Rediff.com
Print this article

20,000 km, 70 days: All aboard the Delhi to London bus

September 01, 2020 08:34 IST

An unforgettable journey awaits you!

IMAGE: Adventures Overland, run by Tushar Agarwal and Sanjay Madan, will ferry 20 passengers on a modified luxury bus, in what they describe as a trip of a lifetime.. Photograph courtesy: Adventures Overland

Eighteen countries. 70-days. £15,000 (Rs 14.65 lakh)... And an adventure unlike any other.

If this has tickled the travel bug in you and your head is filled with questions like “how” and “when”, then you’re not alone.

A company, Adventures Overland, has announced a bus journey from Delhi in India to London in United Kingdom -- with no airplanes involved.

Described as the "first-ever hop-on/hop-off bus service" between the two destinations, Bus to London will ferry 20 passengers on a modified luxury bus.

 

The bus will cross 18 countries over a period of 70 days, with passengers hopping off to marvel at the pagodas of Myanmar, hike the Great Wall of China and wander historic cities including Moscow and Prague.

IMAGE: The coach is fitted with luxurious Business Class seats, with two seats per row to maximise space for each passenger. Photograph courtesy: Adventures Overland

Passengers will be able to choose whether they want to take the entire journey, or one of the four legs (South East Asia, China, Central Asia, Europe), and they can choose to start in Delhi or London.

The cost includes all hotels, all visas, an experienced English-speaking guide in each location, local cuisine, as well as a fully stocked snack and drinks bar on-board the coach which is fitted with Business Class seats, including WiFi and TVs.

Starting in Delhi, passengers will first arrive in Myanmar where they will spend a week, taking in the ancient city of Bagan, filled with thousands of temples and pagodas, and the Buddhist pilgrimage site, the Golden Rock.

The following week will be spent in Thailand, with the coach driving through Bangkok and Laos before entering China.

Day 15 to Day 34 will be spent in the colossal country, where, of course, tourists will walk the Great Wall, as well as gaze at the Giant Buddha of Leshan, touch the sands of the Gobi Desert, visit pandas in Chengdu and venture into the Magao Caves.

IMAGE: The bus will be equipped with every comfort, comparable to the standards of four- or five-star hotels, to accommodate a wealthy clientele. Tickets for the new journey are priced at Rs 15 lakh per person. Photograph courtesy: Adventures Overland

The third leg of the journey drives through the vast plains of central Asia, first into Kyrgyzstan, exploring the markets of Bishkek, before following the Silk Road into one of the oldest cities in the world, Samarkand in Uzbekistan.

The luxury coach will arrive at the Kazakh Steppe on Day 46. The bus will hook around the Caspian Sea and head northeast into Russia, arriving in Volgograd on Day 50, the site of the Second World War's Battle of Stalingrad which is celebrated by a huge statue, The Motherland Calls.

Moscow is three days later, rich with modern history of the Russian Revolution and the Cold War, where the Red Square and the Kremlin will be taken in by the tourists.

Leg four starts on Day 55, and takes the passengers across Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, the Czech Republic, Germany and Belgium before they will board a ferry over the English Channel for the final leg of the journey into London.

IMAGE: The seats are fitted with TVs, tray tables and there are also numerous charging ports and on-board WiFi for those who rely on their tech. Photograph courtesy: Adventures Overland

Adventures Overland was founded by entrepreneurs and enthusiastic travelers Tushar Agarwal and Sanjay Madan.

Speaking to CNN, Agarwal says that the idea was inspired by an incredible solo drive from London to Delhi he did back in 2010.

They have also organised three India-to-London expeditions, in which travellers bring their own cars and travel in a convoy. The duo has also organised driving trips across snowy Iceland and over frozen lakes in Russia.

IMAGE: The route that the passengers will follow on this epic journey. Photograph courtesy: Adventures Overland

The inaugural Bus to London journey is set to take place in mid-2021, Covid restrictions pending.

The first journey is due to go ahead in May next year, depending on how the pandemic continues on its course.

"The best time to do this journey is between April and June, because that's when the weather is favourable to start the journey from India through to Myanmar, and to cross the high mountains of China and Kyrgyzstan," Agarwal was quoted as saying.

This road trip doesn't come cheap -- Agarwal says it will cost around Rs 15 lakh, but you can opt to just do part of the journey, which is divided into four legs.

What do you think about the tour? Would you be willing to hop on? 

AGENCIES