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Motorcycle travel in Tibet, Nepal, Bhutan, India...

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  #1  
Old 21 Jan 2006
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Riding in China : finding SOLUTIONS

hello, as chris mentioned, just to continue :
http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/ubb...ML/000291.html
and change a bit the debate, feel free to expose your wishes, difficulties, experiences, SOLUTIONS, …. to ride in china.
hope things will become more easy for us to ride there.

other open posts covering some aspects of riding in China include :

Topic: Carnet for China
http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/ubb...ML/000348.html
Topic: Another China Question
http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/ubb...ML/000347.html
Topic: Enter in China !
http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/ubb...ML/000326.html
Topic: Rent a bike in China
http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/ubb...ML/000329.html
Topic: bribe/"fees" in china
http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/ubb...ML/000319.html
Topic: Driver's license in China
http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/ubb...ML/000320.html
Topic: Chinese requirement to ride in China
http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/ubb...ML/000324.html
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Sept 2008 - dec 2009 : Voyage et art contemporain en Amérique du sud.

* http://vincent.danna.free.fr/
2002 - 2004 : Un tour du monde en moto.
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  #2  
Old 27 Jan 2006
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Well, after reading the previous posts about this topic, i would like to share my experience. I have made this summer a 5 months trip along the silk road from France to China trough Turkey, Iran, Turkmenistan, UZ, KG, KZ and China, i was may be lucky to be allowed to go into China independently and ride from Druzba (KZ) to Beijing.

First, it seems to me important to keep in mind that in these countries, what is true one day may be wrong the next one... and before being successful in border crossing, i was turn back in the Torugart 11 days before. I knew exactly before trying at this place it was probably the most umpredictable border from central asia, but i was so near (Tash Rabat), and i have a double entry Kirghyz visa, then i decided to try.

Without any surprise, they don't let me cross the border, but it could have been possible an other day (i was there on friday and they will close soon for week-end). This may have work only if i have book my journey with a chinese travel agency which will provide me a guide to Kashgar... etc, etc. A chinese guide who was there to pick-up some tourist can provide me this service for 150 USD, and except this no way !!! In fact, the most complicate was to cross the first checkpoint, i have to talk for a long time with the guards and it cost me 20 euros to do that !!! But no regrets, i have to try !

1500km later, i face again chinese border at Druzba check point in Kazakhstan, compare to others "Stans", it was quite difficult to leave Kazakhstan ; they check carefully my papers and all my bags. After five hundred meter, i meet the first chinese post, i have to open again all my bags, they check again everything but they let me go easily without paying anything, nobody there spoke english.

The main custom office was not far, i arrived there at lunch time and there was nobody. When they come back, i was worrying a litle and in fact it was cool. A small part of the staff was speaking english, they were friendly and helpful, and all the paperwork was done in one hour, the bike was not a problem, i just have to put it on the custom declaration form and nothing more, of course no guide and nothing to pay ! i was really surprised, and when they stamp my passport, i was near to shout "YESSSSS" !!!

The officer was really intererested in my trip, and something which seems very important for him was to show him i have a map, and also I know exactly where i was and where i plan to go ; my feeling is that he wanted to be sure that i won't be lost as soon as i leave the customs. After shaking hand, he wish me "have a nice trip !".

What a strange feeeling when i leave this place, i was so happy, but in other hand i feel a little bit lost... and frightened by this huge country. I don't ride more than 5 km and police stops me, it was fun, they doesn't expect to find a people like me under the helmet !!!, they just check my passport and let me go. This is exactly what happened each time the police stops me on the road during the month and half i spent in china. We cannot communicate et they don't know what to do with me. During this kind of control, asking to confirm the road and showing the map was a "sesame".

There is just one exception, one day i was on a trail in a remote area in Xinjiang, the police stops me in a village, they want to see my "permit", i have nothing and of course they don't want my driving licence, they look very angry and ask me to go back from where i was coming, one of them which seems to be the chief told me "Go back to Kazakhstan !", but they don't do more, i just have to go back and find an other way, it was on trails in high mountains and this day it was not far from midnight when i arrived in Balguntay

My feeling is that Chinese authorities don't want to have any trouble with foreigners, in my opinion they want to behave like a big democratic country and they don't really care if you are or not compliant with chinese road regulation. Except this problem in Bayanbulak, i was really free to move and usually policemen were more interested to play with their mobile phone along the road than checking my papers, very often they stops chinese cars or trucks and let me go. In many occasions, they help me to find my way.

One day, i meet on the road in Gansu an english guy, who was living and working in Beijing. He was travelling with a 3 wheel cj750 through China, and doesn't have any bad experiences about driving in China.

In other hand, i think i could be in deep trouble if i was involved in an accident, but this was also true for many countries i have crossed before, and it's so great to travel like this, then…
At least, i believe the most important is to keep smiling.

Christophe
Sorry for my poor english ;o)

http://mesphotosdumonde.chez-alice.fr/


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  #3  
Old 21 Mar 2006
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Ive been driving a bike in China for over 2 years now. I've driven from Inner Mongolia to Tibet and back and from Fuzhou to Nanjing. I dont have a licence and my bike isnt registered in my name. The biggest problem I have ever had was when I entered a "restricted zone", (which was just a section of highway) and the police hassled me, and then asked for "mei yuan" (American money) at which point I basically told them to f off and left.

But the bike(s) I drove around then at least had proper plates on them. The bike I have now doesnt even have that. So I just dont stop for police. My bike is a CB400, the police could never catch me, (but, really arent that concerned about bikes anyway).

If you are ever stopped by the police, outside of perhaps Shanghai or Beijing, just smile and say "ting bu dong". It will work 99.9% of the time.

Actually, here in Inner Mongolia I was stopped by one cop who thought he was going to teach me a lesson, I was new to the whole driving in China thing and went along with him, he radiod his boss and asked what to do, his boss radiod back, "I have no idea" and he let me go.

That happened in Tibet as well.. a police checkpoint and after about 20 minutes of radio chatter, they had no idea what to do with a foriegner on a motorcycle so they let me go.

Most Chinese really respect the whole "adventure" travel thing. So me driving out in the boonies on my bike is usually met with smiles.

Most important though, if you are stopped by the police, take your key out and put it straight in your pocket (or they will take it), and then say "wo bu qi moto" (I wont drive the bike) and just walk your bike away. (and then get the hell out of there)
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  #4  
Old 5 Apr 2006
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Join Date: Dec 2003
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Posts: 58
hello vincent
thanx for continuing the thread. It seems to be an issue.
An excuse to everybody: with hindsight I should have titled the former thread
"Is China open?"
Having read the threads on the HUBB I come to the conclusion:
If U have enough time give it a try on different crossings.
This is what Norbet Berentz did. He went in and out of PRC several times.

Goetz



------------------
ïóòü = öåëü
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  #5  
Old 11 May 2009
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China to UK

Hi all

I am new to the HUB and have found all of your posts very interesting as I am planning on riding from China (Beijing) back to the UK. There are a number of issues that are concerning me and that I hope you can lend your wisdom too:

1) I have read a lot about the benefits and risks of not getting proper registration and insurance and understand that it is up to personal preference at the end of the day. What I would ask is if you are going to do it legit then a) what paper work do you need as a foreigner buying a bike in China and b) how long does it take?

2) As I am planning on exporting a bike out of China what are the likely problems at border crossings with a) an unlicsenced and non-plated bike or alternatively licensed, fully documented one, and b) will I have problems in Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan etc if the bike is registered in China and ownership docs are in Chinese?!

All advice is hugely appreciated as so far I have taken a rather ad-hock approach to organising this trip!
Cheers
Fynn
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  #6  
Old 11 May 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fynnbar96 View Post
Hi all

I am new to the HUB and have found all of your posts very interesting as I am planning on riding from China (Beijing) back to the UK. There are a number of issues that are concerning me and that I hope you can lend your wisdom too:

1) I have read a lot about the benefits and risks of not getting proper registration and insurance and understand that it is up to personal preference at the end of the day. What I would ask is if you are going to do it legit then a) what paper work do you need as a foreigner buying a bike in China and b) how long does it take?

2) As I am planning on exporting a bike out of China what are the likely problems at border crossings with a) an unlicsenced and non-plated bike or alternatively licensed, fully documented one, and b) will I have problems in Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan etc if the bike is registered in China and ownership docs are in Chinese?!

All advice is hugely appreciated as so far I have taken a rather ad-hock approach to organising this trip!
Cheers
Fynn
Flynn,

can you give me some more details please.

Are you already in China? Beijing?
When do you plan to start?
What kind of bike are you looking for?
Budget for the bike?

Andy
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  #7  
Old 11 May 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chinabiker View Post
Flynn,

can you give me some more details please.

Are you already in China? Beijing?
When do you plan to start?
What kind of bike are you looking for?
Budget for the bike?

Andy
Andy,

No, am coming over with a mate around june/july and was hoping to spend no more than a week getting things finalised on the ground in Beijing.

Very rough plans concerning bikes. Very much like the idea of a CJ sidecar, however have heard that then are massively unreliable and as I have limited mechanics experience may not be the best plan. Do you know of any other bikes with sidecars? If not anything from a 125cc to 200cc is preferable. Budget £500-1500 for bike. Anything more old school would be nice, Royal Enfield esq!

Length of trip in China around 30days, planning on leaving into Kyrgyzstan. Possible?

Cheers
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  #8  
Old 11 May 2009
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Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Tasmania,Australia
Posts: 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Memnoch9615 View Post
Ive been driving a bike in China for over 2 years now. I've driven from Inner Mongolia to Tibet and back and from Fuzhou to Nanjing. I dont have a licence and my bike isnt registered in my name. The biggest problem I have ever had was when I entered a "restricted zone", (which was just a section of highway) and the police hassled me, and then asked for "mei yuan" (American money) at which point I basically told them to f off and left.

But the bike(s) I drove around then at least had proper plates on them. The bike I have now doesnt even have that. So I just dont stop for police. My bike is a CB400, the police could never catch me, (but, really arent that concerned about bikes anyway).

If you are ever stopped by the police, outside of perhaps Shanghai or Beijing, just smile and say "ting bu dong". It will work 99.9% of the time.

Actually, here in Inner Mongolia I was stopped by one cop who thought he was going to teach me a lesson, I was new to the whole driving in China thing and went along with him, he radiod his boss and asked what to do, his boss radiod back, "I have no idea" and he let me go.

That happened in Tibet as well.. a police checkpoint and after about 20 minutes of radio chatter, they had no idea what to do with a foriegner on a motorcycle so they let me go.

Most Chinese really respect the whole "adventure" travel thing. So me driving out in the boonies on my bike is usually met with smiles.

Most important though, if you are stopped by the police, take your key out and put it straight in your pocket (or they will take it), and then say "wo bu qi moto" (I wont drive the bike) and just walk your bike away. (and then get the hell out of there)
Plenty of CB400 and bigger cc bikes up here the police don't have a problem catching them one way or another.

Seen it yesterday police pulling people up checking car and motorcycle hell the police didn't even have a car or if they did it was a unmarked one small back street too.

Roll the dice.
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  #9  
Old 11 May 2009
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Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Beijing
Posts: 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by fynnbar96 View Post
Andy,

No, am coming over with a mate around june/july and was hoping to spend no more than a week getting things finalised on the ground in Beijing.

Very rough plans concerning bikes. Very much like the idea of a CJ sidecar, however have heard that then are massively unreliable and as I have limited mechanics experience may not be the best plan. Do you know of any other bikes with sidecars? If not anything from a 125cc to 200cc is preferable. Budget £500-1500 for bike. Anything more old school would be nice, Royal Enfield esq!

Length of trip in China around 30days, planning on leaving into Kyrgyzstan. Possible?

Cheers
Fynn,

sorry, mis-spelled your name first. I can get you 2 brand new bikes 150/200cc class (I assume you are not riding 2 up). Sidecars can be fun, but as you said, they may not be reliable for what you are planning. However, I have a buddy who could provide sidecars as well.

July would be better than June.

Details via PM.

Andy
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  #10  
Old 11 May 2009
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Posts: 9
Andy,
Thank you for your kind offer! Once my post count increases I will be in touch.
Cheers
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