I am just back from travelling S.E.A. and Oz had an amazing time. Now it's time to plan the next trip. My partner and I are mad keen motorbike fanatics. We missed our bikes as much as we missed our families while we've been away.
So next trip South America by motorbike bottom to top.
Anybody done it or have any advice for buying a bike over there and how easy is it to crossing the borders?
All ideas welcome
There are loads of people who do that trip, circumnavigate the continent, etc. Lots of good blogs and websites to research everything. Here's one good one to get started with:
it is absolutely doable. when we were cycling in latin america we met many travellers with motorbike and minivan.
what we heard from them that there was in general no big issue crossing borders, beside some minor requests for bribes and extra payments for insurance. the most important thing is that you won't need visa and carnet douanier in any of the south american countries. which is a big headache/obstacle in africa and asia.
i also met a couple of people who bought vehicles: car, motorbikes in south america.
many brands are available and there is a large selection of categories as well. cheap and reliable chinese and indian brands are as widely available as japanese models.
you can basically buy a new chinese brand for app US$1000 and amend / add few components for another maybe $500. you can also buy full gear, including boxes, panniers, vest, helmet, etc.
only thing i would definitely recommend: bring maps from home!
fuel prices and highway toll prices largely vary but are still way below developed countries'.
safety: it is safe, especially for motorbike travellers. you will quickly learn on the road what is safe and what you should definitely avoid. uk/usa government websites and wikitravel and locals are good sources of information.
you will need camping gear for argentina and chile - where camping is a popular and cheap alternative of lodging.
in the rest of the countries, you will always find cheap motels, guesthouses. you will spend much less and see much more than an average backpacker.
have a great trip!