Santiago, Valparaiso, and the road to Patagonia

Having relaxed for a couple of days with my friends, I set off for a bit of exploring without the bike, first to Valparaiso and then to Santiago’s central district. Valparaiso is a bohemian city on the coast, famous for being a home at one time to Pablo Neruda, the Chilean poet. It has a … Continue reading Santiago, Valparaiso, and the road to Patagonia

Mendoza to Santiago – Wine, steak, pumas, headwinds and mountain passes.

I had long been looking forward to Mendoza. I’d heard great things about the food there, and then of course there’s the wine…… In the event it was even better than expected. Not only did the food and wine live up to (or indeed exceed) expectations, the countryside, the scenery, and the warmth of the … Continue reading Mendoza to Santiago – Wine, steak, pumas, headwinds and mountain passes.

What’s new, Argentina?

Leaving our unexpected and comfortable accommodation at the border, Stephano, Tracey and I set off towards the next town (some 68 kms away). We were promised that the Police there would be expecting our arrival and would be happy for us to camp behind the police station. The corrugated concrete road surface, together with sand, … Continue reading What’s new, Argentina?

Galapagos and Peru – travels without my bicycle

As usual, sorry for the delay in posting and consequent length - there's a lot to catch up on! So after much deliberation, I'd decided to visit Galapagos after all. I’d been in a quandary as I’d read that the best way to experience the islands is on a cruise (albeit they have small boats … Continue reading Galapagos and Peru – travels without my bicycle

Ecuador, and past the 2000 km mark.

The first days in Ecuador made me apprehensive of what the country would hold. All the towns and villages I cycled through felt deserted; as though everyone had moved away. One constant feature however was the presence of street dogs, including this chap who was happy to guard the bike whilst I had breakfast. I … Continue reading Ecuador, and past the 2000 km mark.

Illegal border crossings…..

Well, maybe not illegal, but I did go against travel advice of Germany, UK and the United States by using the roads and crossing in Putomayo, in South Eastern Colombia. Embassies advise against all travel in the region. I didn’t do this lightly, and sought guidance from many sources over the preceding weeks, including repeatedly … Continue reading Illegal border crossings…..

Coffee country

Since my last post I’ve travelled through the last of ‘coffee country’, and continued to have an incredible time in this cyclist's paradise. I had another couple of days slogging up the hills with my original chainwheel. With some of the ascents being up to 20% in parts, with averages often being over 5%, many … Continue reading Coffee country

Travels with my bicycle

(Please note pictures can now all be viewed full screen just by clicking on them) Given that I've started getting messages asking whether I'm ok, thought I'd better do my first post from being on the road. An easy way to get started is with some stats for the first 8 days: Number of days … Continue reading Travels with my bicycle

Medellín, I shall miss you….

So, all good things come to an end, and tomorrow I leave Medellín and finally set off on the bike. I’m healthily apprehensive of the challenges ahead, and more than a little nervous about those hills. The bike has been prepared; luggage reduced; everything squashed into the four panniers I’ll be carrying; and I’m as … Continue reading Medellín, I shall miss you….