The African Family Challenge Trek

London to Johannesburg OVERLAND 4×4 TREK via East Africa over 150 days, departing 19th January 2013.

We are doing a Trans-Africa Overland 4×4 TREK from London to Johannesburg via East Africa, with myself, Nic Andela, my wife Nicky, our 2 year old daughter baby Lily and my father Sib Andela, in aid of raising money for St John’s Hospice in the UK and Fatima House in South Africa. We were initially going to go down West Africa, but the recent kidnappings and problems in Mali we have decided to change our route for the East. It will no doubt be a challenging journey getting the whole family home safely.

It’s all for a good cause so if you have some pennies, both these organisations would greatly appreciate you donations:

St John’s Hospice – delivers extraordinary care and expertise in the field of palliative medicine. They do it free of charge to patients who may be facing a variety of life-threatening illnesses, including cancer, motor neuron disease, renal failure, respiratory disease, HIV and MS. [http://www.justgiving.com/exploreafrica2day]

Fatimah House – The Good Shepherd Catholic Sisters are a worldwide congregation who work towards empowering and healing girls and women in marginalized and abusive situations. Read more about the House


Many thanks

Nic Andela

26 Responses to About

  1. stan says:

    am enjoying your diary.I do same route in August.Interested to hear about Turkey to Israel to Jordan as am not keen to do ferry to Port Said.Please let us know how Sudan border goes re Israel stamps in passport

    • Hi Stan,

      No problem, I’m creating an Overland Bread crumb trail diary with all the info you require for downloading off exploreafrica2day. Yip, having an israel stamp will prevent you from acquiring a sudan visa. But you can ask for a stamp on a separate sheet, it’s standard practise there and it’s no trouble so there will be no sign that you traveled through Israel and getting your visa will be easy.
      We’ll list contacts in both Egypt and Sudan to sort your cars out, an absolute must in both countries were little english is spoken and where knowing the systems are essential to streamline your passage.
      All fun,


  2. stan says:

    Thanks Nic.The contacts would be great.Do the Israelis not stamp the carnet which Sudan can see ? There are very differing views on some of the overland sites.

    • Hi Stan

      You don’t need a carnet for Israel! So you don’t have that problem! In fact you don’t need a Carnet for Jordan either, though it is covered, esp. the Eilat Jordan border. I think it’s a great route, Taba seems to be a problem though…

      Speak later,


  3. Michiel Ter Haar says:

    Hi Nic

    Glad to see you are in Africa and on your trip. Was wondering what happened to you. Trip looks great with awesome photos!! Send me your e-mail address. Enjoy yourself!!!!

    Michiel Ter haar

  4. Pearl Harris says:

    Hi Nic,

    I am enthralled by your progress. You must be nearly home now! Well done — what an adventure!! You have to write a book next. My husband, Ian sadly died on 22 Feb. Only recently he asked me how you were doing in Africa — he helped me a lot with all the countries’ research and was so interested in your progress… Take care on your last lap!

    • DEAR Pearl

      I’m so sorry for your loss, you must have had some really difficult months…

      Where have you decided to live now?

      We are in Dodoma at the moment and about to move onto Morogoro tomorrow and then onto Zambia.

      Keep in touch,


  5. Pieter Habets says:

    Hey family,
    your trip looks great. I was wandering if you’re planning to sell the car in south africa? I might be interested, as i want to drive in the opposite direction back to amsterdam.
    kind regards

    • Hi Pieter

      Thanks for your comment, and the car is a Japanese import from the UK and hence a right hand vehicle.
      Will this work for you?

      Nic A

    • I bought the following for the Toyota and the trip:

      High lift jack
      x4 High lift points, welded to the chassis
      Lifesaver jerry can water purifier
      Godigear roof awning and large tent room
      Rear drawer system
      Fridge roller and attachment
      Rear locker
      Duel Battery Monitor and Contr
      Intelligent Solenoid
      Odyssey Batteries x2
      Front Springs
      Rear Springs
      Front Shock Absorbers
      Rear Shock Absorbers
      X3 rear ELEC Din sockets – on aux 12v battery
      National Lunar fridge
      Jerry can holders x6
      Jerry Cans x5
      Front runner roof carrier
      Roof rack steel table
      ROO 100w spot lights
      tow bar
      50l water tank
      5 Toyo and steel modular rims (easy more than 40000kms, more around 10mm)
      Camping chairs x2
      x2 Wolf storage boxes
      x3 ammo storage boxes
      Chain steering lock
      Reflector tape as per african std

      So it could work for you to drive in the opposite direction, what is your budget?

      • Hi Pieter, thanks, I’ve written you a comprehensive email + images this evening, can we speak regarding the matter where we can both help each other out and I offer you the full car / travel package with total reliability?
        Nic Andela

  6. stan says:

    We should be home end october.You will have to adapt it for 3 adults.Keep in touch.
    Did you get through Egypt and Sudan OK after Israel ?

  7. stan says:

    Sorry Nic I live in cape Town so will not be going anywhere for a while !

  8. Gav says:

    Hi Nic,

    Please get in touch if you would like to do a guest post on our website to help promote what you’re doing.
    We have a section on ‘adventure families’ with the aim of inspiring other people with kids to get out there and do something. It would be great to have you featured.

    Drop me an email if you are interested.

    Many thanks,

    • No problem Gav.What did you have in mind? nic

      • Gav says:

        That’s great Nic.
        If you e-mail me something about who you guys are, what you decided to do, why you decided to do it, any concerns you had as a parent, and something about your adventures and things you’ve seen on your travels, that will make a great story.
        Also include information for a ‘Bio’ about yourself that we can link back to your blog (or to wherever you want).
        We look for about 500 words and ask for a few pictures, which we can use in the post and to help promote.
        I think you have a fantastic story to tell. It’s really inspiring taking on that journey with kids.

  9. Hi Guys – inspiring trip! 🙂
    I know it was a year ago that you travelled in Ethiopia, but I wondered if you’d have some advice for us. We are heading north from Kenya, hoping to drive our Defender through Ethiopia in about two weeks time, from Moyale to Metema (into N Sudan). We have been on the road for four years (www.goingoverland.com), and have just been denied a visa at the Ethiopian embassy in Nairobi (they aren’t issuing them in Kenya except to Kenyan’s), so we are getting them from London by post!
    We are researching the requirements for driving in Ethiopia and are meeting with conflicting info. We have UK licenses, Comesa insurance covering Ethiopia, and all the car docs, including a valid Carnet de Passage. The conflicting info is around licenses. Do you know if we need to apply for a temporary Ethiopian license and get it in Addis Ababa (which will be a pain given we are only really transiting for 8 days)?
    Lonely Planet says this is the case but most people run the risk; the embassy website says we need to apply for a permit from the Ministry of Transport and Communications; and other site say we need a License!
    What did you do, and what were the border crossings and police checks requirements?
    My email is paul@uk-sas.co.uk – be good to hear your thoughts.
    All the best,

    • Hi Paul
      We had no problems using UK licenses, this in both directions of travel i.e. 2008 going north and 2013 going south. We recently entered via lake Turkana (east side of the lake) and came through Omerate (Ethiopian border post there), none for Kenya and had to get our visa’s stamped in Nairobi. You guys should be fine with all those documents you have esp now that you are getting the Ethiopian visas posted. Where are you headed north of ethiopia, ? Sudan. You may want to get the next visa onwards! Cheers
      Nic A

  10. Anne Nolan says:

    Hi Nic – Anne in Addis here – just saw your post about your stay at ours ! Hope you are all well – we are all good.. Where are you all now ? Remember our big dog that the Born Free Foundation adopted to befriend a hyena – its now called ‘Nolan’ and is en route to Australia !! We are still in Addis and enjoying !

    Looking forward to hearing from you. Best wishes to all.

    • Great to hear from you, how are your Han and Addis? how are you? Nolan really travels, i guess a big patch like Australia will do him well. We busy putting a book together from the trip, will let you know when it’s done! Hows Addis??

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