We’ve arrived in Iran’s port city Bandar Abbas (بندرعباس) after cycling through a lot of desert. We arrived on January 8th after cycling a further 1220 km, bringing our total to 12505 km. On this route we saw many historic ruins, castles and caravanserai.
A slight detour heading south getting away from winter.
It wasn’t easy trying to organise Christmas on the road. This period was especially important as Christmas, New Years and Pheng’s birthday were all within 10 days of each other. We had initially wanted to celebrate it in a nice city, sleep in a cosy hotel and have a nice birthday cake to dig into, however the heartless thief took that dream away.
We rode on Christmas but actually really enjoyed it. We woke up on Christmas day to the best present any cyclist ever want — a tailwind. Santa really did come. The wind blew all day and took us 120 km further towards Kerman. We camped a kilometer away from the road in the desert behind some dirt mounds for sound protection.
For dinner we had an amazing sandwich with falafel, cheese, salad and mayo. Hot chocolates and a wonderful block of Iranian chocolate was shared. It has been a long time since we treated ourselves to good food.
Our Christmas present for each other this year was health and well-being. Don’t need to wrap that one 😎.
我们骑在圣诞节，但实际上非常喜欢它。我们在圣诞节那天醒来，听到任何骑车人想要的最好的礼物 – 顺风。圣诞老人真的来了。风吹过一整天，我们向克尔曼方向走了120公里。我们在沙漠中的一条公路上露营了几公里远的沙丘后面，以保护声音。
Morning after Christmas we had to boil ice for tea
We arrived in a date growing town of Bam on New Years Eve. Our Iranian host didn’t celebrate new year, in fact, Iran have theirs in March. We didn’t stay up for the new year to come so went to bed early.
We celebrated New Year’s Day with our host by making a big plate of Roast Vegetables with mushroom sauce
The next morning we replied to all the new years wishes from friends and families. It was very nice to hear from everyone. We do miss our family and friends a lot.
We started a “Give a Little” fundraiser page to help us afford the next visa of Iran, and the response was amazing!
Families and friends all came and contributed way above what we had hoped for and we felt positive again that the trip could be finished. We’re at a point now that anything bad that could happen would mean we go home. However, the donations has improved the outlook for us and we truly appreciate everyone’s contribution.
A very big THANK YOU.
我们开始了一个“Give a Little”筹款页面，帮助我们买下伊朗的下一个签证，回复真是太棒了！
Our next host in Bam was a family who had a son studying abroad in Rome. The son had his CouchSurfing set in Bam but he still helped us. He asked his family to host us and we celebrated Pheng’s birthday together.
The mother spoke the most English out of everyone and it was a great opportunity for her to practice… since her high school classes! It was also a good opportunity for us to use more Farsi.
Family day out at the biggest mud-brick castle in the world
Quite a lot of work still to do
On the evening of Pheng’s birthday the father took us to a cake shop for Pheng to pick a cake! Another customer kindly purchased the candles after learning that it was Pheng’s birthday. Afterward we went home with wide smiles.
One by one, all 28 candles were put on the cake and lit. We wanted to sing the Persian version of the birthday song but our host couldn’t understand us. The candles were melting fast so Pheng quickly made a wish and blew all the candles out. In hindsight we should have learnt the birthday song in Farsi!
So far so good for the start of 2019. We are forever grateful to the friendly Iranians that are emphatic about our recent travel mishap in Chalus. With their generosity and kindness, we can replace that with good memories that we’ll cherish for a long time.
While in Bandar Abbas we will take a short holiday (from our current holiday). There are two popular islands nearby so we will be resting and relaxing in the sun. Depending on how the visa situation goes, we may stay longer in Iran, or have to leave and return to get a new visa.
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