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Go Go Goa!

Read the original post and follow Drive Nacho Drive's overland adventures on their website: Drive Nacho Drive.


About a year and a half ago we got an email from someone in Pakistan inviting us to Islamabad when we passed through the Middle East. He was with the VW club of Pakistan, and had been following our trip through the Americas. When we got to Islamabad, he said, there would be a big community of friends waiting. We…

Cowboys and Indians

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At last we arrived in Mumbai, the planned termination of our Indian adventure. Lo and behold, as we wound our way into town, we were pulled over by a cop. Indian cops are nothing more than common criminals, and this one fit the stereotype to a T. After pulling us over in thick Mumbai traffic he got off of his…

Trouble on the Pakistani Border

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After the Indian wedding we skipped town and headed for the deserts of Rajasthan. We made a pit stop at the Taj Mahal near Agra, a building said to be the most impressive ever built. It was impressive, I will say, and the attention to detail and scale were remarkable, but to say it is the most impressive building in…

The Big Fat Indian Wedding

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The Big Fat Indian Wedding

As seems to happen to us from time to time, we have fallen grossly behind on our blog. As the days and weeks pass, the interesting things keep piling up and eventually we become as we are now, struggling to catch up to the present. So much happened in Nepal that we couldn’t get ourselves…

Pit Stop Varanasi

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We reached Varanasi terribly late on the fourth day of our drive to Nepal. Varanasi was to be our much needed intermission point; a place to stretch our legs, build back our endurance, and wash off the caked dirt plastered on our skin. At some point in the evening the plan was to reconnect with Regina and David at a…

01/18/2013 – 198 days/18644 miles

Read the original post and follow a pat on a motorcycle's overland adventures on their website: a pat on a motorcycle.


Here’s some video clips from my time in India…some while riding, others not.

My last night in India, I stayed less than a mile from the border to Nepal, and when I arrived in the morning to get my passport and carnet stamped out, I was told that the official that does that wouldn’t show up for about an hour.…

Fork Me: A Drive Across India – Part 2

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<< Click to read Part 1
Every morning on our trans-India drive started out the same way; we awoke from fitful sleep by our talking phone alarm clock to the suffocating weight of reality pressing down on our chests. It was a terrible feeling, as if we had accidentally burned down the house with the entire family inside. We were…

Fork Me: A Drive Across India – Part 1

Read the original post and follow Drive Nacho Drive's overland adventures on their website: Drive Nacho Drive.


The distance from Hampi, India, to the Nepalese border is 2,200 kilometers, approximately the distance from Phoenix to Seattle. The plan was to drive to Nepal for the short trekking season, and then return to India later to explore the North.
“It’s only 2,200 kilometers,” I reassuringly reported to Sheena. “We’ll be yodeling in the Himalayas in three days, tops.”…

01/17/2013 – 197 days/18525 miles

Read the original post and follow a pat on a motorcycle's overland adventures on their website: a pat on a motorcycle.


It’s my last night in India, and although I’m ready to be leaving, I definitely hope to be back one day.
I’d mentioned the narrow alleys that I had to navigate through Varanasi…here’s some video of them as I was leaving this morning. Now just imagine the stress of when I arrived after a long day of riding and finding…

Hampi Campers

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Hampi Campers

A few weeks back when we went to our friend Santhanam’s house for coffee I brought along my India map, and he offered his advice on the must-see destinations in South India. While we sipped on coffee in his bedroom we worked through the map. He highlighted several places on the map that I had never heard of.
“The…

01/16/2013 – 196 days/18275 miles

Read the original post and follow a pat on a motorcycle's overland adventures on their website: a pat on a motorcycle.


On the bar above, you can see that I’ve added a video section.  I’ve put up a few videos I put together from earlier in the trip, and hope to continue adding more to it as I find time to edit more footage.
Varanasi has proven to be an interesting place…and also fairly crowded and noisy compared to my last…

01/13/2013 – 193 days/18275 miles

Read the original post and follow a pat on a motorcycle's overland adventures on their website: a pat on a motorcycle.


Of the many unorganized traffic situations I’ve found myself in in India, I think the railroad crossings confuse me the most. When the barriers are down, I’m used to all the vehicles staying in their lane and forming a nice orderly line. In India, cars and motorcycles (and occasionally, buses) quickly fill the empty lane, meant for oncoming traffic. Shortly…

01/08/2014 – 188 days/17496 miles

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From Chandigarh, I had a full day of riding (on the roughest paved road I’ve ever seen) to get to Mcleodganj. First thing in the morning when I left, there was a very light fog…just enough to accumulate on my visor and blur my vision, but little did I know, it wasn’t enough to keep the dust down. So every…

The Onam Food Babies

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Over the course of a few days we crossed the subcontinent from the Indian Ocean west to the Arabian Sea. We left Pondicherry, first stopping in Madurai to celebrate the birthday of the elephant god Ganesh, and then to the hill station of Munnar to escape South India’s heat. The ground rose from the desert plains like a strange…

12/31/2013 – 180 days/16643 miles

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Here’s how I spent the rest of my time in Jaipur…
Hawa Mahal. I’d say that the backside of this building provide the best photo

             
              
Jantar Mantar is a collection of massive astronomical instruments. Due to lacking astronomical knowledge, to me, it was mostly just an…

Nacho’s Ark

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By the time we reached Pondicherry, we figured we had our system down. We’d drive into town and ask at the police station where it would be safe to camp. With all of the recent high profile rape cases here in India, this was no place to mess around. I’m squeamish, after all, and my worst nightmares revolve around me…

12/29/2013 – 178 days/16603 miles

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From Jaisalmer, I headed to Jodhpur, just for a one night stop.
I arrived in the afternoon and had time to take a stroll around the fort in the center of the city, and also get a glimpse of why they call it the “Blue City.”

           

           
In the…

12/24/2013 – 173 days/16162 miles

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I was about 30 minutes from Jaisalmer when I pulled off on a sandy dirt road leading to a hospital to take a few photos. By the time I got off my bike, pulled out my camera, and took a single photo, I saw a cloud of dust as a Hero Splendor was making it’s way up the dirt road.…

12/21/2013 – 170 days/15871 miles

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I found the Indian traffic that I was expecting…it required getting out of the cities and off the large divided highways. (No need to read any further, Mom)
In the cities, traffic is crazy and chaotic, but it’s so slow that it isn’t really scary. Minor collisions aren’t uncommon, but the consequences aren’t too serious, as can be seen here……

Santanam

Read the original post and follow Drive Nacho Drive's overland adventures on their website: Drive Nacho Drive.


It is no secret that India has given us stage fright. We’ve learned quickly that any sort of personal space or blending in with the masses is far from realistic. Over the last two years we’ve grown accustomed to being foreigners, but now for the first time we feel like E.T.
Chennai was a serious eye opener. It was a…

12/18/2013 – 167 days/15256 miles

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I finally got my bike through customs!
After leaving Istanbul two days later than planned (which then required waiting over the weekend while customs was closed), and going through 3 days of dealing with customs, it felt pretty good to go on one of the most exciting rides I’ve ever taken through a city.

When customs opened on Monday, I…

12/15/2013 – 164 days/15248 miles

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I’m still in Mumbai, waiting on my bike…here are some more pictures of the city…
Dhobi Ghat
A massive open air laundromat.

           
Haji Ali Dargah Mosque
This mosque contains the tomb of saint Pir Haji Ali Shah Bukhari. Apparently he died while on pilgrimage to Mecca, and his body floated back to this spot,…

Cars Honked, Cows Ate Trash, and People Stared

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Nacho arrived in Chennai Port aboard a mighty container ship after having floated from Bangkok to Singapore, and then across the Indian Ocean to India’s Central-East coast. The logical procession of events would have had Nacho unloaded from the ship so that we could be on our way, but in India logic has no place.
Our shipping agents were right…

12/13/2013 – 162 days/15248 miles

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In pretty much every way possible, India is a completely different than anywhere I’ve been. I think that’s pretty much what everyone says about this place after they’ve visited, which made me think I’d have some idea of what to expect. Turns out I didn’t.

Things I’ve noticed (some of which were expected, but I didn’t understand the extent)…
It’s…

India Overload

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Our plane landed in Chennai in the dark and we exited the airport into a calamitous mess of bodies. Touts hurried from passenger to passenger trying to round up business for the taxis. We were swept up in the chaos and found ourselves cramming into the back of an old Ambassador with a velvet headliner and ornamental drapes hanging…

12/10/2013 – 159 days/15248 miles

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I’m heading to India.
I’m really excited.
I’m going with virtually no plans.

I’m excited mainly because I don’t really have any idea about what to expect.  I’ve never been there, but of course know plenty of people that have, so I’ve heard stories and descriptions…it’s beautiful, there’s poor people, traffic is bad, people are wonderful, food is good, it’s…

Finding Solitude in India

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No, You did not read that wrong. This post truly is about finding solitude in India, an oxymoron to be sure. India is chaos personified. Everywhere one turns there are bustling throngs of people, thousands of cars and rickshaws, camels, cows, and endless shops and spice markets.

 
We had two items on our bucket list for our months in…

India in Summary – 100 Miles Per Hour to Very Very Slowly Slowly

Read the original post and follow Big Os Adventures's overland adventures on their website: Big O's Adventures.


Cricket in the Park
(Kolkata, India)
India is a country of such wide-ranging contrasts. From the many cultural highs and lows, to areas of great beauty and places of such filth. If you want a country to challenge your senses then India is it. It’s a classic love it or hate it country, with most people in one camp or…

Dharamsala & Amritsar – Crazy Borders, Spiritual Hills & Golden Temples

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A Paraglider about to land
(Bir, India)
It was another beautiful sunny start to the morning drive, west towards Dharamsala. Along the way I stopped at Bir. This is a famous location for the paragliding fraternity. As I got closer to the drop zone I could see hundreds of paragliders up in the sky. I stopped to watch as they…

Shimla & Manali – Queen of the Hills & Mountain Retreats

Read the original post and follow Big Os Adventures's overland adventures on their website: Big O's Adventures.


Views from Shimla
(India)
The drive back into the hills was beautiful yet again. Shimla, the Queen of the Hills was my destination. Famed for being the summer capital where the British governed the country during the hot summer months down on the plains.
It was an early start and a long drive from Delhi. On arrival in Shimla after…