| Bishkek – Tash Rabat
We set out from Bishkek in the morning and reach Tash Rabat in the evening. It’s a beautiful caravanserai hidden in the mountains, 15 kilometres away from the main route leading to China. Very good asphalt road all the way. Night at an altitude of 3100 meters.
| Tash Rabat – Kashgar
We head for the Torugart Pass and continue towards the Chinese border. On the other side there’s our local guide to accompany us for the next few days. The first night in China in a hotel in Kashgar.
No bikes today. We deal with Chinese bureaucracy, wait for registration and driving licenses. But fear not, no time will be wasted. Meanwhile, we sightsee the remains of the old Kashgar – definitely worth it! This city has been here for thousands of years. It was a certain stop for everyone travelling the Silk Road.
| Kaszgar – Taszkurgan
From Kashgar, we head south to the famous Karakorum Highway towards Pakistan. On the way, we stop at the Karakul lake to pay homage to the father of the ice mountains – Muztagh Ata. It is massive – 7546 meter high. Despite its intimidating height it’s also considered one of the easiest in the world. And according to us, also one of the prettiest. Night in Tashkurgan.
| Tashkurgan – Sost
From Tashkurgan we continue further south along a good asphalt road. We crawl up until we reach the Khunjarab pass. Pakistan. From this point we must keep to the left side of the road.
| Sost – Gilgit
A ride through upper Hunza through a whole lotta tunnels along Lake Attabad. There’s a magnificent Cathedral, and most definitely not like anything you might have seen already! It’s an amazing mountain range near the village of Pasu.
| Gilgit – Skardu
Ready for a fun ride? It’s not long, but it’s worth it! Just one turn from the Karakorum Highway and we find ourselves on a narrow side road, a wall on the right an abyss on the left! Almost no traffic, but if there’s a truck, well… let’s just say – it might get really exciting! 200 km and 6 hours of this natural roller-coaster ride. Anyway, see for yourself: https://www.dangerousroads.org/asia/pakistan/4186-gilgit-skardu-road.html
| Skardu – Gilgit
The fun ride continues. The same road, different views, but still – amazing!
| Gilgit – Naran
We leave the KKH and go down a much narrower road leading to Naran. This is a special place, where three giant mountain ranges meet: Hindu Kush, Karakoram and Himalayas. A beautiful day, breath-taking views.
| Naran – Rawalpindi
Twists, bends and turns. Asphalt roads and moderate speed all the way. As we approach the capital, the traffic is growing. Night at a hotel.
| Rawalpindi – Armitsar
Pakistan and India, similar and yet very different countries. 2,900 kilometers of the border and only one road crossing – in addition this crossing only operates for 8 hours a day. We get to experience the rituals accompanying the closing of the border and then we move forward until Amritsar to see the magnificent Golden Temple of Sikhs.
| Amritsar – Patnitop
Tien Shan in Kyrgyzstan, Pamir in China, Karakorum in Pakistan, now it’s time for the Himalayas. The ride on the left side of the road continues, so you’ve probably got used to it by now. What might come as a surprise is definitely the… unique Indian driving style. Once we traverse India’s longest tunnel (almost 10 km) we reach Patnitop, at 2000 m a.s.l.
| Patnitop – Kishtwar
We leave the main road leading to Srinagar and for the next three days follow the river Chanab. Slightly smaller traffic but more and more impressive views.
| Kishtwar– Killar
It’s safe to assume most bikers have probably seen a youtube clip with motorcycles riding along a rock ledge high above the river. Today is the day we live it! Prepare for serious doses of adrenaline!
| Killar – Sissu
The ride along the Chanab continues. Thousands of turns and very careful ride on the rock ledges. We bet an Old Monk to anyone who can go faster than 30 km/h.
| Sissu – Manali
Time for the famous Rohtang Pass. Seems not very far away, but the traffic is getting heavier and you definitely need to stay careful on the Himalayan roads. Drivers believe in reincarnation here, we not so much… Only asphalt, but the views are spectacular. Night at a hotel.
Manali has a lot to offer. Ganja everywhere…
| Manali – Shimla
Finally, we are heading for civilization – Shimla was built by the British, because its climate is similar to the British weather. There are plenty of British buildings to sightsee. As for the roads – an entire day on winding asphalt roads.
| Shimla – Chandigarh
Chandigarh is new India. This modern city designed by Courbusier is the capital of two Indian states – Harayana and Punjab. Punjabi cuisine is the best in India. Prepare for a great evening!
As we leave the mountains our trip comes to an end. We pack the equipment and say our farewells – Delhi only 300 km and a 6 hour bus ride away.