Covering a distance of 1012.5 kilometers from Phnom Penh, Cambodia, to Pattaya, Thailand, “Motorbike Uncle” and his seven companions have successfully completed their transnational motorbike journey. They faced numerous challenges, including navigating international borders, enduring heavy rainfall, and even being misled by GPS systems.
Motorbike Uncle, also known as Mr. Lu from Shandong, stands tall at 1.8 meters. Over the past few years in Cambodia, he has assisted countless fellow Chinese nationals and connected with many who share his love for motorbikes. Speaking to “INNews”, he shared details of this adventurous trip across Cambodia and Thailand.
Their journey began in Phnom Penh on the 12th. After their individual work commitments, the eight enthusiasts, with four motorbikes between them, traveled 300 kilometers to rendezvous in Battambang. They carried essentials, hotel reservations, insurance for their bikes in Thailand, and authorization letters for bikes not under their own names.
Initially planning to cross the border at Pailin, they were faced with Thai regulations prohibiting the crossing of vehicles not registered under the rider’s name. This setback led them to a detour, traveling an additional 300 kilometers north to the O’Smach border crossing. Despite the rain soaking their gear, their spirit remained undeterred.
Upon reaching another border crossing, they finally made their way into Thailand, reaching Pattaya by nightfall. The following day, they explored the streets of Pattaya, relishing the peace their ride had brought them. Quirkily, Motorbike Uncle mentioned in his social feed, “The whole journey from Phnom Penh to Pattaya was to test out the camera quality of a new Huawei phone for an old friend.”
The return trip had its fair share of challenges. A malfunctioning navigation system led them astray, but they ultimately found their way back to Phnom Penh. Motorbike Uncle humorously mentioned, “It wasn’t tiring for me, but my passengers had a rougher time.” He further advised travelers in Thailand to strictly adhere to the nation’s left-hand traffic rule.
Recollecting past rides, Motorbike Uncle shared that this wasn’t their first cross-country trip. Earlier in April, during the Cambodian New Year, they had motorbiked through Laos. Since picking up biking in 2019, he’s seen it as a symbol of freedom. Back in 2018, he moved from Yantai, Shandong, to Cambodia, immersing himself in the elevator business. Pre-pandemic, he frequently shuttled between China and Cambodia. But the outbreak in 2019 brought about changes, leaving him seeking a new passion after his family returned to China.
In Cambodia, he bought a beloved motorbike. In less than a year, he covered over 30,000 kilometers, roughly averaging 100 kilometers daily. He’s virtually explored every corner of Cambodia and even journeyed to Vietnam and Laos pre-pandemic.
Reflecting on a notable trip in December 2021, a then 39-year-old Motorbike Uncle joined 16 like-minded bikers for a restaurant opening celebration in Pobei. The 1000+ kilometer round trip further ignited his passion for biking. He frequently organizes rides with fellow enthusiasts. When meeting strangers, he often jovially introduces himself as “Just call me Motorbike Uncle!”
As for the future, Motorbike Uncle and his crew aim to motorbike throughout Southeast Asia, chasing the freedom that the open road offers.
(Article by Kay)