Off-roading vacations are the most recent addition to the ever-expanding list of thrills on offer for people looking for adventure holidays. These are basically driving holidays, but of the off-roading variety, where you are provided a 4x4 SUV and guided through a pre-determined terrain involving loads of dirt tracks and rugged countryside. Depending on your interests the trails take you through mountains, desert and even ice and snow. While India itself boasts of some great trails across the country, many of these companies offer off-roading trips to and in international destinations as well. Besides-top-of-the-line SUVs, enthusiasts can expect to be guided by trained driver/instructors all through their drive. Here are some that are worth checking out for your next adventure trip.
They maintain a fleet of over 100 Mahindra vehicles stationed all across the country according to their website, and offer at least seven expeditions that you can be part of. You can try the off-roading packages such as the Monastery Escape, Spiti Escape, Royal Escape (Rajasthan), Authentic Goa or even cross borders with the TriNation Escape (Nepal and Bhutan). They also run India’s first training academy in off-road driving, in Mumbai, where they will train you to negotiate the most challenging of terrains.
Based in Rajasthan, Overlander India offers 4x4 tours and holidays and is run by Uday Bhanu Singh and Ajit Rana, two car enthusiasts who have years of off-roading experience that they enthusiastically impart to fellow travellers. Their website states how it is ‘India’s Ultimate Rural Experience’ and you definitely need to experience what it is all about. So if you’re in Rajasthan and planning a weekend adventure trip with your buddies, take a look at their website.
Adventures Overland offers some of the most exciting off-roading adventures. Besides the usual trips to places like Rann of Kutch, Spiti Valley, Rajasthan, etc., diehard enthusiasts can also choose to be part of the many expeditions on its time table. There is, for example, a two-week trip planned this October/November to the South Pole. Then there is an annual 49 days, 18 country, 16,000 km trip from Delhi to London, that usually starts in late April. Or if you prefer the cold, there is a 12 day drive planned in August this year through Alaska called the Dead Horse Drive.
Mercury Himalayan Explorations
This Delhi-based company offers vacationers four-wheel drive vehicles in the various corners of the country, including the Thar Desert and the Northeast.
This Gurgaon-based company, which offers an array of adventure activities, organizes motorbike adventure rides and expeditions in Ladakh, Spiti, Bhutan, Arunachal Pradesh, etc.
India on bicycle
This unique company based out of Delhi and Cochin, offers group guided cycle trips across the country. The many rides on offer in their portfolio include 7-day Backroads of Rajasthan trip, or a Highlights of North India ride that will take you through Delhi, Agra, Bharatpur, Karauli, Talabgaon, Jaipur and back to Delhi, a 10-day Little Tibet ride, and a 15-day trip across Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu, called Glimpses of South India.
(Pics: Courtesy of company websites)