The Route to Nepal
How do I actually go to Nepal? What obstacles are there on the way? Is it possible to go the whole distance by bike? These are all questions that have reached me frequently during the last weeks. With this first blog I want to clarify all open questions around the travel route and mention possible risks or problems that could come up during this trip. Also, I will give herewith a first rough overview of my time schedule which will be only provisional in view of the distance lying before me.
Meanwhile the first week since the beginning of the journey is behind me and I am currently on Mali Losinj where I am using the first break to recover and to provide you with the latest information. With the course of the first stage until here I am quite satisfied. Just under 750km have already been covered and I haven´t had to deal with any major breakdowns or problems until now. But one thing has already become very clear to me after this one week of cycling. I still have an extremely long way to go and with every kilometer I keep on moving forward, I'm approaching a region that is still unknown to me. Nevertheless, I am still in good spirits, and I am really looking forward to the upcoming weeks/months, which will have so many adventures for me, which I can't really assess at this point in time. I have divided the entire tour into four large sections and will present them section by section as best I can.
Part 1: The way to the Orient
Now the question arises how it goes on from here on Mali Losinj. The next major destination is clearly Istanbul. Until then it will go from Zadar over Split through a small piece of Bosnia, before I cycle from there by Montenegro to Albania. In Albania the first real highlight of my tour is coming up, the "Albanian mountains". On the one hand there are quite a few meters of altitude to do, but one the other hand there is also a breathtaking landscape and, as I was told by friends, also an incredibly hospitable population waiting for me. According to the current status, the route will then lead via Northern Macedonia and Bulgaria to Turkey's most famous metropolis, Istanbul. The time frame for this is actually very relaxed, because around mid of July the remaining kilometers until then should be done easily.
Part 2: Through Eastern Turkey and the Middle East
Probably the part of the journey that scares most of you and at first also me the most. Much good news from a political point of view you not get to hear these days from this area around Turkey and Iran. Again and again there is political unrest there and lately Iran is again associated with uranium enrichment. Nevertheless, I don't expect any major problems there, but rather a population who is trying to distance themselves from the image of their country and show their real culture. One point that gives me a little more headache than the political situation is the point of heat in combination with food and water supply. According to a first estimation of mine, it will be necessary to carry drinking water and food for three full days. In addition to the current 42-43 kg of luggage there will be another 12-15 kg coming on top. But now to the planned route. From Istanbul it should go directly into the center of Turkey to Cappadocia, a destination, which stands on top of my list and probably the only one of my entire journey, for which I will take a detour. After that, my further way will most likely lead me via Georgia and possibly Armenia to Iran. In Iran it should go from Teheran in the north of the country via Isfahan to Bandar Abbas, a port city near the Arabian Peninsula. The plan is to take a ferry from there to Dubai. The simple explanation why I probably won't go through the neighboring country of Pakistan is that there are times when tourists are not allowed to move freely cause of security reasons. This will make it very difficult to get around by bike. The plan in relation to time is to make a lot of distance per day especially in Iran and Turkey to be able to cover the entire distance in just under two months. Especially from here it is very difficult to calculate time, because road course and condition can not to be estimated in advance.
Part 3: Through the heat on the Arabian Peninsula
From the already mentioned port in Bandar Abbas it will go with a 24h ferry to Dubai. To fulfill the plan to cover the most possibly distance by bike, I decided to leave Dubai in the direction to Mascat, the capital of Oman. A rather small distance compared to the rest, but probably the one with the highest temperature on my trip. From Oman, it then goes the only time during the trip on the plane and yes, the bike can be packed in a bicycle box as bulky luggage along. Next stop on the other side of the Arabian Sea is India, Mumbai. Given the distance, this section should be possible to do within about week, if nothing unexpected will happen.