Driving through Asia to Europe

Submitted: Wednesday, Jun 19, 2013 at 10:22
ThreadID: 102831 Views:1502 Replies:7 FollowUps:8
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We are investigating the option of driving Asia to Europe. We would be interested in joining a group of people to travel part of this journey (especially through China and Mongolia)) or alternatively having discussions with people who could be interested in forming such a group - recommended size is 4-6 vehicles. The plannng and preparation required to undertake such an adventure is approximately twelve months so 2014 is more than likely out of the question but 2015 a possibility. We would be travelling in a Nissan Patrol with possibly a roof top camper. We look forward to hearing from any Interested adventurers.
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Reply By: Tim HJ61 (WA) - Wednesday, Jun 19, 2013 at 11:38

Wednesday, Jun 19, 2013 at 11:38
Having just mapped out a route from Singapore to Paris on Google maps for myself, I would be foolish to not reply and put my hand up for this one. Whether it comes off or not, it's an adventure worth contemplating.

I'm Perth based with a 1988 HJ61 Landcruiser.

Tim
AnswerID: 513367

Reply By: Barbera72 - Wednesday, Jun 19, 2013 at 11:41

Wednesday, Jun 19, 2013 at 11:41
I'll be very interested to know from you on how you plan the border crossing especially in and out of China. I tried to start organizing a trip like that few years ago but totally failed upon advice on how to deal with unreliable and mysterious border crossing and dealing with the bureaucracy involved with border officers. I opted for the pan-american highway from Canada to Chile and will organize that trip instead eventually.
AnswerID: 513368

Follow Up By: Tim HJ61 (WA) - Wednesday, Jun 19, 2013 at 11:56

Wednesday, Jun 19, 2013 at 11:56
I have no real idea about these things, but using Google maps there is a border crossing from Laos to China at Mohanzhen, Xishuangbanna, Yunnan, China. Viewing images from the region, it looks like an impressive crossing point.

Arranging visas etc etc etc., is a whole different story - one I've not explored. There is a blog on here for a small group that did a similar trip several years ago that makes a great read. I've not gone back to review it lately.

Tim
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Follow Up By: Barbera72 - Wednesday, Jun 19, 2013 at 14:15

Wednesday, Jun 19, 2013 at 14:15
The people I asked advice told me that often the few crossing points get shut with no reason for an indefinite time. As waiting at the border with no certainty of getting through is not an option the next thing to do is try to reach the next border gate and they're not close by. Some regions also need a special permit that can be obtained only from an invitation from a citizen. Then each Country have different border issues, I'm not going to write a book here but crossing borders in Asia is not as easy as crossing the QLD/NSW border. And certainly not as straight forward as presenting the valid passports and documents required. The safety issue is another thing. Definitely a mouth watering adventure.
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Follow Up By: Member - Kiwibound eventually - Thursday, Jun 20, 2013 at 19:55

Thursday, Jun 20, 2013 at 19:55
The Chinese government now insists on the services of a guide for the entire period od travel in China. A company who offers these services is Navo. They assist with all the paper work and visas and a guide travels with the Group/ vehicle until departure from China. Of course this comes with a cost payable to Navo and also the accommodation and meals for the period of travel for the guide must be paid. Being able to share this cost across more than one vehicle (often 4-6 vehicles) makes this much more affordable.
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Reply By: member - mazcan - Wednesday, Jun 19, 2013 at 12:13

Wednesday, Jun 19, 2013 at 12:13
hi all

i'd suggest you try and contact ron and viv moon
they have done quiet a bit of travelling in all those areas they are the travelling guru's from 4x4 australia magazine
i'm sure they could give you some helpful advice and /or pointers

cheers
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Follow Up By: Member - Kiwibound eventually - Thursday, Jun 20, 2013 at 19:58

Thursday, Jun 20, 2013 at 19:58
Thanks for your suggestion. Ron and Viv wrote a blog which we have read and it was very enlightening. They didn't cross China as far as I know but certainly extensive travel in Russia and parts.
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Reply By: bgreeni - Wednesday, Jun 19, 2013 at 14:34

Wednesday, Jun 19, 2013 at 14:34
Something I have thought about doing. My idea was to travel to Vladivostock and buy a vehicle there. Plenty of Japanese second hand vehicles available. My wife is Russian and I have a brother-in-Law who lives in the far east of Russia so I would have some local assistance and no language problems.

Having visited that area it is not all that remote or unvivilised, with some large-ish cities on the russian side - I have visited Khabarovsk. An easier alternative might be just to take the Trans Siberian train.
AnswerID: 513380

Follow Up By: Member - Kiwibound eventually - Thursday, Jun 20, 2013 at 20:01

Thursday, Jun 20, 2013 at 20:01
Vladivostok is an option but not our first choice. We also have a number of contacts in Russia as our son lived in Moscow for nearly six years until recently. Taking the train has been of any interest to us. Thanks for your comments.
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Reply By: mchapo - Wednesday, Jun 19, 2013 at 18:34

Wednesday, Jun 19, 2013 at 18:34
G'day Kiwibound
I have just finished reading Jon Faine's book called From here to there. He and his son drove from Sydney to London through China Mongolia Kyrgystan Uzbekestan Iran. A great read outlining the troubles he had getting across borders etc with his car. I think you'll find it helpful.
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Follow Up By: Member - Kiwibound eventually - Thursday, Jun 20, 2013 at 20:04

Thursday, Jun 20, 2013 at 20:04
We found reading Jon Faines's book inspirational as well and have since ready many blogs including those of three couples currently crossing China.
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Reply By: mikehzz - Wednesday, Jun 19, 2013 at 19:18

Wednesday, Jun 19, 2013 at 19:18
Another good one would be Cape Town to London. I read about a Perth based Land Rover Discovery that did that one. The Vladivostock to London trip was a bunch of Aussies on one of the Your 4x4 episodes. They all look like great fun. I think you have to be careful to pick your car and equipment to fit easily into a standard shipping container from memory. Also best safety advice seems to be self contained for sleeping in the vehicle or have a roof tent. I wish I could come....:-(
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Follow Up By: Member - Kiwibound eventually - Thursday, Jun 20, 2013 at 20:11

Thursday, Jun 20, 2013 at 20:11
We have not been to South Africa so great suggestion for the future. We have a copy of a DVD on a trip made by a group from Victoria and fortunately have a mutual friend of one of the couples. We agree with you how important it is to carefully pick the vehicle and equipment. The potential for fuel issues concerns us after an experience with dirty diesel bought in Australia. Lots of decisions to be made and research undertaken. We wish you could come as well! Perhaps sometime in e future your turn will come.
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Reply By: Robyn R4 - Wednesday, Jun 19, 2013 at 20:49

Wednesday, Jun 19, 2013 at 20:49
Warren Brown (cartoonist from Sydney's Daily Telegraph) did a re-enactment of some trip in beautiful old cars a few years ago...I'm sure it was through Russia to Paris. He seems like a decent enough bloke to give pointers if you could make contact with him through the Daily Tele...?
But then again, things may have changed enormously in the few years since, too!!
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Follow Up By: Member - Kiwibound eventually - Thursday, Jun 20, 2013 at 20:13

Thursday, Jun 20, 2013 at 20:13
Their trip made a great movie too. Thank you for the reminder.
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