The Anglo Australian Comfortable Coach Company - History, reunion and memorial site
Details of the London to Kathmandu tour, September-October 1979 by Nick Whetstone.
Part three - Isfahan to Amritsar
|Diary (click on thumbnails for enlargement)|
Left Isfahan through the worst traffic mess I have ever seen but soon out on open road. Passed over mountain range at border at an altitude of 8500 feet then descend into the Dashtelut (Great Sands Desert). Lunch stop at Yazd then hundreds more miles of nothing but sand. Free-camped in desert about 10 km west of Rafsanjan. No tents and we went to sleep gazing at clear night sky.
Very early start (6 am) and drove to Bam via Mahar. During the long afternoon drive we stopped at a desert lighthouse then continued until after dark. Camped at a Marples Ridgeway road camp where we enjoyed the luxury of showers, swimming pool and bar!
Drove to Zahedan then another 95 kms to the border with Pakistan. Long, long wait to get through and only one toilet that was possibly the worst I ever saw. Heard news of a tourist bus being attacked by gunmen in Afghanistan. Continued through desert on roads sealed but worse than the scrape road to the border. Reached Nokundi by dusk and camped in the courtyard of the tourist information office.
Left camp after removing rock from between rear double wheels. More desert and very rough road to Dalbandin to replenish our water supplies. Continued on to arrive in Nushki to camp in the grounds of a guest house where we were stoned by local children while we ate our evening meal. Slept out on lawn.
Finally reached some real civilization at Quetta after another long drive. Camp in ground of the Lourdes Hotel. Explore Quetta in afternoon.
Stopover day and another chance to explore Quetta and do some shopping. Evening meal out at Chinese restaurant.
Afghanistan border now closed due to troubles so head south. Roads terribly corrugated and bus bounces up and down awfully. Worse, all of us who ate at the Chinese restaurant have food poisoning. Temperature inside bus is 44 degrees centigrade and everybody is dehydrated. Only two places to get drinks and we were all glad to reach Sukkur by early evening. Camped in grounds of the Circuit judge's house.
Cross Indus river and turn northwards. Another rough day, especially for those with the bad stomachs. Reached Multan by mid afternoon and set up camp in the grounds of the Canal Guest House. Besieged by inquisitive local youths but in the evening we accept a challenge to play a game of football - ten of us against twenty-two of them but the result wasn't really important.
Woken by mullah calling the faithful to morning prayer. Not such a long drive today and reached Lahore in the early afternoon and camped on the lawns of the International Hotel. Quickly into the swimming pool to cool off before going into town.
Stopover day and a lie in. Went into Lahore for sightseeing, Kim's Gun, Red Fort, Grand Mosque etc.
Drove to Shalimar Gardens, purchased diesel then drove to Indian border arriving at 8.30 hoping to get through quickly. Only took two hours which Tim told us was fairly quick! Drove into Amritsar and stopped at the railway station for lunch (able to buy beer again). Drove to the Youth Hostel on edge of town to set up camp. Took a trishaw to visit the Golden Temple in the evening - one of the best locations/experiences of the trip!
Last update: May 6th 2002 - (The AACCC Website) - Author Nick Whetstone. All rights Reserved.