Non-Motorcycle Meanders

Other Adventures Anywhere

Motorcycling isnít everything. Motorcycling isnít everything. There are other adventures that also merit a few pages telling about them. This section will be a repository for such adventures.

Most of these adventures were undertaken in conjunction with a motorcycle tour, taking advantage of location to include visits to nearby countries. A couple were independent of such tours.

Mongolia/Orkhon Valley
This was a three-day prelude to the Wild West Mongolia Tour. Its particular interest was to visit the old Mongolian capital of Kharkhorin and to experience that part of the steppe Ė the Orkhon Valley Ė that gave birth to so much of Mongoliaís early history, including the homeland of the Turkic people who went on to inhabit present day Turkey.

This is an amazing part of the world. Over millennia, itís experienced tribal movements and conquests across the Great Eurasian Steppe; the coming and going of empires and kingdoms; and the enormous changes to trade, commerce, philosophies, religious beliefs, traditions, life-styles and, indeed, warfare that were the products and by-products of the Ancient Silk Road.

As a prelude to my Tibet Tour, four of us, "harmonious friends" from previous motorcycle tours, spent almost three weeks in "mainland" China visiting several key tourist spots. We had planned to take the train from Beijing to Lhasa for the motorcycle tour, but because of visa obstacles we had to fly to Nepal and enter Tibet from there. The "mainland" China tour included the Three Gorges, Shanghai, Xi'an and Beijing.

Taj Mahal from Agra Fort
Delhi and Agra
This page combines visits made to Delhi and Agra in 2010 with Dylan, my grandson, as part of our Nepal/Bhutan tour; and in 2012 as part of my Himalaya tour. The main highlights were tracing the legacies of the Mughal Empire; but the visits also took in some pre-Mughal structures and treasures of the National Museum relating to early Indian history.

Rome and Venice
Rome and Venice
A few days in each of these amazing Italian cities preceded my Dalmatia Tour in 2010. Iíd never been to Italy but had a long association with Rome through classical studies and ecclesiastical links Ė all more or less intangible but real enough. Venice was my choice for a second city and proved a good one. It was also conveniently located to get to Ljubljana for the start of the Dalmatia Tour.

All Saints, Kirtling
Kirtling is a tiny hamlet in Cambridgeshire near the Suffolk border in UK. Itís somewhere no road passes through to go anywhere! Simply put, that means you have to want to go there and then work your way through and around a series of country lanes to get there. My great grandfather, William Crick, was born and worked there. So too, his parents and their parents lived, worked and were buried there. My visit was part nostalgia, part self-discovery and part research. It was enlightening in all respects.

Furling top sail on top yard
HMB Endeavour
This was a five-day voyage as a member of the shipís crew on HMB Endeavour from 25-29 April 2010. The ship is an exact replica (except for some modern equipment and facilities) of the original ship (actually 'bark') that Lt James Cook captained on his first voyage (1768-1771) to observe the 1769 transit of Venus across the Sun (3Ė4 June of that year), and to seek evidence of the postulated Terra Australis Incognita or "unknown southern land". Hereís a chance to sail with me Ė if only in retrospect.

Prior to my Morocco tour in 2009, I spent some time in Madrid and southern Spain, visiting Toledo, Seville and Cordoba. There was an area of southern Spain under Moorish rule called Al-Andalus. I hadnít set out with this concept in mind, but it was a perfect prelude to Morocco. 

Treasury, Petra
I took the opportunity of visiting Jordan before undertaking the Turkey tour in 2008. Itís a special place worth capturing. I kept a detailed diary so it wonít all that difficult to re-create the trip.

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