The Sahara desert is the largest desert in the world. Many ancient civilizations like the Mali kingdom and Ghana kingdom have existed here. The Trans-Saharan Trade Route started because of the abundance of gold in northern Africa.
One famous town was Zayla with a population of merchants and camels. The camels were used as transportation and as food. When merchants would sail in from the Mediterranean and be greeted by sumbugs who would invite merchants to their house.
The merchant is not allowed to go to any other house than the one he is invited to unless they've been there before. The host feeds the merchant and buys and sells his goods. if someone buys the goods below price the sale is seen as invalid.
Merchants were treated like royalty and were feed three times a day. On the day that would be considered Friday today, the qadi would by them garments and the merchants would go to the mosque and pray.
After the merchants finished trading in the Sahara they would go to Swahili. There they would trade gold, ivory, slaves, and other luxury items. The Indian Ocean trade Route was just as important to African history as was the Trans-Saharan.