November 25, 2008 GMT
No.16. Iran. Persian Gulf to Pakistan.

After spending a night in a dreary hostel - as 'recommended' by the Kangan police - I'd headed south, sparkling waters on my right, smoking refineries on my left. Bemused police checked my progress at regular intervals until I arrived on the outskirts of Khamir.

A dual carriageway took me into the centre of town. An uninviting fly blown place of what appeared to be one storey concrete buildings with shops spilling out onto the streets. I pulled up and a man stepped from the shadows towards me....

What follows appeared in the Teheran papers.

"Simon Roberts of Manchester United, near London, England is recovering from a terrifying ordeal. While travelling the coast of our wonderous Persian Gulf, Mr Roberts was accosted in Khamir by members of the HAAC. (Hospitality at all Costs).

Arriving in Khamir, about 100kms from Bandar-e Abbas as darkness fell, Mr Roberts was approached by a local.'Mr Simon', as he was called, asked where he might find a hotel. 'No Hotel in Khamir' was the response. ' Please - you can stay with me at my house'.

From that moment on Mr Simon underwent relentless hospitality in the form of food and drinks and entertainment.'I thought I'd never get away' said Mr Simon.

Click here to see the full story

It was only after four days was Mr Simon able to negotiate his release. The ransom price agreed upon was over 30 caricatures of Mr Abdoul's close friends and relatives including one of his neighbour's dog.

'Mr Simon, now recovering in Bam, said he was looking forward to moving on to Pakistan - for some peace and quiet'.............."

Click on MORE below for tales of dancing girls and palm lined islands..

'Hello. How are you?'
Ah, the usual four words of English. 'Fine, thankyou...'
'Are you looking for somewher to stay?'
Much better. Abdoul spoke excellent English and once again I was humbled by a local's linguistic skills.

'Yes. I am. Do you know of a Hotel?'
'No Hotel but you can stay with my family...'

I followed him as he ran down sandy lanes between whitewashed walls. We stopped at a metal doorway in a high wall, and he ushered me in to a simple inner courtyard. This was to be my home for the next few days.

That evening, as we ate with his friends, sitting (painfully) cross-legged on rugs, a boat trip was planned. {TIP. Heading for the Middle East? Spend two months prior to your trip sat on the floor. It WILL pay dividends and reduce your Post-trip Chiropracter's bill}. They knew of an island where we could camp.
'We take supplies and catch fish...Grill them later..'
I'd planned to move on but this sounded like the perfect tonic for a weary biker. Palm tree lined white sands...Beach bar...Dancing girls. Oh, how wrong can you be.... The cartoon says it all.

Nevertheless, it was a truly unique experience and I was overwhelmed by their hospitality. The only way I managed to repay them was with caricatures - of the whole family, their friends and their friends' friends. Great laugh though.

From Khamir I rode through Bandar-e-Abbas, and on, North West, to Bam staying at Akbar's Hotel which was slowly being rebuilt after a devastating earthquake. An abandoned Yamaha was all that remained to mark a biker who'd lost his life there. A sobering sight that stayed with me all the way to Zahedan and the desert road to Pakistan where things were going to take a turn for the worse.........

Posted by Simon Roberts at November 25, 2008 01:29 PM GMT

HU DVD Summer Special!

Now that summer is here, get On the Road! Take 30% off the Achievable Dream - On the Road! 2-DVD set until August 31 only. Get On the Road! Learn the tips to staying healthy, happy and secure on your motorcycle adventure!

Our veteran travellers share their tips (and great stories) for staying healthy, happy and secure on your motorcycle adventure.

"A fantastic, informative and inspirational DVD."

"It's brilliant - thank you very much!"

Check it out at the HU Store! Remember to use Coupon Code 'ONTHEROAD' on your order when you checkout.

Renedian Adventures

Renedian Adventures

What others say about HU...

"I just wanted to say thanks for doing this and sharing so much with the rest of us." Dave, USA

"Your website is a mecca of valuable information and the DVD series is informative, entertaining, and inspiring! The new look of the website is very impressive, updated and catchy. Thank you so very much!" Jennifer, Canada

"...Great site. Keep up the good work." Murray and Carmen, Australia

"We just finished a 7 month 22,000+ mile scouting trip from Alaska to the bottom of Chile and I can't tell you how many times we referred to your site for help. From how to adjust your valves, to where to stay in the back country of Peru. Horizons Unlimited was a key player in our success. Motorcycle enthusiasts from around the world are in debt to your services." Alaska Riders

contest pic

10th Annual HU Travellers Photo Contest is on now! This is an opportunity for YOU to show us your best photos and win prizes!

NEW! HU 2014 Adventure Travel T-shirts! are now available in several colors! Be the first kid on your block to have them! New lower prices on synths!

HU 2014 T-shirts now in!

Check out the new Gildan Performance cotton-feel t-shirt - 100% poly, feels like soft cotton!

What turns you on to motorcycle travel?

Global Rescue, WORLDwide evacuation services for EVERYONE

Global Rescue is the premier provider of medical, security and evacuation services worldwide and is the only company that will come to you, wherever you are, and evacuate you to your home hospital of choice. Additionally, Global Rescue places no restrictions on country of citizenship - all nationalities are eligible to sign-up!

New to Horizons Unlimited?

New to motorcycle travelling? New to the HU site? Confused? Too many options? It's really very simple - just 4 easy steps!

Horizons Unlimited was founded in 1997 by Grant and Susan Johnson following their journey around the world on a BMW R80 G/S motorcycle.

Susan and Grant Johnson Read more about Grant & Susan's story

Membership - help keep us going!

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.

You don't have to be a Member to come to an HU meeting, access the website, the HUBB or to receive the e-zine. What you get for your membership contribution is our sincere gratitude, good karma and knowing that you're helping to keep the motorcycle travel dream alive. Contributing Members and Gold Members do get additional features on the HUBB. Here's a list of all the Member benefits on the HUBB.

Books & DVDs


All the best travel books and videos listed and often reviewed on HU's famous Books page. Check it out and get great travel books from all over the world.

Motorcycle Express for shipping and insurance!

Motorcycle Express

MC Air Shipping, (uncrated) USA / Canada / Europe and other areas. Be sure to say "Horizons Unlimited" to get your $25 discount on Shipping!
Insurance - see: For foreigners traveling in US and Canada and for Americans and Canadians traveling in other countries, then mail it to MC Express and get your HU $15 discount!

Story and photos copyright ©

Sorry, you need a Javascript enabled browser to get the email address and dates. You can contact Horizons Unlimited at the link below. Please be sure to tell us WHICH blog writer you wish to contact.

All Rights Reserved.

Contact the author:

Editors note: We accept no responsibility for any of the above information in any way whatsoever. You are reminded to do your own research. Any commentary is strictly a personal opinion of the person supplying the information and is not to be construed as an endorsement of any kind.

Hosted by: Horizons Unlimited, the motorcycle travellers' website!
You can have your story here too - click for details!