The Achievable Dream 5-part series - the definitive guide on DVD for planning your motorcycle adventure. Get Ready! covers planning, paperwork, medical and many other topics! "Inspirational and Awesome!" See the trailer here!
Gear Up! is a 2-DVD set, 6 hours! Which bike is right for me? How do I prepare the bike? What stuff do I need - riding gear, clothing, camping gear, first aid kit, tires, maps and GPS? What don't I need? How do I pack it all in? Lots of opinions from over 150 travellers! "This DVD will save you a fortune!"See the trailer here!
So you've done it - got inspired, planned your trip, packed your stuff and you're on the road! This section is about staying healthy, happy and secure on your motorcycle adventure. And crossing borders, war zones or oceans!
On the Road! is 5.5 hours of the tips and advice you need to cross borders, break down language barriers, overcome culture shock, ship the bike and deal with breakdowns and emergencies."Just makes me want to pack up and go!" See the trailer here!
Tire Changing!Grant demystifies the black art of Tire Changing and Repair to help you STAY on the road! "Very informative and practical." See the trailer here!
Ladies on the Loose! For the first time ever, a motorcycle travel DVD made for women, by women! These intrepid women share their tips to help you plan your own motorcycle adventure. They also answer the women-only questions, and entertain you with amazing tales from the road! Presented by Lois Pryce, veteran solo traveller through South America and Africa and author of 'Lois on the Loose', and 'Red Tape and White Knuckles.'
"It has me all fired up to go out on my own adventure!" See the trailer here!
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DVDs - Watch and Learn!
Horizons Unlimited presents!
Achievable Dream The definitive guide to planning your motorcycle adventure! This insanely ambitious 2-year project has produced an informative and entertaining 5-part, 18 hour DVD series. "The ultimate round the world rider's how-to DVD!" MCN UK.
Collectors Box SetAll 5 DVDs with a custom printed slip case. "The series is 'free' because the tips and advice will save much more than you spend on buying the DVD's."
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I am planning a RTW/Long Tour on a 4 to 8 months basis next year. I am looking at different options and I have come across a couple of websites specialized in organising Tour around the world...
Kudu Expeditions and adventurebiketour... The former seems a very well organised expedition company but you feel always in a rush to stay tight in the schedule and the later seems a more economical option. Would you have any feedbacks or would you know any other organisations ?
I am also looking at doing this independently but I dont want to travel alone. Would you have any experience to share? How easy is it to meet people who wants to ride the world? Is the choice of the bike important in terms of riding with others? How cheaper this option is compared to an organised tour?
I have always been a fan of independant travel for a number of reasons (I do not aim to critisize package trips, they are just not for me).
Have never done package holidays because I always felt that the chances of being forced to share what should be an amazing experience with someone I didn't like were too high. They might not be very great, but imagine if there was someone you really didn't get along with, it would be awful!
If you are committing yourself to an adventure, half the skill (some would say battle!) is the trip organisation. Both before and during: getting the carnet, visas etc. where to stay that night, where to get that new tyre, how to get through this border, how to surmount this challenge or that obstacle. For me an adventure should always be a challenge, by surrendering a good portion of that challenge to someone else I would feel as though the adventure were a little less valid. I would, personally, feel as though I had not truly completed the adventure.
As an independant I have complete freedom as to where I go, who I travel with, what speed I go, how often I stop, what I eat, etc. etc. Being out on the road is essentially about freedom. By surrendering your itinerary to someone else you lose a huge chunk of this freedom.
To answer your question re: choice of bike. Yes, it does. I went to Norway with a couple of mates, they on an F650 and a Dakar, me on a 350 Enfield Bullet! They spent ages waiting for me (and, increasingly, not waiting for me!). It's a good thing to have a bike of similar performance to your co-travellers.
To sum up, I think doing a big trip can be a very daunting thing. It seems like a huge amount of organisation and risk to take alone. However, personally, I think if you take the plunge and commit to doing it independently, the feeling of achievement will be far greater than it would be if you were to join a package tour.
*Disclaimer* - I am not saying my bike is better than your bike. I am not saying my way is better than your way. I am not mocking your religion/politics/other belief system. When reading my post imagine me sitting behind a frothing pint of ale, smiling and offering you a bag of peanuts. This is the sentiment in which my post is made. Please accept it as such!
Try a short version like a week in the alps. This could give you a taste of what a group can be like. We have hosted groups of people for a short time where they all have a overriding goal and it can be majic. Mainly it would depend on who the tour hosting is done by. Myself I enjoy riding by myself and then meeting others in the evening to share experiences.
I completely agree with you on most of your points. I never joined any organised tours in any of my holidays I plan. As you said part of the fun and the memories you build along the journey are made of these unexpected things.
Also the planning prior to the actual journey is very important and exciting...
I would definitely prefer to do this trip independently. But most of all I want to share this trip with people...and I am aware that it is that easy to meet up with people you are going to live with and to get along for months...
Hopefully HU helps...
So if anyone out there has a plan to ride the world in 2009, horizontaly, vertically or in any other directions, please let me know... One of the - following plans are the tops of my list :
- The now well known Western Europe - Mongolia-Russia- North America
- or Very top of NA to the bottom of South Ameria (TDF) ?
But I would be open for any other (good) plans.
Like the others, and in no way am I disparaging others ways of doing things, but I would go solo. I tend to be a bit of a schizophrenic one day I want to ride hard and fast and just ride for the ride, the next or even later that day I want to go slow and see everything… This can be very hard to accommodate when riding with a group (e.g. 10 people that is at least 11 personalities [possibly 20 or more J] or moods or wants to deal with). Even for one day you have to match your riding style and wants with the others in the group, whereas when alone, you do not have to match riding styles (or moods), plus on a longer trip if you fall in love with a place (or person) and want to stay awhile then there is nothing to stop you. If you are ill you can stop without disrupting the schedule (or worse not stopping and risking your life – by not concentrating on your riding). I have also found that a single person or couple get better treatment at restaurants and borders then large groups (I guess it is just less stress for the people working so that gets passed on to you). Basically I say that alone you can be selfish, with a group you really have to be a team player.
I think it is good advice go on a short tour (like a week or two) with a group, see if you like it, then go for a the same amount of time alone and see what you like better. Then go that way… The third option is don’t book on a RWT with a tour group but book on to many short tours in different places around the world.. this could be the best of both worlds..
If you went on an organised tour, you'd miss out on all the fun I'm having right now trying to get my trip from Australia back to the UK sorted before these lovely people here deport me in about 2 weeks time. As Matt says, there's the Carnet, Visas, bike transport etc to arrange and thats before you even turn a wheel. As of right now, I don't have any visas arranged for India, Pak etc as my departure from Australia is going to be somewhat quicker than I originally anticipated. And I've never felt so disorganised in my life. But hey, that's half the fun of this malarky isn't it? The bike is at least on its way to Kauala Lumpar though.
And don't forget, it's also good to be able to pick and choose who you want to ride with as on an organised tour, you're stuck with the lot of them for the duration.
Also if you want to avoid dealing with the cost of obtaining a Carnet, I'd say head to the Americas as it's not required there.
Having said that, believe it or my bank is actually underwriting the security on my Carnet!! So after a few frantic phone calls and emails, my bill has gone from a potential £1800 down to £250- phew!
My wife and I took a 3 week organized motorcycle tour in South America a few years ago and it was wonderful. Everything was taken care of for us.
Perfect when you are working full time and have limited time to plan/organize and also need to stay within a short vacation window.
It was exactly what we we looking for at the time: an introduction to South America and a very nice motorcycle ride.
We are now retired and travel on our own, as a couple, for all of the reasons Xander outlined.
I would add that when with a group, you are seldom approached by local people. A group can seem a little intimidating. You tend to miss the best part of travel; meeting people in their home environment.
When solo or as a couple you seem to become a magnet for local people when ever you stop. This is the essence of travel for us.
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Horizons Unlimited is not a big multi-national company, just two people who love motorcycle travel and have grown what started as a hobby in 1997 into a full time job (usually 8-10 hours per day and 7 days a week) and a labour of love. To keep it going and a roof over our heads, we run events (22 this year!); we sell inspirational and informative DVDs; we have a few selected advertisers; and we make a small amount from memberships.
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