The winter weather has been wet in most parts of New Zealand with the occasional snow fall closing roads for a short period throughout the country and prompting an early opening on most of the countries ski fields.
It’s the first real winter I have had to endure in NZ for 7 years and normally at this time of the year am basking in the sun and warmer temperatures of Mongolia, Russia or Central Asia.
Must say that there are lots of good reasons to leave home in the winter months and the promotions in the general media to venture to a tropical island, participate on a boat cruise or enjoy a trendy river boat cruise in Europe are all very tempting and in most cases cost effective.
However, I suggest that if you save the above options for your “later in life” vacations and while you can, take a self-drive adventure in an interesting part of the world while the countries on our agenda are available to us to visit in safety. This will also surely give you a greater appreciation of the places visited on the boat cruises later in life !
Overland Journey’s biggest challenge is that of convincing clients that the likes of Russia are not what they have been led to believe. Always portraited as the “bad boy” of civilisation, dark and dingy and unfriendly, it’s a hard image to shake off especially when the media play on its reputation.
To quote the majority of our clients within 24 hours of arriving in Vladivostok to start an Overland Journeys self-drive tour. “Wow, this is not what I expected !”
Yes, the people are friendly, the weather is warm, even in May and the scenery and architecture is amazing. The initial impression sets the scene for the start of an unforgettable 81-day tour to London passing through no less than 14 countries.
Anton Zaglyadimov, “Events and Operations Manager” for Overland Journeys has been doing an amazing job developing and refining our website.
We seem to be reaching a wider audience and a renewed awareness and interest in Overland self-drive and escorted travel is evident.
Its true to say that we are leaders in this field of travel and now have a global audience.
Just recently, NZ 4×4 Magazine have released their July edition with a 8 page article (with some spectacular photos) of our January winter ice road BAM trip in North Eastern Siberia. Either pick up a copy of NZ4x4 Magazine or read the article online on nz4x4.co.nz. The inclusion of an international articles written by Overland Journeys will be a regular feature from now on.
Greg Paul and the old faithful 96 / 80 series Land Cruiser in conjunction with Goosey’s Customs the Pukekohe Ironman 4×4 dealer recently displayed our tour product at a home show at Pukekohe. It was a great weekend and met lots of interesting people with that were amazed that a NZ organisation arranged 4×4, classic car and motor home tours around the world ! Of course, everybody who did engage in a conversation was keen to participate in such trips but mostly filed their thoughts in the “too hard basket”
I can assure you that the hard part is making the decision to do such a trip. The rest is easy with our help and organisation !
Part of the Overland Journeys portfolio these days is making arrangements and advising independent travellers on Overland travel.
At the moment we have 2 motorcyclists on a 150 day journey from Singapore to Amsterdam via China, Central Asia, Iran and Turkey. It took some organising but the boys are having a ball and soaking up the experience on a daily basis. At the moment they are on the Pamir Highway in Tajikistan.
Another couple from Rotorua are currently in Moscow after driving their Land Rover Defender from the UK via Finland to Murmansk in North Eastern Russia. They have an interesting Itinerary in Russia, Central Asia and Mongolia. Their blogs provide interesting reading and if you wish to follow Dennis and Jenny’s travels let me know and we can provide you with a web address.
Due to some early issues with the LR we also provided a list of the LR service agents throughout Russia. All part of the Overland Journeys customised service.
Overland Journeys are proposing a “last minute” limited edition 30-day Central Asian tour from the beautiful Kazakhstani city of Almaty to seaside resort of Yalta on the Crimean peninsula now back in Russian ownership.
Cost: $US19500 for 2 persons twin share including vehicle hire. (Land Cruiser 100 series LHD)
Notes: Only two customer vehicles available plus guide.
Email or call for detailed itinerary and tour inclusions / exclusions now.
Almaty, Bishkek, Osh, Dushanbe, Samarkand, Bukhara, Khiva, Astrakhan, Krasnodar, Sevastopol, Yalta.
Dakar Rally Tour
The famed Dakar Rally-Raid is next year to be held entirely in Peru.
This is a huge surprise to the Dakar fraternity, but the sand dunes of Peru are what the Dakar is all about and the return to Peru and the dunes earlier this year gave the competitors and teams a taste of what the Dakar event is known for.
Its tough going and the duration of the rally has been reduced to 10 days, also a surprise.
We will be shipping our specially prepared Land Cruisers to South America for the 10-day event.
We are traditionally the only company that follows the Dakar from start to finish.
Due to the Rally only being on Peruvian soils this year and that its shorter in duration we have slashed the price in hope that all 15 seats will be filled in 2019.
This will be the last Dakar that Overland Journeys / Rally Tours run as rumour has it that it may be the last in South America.
Cost: $US8,000. Per person. (Seat in vehicle) Vehicle hire options are available.
See our website for more details.
The Best of South America
South America is on for 2019.
Following the Dakar tour which this year finishes in Lima Peru, we will be starting a self-drive tour (with vehicles provided) to travel to the Southern tip of the continent, to the city of Ushuaia.
The city of Ushuaia at very tip of the South American Continent is our turning point before heading back up to Santiago by way of a relaxing 3-day ferry trip.
This trip is “The Best of South America” and has morphed into a 50-day affair combining the best of all 4 countries at a crazy price of $NZ49k per couple based on share twin accommodation.
There are only 4 clients vehicles available for this tour so you need to be quick to accept this offer !
Finish: Santiago (Chile) on 8th March 2019
Cost: $NZ 49,000 per couple (4×4 vehicle included)
Details and Itinerary available now from firstname.lastname@example.org
Momentum is gathering for our planned “Across Russia” Camper Van / Mobile home tour from Vladivostok (Russia) to Tallinn (Estonia) starting May 2019.
Advertising in the two most popular Motorhome publications has yielded plenty of enquiries from adventurous travellers keen to experience Russia and explore Europe and the UK with their own wheels.
A trans Russia Motor Home trip is now possible due to improved road conditions.
It will be leisurely trip with several two and three night stops and city sightseeing trips arranged with local guides and lots of optional excursions to museums, concerts etc.
Email Anton to get information about this trip and obtain a tour prospectus.
Finish: Tallinn (Estonia) on 20th June 2019
Cost: $NZ37.000 (does not include shipping)
Silk Road Tour
Still taking bookings for the 2019 Silk Road Tour. We have just 4 spots left for this 81 days “Overland Journeys” adventure of a life time.
If time is a problem and you don’t have 81 days we have one vehicle for hire that is available to do the Ulaanbaatar (Mongolia) to Volgograd (Russia) leg. It’s 54 days and takes in the best of Mongolia, the Pamir Highway and Central Asia.
Also, we have a couple of “seat in Vehicle” fares available. This will involve travelling with Greg in the lead Land Cruiser or the “TEC” (Trail and support) vehicle. This is a cost effective and relaxing alternative to driving at $NZ36k.
Note: We operate this tour bi-annually. The 2021 Silk Road Overland is almost booked out.
If your thinking about the Silk Road adventure we can get you organised now for the 2019 trip.
Experience the Baikal Amur Mainline
February 2019 is not that far away, and we are now looking for expressions of interest for our 2019 BAM Russian Ice road trip.
Yes is cold, but not cold as we know it !
It’s a dry cold and the skies are mostly clear every day.
The tour cost includes warm Russian clothing, warm hotels, vehicles and as much vodka as you like to keep your insides warm.
This is truly an amazing trip and an incredible experience that you will not forget.
Talk to us about it now or take a look at the 8 page article that Greg wrote on our 2018 BAM trip and see the spectacular photos on www.nz4wd.co.nz or buy the NZ4WD magazine July 2018 edition and you will be convinced. This is also a very cost-effective trip and is seat in vehicle or vehicle hire by arrangement.
Duration: 18 days. 18th Feb – 8th March.
Call us now to discuss this trip.
2020 Classic Car Tour
2020 will see us run our popular Classic Car trip and this time from Vladivostok to London. Details out soon.
We have escorted Classics across Russia on 3 occasions before and its proved to be popular.
The tour will end in the UK in time for the “Goodwood Festival of Speed” and the Silverstone Classic and Historic race meeting.
So, dust off your favourite classic and reserve the months of May, June and July to tour Russia, Eastern Europe and the UK.
Cost and dates to be announced soon.