Cheap (and pretty) ways to Africa

Cut-price flights to southern Europe can take you further, says Sam Dunham

Not a single no-frills airline yet flies between the UK and Northern Africa. However, to access souks and the Sahara, combine a flight to Italy, Spain or Greece with a ferry or even a helicopter ride. You can have a two-centre holiday linked by a Mediterranean cruise, and also save cash.

Target: Tangier

Fly from Stansted to Jerez in Spain on Ryanair (0871 246 0000, www.ryanair.com), typically for £110 return. Tour one of the many sherry houses, or sample a free flamenco display at the Andalucian Flamenco Centre on Plaza de San Juan. Stay overnight in Jerez and take the bus in the morning to Tarifa, windsurfing capital of Europe.

The early evening ferry run by Ferry Rapido del Sur (00 34 956 68 18 30, www.frs.es) will whisk you across the Straits of Gibraltar in 35 minutes to the cosmopolitan city of Tangier for €48 (£32) return.

Target: Ceuta

Fly to Malaga from one of many UK airports. Take a 30-minute helicopter ride to Ceuta, a Spanish enclave in Morocco, for €202 (£144) return on Helicope de sureste (00 34 95 204 8700; www.helisureste.com).

Target: Tunis

Both options involve flights from Stansted to Italy on Ryanair (0871 246 0000, www.ryanair.com). The quickest is to fly from Stansted to Palermo in Sicily, for around £116 return. Go to Trapani at the westernmost tip of the island. Each Tuesday at 9pm, Tierra Navigazione (00 39 09 1602 1111, www.gruppotirrenia.it) sails for the eight-hour voyage to to Tunis. The fare of €97 (£67) includes a second-class cabin on the way back.

For a shorter land transfer but a much longer voyage, fly from Stansted to Genoa for as little as £40 return. The bus from the airport can drop you close to the shipping terminal. At 5pm, Wednesday & Saturday, the ferry departs from Genoa for a 24-hour voyage across the Med on the Traghetti line (00 39 010 58 93 31, www.traghettionline.net).

Target: Port Said

In a perfect world, you could simply fly on easyJet (0870 600 0000, www.easyjet.com) from Luton or Gatwick to Athens; catch the E96 bus from the airport (departures every 20 minutes) to Greece's principal port, Piraeus. Until recently a ferry departed each Wednesday operated by Salamis ( 00 30 2810 346185, www.ferries.gr/salamis), calling at a series of beautiful Greek islands, and Cyprus, before arriving at Egypt's Port Said, the Mediterranean end of the Suez Canal on Saturday. When services resume, expect to pay around £200 return.

News
newsAnother week, another dress controversy on the internet
Life and Style
Scientist have developed a test which predicts whether you'll live for another ten years
health
Life and Style
Marie had fake ID, in the name of Johanna Koch, after she evaded capture by the Nazis in wartime Berlin
historyOne woman's secret life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
News
news... and what your reaction to the creatures above says about you
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Travel
ebookHow to enjoy the perfect short break in 20 great cities
Independent Travel Videos
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Amsterdam
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Giverny
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in St John's
Independent Travel Videos
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Travel

    Recruitment Genius: Lifeguards / Leisure Club Attendants - Seasonal Placement

    Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: Qualified Lifeguards are required to join a fa...

    Recruitment Genius: Assistant Exhibition Content Developer

    £19000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Based in South Kensington, this prestigi...

    Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager - major leisure brand

    £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A reputable organisation within the leisure i...

    Recruitment Genius: Sales Partner

    £25000 - £33000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Sales Partner is required to ...

    Day In a Page

    Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

    Climate change key in Syrian conflict

    And it will trigger more war in future
    How I outwitted the Gestapo

    How I outwitted the Gestapo

    My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
    The nation's favourite animal revealed

    The nation's favourite animal revealed

    Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
    Is this the way to get young people to vote?

    Getting young people to vote

    From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot
    Poldark star Heida Reed: 'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'

    Poldark star Heida Reed

    'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'
    The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

    The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

    Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
    Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

    Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

    Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
    Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

    David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

    The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
    Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

    Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

    Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
    With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

    Money, corruption and drugs

    The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
    America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

    150 years after it was outlawed...

    ... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
    Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

    Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

    The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
    Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

    You won't believe your eyes

    Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
    Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

    Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

    The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
    War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

    The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

    Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn