Berfore we start with the trip, here is a short overview about or planned trip. The general idea is a round trip from Würzburg in Germany to Mongolia and back. The image below shows the approximately planned route, albeit it was planned using suggested routing between major points of the trip. Therefore, the actual route will probably vary from the planning.
The planning started in 2018, about one year before the actual start of the trip. As Chris was writing his master thesis until the end of March, most of the preparations on the bikes took place in the last weeks before the trip. Therefore, we were not able to conduct as extensive testing as we would have liked to.
During our trip, we plan to document the adventures we experience using this blog. We will probably not manage to create a “live” day-by-day report of the trip. Instead we will try to cover different parts of the trip when we can manage it time wise.
Caspian Sea Ferry
As can be seen on the planned route, we are planning to cross the caspian sea by ferry. As the plan was to get from Turkey to Uzbekistan, three options existed.
- Take the northern route via Russia and Kazakhstan
- The southern route via Iran and Turkmenistan
- Ferry from Baku to Aqtau (Kazakhstan)
Option one was ruled out by the fact, that we had already planned to enter Russia twice. As a consequence, we would need a multiple entry visa which are a) expensive and b) is it unclear, if you are required to have previously entered Russia for a certain period.
The second option was discarded as the chances for getting a Transit Visa for Turkmenistan are very low according to multiple sources. As a consequence, only the third option remained. According to two online sources, taking the ferry is a little more complicated than ferries in western Europe, but definitely possible. We are closely monitoring this thread for updates on the current situation regarding the ferry.
Transsib Irkutsk – Moscow
We are planning to cover the longest part of the Russian leg of the trip using the trans siberian railway. This does of course pose the question “How do we transport the bikes?”. Luckily, we are not the first ones with this plan. Instead, a user wrote a tutorial on shipping a bike from Irkutsk to some other place in 2011 where he explained in detail who to ask, what to bring etc. As the tutorial is eight years old by now, we don’t expect the information to be up to date. But it definitely shows, that there once was a way to get it done, so it should somehow also be possible now 😉