03-Feb-2005 -- A couple of Algerian offshores are still to being bagged, and this morning daylight was favourable for 37N 5E. Shortly after sunrise, however, a front of heavy rain clouds was moving towards the coast, obscuring everything and threatened to screw up this visit. Just in time the clouds dissolved and so the visit could be carried out properly.
Looking to WSW there is Cape Sigli. To the SW we see the Atlas mountain range, and, this is an extremely rare phenomenon in Algeria, the higher peaks, namely Mount Irhil n'Temeridjine (797 m/2600 ft) and Mount Ifri Ou Erzen (1317 m/4320 ft), are snow-capped. Looking to South towards Pointe Mezaïa, we see a nice small town. Looking finally towards SSE, we see Cap Carbon. Behind Cap Carbon, but alas not visible from the Confluence, there is the port of Bajaïa, formerly known as Bougie.
It's a pity I cannot go closer and make a picture of what could be really seen behind Cape Carbon. I have of course been several times to Bajaïa, and so readers must be content with my verbal description: The Gulf of Bajaïa, which extends behind Cap Carbon, offers a wonderful and overwhelming panorama. It is certainly one of the most beautiful places in the world.
Unfortunately, Algeria is not a common destination for tourists. Lacking infrastructure, awkward and lengthy visa application procedures, restrictions of travelling due to imminent security risks and terrorist activities make travelling there not really recommendable – and certainly not to inexperienced persons. But if one or the other reader happens to make a business trip there, ask your business friends to bring you to Bejaïa, and you won't be disappointed.
The beauty of the Gulf of Bajaïa is not only my personal impression. Even British Admiralty, rather known to supply just plain and sober information, and not being generous on superlatives, writes in its "Mediterranean Pilot, Vol. 45": "The town of Bejaïa is backed by beautiful mountains in what is considered to be one of the prettiest bays on the North African coast."