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Reminiscing About Leg 3 – The China to Singapore Photo Gallery

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While I was stuck in Quetta (Pakistan) last week I had the chance to reminisce about previous sections of the journey. Leg 3 from China to Singapore was the toughest, most frustrating and challenging section of the journey. But over time the wounds have started to heal and on reflection there many highlights, satisfying memories and great photos.
If you…

The Karakoram Highway – The 50 Best Scenic Photos

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My 10 day trip up the Karakoram Highway in Pakistan to the Khunjerab Pass (and Chinese border) was punctuated with amazing views every day.
Here are the 50 best scenic photos from my journey. I hope you enjoy these as much as I enjoyed the drive. It was simply one of the best scenic drives in the world.
To read about the…

The Karakoram Highway – Wow Wow Wow, 3 Cups of Coffee & 60 Minutes on a Leaky Boat

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The Hills of Murree
(Murree, Pakistan)
I left Islamabad at 6am to get an early start. Besham was the target for the day and it was going to be a long drive. I was expecting to see my first Police escorts at some point along the way as well.
The morning drive up past Murree was very pretty. It is…

Last Days in Mongolia – Photos and Blog Dirt-Road biking in Uvs and Bayan-Olgii

Read the original post and follow Helen's Take On....'s overland adventures on their website: Helen's Take On....


[I got a bit carried away with this blog - about time some may say - but if you just want the photos, skip to the bottom]
After a few days ‘rest’ in Ulaangom where my room was once again invaded by drunk locals, it was time to get back to the dirt roads – life is much simpler there,…

China Part 3 – The Slow Road to Happiness, The Flood, and The Great Chinese Dumpling Challenge

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The morning after the accident was a slow start. Nobody was sure what to expect. None of us had ever been in this situation before. Still there were things to do. I needed to fixed Boris’ right rear spring. I’d been driving on it for over 1000km, and a solution need to be found before I disabled my car even…

Photos of Biking Across Mongolia

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Having made it to Kharkhorin and had a look round the Erd Zuu monastery, I was looking forward to beginning the off-road adventures through Mongolia. Alas, progress has been made and the tarmac extended for a couple more days’ ride… I lingered longer than anticipated in Tsetserleg as their Naadam festival was just beginning. So I watched the ceremonies and…

China Part 2 – The Great Wall of China, The Storm, and The Accident

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Gobi Desert Camping Spot
(China)
The trucks gave the bikers a wide berth the next day. Fun had given them the name and address for the hotel in Hami, and they were free to make their own way. The trucks would continue at their own pace. For the first time Fun travelled in Ivor, and I had a different companion…

China Part 1 – Unhappy Campers, Bike Wankers and Butt Spankers

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My apologies if the following 3 part series on China comes across as petty and spiteful in places. It was a tough section of the trip. Much tougher than I’d anticipated. As a result, it’s only since I’ve left China that I’ve been able to write the story, as I have started to physically, and mentally recover from the trauma…

Things are Looking Up – Naadam and Road to Kharkhorin – in maps

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Having made the decision not to do a big packrafting trip, the relief was tangible. Finally I felt like I could do things I really wanted to. And I wanted to see some of the Naadam festival celebrations and competitions of archery and horse-racing. Since there were a couple of days before the festivities began, that gave me time for…

The Road to Ulaanbaatar – A Little Less Cycling – in maps

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It’s time for a round-up of the last few weeks… you may have noticed, there hasn’t been an awful lot of cycling. I had great plans, but sometimes they don’t quite work out the way you expected.
The plan. Get to Ulaanbaatar quickly to extend my Mongolian visa and get visa for Kazakhstan for onward travel. Speak to guides about…

Naadam Festival – Horse-Racing

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The second day of Naadam, I took a bus 40km out of UB with Dimitri Kieffer (who is circumnavigating the world by human-power and I’d highly recommend following his journey), who is also in town, to where the horse-racing was taking place. The roads were congested with half the city making the exodus for a family day out.
There was sun, big…

Naadam Festival – Archery and Knuckle-Bone Shooting Photos

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Sticking around Ulaanbaatar means I’ve had the chance to see some of the Naadam Festival. Essentially one big holiday where families gather to watch the wrestling, horse-racing and archery, as well as the less popular knuckle-bone shooting.
The first day I wandered down to the National Stadium where the wrestling was being held. Unable to buy tickets (translate: unwilling to…

Bikepacking to Terelj National Park

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I’m here in Ulaanbaatar for the Naadam Festival and until next week when I can get my Kazakhstan visa. The one guy at the embassy who issues them is on holiday…
So I packed my raft, bivy bag, toothbrush and some food and headed out of Ulaanbaatar on my bike. Destination Terelj NP, some 60km away.
Off the main road…

Gandan Style – Photos of Gandantegchinlen Monastery, Ulaanbaatar

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I’m now in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia’s thriving capital, where half the country’s population lives.
Finding it too easy to linger here, I have not yet been packrafting, so instead I’ve been seeing some of the sights. And those include Gandantegchinlen Khiid. It was one of the few monasteries that escaped the has destruction of the 1930s under Stalin. Although closed for…

Is that the Tourgat Pass? It sure is!! – Leg 2 Complete

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Hi everybody,
Just a quick note to say Boris, Kiwi Ted and I have made it to the Chinese border. Today we cross over into China over the Tourgat Pass to Kashgar. We are now part of a group of fellow overlanders (6 bikes, 2 trucks and 1 guide).
We’ll be crossing over the pass as you read this. It’s…

Mongolian Motoring Madness

Read the original post and follow Around The World In 800 Days's overland adventures on their website: Around The World In 800 Days - Blog.


Mongolia is a unique country in every aspect; a country often associated with isolation and remoteness, a country with a very extraordinary inimitable stark landscape.
It is not all nomads and yak though; due to the recent discovery of copper and gold deposits it is developing at an extremely fast rate. The country that Ewan McGregor and Charley Boorman visited…

Middle Kingdom – Part 2

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After the smokey haze of the lowlands we were glad to be climbing into the mountains. These were the eastern reaches of the Himalayas, and we were headed to Juigaihou (or as we called it, GI Joe). A world heritage park, this national park was a series of waterfalls and beautiful azure blue pools cascading down from the mountains. But…

A One-Ger-Full Life

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With a perfectly-pitched camp on the banks of the Zavkhan River overlooked by the holy Otgontenger mountain, dinner was underway (tinned sardines despite two hours spent fishing for Taimen giant trout in the river) when we spotted a small army of Mongolians approaching from the South. Sardines off and tea on, the mother and children gathered on a blanket, entertained…

The Middle Kingdom

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Location:  26° 52′ 22″ North, 100° 14′ 06″ East (Lijiang, Yunnan Province, China)
Distance from Sydney: 8,646km
China. The Middle Kingdom. Home to the Giant Panda, the noodle, and about 1.3 billion people. It is impossible to approach China without pre-concieved perceptions; many words and ideas come to mind. Awakening super power, industrial power house, communism, proud dynastic history, environmental…

China and the Yangtze – a step back in time

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CHINA - The name along evokes a myriad of emotions and images; the worlds largest population, communism, take out food, Chairman Mao, tai chi, the Great Wall, and tea. The country is all this and more. The enormity of the country is as intimidating as it’s history and we feel the three weeks we spent there in 2000 barely scratched the…

Reaching the Peak

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Location:  47° 54′ 41″ N, 106° 58′ 53″ E, Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia
Distance from Sydney:  10,126km
So we’ve crossed Mongolia.  Like a mountain climber reaching the peak, Mongolia was our half way mark, timewise for me (3 months of a 6 month journey), and also the greatest challenge in terms of remoteness, roads and logistics.  Appropriately, like the top of a…

Enter Mongolia

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Location : 47 44′ 27″N, 96 50′ 17″E (Uliastay, Mongolia)
Distance from Sydney: 10,597km
A mini update, written just after arriving in Mongolia:
I’m meant to be trying to finish off the Russian blog right now, but I want to talk about Mongolia instead. It’s our second night in the country, and first night camping. I don’t know how to…

Tough Miles Blog 9: South Korea.

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Pete here again:
Clearing the bikes through South Korean customs can only be described as an absolute pleasure. A big leather sofa, multiple glasses of iced-tea, an air-conditioned office and English-speaking officers. The entire process was over within less than 2 hours most of which for us was spent surfing the web over their free wi-fi connection. Service with a smile?…

One Day in Ulaanbaatar

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Our arrival into the Mongolian capital was of stark contrast to our drive from the border with its rolling green hills, peaceful Gers and scenic steppe dotted with grazing animals. The suburban sprawl of the city creeps up the surrounding mountainsides as we approach to see the haphazard concrete urban jungle before us. We were able to get an extremely…

Tough Miles Blog 7: The BAM Road

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Jon here:
 
The BAM road is not just about motorcycling skill, it is a real test of physical and mental endurance. It is impossible to portray how tough this route really is, and once finally over it is far too easy to forget the pain each kilometer can bring. To ride it you need pure grit and determination.
Mongolia…

Tough Miles Blog 6: The Mighty Mongolia.

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Pete here.
The only time we’ve had the shower gel out in the last 8 days is to lubricate the tyres for a set change or puncture repair. I’ve never felt as filthy as I did on that last night before we made it to Ulaanbaatar, the capital of Mongolia. Everything was covered in sand and mud from numerous falls…

Is it better to travel than arrive…?

Read the original post and follow Mikes Mongolian Madness's overland adventures on their website: Mikes Mongolian Madness.


OK, so we had arrived at our destination – Ulaanbaatar – exotic city of eastern mystery, fabled centre of Gengis Khan’s legendary empire, magical destination on the Silk Road. Well actually it wasn’t founded until around 1639 (well after Genghis’s time), it’s never been on the Silk Road (that runs much further south of the Gobi desert) and, to be…

Faces of Mongolia

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Young Mongolian horseman. He was probably on a horse before he could walk.

Leon charms the locals as the crowd gathers

And you thought we were mad! This guy was cycling from UB to his home in Austria

Andrew asks where the nearest recruiting office is

Sorry, but I'm not sure we will have a uniform big enough for you…

Riding all the the way to Ulaanbataar my body sweats and my a*** is sore…

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Subtle allusion in the title for those of you have read the ‘Why?’ section and they will also get the slight twist on the wording – and you thought this thing was just thrown together!
There was a slightly strange mood as we packed up this morning. We would be hitting UB today (unless the roads suddenly deteriorated – which…

Psssst….wanna buy a used inner tube? Very good, very cheeep.

Read the original post and follow Mikes Mongolian Madness's overland adventures on their website: Mikes Mongolian Madness.


Wake as it gets light, untangle myself from sleeping bag liner (ripping it more in the process), peer out of the tent and see if it really is time to get up. Roll around in the confines of the very small one-man tent and drag smelly, dusty riding gear on and emerge blinking into the sunlight to face another day.…