About – trip
Our plan? Very simple: drive to Europe from Australia.
Reality? A long process of preparation, with many, many hours spent making lists, creating spreadsheets, negotiating visa bureaucracy, researching websites and DIY projects.
We hope all the hours of planning and preparation will be worth it.
If you just want to know what we’re up to and where we are, go to ‘On our way’! That’s where you’ll find our trip blog, including latest (mis)adventures and photos.
If you are interested in our plans and preparation for the trip, you’ll find all things we have learned and discovered in the many months of preparation in the ‘Planning’ section. But for information about visas you’ll have to look under each specific country (in the ‘Countries‘ section). You’ll find the ‘official’ info we found on the web before we left (or after calling the embassies), but also our experience at the actual border.
In the ‘Countries‘ section we are also adding the more detailed country by country information like our route, food and shopping, fuel and sim cards.
Some of you might spend hours on Lara’s page – our white Land Rover Defender 110. We’ve listed every modification and what we’re taking, including the list of spares. And at the end of the trip we might be able to tell you what fell in the category ‘useless’. 🙂
Then there is the ‘useful links’ page. Don’t think that one needs any explanation. We’ll expand after the trip with any other useful sites we might have found along the way.
And here, as you can see, on our home page we’ve put the trip overview map and a bit about who we are and why we’re doing this.
If you would like to be kept up-to-date with our adventures, the best thing is to ‘Follow’ the blog. You can do this by adding your email address in the ‘Follow our progress via email’ section on the right of every page. Once your email has been added you will automatically receive an email every time we post a new story. How easy is that?! (You do get an email first to ask if you are sure you want to follow this blog, you’ll have to click on the link in the email to ‘confirm’ and then you’ll get the emails automatically. If you don’t get this email in a day after signing up check your junk mail folder!)
(Click on it to see a larger map so you can see a bit more detail or go to each country individually in the ‘Countries‘ section if you want to see a more detailed map of each section after we have been there. Most countries we won’t plan in detail before we get there, so we will only add those maps later).
Our basic route (country by country) is:
- Malaysia, departing 1 March 2013
- Russia (Lake Baikal area)
- Russia (to cross into Kazakhstan)
- Croatia (including Bosnia-Hercegovina)
- The Netherlands / United Kingdom for a family Christmas 2013!
(go to ‘Countries‘ for dates in each country)
To drive to Europe from Australia, there is one pretty obvious problem: the ocean between Australia and the Asian continent… This means we are shipping Lara (this is our Land Rover Defender for those of you who haven’t met her yet) from Brisbane to Kuala Lumpur.
We did look into shipping into Singapore as that is the start of the Asian continent, but unfortunately you are not allowed to drive a foreign camping vehicle in Singapore (2013). KL was simply the next best option. Malaysia does require us to have a carnet de passage to enter (and, most importantly, exit) with a private vehicle. We also need one for Iran, and possibly Laos, so this wasn’t a huge problem. But we’re getting ahead of ourselves now.
Why are we doing this?
One evening in the honeymoon suite on a beautiful tropical island, we discovered that doing an overland trip was something we both had listed on our individual lists of what we wanted to experience in our lives. Fast forward about 7-8 years and we’re on another beautiful island, this time a big sandy island (Fraser, the biggest sand island in the world) off the coast of Queensland. We were spending Christmas there with some friends and on one of the drives exploring the island, we talked about dreams and plans we had, and when we were planning to do some of them.
The seed was truly planted this time as a few months later (April 2012) Jon started researching on the internet and found Kym Bolton’s blog and the rest is history as they say… We discovered that Kym and Lyn lived close to Brisbane and we visited them shortly afterwards.
It is now the end of September (2012) and we have an action list with 69 items on it, which we wrote on yet another sandy island off the Queensland Coast (North Stradbroke Island). Over the past few months we have been preparing, planning and researching for this trip and now we are getting
- very excited and
- a bit stressed about all the things still left to do! We know most of the activities are on track, but it can be frustrating waiting for parts when they have a 10 week lead time…
The rest of the route was selected on the basis of security, interest and combining plans with others who will be crossing China at the same time – more detail on that in the Planning section though.
If you want to get in touch, either leave a comment on any of the pages or posts or contact us via jonandjude ‘at’ gmail ‘dot’ com. As we are on the road it might take a few days or week before we can respond, but we promise we will.