Summary: The Central Asia Budget Overland Tour by MAdventure

Well, my two months traveling across the Silk Road on the “mechanical camel” has come to an end.   This was essentially MAdventure’s Central Asia Budget Adventure trip and, once I’d come to terms with the speed of travel (much faster than I normally move), I really, really enjoyed it!

However, it is not for everyone, and it really is “budget” in every way.  The truck is not air-conditioned or heated.

On the truck
Yes, this is me on the truck trying to keep warm in Tajikistan

You are camping about 1/2 the time (which, personally, I loved)

Campsites along the Silk Road
Just a few of the many, many campsites we had along our 2 months on the Silk Road

And you must take your turn with cooking and cleaning.

Cooking on an overland tour
Grub’s up! (top). Claire, Mick and I in Turkmenistan with our masterpiece (middle). Lauren and I in Armenia with our culinary delight (bottom)

You should not expect even basic luxuries on this trip, and it makes them all the sweeter when they do miraculously occur! 

Hotel in Ashgabat - Turkmenistan
The fanciest accommodation of the whole trip was in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan

So, should you consider it?  Well that depends on whether you can cope with the following:

  • Being stinking hot
  • Being freezing cold
  • Being dusty
  • Getting dirty
  • Not showering for several days
  • Bush toilets 
  • Disgusting and smelly squat toilets at service stations and most “quick meal” places along the side of the road
  • Taking your turn at cooking
  • Not being a fussy eater
  • Taking your turn at cleaning
  • Chipping in with whatever needs to be done, when it needs to be done – in our case, this also involved building roads and digging out the truck
  • Sleeping in dorm rooms with at least 5 other people (bring earplugs – sooo many people snore!)
  • Taking your turn on a top bunk in said dorm room
  • Being bounced around in the back of a truck to the point where your teeth rattle (ie it is not for you if you have a bad back)
  • Change and uncertainty – the itinerary is what is intended, but there are no guarantees

It is also not for you if you get bored easily and are unable to entertain yourself in the back of a truck for long periods of time.  And if you have an over-inflated sense of self-importance, please, do yourself and your potential fellow travelers a favour and choose a different trip!


Enjoy this blog? Please spread the word :)