Mauritania travel advice

When travelling in Mauritania you should make sure you have confidence in your individual security arrangements. You should maintain a high level of vigilance, particularly in public places, and where there are large gatherings of people.

Travellers to Mauritania should also be aware that developments elsewhere in the Arab world, for example violence between Israelis and Palestinians, may lead to public disturbances. Any increase in regional tension might affect the local situation. You should follow news reports and be alert to developments that. You should take precautions for your personal safety and avoid public gatherings and demonstrations. You should be prepared to adjust travel plans at short notice in light of developments.

Safety and Security

Crime levels are moderate but steadily increasing. There have been several incidents of carjacking involving foreigners in the capital as well as reports of robbery, rape and assault.
You should avoid the unlit and isolated beach at Nouakchott and ‘Le Cinquième’ district after dark as a number of thefts and violent incidents have been reported there in recent years.

Crossing the border from Senegal can be time-consuming and officials may request payments to cross the border.

The conditions of paved roads in Mauritania are generally poor, and overland travel is difficult. You are advised to use four wheel drive vehicles, check the tide times, travel in convoy and ensure you take adequate supplies of water and fuel.

The national mining company, SNIM, runs a train service for both people and vehicles between Nouadhibou and Atar (80km from Choum). It is essential to book in advance.

Mauritania Airways runs flights linking Nouakchott to Nouadhibou (daily), Zouerate, Atar, Kaedi, Kiffa, Tidjikja, Aioun and Nema. You should reconfirm all flights.

Significant deficiencies have been identified in the level of safety oversight that Mauritania gives to aircraft on its register and to the airlines that it certifies.

Sailing in the port at Nouadhibou can be dangerous because of the number of shallow shipwrecks.

Local laws and customs

Local laws reflect the fact that Mauritania is an Islamic country. You should respect local traditions, customs, laws and religions at all times and be aware of your actions to ensure that they do not offend other cultures or religious beliefs, especially during the holy month of Ramadan or if you intend to visit religious areas.

You should respect Mauritanian laws and regulations. It is considerate to dress modestly. Sale and consumption of alcohol is against the law, although some restaurants do serve it. Police sometimes object to photography without prior permission.

You should carry ID, especially when travelling outside Nouakchott (where you may encounter many police road checks). You should also comply promptly with directions from the police and other Mauritanian security forces, and to carry copies of your personal identity papers (passport) with you at all times.

Homosexuality remains a punishable offence in Mauritania.

Drugs laws are severe. Those found in the possession of any illegal drug may receive a prison sentence.

Entry requirements

Visas are required for entry to Mauritania.


Medical facilities are extremely limited, particularly outside Nouakchott and Nouadhibou, where lack of communications makes dealing with an emergency very difficult. Clinics in Nouakchott and Nouadhibou charge for medical care (sometimes in Euros or US dollars), and may not accept foreign insurance cards. You should ensure that your insurance covers medical repatriation by air ambulance.

The weather can be very hot and dry. Fluid intake should be kept high, making sure enough salts are included.

You should take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance before travelling. Your insurance should also cover you for medical repatriation by air ambulance. Check for any exclusions and that your policy covers you for all the activities you want to undertake.


Local currency (Ouguiya) is not convertible and may not be exported. US Dollars or (preferably) Euros can be changed for Ouguiyas at banks, some hotels and official Bureaux de Change. The rate for Sterling is very poor. Credit cards can be used at a few hotels in Nouakchott and Nouadhibou. ATMs do not accept foreign credit or debit cards.
Sedo - Buy and Sell Domain Names and Websitesetracker® web controlling instead of log file analysis

All rights reserved ©
If you want to use any content produced by CrazyTravel,
please contact us