Ibn Battuta was a fourteenth century Moroccan who, at the age of twenty-one, went on the hajj to Mecca, then found that wandering was in his blood, and thus proceeded to tramp all over the known world. He traveled to India and China, sailed about Southeast Asia, went all over Central Asia, met with a former Byzantine Emperor, and wandered around sub-Saharan Africa, including a jaunt over the Sahara with a trading caravan. Those would be considerable accomplishments in today's world- in his time they were truly remarkable, for scope and duration. However, it should be noted he had far less trouble crossing borders and such compared to a modern-day traveler.
Someone apparently is retracing Ibn Battuta's steps, and she's blogging about it at Girl Solo in Arabia
. She's made it so far from Morocco across North Africa into Egypt at present. But where Ibn Battuta simply crossed North Africa without hindrance (other than the occasional threat of Arab raiders), she was forced to turn around at the Morocco-Algeria border and instead fly to Algeria.