travel in algeria Djemila Rach

Updated in January 2023

Algeria, one of the most underrated countries in Africa. It was also one of the most difficult visas to obtain from my travels around the world. After extensive travels to nearly all 54 countries in Africa, independent travel in Algeria isn’t nearly as straightforward as it should be for visitors.

Tourism isn’t really a thing here. For many passport holders to be able to travel in Algeria, you will most likely need the assistance of a local Tour Operator to first help them get the visa to enter and to facilitate permission to explore many regions of this country. 

As of January 2023, Algeria announced a new visa on arrival for tourists visiting the desert regions on an organised tour. More info to follow this year.

There are many things to know before you travel to Algeria. This guide will help you arrange a visit to Algeria and provide you with knowledge and tips once you’ve arrived.

Why Travel to Algeria?

travel in algeria constantine

Constantine, the city of bridges.

Algeria is one of the most underrated countries in Africa. If you do decide to go through the often difficult process of obtaining a visa (more on this below), you will discover that Algeria is a very diverse country.

It boasts incredible landscapes, the Sahara desert, Mediterranean coastline and beaches, stunning colonial architecture (don’t miss visiting Oran, Algeria’s most beautiful city), beaches, fascinating Roman ruins, bustling cities and more.

Also, the Algerian people are some of the friendliest and most hospitable people in the world. They seem very eager and proud to share their culture with visitors.

Algeria also has an incredibly rich history with 7 World Heritage sites – if only more tourists could gain entry to this country to enjoy these wonderful places. And it may come as a surprise to most, but Algeria is one of the most socially developed countries in Africa. 

How to Obtain a Visa for Travel in Algeria

travel in algeria visa

As I mentioned above, Algeria doesn’t encourage tourism at all. From what I’ve gathered from speaking with locals on the ground in Algeria, the country is so rich in natural minerals (oil & gas being the main exports) that tourism isn’t considered as being a significant industry for boosting the economy. Either way, for many nationalities, arranging a visa for travel to Algeria is a difficult, long and expensive process. You need to submit flight reservations, hotel reservations and itinerary for the entire duration of your stay in Algeria, travel insurance details, proof of income and a list of other documents just to lodge your application.

And most importantly you might need a Letter of Invitation from someone in Algeria approved by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

To remove some of the headaches for you, I’d recommend reaching out to an Algerian Tour Operator to help to facilitate an LOI (letter of invitation). This will make things much easier to obtain a visa and in some cases, quicker. A Tour Operator can submit other documents to the Ministry of Tourism in Algeria to support your request to enter the country.

We requested visa assistance and booked some day tours and hotels in Algeria with Wassim from AlgeriaTours16. You can read some fantastic reviews from past guests of AlgeriaTours16 on Tripadvisor, where they currently rank #1.

We’d agree that they offer great customised tours of Algeria with fantastic guides all over the country.

Note: The visa will fill an entire page of your passport.

Is it safe to travel in Algeria?

travel in algeria is it safe to travel in algeria

Is it safe to travel in Algeria? Yes!

If you mention your intentions to visit Algeria, the first question many people ask is, “Is it safe to travel in Algeria?” Bordering these countries, Tunisia, Morocco, Libya, Mauritania, Niger and Mali, it’s a fair question to ask.

If you ask anyone, Algeria has been tainted with a bad reputation. In the past, armed terrorist groups often targeted foreigners from the civil war which finished 20 years ago, back in 2002.

Algeria is still perceived as an unsafe destination due to a lack of updated information on the internet. Most government travel advisories (including my home country of Australia) still recommend that visitors avoid travelling to the southern areas of Algeria. Furthermore, the border areas that are shared with Tunisia and Libya are deemed as extremely high risk of danger in these regions.

In saying all this, Algeria is a huge country, in fact, it’s the largest country in Africa. Based on my visit (in Mar 2022), I felt safe the entire time, Algerians are extremely curious and welcoming to foreigners. My answer to the question of whether it is safe to travel in Algeria is yes, it is.

Currency in Algeria