In Mauritania, there is just one railway line that connects Nouadhibou, Choum, and Zouerat, yet it is a tourist destination in and of itself. Although many claim it to be the world’s longest train, with over 150 carriages and a length of over 2 kilometers, it is most definitely not. It transports iron ore from the Zouerat mine to the Nouadhibou port.
The train leaves Nouadhibou about 15:00 every day and arrives in Choum (for Atar) around 02:00 the following morning. When you arrive, double-check the departure timings.
There is just one passenger car in Mauritania, although iron ore hopper transport is also available (and advisable, as the passenger car is usually overcrowded and tickets are required). There is also first-class seating, which provides access to a smaller room with bunk beds. First-class tickets are restricted. It does not, however, guarantee greater comfort. The cost of a second-class ticket in the passenger car is 1,500 ouguiya, and hopper riding is free. Because there is a lot of dust, bring a scarf to protect your face.
With a bush taxi, you can travel to Atar from Choum. If the car breaks down, the trip may take up to eight hours.