What, road trip overseas?
Yes, you heard us right!!!
Road trip within the country is now a thing of the past. The ‘travel bug’ has bitten ‘deeper’ and a road trip overseas is what a ‘wanderlusting’ heart actually desires.
Now you must be wondering how these international road trips must be an absolute hassle. On the contrary, with proper planning, these trips are actually a real delight.
A true traveler alone can imagine the thrill of cruising between countries at top speed. The feel of taking in all the vivid colors and sight all along the way. Makes you want your pack your bags, right?
So grab your travel documents, hop into your cars or rent one, and set off to experience international destinations; road trip style!
Nepal, a landlocked country in South Asia is a mix of plains and subalpine forested hills. It is home to eight of the ten highest peaks in the world including the majestic Mount Everest. The country does full justice to its official tourism motto, “Once is not enough”.
Nepal is a true mixture of everything a traveler looks for. From trekking to mountaineering to the rich local culture or spiritual awakening; Nepal has it all. This road trip overseas will give you an adrenaline rush, spiritual awakening, and be a cultural experience, all rolled into one.
Of all the international destinations, Nepal is the most doable one. Indian citizens do not require a visa to enter the country. However, valid legal documents like voter ID, ration card or driver’s license are a mandatory requirement at all checkpoints.
This trip of approximately 2,500 kilometers can easily be covered in 7 days if you do not plan to stop at the various National parks and other places of interest. Plan your trip according to your interest and be ready to experience the trip of your life.
Bhutan is a country known for its monasteries, dzongs (local dialect meaning forts) and dramatic landscapes. It is also known as the ‘land of happiness’. The country is tucked away in the eastern edge of the Himalayas with varied terrain. From subtropical plains to steep mountains and valleys, it has it all.
Bhutan is a place like no other. A country of red rice and chilly as the main ingredient rather than a mere seasoning! A Buddhist kingdom of sorts; where culture, spirituality, and tradition meet modernization halfway. The Bhutanese are in fact a group of well-educated people who know how to have their share of fun.
This road trip overseas requires an ‘entry permit’ to be presented at the Immigration Office of the Royal Government of Bhutan at Phuentsholing. Indian nationals visiting Bhutan do not require a Visa. However, you will need to carry either a valid Indian Passport (with a validity of minimum 6 months) or a voter identity card.
The only thing that requires immaculate planning on this trip is the ‘special area permit’. As mentioned, the entry permits allow entry in Thimphu and Paro only. Travel beyond these two cities requires the special permit and can be obtained from the RGoB Immigration Office at Thimphu.
Thailand is well known for its tropical beaches, magnificent royal palaces, ancient ruins and rich temples complete with a display of Buddha figurines. This road trip overseas spans a distance of approximately 4,300 kilometers. Imagine the thrill of a vast, empty stretch of sun-kissed highway road, a car and some good music.
While on the highway, remember to carry a valid passport with at least 6 months’ validity (from the date of arrival). Out of all the international road trips, Thailand has its own little list of complications.
You would need to secure a travel document known as the ‘Carnet’. A Carnet is like the passport for your car and comes at a whopping price of 200% of the value of your car. The deposit is thankfully refundable. Do not forget to carry an International Driving Permit (IDP) along with your valid Indian driving license.
Other mandatory documents include a pre-filled application form along with recent passport photographs, photocopy of the credit card along with original credit card statements of last 6 months and last 6 months bank statement with original bank seal & a minimum balance of INR 20,000 per person.
The country never fails to deliver a diverse and fabulous experience to each and every visitor. From towering skyscrapers beside Hindu temples to Chinese sanctums alongside mosques to rich natural biodiversity with a unique blend of cultures, Malaysia is truly Aisa!
Mountains, coral islands, tropical rainforests, flora and fauna, the list of natural experiences is indeed endless. The country is equally a paradise for adventure junkies with activities like bungee jumping, scuba diving, and snorkeling.
This epic trip of approximately 4,400 kilometers is a marvel in itself and takes over 20 days to experience it all. Indians need to carry a valid passport along with a valid visa to enter the country. Do not forget to carry your driver’s license while you set out for this road trip overseas.
The country, last on our list of international road trips; China. A road trip to China is definitely challenging and involves a lot of paperwork. You are to obtain all the necessary permits two months in advance of the date of the journey. Even then, the trip wholly depends on the contingency of the application being accepted by the Chinese government.
If luck is on your side then embrace yourself for a myriad of experiences, engaging architecture, and delicious Chinese food. An international road trip totally worth all the hassle, eh!
As the best route to arrive in China is via Nepal, be sure to familiarize yourself with all the required formalities required at the Nepal border.
This journey of approximately 1,600 kilometers requires all travelers to possess a valid passport along with a valid visa, special Overland Permits for Indian registered vehicles, Tibet Travel Permit, and a temporary driving license.
Remember, there is a prohibition in China to drive a car with a foreign or international driver’s license. As a tourist, you are to obtain a temporary driving permit.
Well, if you have been with us all along then we are sure that this list of road trips overseas has surely got the travel bug ticking in you. Having said that, yes an international road trip does sound fun but surely comes with its own set of rules & regulations and responsibilities.
Before you embark on this journey, remember:
- Driving for such long stretches comes with its own set of challenges. Equip yourself for all unforeseen circumstances.
- Carry multiple photocopies of all legal documents in case you misplace the originals.
- Carry extra cash for emergency and keep it tucked away safely.
- Familiarize yourself with the driving rules of every country before you set off to avoid legal hassles.
On this note, go ahead and get started on a road trip overseas, an experience of a lifetime. Fill your car with all that you might possibly need and get going. If you need help with planning a trip to any of these places, feel free to reach out to us on Twitter/Facebook/Instagram. We will help you #MarkAndEmbark on a journey of a lifetime.