Kawar Travel Guide

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The Kawar is the string of oases stretching from Bilma north toward the Libyan border. An ancient salt producing center and western edge of Toubou territory, these towns are about as remote as it gets.

The scenery is stunning. The red and black Kawar escarpment forms a jagged wall to the east, while the dunes of the Tenere melt into the horizon to the west. In beautifully sharp contrast to the endless sand and rock are the lush natural springs in Bilma. Wandering among the palm shaded pools is like stepping into another world, and an unbelievable experience after making a long desert crossing.

Accomodation is limitted if you don't come with your own car or an organized tour. Bilma has one campemant, Camping AKFO. Dirkou (the transportation hub of the region) has a couple of dodgy flophouses catering to migrant workers. Perhaps the best option is to ask around for a family to put you up for a few nights. If all else fails you can stay at the police station. I've never done this, but I've been told it works, and the gendarmes in Dirkou were pretty cool when I was there.

It's easiest to get here from Agadez if you don't have a car. You can find lots of tour companies there if you want a hassle-free and comfortable, albeit highly expensive, way to see the desert. Or you can find a ride with a truck heading to the Kawar there. For more information on travelling by truck to the Kawar see the Tenere Desert section.  

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