A Feast for the Senses
India has well over one billion people. If you are just a bit like me and have never been to this country, you probably think the way I did. How are you going to cycle in India? Where are you going to find some quiet and, at the same time, interesting and attractive routes to cycle on the 4,000km ride from Agra to Kanyakumari?
When the Indian Adventure tour on our Dream Tour page started gaining momentum a year or so ago, so did my apprehensions. Michael, our office manager, had spent six months in India previously and kept reassuring me that it will be a great tour. Easy for him to say! When Shanny and Michael returned from scouting the Indian expedition last November they both told me what wonderful routes they had found and what a great tour it would be. Being a skeptic, I rationalized “well, what else could they say”.
We are now beyond the mid point of the tour and my wonder grows daily. The route has been superb, the scenery wonderful and the traffic light. Yes, we have hit some busy sections. We have passed through some overcrowded towns and cities where, to the uninitiated, the cycling might have seemed challenging, to say the least. But, overall, kudos to Michael and Shanny.
I do not know how busy and how pretty other routes are or if even if they exist in this country. What I do know is that day after day we are cycling through what one rider called “a feast for the senses’. The vistas have been spectacular, the scenery constantly shifting, the peoples and cultures seems to change from morning to night. The Banyan trees, the Arabian Sea inlets, the mangrove forests, the pristine beaches, the coastal climbs and descents, the friendly people and the back roads ; what Lonely Planet defines as areas “where few outsiders ever set foot, an experience of which seasoned explorers would be proud off”.
So, to all of those who thought that, like on many other routes we have pioneered, that it is not doable, that it is dangerous, that it is this or that – such an attitude comes from incorrect, preconceived notions. Get rid of them, get on your bike and go and explore. You will be rewarded beyond your wildest expectations.