RTW Solo Melbourne > London 2020 (Asia Pacific Leg)

Discussion in 'Asia Pacific' started by DylanGeorgeField, Sep 30, 2019.

  1. DylanGeorgeField

    DylanGeorgeField Adventure | AU

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    Hi all,

    Would you help me out with trip planning my Asia Pacific leg?

    The Middle-East/Europe thread will be found here.

    Timeline: April > November 2020 (6-8months)
    Distance: 50,000km approx
    Bike: CRF250 Rally

    Criteria:
    - Must go to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
    - See my family on the East Coast, Australia
    - See the Himalayas/Kashmir
    - Must go to Kermanshah, Iran
    - Hit the Goodwood Revival 17th September

    Looking for:
    - Mountains
    - Remote areas
    - National Parks
    - Historical Points of Interest
    - Culture and Food

    Background:
    I toured America for 3-months when my partner's visa to Australia was rejected. I loved it so much I needed to keep riding. I met a guy called Drew (Blokes on Spokes) at a bucks party prior and told me he'd ridden from Australia to Austria. I met him when I got home. He suggested the route you see here with minor additions.

    My partner is Iranian and lives in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. I'm doing this trip while we wait for her marriage visa to process in Australia for 12+ months. I can ship the bike to Malaysia and wait for it. I'll ride Asia/Himalayas/Kashmir and meet her in Iran. Where I'll meet her family and maybe killed by her father.

    I'll continue to Europe from there.

    This trip is completely self-funded and some parts generously supplied by:
    - Andy Strapz
    - Barkbusters
    - B&B Offroad
    - Lightforce

    If you're interested in the bike I'll be on the Honda CRF250 Rally thread.

    All tips, suggestions, routes, places to stay, warnings, prayers and support appreciated.

    If we can ride together let me know :freaky

    [​IMG]
    #1
    PomInOz_ and Suncoaster like this.
  2. Wherever I may roam

    Wherever I may roam Because I can, that's why

    Joined:
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    Hi Dylan,
    Looks like an awesome plan mate!
    Seems we will be riding just about the same route when I look at your map, though you will be a few months behind me.
    I'm just at the end of the Australia leg of my trip, started in Sydney in November and have gone to Brisbane, Tasmania, Nullarbor, Perth, up the coast, Gibb river road to Darwin where I am currently waiting to ship out to Indonesia. The plan is to ride home to the Netherlands.
    Will explore as much as I can in Asia and keep going slow so I can see lots and, very important, wait for the snow to melt in the Himalayas. Hoping to be in Nepal around may (?) when the roads are cleared of snow so in the mean time I will have to spend a lot of time fluffing around Asia, exploring as much as possible, enjoying the odd cocktail on the beach. I've found it's best to travel slow and meet lots of people. Can't really help you with the route or itinerary as I just improvise and see what happens, I've got no idea about the how, what, where, when or even why :) .
    When someone tells me to check out the waterfall around the corner I go there and have a look. Talking to locals and fellow travellers has worked ok in Oz, might have to do more serious planning in the future but we'll see what happens.
    Good plan to have the Goodwood Revival as a destination on your trip, is on my list of things I'd really like to go and see one day!
    Maybe we will meet on the road, you never know!
    Good luck with all the prep work for your trip and if I can help you with the experience I will be gaining in the next few months I'll be more than happy to see if I can contribute.

    Sander.
    #2
  3. yokesman

    yokesman Long timer

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    looking at your route, check freeie.com. Right now you need to fly to M'laysia or go thru Borneo by way of air or boat. PM me if Boat and I can give you the info of look on ktm500 RTW thread. He is having a time with shipping now. or pm G perkins, he should be in OZ now.
    #3
  4. DylanGeorgeField

    DylanGeorgeField Adventure | AU

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    Hey Sander, would you have an Instagram account I can follow you on?

    I need to know how you ship from Australia > Indonesia.

    I should be able to catch you around the Himalayas. North & Left a Bit did the route in late May/June this year. They hit snow and slushy mud. I just came back from Malaysia and I'm preparing for this one to be hot as hell.

    I agree with you. You only need a mud map. Thanks to @TUCKERS I got around north america on 1.5 months planning. I have 6 months this time and it's best if I use it. I'll follow the UNESCO World Heritage List on the route.

    Keep in touch, enjoy the beach and watch out for the monsoon!

    Boat works as my partner is in Malaysia. I'm considering going via Indonesia as well. I don't know how difficult that is. I hear everyone goes via Dili?
    #4
  5. Wherever I may roam

    Wherever I may roam Because I can, that's why

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    Hey Dylan,
    I don't have an instagram account, or any other social media, 'cause I'm old fashioned :)
    I do have a website, roamingmoto.com where I post some stories and pictures of the trouble I get myself into, but I'm 6 months behind and slowly catching up with that, have been doing to much enjoying and not enough writing.

    Hope I can miss out on the snow I the Himalayas, I hate cold!
    And I'll send a request form to the authorities asking them to keep the monsoon away from me as much as possible since my boots are no longer waterproof.

    Shipping then:
    To go from Aus to Asia by boat the most common route is indeed Darwin-Dili.
    Here's a good write up about the subject:
    https://bikehedonia.wordpress.com/how-to-ship-your-motorbike-from-darwin-to-dili/ and the rest of the blog is also quite nice to read for inspiration.
    One thing that can be a pain here: you can get your own container but that's expensive, you can share it with others to get the price down but you'll have to find them and time it right. The other option is LCL, Less than Container Load: you drop your bike off, they shove it in a container (no crate needed, can leave all luggage on the bike) and fill the container up with other goods. When the container is full it goes on the next boat. Bad luck scenario: it can take a while for that container to fill, leaving you either in Darwin or Dili spending $$$ on accommodation while watching Netflix (can't ride your bike anymore). The friendly people at Bollore will however try and squeeze your bike in a container from another customer to avoid this but no guarantees.
    Costs are about $800Au to pay in Oz, plus about $150Us in fees in Dili.
    Close to $1000 Au all up. From what I've heard not too much bullshit in Dili with 'unforseen costs'/bribery and such but...apparently the people at the office can struggle with how to pick up a phone and or go on loooong lunch breaks.
    Drop off a few days before departure in Darwin, 3 to 4 days at sea, another 3 to 4 for paperwork and practicing your patience in Dili.
    Note: the boat also goes to Singapore should you want to miss out on riding Indonesia, but that would be a bad thing, right?

    As far as my own crossing goes: the above was my plan until recently. Then I got lucky because I met a very friendly couple (this is something I've been doing a lot on this trip, meeting awesome, hospitable, super nice people...I could fill a website with stories about that, oh wait, I am).
    What's the deal with this couple you ask? Well I met them at Honeymoon beach after riding north from the Gibb river road where they anchored their boat in the bay. We started talking and they mentioned going to Indonesia with the boat. I got invited for a few beers, got cheeky and asked I i could join them on their voyage Darwin-Indonesia, bike and all. That was no problem so in about a week we will hoist my bike onto the fly bridge with the davit crane and set off in lavish luxury on a 55ft kick ass boat. Will do a bit of island hopping in Indonesia, sail around Komodo (diving gear on board, nice!) and I will probably get off on Sumbawa.

    Like I've been telling my mates back home: stay away from this long distance motorcycle travel thing, it's way too much hard work :wings
    #5
  6. DylanGeorgeField

    DylanGeorgeField Adventure | AU

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    Well shit, you lucked out there. Scuba gear and all.

    I wish I'd have the same but I'm going to bet I'm on the boat. The ship to Singapore may work with my partner being in KL. I would like to see Indonesia.

    The link is great and detailed. Now I just have to work out how to island hop and get across the straight of malacca :hmmmmm
    #6
  7. Wherever I may roam

    Wherever I may roam Because I can, that's why

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    I've been looking into how the Indonesian ferry system works, it's all new to me too. Found out that the further the islands are appart, the less frequent the ferries go and the waiting times and uncertainty on when they depart grow. So if your next island is far away: ferry might get to the port you're at today, or the day after. Or the day after that, who knows?
    Let's say that gives you time to get to know the local port better while sampeling the street food and having a chat with the locals.

    For crossing the straight of Malacca it might pay to have a look on Horizons Unlimited, must be posts on there on that subject. Read a bit about it last week I believe but the brain cell that was assigned to keep track of that info seems to have given up after the beers from last night, I'll look into that again soonish.
    #7
  8. DylanGeorgeField

    DylanGeorgeField Adventure | AU

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    Thanks Sander, I'll have a look around.

    I'm alright with waiting though I'd like to get to Kuala Lumpur to see my partner!

    I'll have a look on Horizons Unlimited :D
    #8
  9. Meriwether

    Meriwether Following big footprints.

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    Indonesia is a great country to ride, the change in culture as you travel from island to island is a feature. I found there was no need to micro plan a schedule, there are plenty of ferries and I soon learnt to get behind a car on the roads that are busy, especially in Java.
    All the best, Mark
    #9
  10. DylanGeorgeField

    DylanGeorgeField Adventure | AU

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    That settles the decision to ride via Indonesia ☝️
    #10
  11. Wherever I may roam

    Wherever I may roam Because I can, that's why

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    So Dylan,
    How's the adventure comming along, are you on the road or still doing the prep work?
    I'm in Indonesia for two months now and it's awesome, you don't want to miss out on Indonesia!
    Landscapes: beautiful!
    People: super friendly
    Food: amazing (must like rice/noodles)
    Traffic: play some Mario Kart before you get here, the experience will be helpful.

    People told me I would like Indonesia, they were right, it's a great country!
    #11
  12. DylanGeorgeField

    DylanGeorgeField Adventure | AU

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    Hey Sander,

    Prep work is slow, I'm aiming to leave April. I don't want to miss indo either! I got a quote from ANL for ~$1000 AUD. You were lucky finding the yacht.

    I can't wait for the food in Asia/Middle-East.

    I'll get my turtle shell/banana game on. I'm looking at the roro between Borneo and Port Klang, Malaysia. I was quoted 600RM or ~200AUD.

    The visas and Thailand > Myanmar > India I haven't fully worked out. I want to do Laos.

    My partner is in Kuala Lumpur if you need a place to stay.
    #12
  13. Wherever I may roam

    Wherever I may roam Because I can, that's why

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Indonesia, riding to the Netherlands
    For Thailand visa arrangements and such look up Plodstop.
    It's a overlander hostel run by a couple of Brits who did a big overland tour with an old truck.
    Now they run the Plodstop and are keen to help overlanders out with getting in and out of Thailand, arranging letters of invitation, tips on border crossings etc.
    After that you stay with them for a bit of course, I've been told it's a good place to meet other travellers.
    I need to do a bit more research into the visa stuff too, been putting that off in favor of enjoying myself with the locals.

    Thanks for the offer for a place to stay in KL, much appreciated!
    Don't know if I end up there (a plan, what's that!?) but it's always good to know there is somewhere to stay on the road.
    Must be scary for your partner watching the news at the moment, from what I read online the shit is making it's way to the fan in a hurry in Iran.
    I hope for the sake of the people of Iran that this is going to blow over.
    Plus I would like to ride there too, it's very high on my list of countries that I really want to see on my way home.
    Dear governements around the world, can we please do without the whole war thing? Instead of spending lots of $$$ on guns and planes and such buy a bike and travel the world so you can see we are not that different, thanks!
    *Miniature attempt to achieve world peace off again*

    And yes, the food!
    Right now I'm in a little warung (restaurant) in Ubud, Bali for breakfast.
    Superb mie goreng (fried noodles with veg), a veggie omlet the size of Texas on the side, all fresh, taste is awesome.
    Total cost: Aus $4!
    Think I'll have another coffe, life is good on the road!
    #13
  14. DylanGeorgeField

    DylanGeorgeField Adventure | AU

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    I'm not sure we can ride Thailand without a guide. Plodstop sounds perfect if we can.

    Who knows what the plan is but I know it's great to have a safe spot along the way. The Iran situation is bad although it shouldn't affect touring. My partner's family is in Kermanshah and will help you if you need. Avoid protests and gatherings. We follow the news and would love a diplomatic solution. It's a beautiful country rich with history. No bombs thank you!

    I'm jealous. That sounds glorious.
    #14
  15. isgila

    isgila Been here awhile

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    Hi there,
    You can ride most parts of SEA without a guide.
    Only China, Vietnam and Myanmar you will need a guide. Drop me a PM if you need more info on SEA.
    Ride safe.
    #15
  16. DylanGeorgeField

    DylanGeorgeField Adventure | AU

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    Thanks isgila, PM'd

    @Wherever I may roam, did you get your visas before you traveled?

    I'm going to try get India/Pakistan/China before I leave.
    #16
  17. Wherever I may roam

    Wherever I may roam Because I can, that's why

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    I only got my my Australian visa before I flew to Australia, in Darwin I applied for a visa for Indonesia.
    For the rest I will apply on the way.
    Pakistan is the tricky one since it is only possible to apply for that one in your hone country.
    I have a second passport because of work, left that at home and will send my dad to the embassy with it to apply for the Pakistani visa, then send my passport to me (while in a country where that is legal, that's a thing mind you).

    I've been in touch with Dave from Plod Stop, he can advise on what border crossing to take and can arrange the mandetory insurance. Very friendly guy.
    #17
  18. DylanGeorgeField

    DylanGeorgeField Adventure | AU

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    The Indonesian consulate said I don't need a visa for < 30 days as an Aussie. I met a couple @get.lost.and.ride.on, they're in Indonesia and confirmed it.

    The Pakistan one shouldn't be hard. Lucky you have the two passports! I didn't know it's illegal in some countries to send passports.

    I'll give Dave a message.
    #18
  19. Wherever I may roam

    Wherever I may roam Because I can, that's why

    Joined:
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    You're right on the visa on arrival.
    I apllied for the social cultural visa because that can be extended to up to 6 months. Indo is big, lots to see and I go sloooow.
    If you don't think 30 days is enough spend $30 on an extendable visa on arrival, you can have an extra 30 days with that.
    #19
  20. DylanGeorgeField

    DylanGeorgeField Adventure | AU

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    @Wherever I may roam

    I'm considering canceling my trip due to corona virus. The borders are currently closed at Iran and China making it near impossible for me to get through.

    What are your plans?

    Chinese tour companies have quoted 2000-5000 USD to pass through and said the virus/border situation is 'sure to improve in 3 months'.

    I'm not so sure. Given I mainly want to go to Tajikistan, Iran and Italy, I will save my pennies and go another time. The risk of being blocked at a border and quarantined for 14-days will affect my already tight itinerary.

    FYI, I got a Myanmar tour company on the cheap by getting the guide to ride on the back of my bike ;)

    Current border reports: https://caravanistan.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=9&t=12239
    #20