallel twin cylinder engine
      • Seat height 88cm (34In) Approx.
      • Inner Leg Curve 193cm (76in) Approx
      • Heated Hand Grips
      • BMW style accessory power socket
      • Top Box
      • Engine protection bars
      • Bash plate
      • Dual purpose tyres 

      BMW F700GS
      • 800cc (de-tuned) Parallel twin cylinder engine
      • Seat height 82cm (32In) Approx.
      • Inner Leg Curve 181cm (71in) Approx
      • Heated Hand Grips
      • BMW style accessory power socket
      • Top Box
      • Engine protection bars
      • Bash plate
      • Duel purpose tyres
      • Low seat option available (79cm / 31 in)

      book now JOIN THE WAITLIST


      Accidents happen, luggage is lost and tour or flight cancellations can occur, so it is our policy that all participants of Compass Expeditions tours have an appropriate level of travel insurance to cover the unforeseen. This is not only compulsory when joining our tours, but it makes sense.

      If choosing your own insurance – for motorcycle tours it is crucial the insurance policy you choose will offer a policy for riding a motorcycle OVER 250cc (including our bikes). This is a critical point to ensure when purchasing a policy.

      Our experienced In-house travel team are happy to help with getting you the right insurance for your tour and for any other travel you might be doing before or after. Contact our in-house travel team.

      So you’ve read all the info and think you’re ready?...

      book now JOIN THE WAITLIST