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Atar and the Oasis of Terjit

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As the security situation in Mali had worsened we were told that we would go through Senegal to enter Mali at a different border than originally planned. As it was weekend with embassies not opening before Monday we had a couple of extra days to kill which five of us decided we wanted to spend on an adventure up in the North of Mauritania. We went off early in the morning for a six hour bus ride to Atar, the city connecting the sights of the Terjit oasis, the old trade town of Chinguetti and the World’s second biggest Monolith called Ben Amera. As we got off our bus we noticed that there were two goats fit into bags and laying on top, something we discovered to be perfectly normal around this town.

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We found an auberge and asked the owner how to get around and then he said he would be able to take us there for a reasonable price. We cramped in seven people in his tiny car which punctured on the way but got us to the oasis of Terjit and back.
The Oasis was quite different to those I have visited before. It was shaded by a forest of palm trees in a mountain ally with two small rivers running into it, one with hot water and one with cold. The warm water was used for a bath tub that I took a bath in and the cold was running down the mountain walls and was refreshing to drink. When the sun set we were invited up on the nearby mountain top for some tea, dates and nuts while enjoying the view.