Right now, border closures and travel restrictions are making it tough to imagine embarking on the adventure of a lifetime. But if you’re ready to start dreaming, you need to check out the proposals for an epic bus route linking London and Delhi.
You read that right: next year (assuming all goes to plan) you’ll be able to board a bus in the UK capital and ride it all the way to India, passing through 18 countries in 70 days.
‘Bus to London’ is the ambitious brainchild of Indian travel company Adventures Overland, and is inspired by the ‘hippie trail’ of the mid-twentieth century, which saw huge numbers of travellers dropping out of Western society to travel overland from Europe to India. Adventures Overland founders Tushar Agarwal and Sanjay Madan have previously led an annual convoy of cars driving from India to London.
This time, the 12,500-mile trip will run both ways. Starting in Delhi, the bus will pass through a number of Indian cities, then through Myanmar, Thailand, Laos and China. The second leg includes a number of Chinese cities, before Leg 3 passes through the Silk Road cities of central Asia on the way to Moscow.
Finally, the trip traverses eastern and central Europe before the final approach via Brussels to London – before the bus, with a new load of passengers, retraces the whole route back to India.
The departure date has been postponed from May to August 2021. The full one-way trip was initially stated to cost 1.5 million rupees per person (£15,320, $20,199, A$27,970), though organisers have now said they anticipate a small increase because of added health and safety measures.
For that price, you get bus transport, local guides and tours, hotel stays, some meals, visa and admin fees for Indian passport-holders, and snacks. The bus itself comes with wi-fi, private lockers, entertainment systems and ‘business-class’ seats, according to the trip brochure.
Only 20 seats are available. For a slightly shorter trip, you can join the journey for one of four legs, each lasting two to three weeks.
Up for the adventure? There’s only one catch: you can’t actually book yet. ‘We will only start accepting bookings once there is clarity with respect to travel regulations, both locally and internationally,’ explains the website.
However, you can now register your details – organisers say that applicants will be contacted in the first week of December. And after a 2020 that’s been largely travel-free, this voyage could make for a pretty spectacular 2021.
Planning ahead? Check out the world’s top travel destinations for 2021, according to Google.