Should you feel an irresistible urge to put Somalia on your African itinerary, hold your horses! Its much undiscovered beauty of 3,000-kilometer-long beach coastline, fabulous corals and majestic mountains as well as world-class rock paintings, unparalleled scuba diving sites and a vibrant hotchpotch of Somali culture need to be put aside and wait for some more favorable and safe time. Unless you are bullet-proof or endowed with Chuck Norris omnipotence, of course. As for now, Somalia is off limits. Its current state of gun-law anarchy and civil war that ravage the land with Islamist and warlord-affiliated militia bursts of violence should make even the most intrepid of travelers take a detour. Nobody is safe here, be it the civilians, aid workers or soldiers. It's more like a post-apocalyptic picture of fighting rival factions, crime-ridden cities and corruption, all set against a backdrop of floods and droughts that have been repeatedly haunting the land. More than that, Somalia's recent notoriety for piracy and thick records of ships hijacked for ransom is a growing concern worldwide.
Somalia is a vibrant yet uneasy trim along the Horn of Africa. Beneath the turbulent surface is a patchwork country of 3 separate territories - Somalia in the south, Somaliland in the northwest and Puntland perched in the northeast corner. The only one to look for some peace and stability is probably the independent state of Somaliland that amid the chaos and widespread anarchy has managed to establish its own capital, a parliament, a flag and currency. All of this accomplished backstage and with too little support and publicity to be recognized worldwide. It is probably here where you could start exploring the land's Paleolithic beginnings and glorious past of ancient Puntite civilization or Middle Age prosperity provided the country was not a threat to travelers just as it is to its very self.