Egypt and Tanzania await Nile's trailblazing walker

26th Nov 2013

Egypt and Tanzania are both on the "tick-off" list of an explorer seeking to become the first person to walk the full length of the world's longest river.

For decades, wildlife lovers on specialist tours have marvelled at the rich, diverse eco-systems of Africa's River Nile.

But these will be no trekking holidays for expedition leader, writer and photographer Levison Wood and his crew.

The televised, year-long 4,250 mile (6,839km) expedition starts next month.

It will test Wood's mental and physical limits and bushcraft skills as he travels with only his backpack through some of Africa's most remote, hostile and spectacular locations.

Inspired by his lifelong fascination with Africa, Wood's unforgiving journey will span every step of the Nile, from source to delta.

The 31-year-old former paratrooper will encounter 21st-century Africa, its people and wildlife, face to face at ground level.

Wood's trip, which starts on Sunday (December 1), is being filmed for a four-part Channel 4 series to be screened next year.

The expedition is one of the last, great global exploration "firsts" left to conquer.

In addition, it opens up a cross-section through a continent seeing extraordinary change, revealing seven very different but equally intriguing countries.

The journey will begin in the Rwandan highlands as the river follows a winding path through the jungles of Tanzania and Uganda.

It will take in Lake Victoria before entering the wilds of South Sudan - the planet's newest country.

After crossing the vast wetlands of the Sudd swamp - the world's largest - Wood will cross into North Sudan and then traverse the Sahara desert, around Lake Nasser and into Egypt for the final 1,000 mile (1,609km) walk to the sea.

He will encounter wildlife, pass the Mountains of the Moon and cross the Sahara, wrestle with the Dinka of South Sudan and sleep in Bedouin tents prior to his final arrival at the Mediterranean.

Wood called it "an amazing opportunity for me to report on all the incredibly positive stories that come out of Africa".

Follow Wood on his journey on Twitter (@WalkingTheNile) or via (

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