Where the White Nile and Blue Nile meet in northeast Africa is where you’ll find the capital of the Republic of Sudan. Khartoum is a bustling and modern city, the beating commercial and cultural heart of this huge Islamic African nation.
Originally a 19th-century Egyptian outpost, the city has matured in stature and size as befits the Sudanese capital and has seen recent investment spawn glittering skyscrapers along the banks of the river. To see the two mighty rivers in action—yes, they are different colors—head to White Nile Bridge. Here, you'll see the world’s longest river continue its nearly 7,000km journey, something you can be a part of by taking a sunset cruise from the Marin Water Sports Club. (And since Khartoum is one of the sunniest cities in the world, with over 3,700 hours of sunshine a year, you’ll always be in for a treat.)
For a dose of local culture, head through the tree-lined streets of the central city to Hamed El-Nil Mosque on a late Friday afternoon for a thrilling performance from a troupe of whirling dervishes.
If you’re looking for traditional shopping, head south from the Great Mosque (Masjid Al-Kabir) to find the city’s most famous souk, Souk Al-Arabi, which spreads across several blocks. Pick up a few trinkets at the souk dedicated to gold, or, if you’re seeking a more international fashion offering, head to Khartoum’s Al Waha Mall or Afra Mall in Arkaweet, which are full of Western-style clothes, shops, and cafes.
Khartoum has a handful of international hotels such as the Corinthia and the Al Salam Rotana, but there is also a range of locally owned properties for all budgets. The city is easy to navigate by taxi or auto-rickshaw, and the public bus service runs almost 24 hours a day.