Istanbul to Beijing, Trans Eurasia Expedition

Cost from US$16800, 60 days
  • Introduction
  • Itinerary
  • Date & Pricing
  • Reviews
  • Map
  • Photo Blog

    Follow Marco Polo's great adventure on the Silk Road. It was the world's first superhighway, a series of desert and mountain crossing that fabled silk road to make its way from the ancient Chinese capital of Xian. The Silk Road allowed links between China and the West to flourish, an exchange of art, ideas and culture as well as trade. 

    The Silk Road originally extended over 6,000 km through ancient China, India, Persia, Europe and Arabia, linking the mighty civilizations of the East and the West. Our journey to the East starts from Istanbul officially. 

    If you take the Adriatic Sea route,you will travel through Croatia, Montenegro, Bosnia, Albania and Greece to Turkish border. Another interesting route would be through Hungary, Romania and Bulgaria to Turkish border. 

    By crossing the bridge over the Bosporus Straight, you will have officially left Europe and Asia awaits you. So many things to see and experience in Turkey including the ancient roman ruins, Cappadocia underground city, and the old imperial capital Istanbul. 

    You then enter Georgia at Batumi and reach Tbilisi, the capital city. Don’t miss Georgian wines ! In the foot of the Caucasus mountain and ride to Sheki, your first night in Azerbaijan. 

    You will visit the old city of Baku, the fabulous oil city and take a ferry across the Caspian Sea to our first Stan countries, Turkmenistan. Meet your guide to sort out border formalities we will take a long ride to the White Capital, Ashgabat. We then venture into the desert of Dashaguz and spend a night camping next the gas crater, nicknamed as “gateway to hell”. 

    Leaving Turkmenistan, welcome to Uzbekistan, one of most welcoming stan countries. We will visit many of the historical sites on the ancient silk road. We will ride to our third stan country, Tajikistan. Riding the Pamir highway is our most adventurous section of the journey. We will soon hit the Chinese border after crossing our fourth stan country, Kirgizstan. 

    We enter China and ride to Kashgar city. Visiting this far-flung part of China is a chance to seamlessly mix modern-paced adventure with ancient culture. The arts and crafts of the region, strong since the Silk Road era, are still thriving. 

    In the next two weeks you will travel almost the entire length of the Himalayas and Karakorum mountain ranges. We will follow the western edge of the Taklimakan Desert to Mazza. Then we ride to Ngari-the largest city in the far west Tibet, climb some of the highest passes and cross some beautiful valleys. In the following days this journey we will cross the great Chang Tang (Northern Plateau) into far-west Tibet through the wildest land on earth. 

    Meeting nomads dwelling in low, black tents, tend flocks of sheep and goats as well as herds of the yak. Pilgrims of Buddhists, Bon, Hindus and Jains all come to pay their homage to this sacred mountain. Further within the heavily eroded sandstone canyon and valleys of the upper Yarlung River are numerous ruins of ancient cities that once comprised the kingdom of Guge, temples in that area are still intact and contain exquisite murals and decorative motifs with a history of more than ten thousand years. 

    Highlight of our adventure will be riding your motorcycles to Mt. Basecamp. Continue the journey to the holy city Lhasa, where you have spent some days to explore the different lifestyle and existing culture of the roof of the world. Monasteries and shrines are the center of the religious faith, which plays an important role in their day to day life since from thousand years. 

    We follow the eastern Himalaya ranges to Shangri_la, visit world famous Tiger Leaping Gorge and World Heritage city of Lijiang. We then ride north to Chengdu to take a look at the Giant pandas and Xi’an to visit many historical sites including the Terra Cotta Army, Goose Pagoda etc.., what a great feeling to actually stand on the city  wall of Xi'an,  the very beginning of the Silk Road. Our great journey will end in Beijing with a visit to the Great Wall ! 

    Ride China can arrange the logistics shipping your motorcycles worldwide. Please get in touch !

    A film made by our Italian customers who rode from Rome to Beijing.

    Start from Istanbul on Aug.19, 2024


    Finish in Beijing Oct. 16, 2024


    Depart anywhere from Europe. France, Germany, Swiss, Slovenia. You may travel through Croatia, Montenegro, Serbia to Bulgaria or Greece to meet the group.

    Week 1: Turkey

    Group meets up Istanbul. East meets West in Istanbul. (Istanbul is also THE official start Point for this Expedition). Two full days to explore the Blue Mosque, Tokapi Palance and Hagi Sophia.  Ottoman preserved village Safranbolu. Caves, rock formations and underground dwellings in Cappadoccia. 

    Week 2: Turkey & Georgia

    See the stone heads of Mount Nemrut.  Enter Georgia, Explore Tbilisi, capital of Georgia.

    Week 3:  Azerbaijan & Turkmenistan

    Enter Azerbaijan from Sheki and ride to Baku.  Ferry across the Caspian Sea to Turkmenistan.  White marble city of Ashgabat. 

    Week 4:  Turkmenistan & Uzbekistan

    North through the Dashoguz Desert. A night viewing of the Darvaza Gas Crater – “The Gateway to Hell”!  Enter Uzbekistan.  Desert terrain to the Ancient Silk Road Cities.  The ancient walled city of Khiva, Bhukara and then Samarkand, with the UNESCO listed Registan.  Minarets, mosques and madrasahs abound.

    Week 5: Kyrgyzstan to China Xinjiang

    Enter Kyrgyzstan. We ride to Osh.  The Tien Shan Mountains.  The capital, Bishkek.  Izzyk-Kul Lake to  Naryn. Ride over the Torugart Pass to Xinjiang Province, China. The ancient city of Kashgar.

    Week 6:  Mt. Kailash, Mt. Everest to Lhasa

    Enter Tibet, the ‘Roof of the World’.  Ride at over 5,000 metres high.  Remote settlements.  Mount Kailash & the holy Lake Manasarovar.  Lhasa – two days to explore the Potala Palace and the Buddhist temples of Jokhang and Barkhor. 

    Week 7  Eastern Tibet to Shangri_la

    Ride over a few more 5,000m passes. Through the hidden corridor of Tibet to Shangri_la.

    Week 8: Lijiang to Central China 

    Yunnan Province.  Descend from the Tibetan Plateau to Yunnan and visit the great rivers national parks. Onto the ancient walled city of Xi’an, the start point of the Silk Road.  Two full days to explore the Old Bell Tower and visit the Terracotta Army. And the beautiful town of Pingyao.

    Week 9 : Beijing and the Great Wall !


    Southeast Asia Route Option:

    Week 8: Lijiang to Laos and Thailand

    Yunnan Province.  Descend from the Tibetan Plateau to Yunnan and visit the great rivers national parks. Lijiang city is where we we shall say goodbye to your riding mates if you choose different destinations. Beijing group will ride north towards Xi'an. Southeast Asia group will be riding south to Dali, into the subtropical and exit China at Mohan/Boten border to Laos, it will be another week or so to travel through Laos and Thailand. Ride China will offer local contacts in Laos and Thailand should you need assists riding through these two countries. Thailand and Vietnam will require travel agents to prepare the entry, Laos is permit free. 

    Start from Istanbul on Aug. 19, 2024


    Finish in Beijing on Oct. 16, 2024


    Prices in US Dollar per person

    Istanbul to Beijing:  $16800/person

    Pillion rider: $7400/person

    Singleroom suppl. : $2800/person


    Limited Bike Rental Offers

    Kashgar/Lijiang (Sept. 17 - Oct. 06) 

    KOVE 500X: $7500/person

    Pillion Rider: $3000/person

    Single room: $800/person

    Included in the cost:

    All hotels on shared basis (or a single room, if booked)
    All breakfasts
    Group dinners weekly, most dinners in China
    Overnight hotel parking charges
    Caspian Sea Ferry ( Bike and Passenger)
    Turkmenistan visa on arrival
    Chinese Visa advice and letter of invitation
    Tibet China Travel Permits
    China Customs Deposit for imported Vehicles
    Chinese Driving License
    Chinese Motorcycle Number Plate
    Daily route notes
    Expedition Tour Shirt, Stickers

    English Speaking Expedition Leader on motorcycle

    Support Vehicle equipped with spare fuel, water
    Tools and emergency first aid kit
    Support vehicle driver, with mechanic experience

    Local Guides in Turkmenistan, Xinjiang & Tibet Provinces

    Local city tour guides on some rest days

    Not included in Tour Cost:

    Anything else that is not listed in " Included in tour cost "

    And your own motorcycles

    What is THE motorcycle for this big journey?
 Any mid sized or larger adventure motorcycles will do well. From Honda CB500X, Kawasaki Versys650, Yamaha T700, Aprilia Touareg 660,  BMW F850, Tiger 900 ralley to Honda African Twin 1100, BMW 1250GS and Tiger 1200 ralley pro. Take any one of them as you like, these bikes all have good reputations being comfortable, reliable and robust. This is not an easy trip for novice riders, you need to have at least 5000 kilometers ridden on varied road surfaces in the past and have been riding recently.  It is highly recommended that you take a riding course if you are new to big bikes. Once you are confident in riding big bikes then you need to do some regular exercises like running or cycling to maintain a certain level of endurance. On some days we need to ride a whole long day in extremely hot or cold weather.  Once you are physically and mentally ready, this can be done and enjoyed if you also bring a little bit spirit of adventure and a sense of haha.


    Support Van that can carry your bike and the passengers.


    Shipping motorcycles worldwide from Beijing/Tianjin Port can be arranged by Ride China.

    Shipping cost starts from USD800/bike to Europe (Hamburg, Rotterdam), UK(FELIXSTOWE,SOUTHAMPTON)

    There is no customer review so far for this expedition. We needed to change our old route (Ukraine/Russia/Kazakhstan) to this new one due to various reasons that we all know. The new route is even more fascinating and varied.  2024 expedition will be led by Jia ( Ride China ) who has some words to say about his scout trip back in 2019. 

    "Thank you for spending time on our website and reading through this wonderful journey of a life time, as least for me it was. Back in 2019, my partner and I rode out of China on two BMW G650GS to explore the Silk Road and onwards. On our way to the west, we were not alone but with a wild bunch of multi-nation motorcyclists who just travelled across Southeast Asia and China. They/we were bound for Europe. On our journey we sometimes parted ways, sometimes teamed up again. We shared info of hotels, routes, places of interests and some dinners & laughters when we were reunited. It was one of our most memorable long distance motorcycle journeys, we got to make some great friends, meet different people from different countries. I enjoyed every country we travelled through, people were so friendly and welcoming. Every country has their unique culture, weather, architecture, food and landscape. The nomads of Kyrgyzstan, silk road oasis towns in Uzbekistan, the Gas Crater in the blazing hot desert, the enormous Caspian Sea, medieval cities of Georgia, the ancient Ottoman Empire and it's super friendly people.... everything was just amazing and everyone of us totally enjoyed the journey.   You should be there .  We have been there, done that. Now we can't wait to get back there with you ! "


Minimum 8 motorcycles




60 days


Intermediate Level, some long riding days in hot weather.


Low to very high altitude (0 - 5100 m) in remote areas,5 -8 hours riding per day. Total distance 16000 km. Daily rides 240 - 560 Km. Mostly on asphalt roads


Hand picked high quality hotels

✥ Visit Istanbul, the bridge that links Europe and Asia
✥ Hot air ballooning in Cappadocia
✥ Underground city of Greme
✥ The historic country of Caucasus Mountain
✥ Visit Tbilisi of a Gothic fairy tale
✥ Welcomed by warm Georgian hospitality
✥ Walk on cobblestoned streets dotted by turrets
✥ Enjoy traditional restaurants with great Georgian wines
✥ Azerbaijan,the crossroads of Eastern Europe and Central Asia
✥ Check out Baku of tumultuous past, from its roots as a Silk Road port city
✥ Walk old city with a maze of UNESCO's World Heritage Sites
✥ Ferry across the Caspian Sea
✥ Turkmenistan by far the most mysterious and unexplored
✥ Camp next to“Gateway to Hell” in Darvaza Desert
✥ Visit many historical world heritage sites in Uzbekistan
✥ Ride the Pamir highway through Wakhan Corridor
✥ View Kyrgyzstan's unspoilt mountainscapes
✥ Rest days in Kashgar, the great oasis that links China and the west
✥ Ride by the side of Taklimankan Desert
✥ Traverse the Karakorum mountain
✥ Ride the entire length of the Himalaya
✥ Homage to Mt. Kailash
✥ Wake up at Mt. Everest basecamp
✥ Rest days in the holy city of Tibetans
✥ Ride the least travelled eastern Tibet to ShangriLa
✥ Traverse the great river trenches of Asia
✥ Ride through the third deepest gorge in the world
✥ Relax in the world heritage site of Lijiang
✥ Chance to see the Giant Pandas
✥ Set you feet on the city wall of Xi'an
✥ Visit Terra Cotta Armies 
✥ Hike on the Great Wall of China


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