tall trees towering above the rest of the forest in Liberia

After having cleared the border yesterday, we had our first Liberia lesson. We slept in probably the worst, yet also the most overpriced hotel, of the trip so far, outside the town of Sanniquellie. Everything is ridiculously expensive, in Liberia. Not only hotels, a drink, a meal – they beat European prices, without ever coming close to European quality. Why, I have no idea, but the prices are the same for everybody, also the locals, most of whom must have great difficulty paying. Because daily life inside Liberia is not going to be hugely different from that inside Cote d’Ivoire, or inside Ghana, where prices were far more reasonable given the economy of these countries.

a tourist at the Liberia border

the bridge across the Cote d’Ivoire – Liberia border

wise messages from the Liberain government

a village, not very exciting

the countryside, green

and with lots of trees again, that’s not going to change

the police blocking the road with a rope, barrier stays open

We spend the day driving to Monrovia, a five hour drive, pretty uneventful. The countryside is not different from across the border, green and hilly, with some impressively tall trees towering over the rest of the vegetation. Rubber plantations: apparently rubber is a main export product for Liberia. It is a bit more chaotic, perhaps, also because of road construction. Villages are more chaotic, and perhaps there is also less equality.  We see mud huts next to stone houses, but also next to more elaborate villas, much bigger than the houses we normally see in this environment.

The police checks are back, we get stopped five times, at each district boundary they need to see the passports again. And here they write out the details in a big book, meticulously.

charcoal, not the best of cooking fuels

and a regular petrol station, petrol comes in bottles – small quantities being more affordable

these are empty barrels, no doubt

coming together for religion is a popular thing

in this case on the move for Jesus

washing in the river, another social event

Nearer to Monrovia the chaos increases, obviously. More industries along the road, more larger scale construction going on, more people – helped by political demonstrations and by religious marches, ‘On the move for Jesus’. It slows down our progress, but also increases the entertainment value of the trip, with everything happening outside the truck. Five hours turn into eight, but halfway the afternoon we finally arrive in Monrovia. Where we are likely to stay a few days, again, because some of the groups need more visas.

What we are going to do here is anybody’s guess. It is a little sad that there was no time for Lomé, no time for Accra and no time for Abidjan, but we now have two days to kill in what is probably West Africa’s least attractive city. Poor planning perhaps? The drawback of group travel.

Next: Monrovia

nearer Monrovia, efficient market stall in a wheel barrow

and small yards processing the laundry

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One Response to 8 April 2023 (2)

  1. Thea Oudmaijer says:

    You cannot make your own dicissions by group travel and that’s difficult for you?

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