Pakistan·June

Pakistan Tuk Tuk Adventure

Explore the rugged, contrasting landscapes of Northern Pakistan.

Pakistan_724x10241

Overview

Welcome to the Pakistan Tuk-Tuk Challenge! Pakistan. You’ve probably heard of it, and it’s fair to say that it hasn’t really been somewhere that has existed in most travellers’ minds as a place to go. But we’re here to tell you: it is most definitely a place to go. And it is most definitely best explored by tuk-tuk. Don’t believe us? Pop over to Google and type in ‘Pakistan nature’. See what comes up. From Islamabad to Hunza, and Peshawar to Gilgit – we are certain that your eyeballs are not ready for this. This place isn’t like all those other places you’ve been. It’s wilder, less-trampled and, objectively speaking, the perfect setting for the trip of a lifetime. Your heart will swell. So join us as we take our three-wheeled wonder-machines out into this fantastical place, on a 10-day ‘Amazing Race’-style challenge that’ll test your physical and mental prowess, and give you at least 636 stories to tell your grandkids. You’ll be pioneering a route through the north that approximately not many travellers have ever done before. You’ll be making history and having a ball. You’ll be the talk of the town. You’ll be supported by a merry band of fellow travellers as well as medical, operations and mechanical teams the whole way. Not to mention, you’ll have the sensationally friendly locals themselves to help you roam. And you’ll be helping raise money for charity the whole way.

Highlights

Food

Food

Did we mention the food? You’ve got a blend of Indian and Asian influences, underpinned by stacks of oil and spices. Hot kebabs and rice. Aromatic plates and bowls of veggies. Turmeric, cardamom, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, garam masala. More flavour for your tuk-tuk behaviour. You know what? Just go and pay your closest Pakistani restaurant a visit. Then come back and tell us that you don’t want to go straight to the source. We won’t believe you.

Details

Details

We hire the rickshaws from local drivers while we arrange all of your accommodation. On top of that we also ensure a big chunk of your entry fee goes towards helping local communities. All you have to do is turn up, get in and drive the damned things. You won’t find another adventure like it.

Adventure

Adventure

Our Pakistan Tuk-Tuk Challenge does exactly what it says on the tin. It’s in Pakistan. It’s challenging. You drive rickshaws. And a full on Pakistani adventure is pretty much guaranteed. But really, there’s so much more in the tin than that: there’s bigger mountains than you’ve ever seen before, impossibly hot curry, the occasional overloaded truck and boatloads of culture and history. If that sounds like your particular brand of fun, read on.

Schedule

Previous

Next

7_1277362705

DAY 1

Training day

Destination: Islamabad

Accommodation: Hillview hotel

3

DAY 2

Distance Travelled: 190km

Checkpoint: Balakot

Accommodation: Demanchi Hotel

chillas

DAY 3

Distance Travelled: 200km

Checkpoint: Chilas

Accommodation: Chilas Inn Hotel

GilgitEmbassyLodge1

DAY 4

Distance Travelled: 130km

Checkpoint: Gilgit

Accommodation: Gilgit Embassy Lodge

1474874615_SostEmbassyExterior3

DAY 5

Distance Travelled: 190km

Checkpoint: Sost

Accommodation: Sost Embassy

1474874615_SostEmbassyExterior3

DAY 6

Distance Travelled: 160km (via Khunjreb Pass)

Checkpoint: Sost

Accommodation: Sost Embassy

hunza

DAY 7

Distance Travelled: 100km

Checkpoint: Hunza

Accommodation: Hotel PTDC Hunza

GilgitEmbassyLodge1

DAY 8

Distance Travelled: 110km

Checkpoint: Gilgit

Accommodation: Gilgit Embassy Lodge

50108206053_1d751b070b_k

DAY 9

Departure

From: Gilgit

What's Included

What's Included

Training and driving lessons on arrival day.

Hire and use of 1 genuine, ready-to-roll rickshaw for the duration of the Challenge. Third party liability insurance included.

Challenge logistics & legal stuff (mechanics, support team, permits, luggage truck).

Welcome pack (sim card and phone, map, t-shirt, event bag, phrase-book, navigational sheets).

Emergency & Medical travel insurance for the duration of the Pakistan Rickshaw Challenge.

10 % contribution to our Meaningful Travel projects

Awards ceremony & farewell party.

Accommodation for 2 or 3 people (8 nights) in double, twin or triple rooms. 1 room per team.

Half Board – 8 delicious locally-made breakfasts and dinners

Flights, visas, airport transfers.

Rickshaw spare parts and repairs (approx. total £40-120 per team).

Fuel (approx. total £100 per team).

Day to day costs (approx. £30 per day for lunch and drinks).

Rickshaw Pimpin.

Pakistan Adventure

Why Pakistan?

Our Pakistan Tuk-Tuk Challenge does exactly what it says on the tin. It’s in Pakistan. It’s challenging. You drive rickshaws. And a full on Pakistani adventure is pretty much guaranteed. But really, there’s so much more in the tin than that: there’s bigger mountains than you’ve ever seen before, impossibly hot curry, the occasional overloaded truck and boatloads of culture and history. If that sounds like your particular brand of fun, read on.

Pakistan Adventure

Trip Tips

What should I bring along?

What should I bring along?

Probably not your ski jacket. Or that set of golf clubs. Pakistan has hot summers, so pack accordingly. The nights can get a little chilly in the hills, so a windbreaker jacket and a few light layers wouldn’t go amiss. Other than that, bring all your travel essentials, some good quality suncream and anything you think will make the long driving days more fun (we recommend honing you I-Spy skills beforehand). Oh, and did we mention it might rain?

What about luggage?

What about luggage?

Don’t worry, you don’t have to strap suitcases to the roof of your tuk tuk. We’ve got a luggage truck that will follow us around. Each morning you’ll load it up with your heavy bags, and each night we’ll hand it back at our hotel. Job done. Simples.

Add Ons

ARRIVAL TRANSFER

ARRIVAL TRANSFER FROM THE AIRPORT TO THE HOTEL

PRICE$40.00/pp

ADD THIS

T-SHIRT

GET AN ADDITIONAL LARGE MINORITY T-SHIRT FOR YOUR ADVENTURE

PRICE$26.70/pp

ADD THIS

DEPARTURE TRANSFER

DEPARTURE TRANSFER FROM THE HOTEL TO THE AIRPORT

PRICE$40.00/pp

ADD THIS

You'll Be Staying Here

Hill View Hotel

Hill View Hotel

Demanchi Hotel

Demanchi Hotel

Chilas Inn Hotel

Chilas Inn Hotel

Gilgit Embassy Lodge

Gilgit Embassy Lodge

Sost Embassy

Sost Embassy

Hotel PTDC Hunza

Hotel PTDC Hunza

FAQs

Ah, the humble rickshaw, or “Auto” as they’re sometimes known as, is the original tin can on wheels. And they’re freak’n awesome!

They’ve got three wheels (don’t ask us why), an open frame, a canvas roof with drop down sides, a cabin for the driver and two seats in the back. Oh, and an engine: a 4-stroke beast that is probably slightly more powerful than a horse.

Rickshaws have a few advantages: they’re durable, easy to use and very forgiving. They’ll happily handle almost any surface, climate or level of abuse. Their cruising speed is a tasty 35kph (22mph). Their cruising altitude is about one foot.

Specifications

  • Engine: 4 stroke engine – 205 cc
  • Petrol tank: 6 litre normal capacity plus 1 litre of reserve
  • Average petrol consumption: 1 litre approx 20 to 25 Km’s
  • Top speed: 55 kmph

For a comprehensive answer, go and Google ‘internal combustion engine’. But here are the cliffnotes.

  • The accelerator is found on the right.
  • The clutch and gears are located on the left.
  • The main break is actioned by your right foot.

On the first day of the event, everyone is required to attend a mandatory rickshaw driving induction and safety training session (this means you). You’ll get lots of time to practice before hitting the road. A rickshaw is a cross between a car and a scooter, so clutch control is key. If you´ve driven a scooter or motorbike before, it’ll be a breeze.

It’s worth remembering that the Pakistan Tuk-Tuk Challenge is just that – a challenge. It’s not a race. It’s not like Cake’s seminal 90s hit The Distance. Speed should not be your priority. If anything should be, it’s probably fun.

The Challenge is broken up into various driving legs. Each team gets a road map and a daily navigational sheet, which they’ll use to get from A to B each day. The winning team isn’t the team that finishes first, it’s the one that accumulates the most Challenge points. How do you get points? By nailing various challenges, we set you along the way.

That means that racing is not encouraged. In fact it’s actively discouraged. There’s no need to set a new Pakistan ground-speed record (very difficult to do on a 200cc Rickshaw, but still…) We’ll provide mechanical support when you need it, but essentially you’re hiring a Rickshaw and driving it independently each day. By yourself. Han solo.

A team is made up of either 2 or 3 people. Apparently there is no ‘I’ in it. You get one Rickshaw per team.

Unfortunately, no. Only because each leg will start from the hotel / over-night stop and the idea is to share our challenging travel experience together. Most importantly you wouldn’t want to miss out on each night’s social gatherings…

Yes, you’ve got to be at least 18 years old in order to participate. We don’t have a maximum age, but if you’re over 65 we definitely recommend checking with your insurer to make sure you qualify for the medical insurance you’ll need to take part. The Challenge is physically tough, but by no means extreme – we won’t sugar-coat it. You should really only take part if you’re in decent physical shape and your health is A-Okay.

Probably not your ski jacket. Or that set of golf clubs. Pakistan has hot summers, so pack accordingly. The nights can get a little chilly in the hills, so a windbreaker jacket and a few light layers wouldn’t go amiss. Other than that, bring all your travel essentials, some good quality suncream and anything you think will make the long driving days more fun (we recommend honing you I-Spy skills beforehand). Oh, and did we mention it might rain?

Don’t stress, they’re very friendly. If you can ride a bicycle that has a clutch and an engine, you can ride a rickshaw. Besides, on the first day everyone gets mandatory rickshaw driving instructions and safety training. You’ll have plenty of practice before hitting the open road.

To put it bluntly – yes. There will be an element of danger, if only because you’re sitting behind the handlebars of a three-wheeled Rickshaw, on top of 200CC of raw power, and tackling unfamiliar roads in a foreign country. Lets face it, Indian roads can be diabolical in places and the driving standards might not be what you’re used to. That in itself is a bit risky. But don’t worry too much – if you’re sensible and cautious, you should be fine, and we have a fully trained crew to swing in if anything goes wrong. That includes an ambulance and paramedics on standby.

Warning: Auto Rickshaws can easily roll and flip if not handled correctly. We take safety really seriously on these challenges, and you should know there are inherent risks involved, including potentially life-threatening situations.

Your humble steed will be handed over in a good road worthy condition and from then onwards it is your responsibility to take care of any repair costs. Our team of mechanics will be at your disposal throughout the event and will assist you with this at a cost. Otherwise you can turn to the locals to help you out. But don’t worry spare parts are not that expensive!

The cost of repairs depends on how each teams looks after their vehicle. Naturally there is a small amount of wear and tear on these type of events, but you will only be charged for parts that are damaged or need to be replaced. There will be a full vehicle inspection prior to handing over your ride. On average, the cost of repairs ranges from £ 40-120 per team.

These wonderful machines are surprisingly fuel efficient, so unless you drive like a madman your wheels will do at least 30 km to the litre so you won’t really be spending more than £100 bucks for the whole Challenge.

Whoa there, speed racer. These bad boys can’t really get over 50kph. The average speed should be around 35kph. Fast enough to get the blood racing, but not so fast you hit a cow. That’s the sweet spot.

If possible, try not to do this. One of our registration requirements is to pay (or better block the amount off your credit card) a refundable deposit of £1,500 per team. This will (ideally) cover you for most touch ups and accidents, although if the rickshaw is a complete write-off the bill might increase. At the end of the Challenge we’ll inspect the vehicle, come to an agreement, and return any balance to you before you leave Pakistan. A pretty standard car-hire type system, really.

Emergency medical insurance is included in the trip price, however general travel insurance is not. We strongly recommended to protect against all the ways travel can go wrong. 

Teams have used Campbell Irvine in the past for this however please do shop around.  

Third party insurance is included under the hire of the rickshaw. Scratch as many Ferraris as you want (please don’t actually do this).

Everyone who competes has to provide us with a valid International Driving Permit with a Category A stamp. It’s your responsibility to have the correct DL.

Definitely! We love to see teams going the extra mile to raise money for charity. Just be aware that the rickshaws we use have limited branding space (we take up some for our own branding purposes). If you need more info on this, just let us know.

Easy peasy. Here’s how:

  1. Sign up.
  2. Pay your initial deposit.

Once you’ve done all that successfully, we’ll send you an email with lots of exclamation marks confirming your team’s availability.

Once your registration is locked and loaded, we’ll email you and ask you to provide us with:

  1. A passport copy for each team member (we promise not to laugh at the photos).
  2. International Driving Permit with a category A stamp.
  3. Your arrival and departure details.

We’ll double check all these docs on the ground in Pakistan, so please bring copies with you.

30 days before the Challenge.

Nope. If we camp we’ll provide the sleeping bags and the marshmallows as necessary. However it might be good to bring a torch.

Ah visas, our old nemesis. You can find out how to apply, here.

We try to stick to the original route and accommodation as much as possible, but they can be subject to change from time to time.

Not really. Some luxuries can be a little pricey (hence the ‘luxury’ bit), but for the most part it’s super reasonable. Lunch might be a few bucks and beers are generally around the same. It’s like travelling back in time to the 50s when the world was a much simpler place and children respected their elders.

All our hotels will have internet connection, but the campsites not so much.

Summers in Pakistan are hot, so be prepared.

This is completely up to you (and your doc), but generally it’s a good idea to be up-to-date with standard vaccinations like Tetanus, Hap A and Polio. Other jabs to consider are Tuberculosis, Meningitis and Typhoid. Anti-malaria meds might also be a good idea. If in doubt, check with your GP.

Pakistan has a good road network linking all the major cities, towns and interesting places. But don’t go expecting pristine tarmac everywhere you ride. Some of the rural roads in particular can get pretty wild and bumpy.

  • Only 10% deposit required to signup.
  • Outstanding amount is required 45 days before the start of the Challenge.
  • 45+ days before the challenge starts: Loss of deposit
  • 44-30 days before the challenge starts: 50%
  • 29 days or less before the challenge starts: 100% 

For more information please refer to our Booking Terms & Conditions.

Dates

June 18 - 26 2021

Pakistan·8 nights

FROM$2199

June 17 - 25 2022

Pakistan·8 nights

FROM$2266

Pakistan Tuk Tuk Adventure

Pakistan·June·8 nights

FROM$2199