Most people ride the Himalayas with a fully guided tour, and this is probably sensible. Traveling the Himalayas is not an entry-level motorbike journey. Vietnam in comparison allows easy entry for the casual driver to get started with a motorbike adventure with limited risks. The Himalayas are not …To list a few of the battles that await a Himalayan/Kashmir motorbike adventure:
- Altitude sickness
- Lack of mechanics
- Terrible motorbikes
- Extreme weather fluctuations
- Lack of internet for foreigners
- Narrow roads, big trucks and enormous cliff edges
When route planning in the snowy months, roads will appear closed on Google Maps. When the time comes for your holiday, they may be open, so keep this in mind.Rihanna
I run Tigit Motorbikes based in Vietnam. Once a year I have a group of “ADV Bros” that meet up in a new country to challenge ourselves and our motorbikes. We aim to push the boundaries and do what others can’t do. No tour guides, ambitious route planning, a limited time table, and a positive attitude.
Who am I and why is this probably worth reading?
One of the reasons we put our life on the line driving ridiculous and dangerous roads is to see stunning scenery that few people get to witness, or have the skills and vitality to witness! Nothing better than going somewhere that you know a few people have the balls to reach.
To compare, however, the Himalayas are a rugged high altitude beauty. Huge mountains capped with snow/glaciers that flow as far as the eye can see. The sides of the mountains are bare, sharp and lifeless. In the Himalayas, we see wide open valleys of nothingness that connect the mountains together. We also find ourselves on a road that has been dug into the side of a cliff with death-defying drops into a violent torrent of a river beneath. Both the valleys and sharp mountains are not “friendly” sites, but they are magnificent.
Vietnam, on the other hand, is one of the greenest places on earth. Life is everywhere and it is lush, vibrant and colourful. The mountains tend to be close quarters with gentle cliff edges of beauty but not terror. We don’t get to see the end of the earth covered in mountains as far as the eye can see. But we get to see stunning valleys of greenery up close and personal.