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This category contains 58 posts

House Warming Invitation

So here we all are, the Khorog ten. From left Tobias, Marianne, Ramon, Patrick, Victor, Moniek, Me, Hanne (aka Honkanen) Pete and Arian. Photograph: Arian Van Helden I am procrastination incarnate. So much to write but where to start… I think to myself, I know, I’ll just organise the desk in our hostel room here [...]

Kökbörü – Brutal, elegant, fast-paced and downright bloody cool!

Brutal, elegant, fast-paced and downright bloody cool! Kökbörü, the most popular national sport in Kyrgyzstan. Not so much a blog post, I just wanted to change the ‘featured image’ from being a beautiful picture of some SIM cards to something a little more exciting. Yesterday, 31st of August, marked Kyrgyzstan’s independence from the Soviet Union. [...]

Tajikistan… Last of the Pamir tourists

Sardines, vodka and AK-47s. With the comforting burn of vodka coursing through my body (and a little bit dribbling through my beard) I was shoved out of the way as the soldier reached underneith the pillow on the bed we were sitting on, and, laughing, pulled out his AK-47. He handed it over to us [...]

Getting caught up in Civil War, but don’t worry, we’re OK!

“The good news is that today Tajikistan is safe, stable and scenically spectacular.” Lonely Planet, July 2007 Armed helicopter passes over the hostel just before unleashing heavy gunfire into the surrounding mountains. Press play to listen to a short section of the recording we made of the gunfire throughout and surrounding the town of Khorog. [...]

Cycling across Iran

Cycling Across Iran A few clips from our time in Iran. Hip-Hop courtesy or Reza Chronic Accordion courtesy of Reza Number One…. thanks guys! Have a look at our Iran photos here

Four on Eight Wheels becomes Six on Twelve!!

So two continued to be four as we crossed over another border into Uzbekistan. Stopping at a hospital for lunch (as you do) within an hour of being in the country we found the Uzbeks to be a very friendly and helpful bunch. They were keen to aid Pete with a new look in Bukhara, [...]

Turkmenistan power-break

A mini-break in Turkmenistan Ahhhhh HA HA HA!! A Turkmen woman with the standard set of gold knashers The Turkmen Time-Trial or Turkmen Dash… two of the names for the five day bike ride across this mysterious and closed country of friendly folk, gold teeth, disco-dining, barren desert, blistering sunshine, ridiculously bad road surfaces, mosquitoes [...]

Passports please

Having read several blog entries, along with warnings from the Lonely Planet, we weren’t particularly surprised when we got pulled over by two ‘plain-clothes policeman’ in an unmarked white car demanding to see our passports. If we weren’t already suspicious by the lack of any visual evidence confirming that the two had even the most [...]

The year is 1391, the country Iran

Sheikh Lutf Allah and Jameh Mosques, Esfahan. Kids riding through the winding streets of Yazd. Zoor khane. Old school air-conditioning and no photos of bikes, cycle touring or camping. still no bikes. Tucking into some delicious chicken (100 metres from the abattoir). Khamenei and Khomeini. Don’t see too much cycle touring going on in these [...]

Time off the bikes in Esfahan, Iran

Time off the bikes in Esfahan, Iran No fades, no added music. A taste of Esfahan. Just as we saw it. Just as we heard it.

Istanbul to Iran the movie

Istanbul to Iran Having had an amazing time seeing out the cold winter months in Istanbul, this is part two of our bike ride across Turkey. Banjo by Pete Guitar by Mary Turkish music by some Turkish guys in a restaurant in Istanbul Apologies for some of the dodgy audio quality

Head’um off at the Pass…

Ten minutes before this truck had beeped and waved at us It’s 6.10am and the sun is streaming through our 4th floor hotel room in Agri. I’ve already had a shower and washed my stinky socks in the process too. Maybe it is from spending so many nights in the tent with the light waking [...]

Sitting Turkeys

Sleeping in the show-room If you’ve read many other cycle-blogs then you won’t be surprised, in fact you’re probably expecting to read gushing reports of encounters with friendly and hospitable locals, tales of psychopathic dogs and beaming descriptions of stunning landscapes. I think we’ve successfully ticked these boxes, so no more of that… except for [...]

Collect 100 coins to progress to the next level

Sunshine in a bottle Could it be that Turkey has an abundance of Lucazade or Irn Bru? Maybe there’s a glut of cooking oil or perhaps people just like driving around with plastic bottles of watered-down honey? Over the course of two days I took about 200 photos of these glistening bottles of amber nectar [...]

Like Gold To Me

Sitting looking out over the Istanbulise skyline, the air is crisp and fresh and Fairport Convention is keeping me company. Birds tweet, cars beep, voices drift up from the street, and ambient sounds of the city seem calm to me today. It’s been a while since I felt the urge to write, but thismorning feels [...]