This solo traveler drove from London to Lagos in a small car

On January 24, London-raised content creator Permi Nubi set out on a solo drive from the British capital to Lagos, Nigeria, in her beloved purple Peugeot 107.

The 29-year-old arrived in West Africa’s largest city on Sunday to a hero’s welcome after more than two months and a horrific road accident, and after traveling to around 17 countries including France, Morocco, Senegal and Sierra Leone. I received it.

“It has been an amazing adventure and full of beautiful surprises,” she said in a statement shortly before completing her epic journey.

Nubi, who was born in Lagos, explains that her lifelong goal was to “show that traveling is easy, safe, and doable,” especially for solo black women like herself.

incredible adventure

Born in Lagos and raised in London, the 29-year-old was keen to connect the two places she considers home. - Provided by Perm Nubi

Born in Lagos and raised in London, the 29-year-old was keen to connect the two places she considers home. – Provided by Perm Nubi

After seeing the story of Kunle Adeyanju, a Nigerian man who cycled from London to Lagos, she began researching whether black women had attempted the journey by car, but found no records.

This particular route was deeply personal to Nubi, and she was keen to connect the two places she considered home.

“Every time I went home, I was flying over these places,” she told CNN Travel, adding that although she has traveled to about 80 countries, she “hasn’t explored much” in other parts and regions of West Africa. It never happened,” he explained. I wanted to see more.

Nubi had previously gone on a road trip around Namibia in a four-wheel drive vehicle and returned from Ghana to Lagos using public transport, but his experience with overland travel is relatively limited. I did. In 2023, he drove to Lake Como in Italy for a “trial run.”

“This is much bigger in terms of transcontinental travel,” she added.

Four-wheel drive vehicles tend to be the go-to for overland travel, but Nubi knew the trip to Lagos would be very expensive, so it made sense to spend more on a new car. I explain that I didn’t think so.

She ultimately decided to use a reliable car she had owned for five years.

“[I thought,] “I have a car, so why should I buy another car that I’m not used to driving?” So I kind of accepted it,” she added.

To ensure that her car was suitable for the 10,000km journey, Nubi made special modifications to the car, adding a bed and kitchen facilities inside.

“It took about a month trying to fit everything into the Peugeot 107,” she says.

After spending about a year preparing for the trip, she left London in late January and headed to France, Spain, and Morocco.

“When I went to Morocco, I literally broke down in tears,” Nubi says. “And it wasn’t sadness.

“It was just this overwhelming feeling [realizing,] Wow, I overcomplicated this process in my head. I actually thought it would be more difficult. And I wondered what else I was overthinking in my life. ”

terrible setback

Perm Nubi's Peugeot 107, which was spotted in Paris, France, was given this nickname. "Rumi-chan." - Provided by Perm NubiPerm Nubi's Peugeot 107, which was spotted in Paris, France, was given this nickname. "Rumi-chan." - Provided by Perm Nubi

Perm Nubi’s Peugeot 107, which was spotted in Paris, France, was given the nickname “Rumi”. – Provided by Perm Nubi

Nubi drove from Morocco to Mauritania through the Sahara desert, considered the world’s hottest desert, but says the experience was not what he had imagined.

“I was thinking that [the Sahara] It looks like just a sand dune, but it was a whole town,” she says. “In fact, it was one of the best routes I drove.”

After arriving in Mauritania, Nubi headed to Senegal and then Gambia. Guinea-Bissau, Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia, and Ghana.

However, this journey was not without its challenges, some more severe than others.

After entering Ivory Coast and being delayed at the border, Nubi crashed into a parked truck while driving at night.

“It was really scary,” she says. “that [the truck] It was parked in the middle of the road. There are no hazard lights. I slipped into it. I had never been in an accident in my life, so I was like, ‘What the hell just happened? “It was that kind of feeling”

Luckily, she wasn’t hurt, but her car was badly damaged.

Nubi considered completing the trip in another car, but ultimately decided to keep driving until the Peugeot, affectionately known as Lumi, was repaired.

“There was just a bond,” she says. “She’s seen me through my hardest days. I’ve cried inside her. I’ve cried out her screams of joy inside her.”

The accident delayed Nubi’s arrival in Lagos and caused various border delays along the way, including a 48-hour wait to enter Liberia.

“The border was tougher than the accident,” she says. “We are thankful that we were not injured in the accident, but the borders were really heartbreaking in terms of not having freedom of movement within the continent.”

After leaving Cote d’Ivoire, Nubi traveled to Togo and then Benin, arriving at his final destination in Lagos, Nigeria, on April 7.

Nubi said she thoroughly enjoyed her “daring” journey, but admitted it was lonely at times.

“Sure, I’m meeting new people, but I miss my mom’s cooking and bed,” she says.

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Nubi, who was spotted in Kenya before embarking on her London to Lagos challenge, hopes her journey will inspire us to pursue our dreams. - Provided by Perm NubiNubi, who was spotted in Kenya before embarking on her London to Lagos challenge, hopes her journey will inspire us to pursue our dreams. - Provided by Perm Nubi

Nubi, who was spotted in Kenya before embarking on her London to Lagos challenge, hopes her journey will inspire us to pursue our dreams. – Provided by Perm Nubi

Nubi has been documenting her journey through her. Instagram and YouTube She has been overwhelmed by the support she has received throughout and says the online community has kept her going through the most difficult times.

“This was a solo trip, but it really became a journey that was bigger than me,” she says. “And after the accident, I felt like this couldn’t be the end. There were so many people on board the journey to the finish line.”

Nubi was contacted by her teacher who told her that students were closely monitoring her progress and parents were sending her messages of support from their children.

“My involvement with society and the people who encouraged me have been really great,” Nubi says. He partnered with American company Osprey early on in this journey. “These are wonderful, wonderful memories that I cannot buy or put a price on.”

Mr Nubi hopes that by shining a spotlight on West Africa, he can help “change the narrative” in terms of how the region is viewed around the world, and hopes that by shining a spotlight on West Africa, he will be able to help “change the narrative” in terms of how the region is viewed around the world. I’m excited to introduce you to the place. Located in Yamoussoukro, Ivory Coast, it is considered the largest church in the world.

“In terms of vacation destinations, it’s possible,” she says. “There’s a chance of survival. It’s not just the hot line or line, it’s just changing the story globally.”

As for her future plans, she is considering a road trip from Lagos to South Africa. But this time, Nubi plans to leave her beloved car behind.

“She will live her best life in Nigeria,” she said, adding that she would be very happy if Rumi could be placed in a “little museum” and potentially inspire future generations.

Nubi believes she became the first black female solo traveler to drive from London to Lagos, but said she was not really interested in such a title and that this was never her goal. To tell.

“It was very good [about] Inspire people. In terms of “Do you think it’s impossible to get from London to Lagos?”, I did it. ”

“It was about the big picture. The accolades are nice, but it doesn’t even scratch the surface of what I was trying to accomplish.”

Ms. Nubi is looking forward to spending time with her friends and family, many of whom will be traveling to Lagos to see her at the grand finale, and is also looking forward to having the opportunity to celebrate in style.

“I just proved the strength I have inside me,” she says. “So, for me personally, it’s a proud accomplishment.

“But I think it extends far beyond me, and that in itself is a lot of fun.”

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