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Wau (South Sudan)

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Wau (South Sudan)

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Wau is the third largest city in South Sudan and capital of the Bahr el Ghazal region.


Founded in the 19th centuary as a zariba, meaning fortified base, by slavetraders it grew into an administrative center during British rule. The city is not dominated by a single ethic group; instead, its position as a commercial hub drew many diffrent peoples here. During the latest twenty years, Wau has nearly doubled in size, from 84,000 in 1993 to 151,000 today.

Temperatures stay in the mid-30s during most of the year, the dry season lasts from November to March while the summer months sees an increase in rainfall.

Get in[edit]

Hitching a ride on the train to Wau, unfortunately not possible today.

Flights are handeld by Wau Airport (IATA: WUU), a small airport with a single un-paved runway located northeast of city centre. They newly funded national carrier Southern Sudan Airlines [2] is planning on starting services from Juba.

Wau is also the terminus of the narrow gauge railway from Khartoum, however due to the newly independence of South Sudan all trains have stopped running and there are no news on when they will resume.

Several roads intersect here, A43 connects with Juba and Rumbek while A44 runs southwest towards Tumbura near the border with Central African Republic and Democratic Republic of the Congo. B41 heads northwest towards Raga and ultimately Nyala. Notice that all roads are in poor condition and can sometimes be nothing more then a dirt track. Driving with regular cars is highly unadvisable.

Get around[edit]

See[edit][add listing]

Wau has few attractions to see, however the catholic Saint Mary Cathedral is quite impressive.

There are also wild hippos in the Jur river and can be seen at times from the Wau River Lodge

Do[edit][add listing]

Buy[edit][add listing]

Eat[edit][add listing]

Drink[edit][add listing]

Sleep[edit][add listing]

Hotels are generally expensive and often aimed at government officials and members of NGOs.

  • South Sudan Hotel (Northen part of town, along A43 towards the airport), +121-201837. From $120 per night.  edit
  • Wau Regency Hotel, +121-044417. Prices starting at $150.  edit
  • Wau River Lodge, (), [1]. Located along the Jur river and recently refurbished, all rooms have air-conditioning and en suite bathrooms. The manager of the on-site resturant is an expat Swede which according to rumours has the widest sortiment of liquor in the whole country. Offers airport shuttle. Single $95 BB.  edit


See for more information on Wau River Lodge

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