Tour through Asia 2012 - Sibiria, Mongolia, Gobi, China

I had planned and worked out a circumnavigation of the world against child poverty with Petru from Romania, which was supposed to be generously supported by sponsors. Suddenly it had to be canceled, and I consoled myself with the "little tour" through Siberia, Mongolia with crossing the Gobi desert as far as Beijing. Around 36,000 kilometers were planned, I then cycled exactly 3600.

Moskau - Sibiria.

"If you ever come to Russia, take a look at Moscow." I thought to myself and initially enjoyed the well-run tour from Elena and Nina, two couchsurfing contacts. The Red Square, the Lenin Mausoleum, the colourful, Ornate St. Basil's Cathedral, Changing of the Guards and the elite department store GUM were on the program. We also visited the most beautiful subway in the world and the fairy tale sculptures on the Moskva River. After having met Petru in Irkutsk, we cycled north, crossed the Buriati area of Siberia with its colorful houses along the shores of Lake Baikal. We continued to the holy shaman island of Olkhon, in whose capital, Khushir, we could experience the main annual festival. Since the ferry to the east side of the lake was too expensive, we hitchhiked back to Irkutsk to cycle around the southern end of the lake.

As guests in monasteries and finally in the yurts of Mongolia

We were warmly welcomed in the Selenginski Monastery and introduced to the strict rules of the monastery. The world's largest Lenin head in Ulan Ude was just as fascinating as a herd of cattle that broke down traffic in the middle of the city. And again we were lucky when we were invited to celebrate one of the largest Buriati folklore festivals for two days. The Ivolginsky Monastery, the most important Buddhist monastery complex in Russia, was a feast for the senses. Riding into Kyackta we finally crossed the border into Mongolia and saw the descendants of Genghis Khan in the plains of the northern part of Gobi desert. From now on we were accompanied by the far spread yurts and the herds of camels and even many yaks in the north. A giant Buddha was guarding Darchan, but he was only the forerunner for the beautiful monastery complex of the children's monks of Amarbayasgalant, which we reached after an arduous ride through the mountains. The temperatures of minus degrees at night and lots of rain forced us to change our route - luckily, because this is how we were able to visit the capital of Mongolia, Ulan-Baatar: One third of the city still consists of yurts. Another surprise awaited us in the desert village of Ayrak: At the big folk festival on the occasion of the children's schooling, we were allowed to try all the delicacies that the nomads had manufactured, mainly dried dairy products. After Petru wanted to move on alone, I was "homeless", because I was carrying the kitchen and he was transporting our tent. So began my increasingly adventurous search for overnight accommodation in the yurts.

Adventure China: through the Gobi desert to jail and onto the great wall.

In Erlian there were problems with entering China, because an entry document was missing, but only travelers with cars had received it. Just across the border, Chinese gigantism overwhelmed me: a dinosaur park stretching over several kilometers, numerous different giant lizards and plastic trees. But now there was a paved road through the Gobi, and my Ivory bike, heavily laden with water, baggage, and me, moved much faster than through the sand. In Chuade Montezuma's revenge caught me! Thanks to a lovely helper, I was able to recover in the hotel for three days to get back on my feet. In one of the poorest villages with small mud houses, where I asked a young family, for shelter overnight, I was thrown into jail as a spy! Not a nice experience, but I was able to free myself the next day with a trick. In Xia Hua Yuan, I went to the only hotel that was allowed to accommodate Westerners for security reasons. I was happy when I got to Beijing and arrived at my couch surfing hosts, where I was finally safe again. The morning drill of all companies was as strange for me as the working hours and the incredible discipline of the extremely serious people. The week of culture with numerous Temple tours, visit to the Olympia Park with "Water Cube" and "Bird's nest“ and the old town Huton was remarkable. As an absolute Highlight after visiting the Ming Tombs and the Imperial Palace, I saved the walk on the Great Wall of China in Mutianyu. A nice end to my two-months bike tour through Asia.

Look forward to an eventful lecture!

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