Fixed Departure: July 2020
This thrilling blast across Georgia’s Caucasus Mountains is perfect for those after a short, sharp dose of two-wheeled adventure.
Starting in the charming capital, Tbilisi, we’ll explore Svaneti and Tusheti, two of Georgia’s wildest and most remote regions. Riding a BMW GS650*, you’ll bump along remote tracks, twist up superb mountain roads, eat fabulous Georgian food and fall in love with Georgia and its people. Far bigger than the Alps, these Caucasus Mountains are a biker’s dream.
During the trip you’ll be staying at local guesthouses and homestays – the best way to really get to know any country. You’ll be feasting on home-made produce, glugging home-made wine and sitting around candle-lit tables making countless happy toasts to friendship, family and more.
The ride is going to be challenging, so don’t come on this trip if you are used to slick tyres and city pavements – you will need a modicum of off-road riding skill to fully enjoy it. It isn’t trials, but the roads are very, very rough in places so you need to be prepared. But hey, isn’t this all part of the adventure?
Due to winter snows, this route is only doable from late-June to mid-September so we think we’ve chosen the best time to do it.
This is a partner-led trip, so you’ll be looked after by our superb Georgian partner.
*The standard price is for the use of a BMW GS650. If you would like to upgrade, we can offer a Honda Africa Twin (2017-18) for an extra £600, or a Suzuki V-Strom 650 (2017-18) for an extra £350
||Tbilisi International Airport
||Whenever your flights arrive
- Rental of a your choice of bike
- All accommodation
- Mechanic travelling with group
- Airport transfers
- All meals
- All wine and other drinks
We will be there at the airport to collect you, and will drop you there in good time for your return flight. Please note that to ride a motorbike we will need to see your proof of holding a valid driving licence, and you will be self-certifying that you can handle a bike like this on very rough roads.
Where will we be staying?
On this trip, we’ll be staying in small, locally-owned family guesthouses and homestays. We feel that true luxury is getting to know a place and its people, and is not necessarily measured by the thread count of the bed linen. Give us an immersive experience like this any day.
I’m a solo traveller – is this for me?
Yes. More than 85% of our expedition clients travel alone as part of our group.
Is there a back-up vehicle?
No, we don’t have a back-up vehicle on this trip, as it’s only a week and you won’t need to carry much gear. You’ll also have a mechanic riding with you at all times.
What kit do I need to bring?
We will provide you with an information pack after signing up to this trip, and this will detail any particular equipment we think either necessary or useful.
Do I need to bring my own panniers?
No, the bikes are all fitted with hard panniers and / or a top box.
What will the weather be like?
In the hills, it’ll be chilly (warm jacket territory) at night. In the valleys and in Tbilisi it will be warm to hot, maybe in the 23-35 degree range depending on the month.
How much are flights?
This totally depends on season, but there are direct flights from across Europe to Tbilisi, and some from further afield. There are also budget airlines flying to Georgia now (mostly to the airport at Kutaisi, from where you’ll transfer to Tbilisi), so it is entirely possible to get a return ticket very cheaply if you shop around and don’t mind the time of day you’ll travel.
We can book your flights for you through our trade ATOL partners – please just ask us for details.
Is this a guaranteed departure?
No, we need a minimum of three people to sign-up to make this adventure certain of departure. This is from a maximum of eight riders. We will take a deposit to hold your place and then confirm with you no less than 3 months prior to departure that the trip is going ahead. In the event that minimum numbers are not reached, we will return your deposit with no quibbles, in line with our terms and conditions. So why not just gather together a couple of friends and book together?
What will the food be like?
Amazing! Georgian food is a feast for the palate; a tasty array of (largely home-produced) meat and vegetarian dishes infused with the tastes of Persia, the Middle East and Europe. This is definitely one of our more gastronomic trips.
Are the Bikes Insured?
The bikes are insured as per local law. Your own travel/personal insurance should also cover you for riding a motorbike of this size in Georgia.
Do you perform proper risk management on your expeditions?
Yes. We are members of TRIP – the Travel Risk and Incident Prevention Group – and perform detailed country risk assessments prior to departure, in line with the ISO 31000 international standard for risk assessment. We also maintain close contact with the relevant Foreign and Commonwealth Office advice for countries we plan to visit, in addition to making use of the Australian Smart Traveller assessment tool, and the US State Department’s OSAC service. Beyond this, we have a full set of risk management and disaster contingency plans for each expedition and are expedition first aid trained by Crux Medical. For final back up we also use the services of Remote Medical Support that allows us to have a UK expedition doctor on the end of a telephone line wherever we may be. And we always carry a satellite phone if there is any danger of being out of signal in the places we travel through. We really don’t mess around when it comes to safety.
Value for Money
We are very proud of the routes we design and the way in which we travel them. We don’t cut corners and we plan meticulously. We are a small company that treats every guest as our friend and you won’t find that kind of service in many places. 85% of our customers have re-booked to travel again with us and some of them come on a trip every year. We also do annual expedition and remote medicine training and pay for 24/7 remote medical assistance cover. We employ professional military-grade risk assessments and plan for every possible negative scenario whilst hoping that none ever come to pass. We take our obligations to you and your safety very seriously and this all does cost money. We think the price offered is great value.
What’s a partner-led tour?
We run a range of different trips and expeditions. Our Director’s Cut tours are 100% designed by us, and are completely unique to Silk Road Adventures. You won’t find these trips anywhere else and a huge amount of research has gone into making these journeys one-offs. Examples of these are our ‘In the footsteps of Joanna Lumley’ and Amu Darya journeys. These trips are either led by one of the SRA directors, Marley or Antonia, or by a carefully picked expert on the region, such as Leon McCarron.
Partner-led tours are a little different to this, in that they are designed, organised and led by one of our tried and trusted local partners. These tours are not always unique to Silk Road Adventures, and won’t be led by one of our UK team. However, this by no means affects the quality of the trip, or the level of enjoyment you’ll experience: we’ve put a great deal of time, research and Air Miles into ferreting out the best people to work with, and collaborating closely with them on these trips. We try and make it very clear what sort of trip each one is – if anything is remotely unclear please drop us a line here.
Is this really for me?
Although this is an extremely enlivening way to spend two weeks of your life, it’s also potentially dangerous.
Motorcycling off-road is an inherently risky activity.
It will also be physically tiring.
Don’t even consider signing up for this adventure if you aren’t fully aware of the risks you are taking.
If you like your holidays to include foie gras, butlers and miles of quilted loo roll then please look elsewhere.
If however, you want a proper, unique and delightful experience that you’ll remember forever, then you are in luck!