Remember when monarchs and conquerors would ride on their horses for days together to traverse their kingdoms and empires? Storms, starvations, battles were braved to complete expeditions. And they were.
The 21st century fanaticism could surprisingly, be defined closely along the same lines. There is no stopping and no holding back; Restrictions and inhibitions issues as minor as punctured tyres. In the wake of such enthused travel tales, the recent news of the India-Thailand-Myanmar comes as no less than a blessing to backpackers. It’s time for improvisations and alterations in your travel diaries. Road trips across borders could now be topping bucket lists all over!
A South Asian peninsula, India still offers a fair share of possibilities of crossing national territories by land. Here is a list of the 5 such countries. Let’s just assume the starting point for convenience and familiarity to be Delhi and get started with filling in our planners already.
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After years of attempts of forging relations with the country of Burma, the pact is official and what more, easy for conveyance. Tour through the beautiful forts and mesmerizing architecture of Myanmar using the same trilateral India-Myanmar-Thailand highway.
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The new Trilateral highway connects Moreh in Manipur to Mandalay, Myanmar. The best route option for the transit from Delhi to Moreh is via NH 39. A distance of 2512 kms and 45 hrs, the ride takes you through the states of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Assam, and Nagaland before you enter Manipur through Senapati city, at a stretch of 214 kms and 5 hrs from Moreh.
For apparent human reasons, travelling for 45 hrs is not the most practical or plausible thing that you’d do. The highway route does help in reducing the number of halts necessary for your awareness and may be your sanity as well. Nevertheless, typically neglected and conveniently overlooked conditions of the highway might make the tour a little harder than you had imagined. If you are more of the safe calculative passenger than the impulsive fanatical traveller, availing the bus services from Guwahati and Dimapur to Imphal could also be an alternative.
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Modi Push is what they are calling the completion of the trilateral highway project before its scheduled finish in 2016. The India-Myanmar-Thailand road takes you from Moreh in India to Thailand's Maesot via Myanmar's Tamu, Mandalay and Myawaddy.
Satisfied with Burma yet? Or Thailand is the only and ultimate destination? It’s time to shoulder that backpack and kick off the engine. The India-Myanmar-Thailand highway covers a distance of 1707 kms from Moreh, India to Mae Sot, Thailand which takes roughly 24 hrs. You could use halts in Burma and delve into the mesmerising and captivating landscapes of the country.
Reaching Moreh is already in the books. The perk of this highway is the reduced time and distance of the stretch between Thinggan Nyenaung and Kawkareik from 3 hrs to 45 mins. The newly-built highway would undoubtedly make your journey smoother and more convenient.
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From fortresses to monasteries to cliffs and steep mountains and valleys, the country never fails to leave its guests in awe. You needn’t even worry about passports and visa. Bask in the perks of being Indian. Ours is one of the countries that Bhutan government makes the exception of allowing with any government approved identity.
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The North-eastern state of Assam shares its borders with Bhutan. Indian district Darrang is closest to Samdrup Jongkhar, the entry point to South east Bhutan. The AH1 covers a distance of 1931 kms on its route from Delhi to Darrang through U.P, Bihar and West Bengal in 35 hrs. Darrang stands at a distance of mere 73 kms from Guwahati for travellers preferring to cover major points on their way. Samdrup Jongkhar is another 150 kms. from Guwahati and 100 kms. from Darrang that add just another 5 hrs to your trip before you cross borders.
Traversing the Indian terrains has rarely been described easy and the challenge only multiplies its strength as the route cuts through mountains and water bodies. If you want to avoid the bumpy routes of the way, fly down or take the train to Guwahati. Though it beats the purpose of an overland journey, Darrang is only 2 hrs away there on.
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Many dream to follow the trail of the Himalayan beauty which stretches beyond Indian boundaries. But once in, the enthusiasts are only revealed to breathtaking panoramic views of not just the mountains but restored in even its handicraft, jewellery, temples and every other part of their culture.
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The best way to enter Nepal is advised by many to be the Sunauli border which is only 90 kms away from Gorakhpur, U.P. While Delhi to Gorakhpur is close to 900 km, the Nepalese city of Pokhara is 300 kms further. Just as frequently used is the transit from Delhi to Banbasa, a stretch of 330 kms and 8 hrs which could be easily broken down with halts throughout the NH24. The Nepal border of Mahendranagar is 5 kms away from Banbasa in Uttarakhand making it another 15 mins before your footsteps can be traced on the soils of Nepal!
Being a landlocked country touching borders with India, the route is hence simplified and made easier. Moving through the well frequented highways offers enough halts on the way through all the cities of Uttar Pradesh including Moradabad, Rudrapur and Khatima.