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Route Planning Where to go, when, what are the interesting places to see
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Old 30 May 2010
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UK to Beijing

Hello all,

Is there an accepted route from UK to Beijing?
I have read all about the reams and reams of paperwork, and the big expense of a guide in China.
However I have a plan on a Chinese driving licence.

However, brushing all that aside for now, what route would one take for the easiest?

1st way, keep north above the Black Sea, through Ukrain, and North above the Caspian Sea, through Kazakhstan, and into China from there, or drop south into Kyrgyzstan, and into China that way ?

2nd way, ,through Turkey, with the Black Sea to the North, into Iran and the Caspian, also to the North, then Afganistan and into Pakistan then some how into China?

3rd way, you tell me, , , KLM ?

In all honesty, I havent got a clue on the easiest route?

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Old 10 Jun 2010
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Your routes into China are limited by the number of land boarders they will let forigners though. If I was to head for Beijing I would probably head for Iran, into Pakistan and up the KKH (Karakoram Highway) into China. However if thats the route you want you need to haul ass to arrive before the road crews stop working for the 6 months of winter. During this period avalanches and rockfalls that the crew usually clear are left till the weather is warmer (at least this is what I have read).

Alternatively go through Russia drop down at Samara towards Uralsk an head east towards the chinese boarder. The roads here are being worked on so be weary of motorways marked on the maps which haven'y quite been finished yet. Also remember that land boarders into Kyrgyzstan have been closed for a long time since the revolution and I don't know if they are open yet. This means that if you can't get between Kaz and China for some reason then to drop south means back tracking round into Uzbekistan at Tashkent (they like to close some of the land boarders here but there is usually a route through somewhere). Also if you do head this way keep your tank topped up as soon as you reach east Kaz because fuel tankers have huge delays getting over boarders and petrol stations can run out.

A third route could be Iran, Pakistan, India (at Lahore), then enter China around the Sadjya area. This would make for a shorter sprint to Beijing, and aviod getting to high, but I have no experience of the roads in this area or in China, However I am planning a route this way atm so if you can wait 10 months I'l let you know

Hope this helps, even if I raised more questions than I answered.
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Old 21 Jun 2010
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Location: Burpengary, Queensland
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Hi Guys,

Just a quick question - does having a Chinese driving license negate the need for a guide?

I am planning a trip through China in 2011 and I have found it immensely frustrating and expensive with all the costs associated with a guide.

Can someone please clarify?

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Old 21 Jun 2010
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The "easiest" way to China would be to go through Ukraine and then enter Russia, and ride east all the way to Chita, and then hang a right to enter China around Manzhouli.

The good thing about this route is that there are very few borders (only Russia, and China) and that all the way through Russia you can basically do what you want. No guides, no hassles finding a at the end of the day's ride, etc. The bad thing is that this ride through Russia is pretty long and boring. Personally though, I would probably rather ride through Russia than slog through Pakistan, Iran, India, etc. with all of the visas, guides, etc.
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Old 21 Jun 2010
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Originally Posted by Bryn View Post
A third route could be Iran, Pakistan, India (at Lahore), then enter China around the Sadjya area.
Sure you can do that nowadays?

I´m no expert on this, and I could be totally wrong (probably am, too!) but I thought the only options (for foreigners at least) to enter China from South Asia were via Pakistan/KKH, or from Nepal to Tibet?
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