In the meanwhile, we have learned how to travel through Somalia by public transport. To speak honestly, we needed more than one attempt to understand the county´s system.
In many travel reports you read that you need a personal armed guard who drives you around. He charged 100 USD per day. Though we were very excited getting our own armed guard, this is not the matter of fact anymore. It is true: You do not need to pay the army anymore, to travel with you to Berbera Burco and Sheikh, which are the common tourist cities in Somaliland. (For Haylan you still need an armed guard).
All you need is the permission from the ministry of tourism. It is located in the diplomatic area in Hargeysa, close to Imperial Hotel. The process is without hassle. While they print your permission, you have time to write something nice into the tourist guest book in the ministry. You pay 15 USD per person and that is it!
Now, public transport. Uhhhhh, it took ours to make people understand that all we are looking for is a bus. They thought we´d like to rent our own bus, so they said “100 USD” when we asked for “Berbera”. From one misunderstanding into another, we eventually found the office of Salam Bus. This reliable company connects Hargeysa – Berbera – Burco – Sheikh for 3 USD per ride. They tell you Hargeysa – Burco is four hours but that´s wrong. At least the bus needs 6 hours.
Unfortunately there is no circle line. The buses go from Hargeysa to Berbera to Sheikh, to Burco. So if you want to travel from Burco to Hargeysa, you have to pass Berbera again, even though Google Maps shows a connection street between Burco and Hargeysa directly. People declared us for totally crazy when we insisted to go from Burco to Hargeysa straight, without a stop in Berbara.