Clive Sturdy

Sturdmeister

Clive Sturdy

Over 5 years have passed since I cycled around the UK and Ireland and the time has come to get back in the ol' saddle. This time I will attempt to initially make the shores of New Zealand, initially cycling through Europe to Istanbul, the gateway to Asia, before following the silk routes through Central Asia and China to the Far East. Following a flight or preferably a boat journey to Australia, I will attempt to cycle across the Nullabor from Perth to Sydney, before heading onwards to New Zealand. I look forward to sharing my journey with you.



South America » Colombia » Bogota March 28th 2016

Having been on the road for nearly 3 years, we crossed over the border from Ecuador to Columbia. Our final destination, we'd soon be packing up our bicycles and returning home to the UK to some stability and normality. The formalities crossing the border for both my Iranian partner and I were very straight forward and we then cycled a further 2 Km into the Town of Ipiales, famously known for its 'Las Lajas' Basilica, built on top of a bridge spanning a beautiful river in a gorge. Prior to entering Columbia and despite having experience of travelling through 38 other countries during the preceding 3 years, I had conjured up all sorts of ideas about this South American country. I was primarily thinking about our safety. Is Columbia a dangerous country? Having both cycled and ... read more
Shortly after crossing the border into Columbia
Salento
Huge Palm trees

South America » Ecuador » Centre » Latacunga March 5th 2016

After nearly 3 months on the road in Peru, we were both looking forward to crossing the border into Ecuador. We played the 1997 iconic tune 'Ecuador' by Sash on You Tube and immediately felt euphoric about what lay ahead! Ironically, having researched a little bit more into where the video for 'Ecuador' was filmed it turns out it was produced in Lanzarote and Tenerife. What a let down! Our time in Ecuador was limited by the fact that it took so long to obtain a Columbian and UK visa for my Iranian partner in Peru and so our cycle journey throughout this country was massively curtailed. We only managed a total of 289 KM, but I don't have any regrets whatsoever. At this stage of my journey, I've achieved what I set out to do ... read more
Panama Hat factory in Cuenca
Panama Hat factory in Cuenca
Getting rid of bad energy

South America » Peru » Trujillo December 10th 2015

If you are looking for a peaceful and tranquil holiday destination, don't go to Peru! From the crazy car drivers honking their horns for absolutely no reason whatsoever, to the bus drivers who all have a death wish, Peru has lots to offer including the majestic Machu Picchu, the intriguing Nazca Lines, the beautiful colonial cities of Arequipa and Cusco, the thrilling Dune Buggy rides in Huacachina, the impressive ruins of Chan Chan and Huaca de Lunar as well as the spectacular mountain region of Cordillera Blanca. However you will need definitely need a vacation on completion! The border crossing from Bolivia into Peru in the vicinity of Lake Titicaca took longer than expected. However considering that the border officials had most probably never or rarely dealt with an Iranian citizen before, additional obligatory checks with ... read more
Indian style Tuk Tuks
Our hosts for our first night in Peru
Little Peruvian Lady!

South America » Bolivia » Chuquisaca Department » Sucre October 26th 2015

Bolivia takes your breath away, whether you are admiring the wonderful and spectacular scenery of the Altiplano, are walking the heavily polluted streets of the once famous silver mining city of Potosi or are simply hurtling down the most dangerous road in the world on your pushbike. Bolivia has far surpassed my expectations. It really is a country of contrasts, with dry desert conditions in the south and the rainforests of the Amazon to the north. The population is equally interesting, with indigenous ethnic groups and particularly the women dressed in bowler hats and apron style traditional dresses, mixing alongside others dressed in modern European style clothes in the larger cities of La Paz, Cochabamba and Sucre. From San Pedro de Atacama, in Chile we hired a car to take us and our bikes, the 45 ... read more
Heading to Bolivia
At the Bolivian border
Saying goodbye to our Swiss friend

South America September 14th 2015

New Zealand was always going to be a hard act to follow. We touched down in Santiago at midday on a gloomy Winter's afternoon following a 12 hour flight from Auckland. We declared our food to customs and following a few seconds of toing and froing in pigeon Spanish/English informing the officials that we had cheese and tea and such other articles in our possession they waved us on, most probably relieved that they didn't have to to converse any longer with us Gringos. As we exited into the arrival hall a new country beckoned, with a totally different culture, language and smells. A quick visit to the Airport Gents reinforced the fact that I was no longer in NZ. A short taxi drive ensued into the heavily polluted (both rubbish and smog) and graffiti infested ... read more
Angels on Bikes
Gimme our Chilean Warmshower host
Street Performers in Santiago

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Auckland » Central August 19th 2015

After much needed rest and recuperation at our friend's house in Birkenhead following our cycle ride around Northlands, we commenced the second leg of our New Zealand cycle journey, this time from Auckland to Wellington. Setting off on a fine winter's day we took the ferry to the Central Business District from where we headed east along the northern coast line witnessing what appeared to be the whole of the city out running, cycling or walking their dogs. It was fascinating cycling through the affluent neighbourhoods and I wondered how many of the properties belonged to Kiwis. Recent news coverage has spoken of the number of Auckland apartments and houses being bought up by foreign investors for investment purposes and it appears to be ruffling some feathers. As we started heading inland we were quite surprised ... read more
A short way south of Auckland
Alison the intrepid and brave adventurer
Near Thames

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Northland » Cape Reinga July 16th 2015

When I visit a new country I always take note of any unusual things I see as I cycle from one destination to another. New Zealand although quite similar to the UK in many ways always seems a little quirky to me. From the number of microwave ovens being used as letter boxes to the number of individuals I witnessed walking bare feet around the shops, it is an immensely beautiful country with landscapes to die for, where one person on a beach is considered crowded and the people genuinely open up their homes to any stranger on a bicycle. This was my third visit to New Zealand and on this occasion I've really had the chance to explore the North Island. My previous visits were in 1995 to Wellington and Auckland with the Royal Navy ... read more
Auckland
Arriving in Auckland
Selfie with Noushin, Yvonne and Sharon

Asia » Singapore » Sentosa Island June 11th 2015

And so we crossed over the causeway to Singapore and passport control. On inspecting Noushin's Iranian passport, the female Passport Control officer made a couple of telephone calls, before an armed guard escorted us away to the administration centre for further interviews. The Passport Border Guards remained courteous and polite throughout and after tying up a few loose ends, her passport was stamped and the official wished Noushin a pleasant stay in Singapore. We went through the Red Customs channel as we had nuts and other food stashed away in our panniers, however when we were met by the customs official he simply asked us whether we had alcohol or cigarettes in our possession and then told us that he himself was a keen cyclist. Having given us clear route instructions on how to reach our ... read more
One of the hotels in Singapore
Modern Hotel
Singapore Art

Asia » Malaysia » Johor » Johor Bahru June 3rd 2015

The great thing about cycling around the World is crossing from one country into another and seeing the differences emerge as you leave behind the bureaucracy of the borders. This couldn't be more evident as you travel from Thailand into Malaysia, where you suddenly find yourself situated amongst predominantly Malay, Chinese and Indian ethnicities who each bring their separate cultures to this amazing country, and with it, a fusion of delicious foods which are absolutely to die for. My first main stop was George Town on the island of Penang, where the streets are adorned with the most amazing street art and old colonial buildings rise up in all 4 corners of the UNESCO Heritage site. This blog mainly features photos depicting street art which was absolutely amazing! After travelling in Thailand for nearly 4 months ... read more
Street Art
Street Art
Street art

Asia » Thailand » Southern Thailand April 4th 2015

Leaving the city of Bangkok by bicycle is not for the fainthearted unless you cycle with Paul Mueller (mad_mueller@yahoo.com), a local and enthusiastic cyclist who has resided in the city for the past 8 years and who knows every square inch of this metropolis by the back of his hand. Only two weeks before my departure another round the world cyclist had been killed on the outskirts of Bangkok with 140000 KM and 4 years of cycling under his belt. He had been cycling with his wife (whom he met on his adventure) and 2 year old child and was even cycling with a huge trailer behind him when he was knocked off his bike and died at the scene. A repeat episode of what had happened in the 2 previous years when a British cycling ... read more
Leaving Bangkok the non-traffic way
Chinese Shrine
Leaving Bangkok via cycle paths




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