India's 1st all-women trans-continent road expedition embarks from Delhi

India's 1st all-women trans-continent road expedition embarks from Delhi

Three Indian women set out on on a 55-day road trip yesterday sponsored by Mahindra First Choice Wheels. Starting from Delhi, they plan to drive through 14 countries to reach London, covering a distance of approximately 15000 kms.

Nidhi Tiwari, Rashi Koppar and Soumya Goyal, driven by their passion for exploration and travel, have set about on a long and ambitious trip of driving a four-wheeler from Delhi to London. This idea was the brainchild of Nidhi Tiwari who is also the lead driver of their expedition. They began planning their route in February and  had to keep in mind conditions of roads, possibility of driving on rough terrain, social structures of various countries and security.

The expedition is backed by Mahindra (an Indian multinational automobile manufacturing corporation) who sponsored the team with a Scorpio, along with a range of other sponsors. They will drive the Scorpio,  Mahindra First Choice Wheels product through several countries - Myanmar, China, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Russia, Ukraine, Poland, Czech Republic, Germany, Belgium and France, with its journey culminating in London.

Vehicle used in the expedition
Vehicle used in the expedition. Image ©: Women Beyond Boundaries

The team is a part of a social initiative, Women Beyond Boundaries, a unique concept that brings people with a thrill of driving together. It seeks to empower and enable a greater number of women to occupy the long distance/off road driving space. It will train, design and assist women towards this endeavor.

"It is a dream come true. It took almost 15 years for this dream to become a reality. We want women to come out of their daily boundatries and set on such a long journey which holds the capability to change lives," said Nidhi Tiwari.

Day-wise route:

Day 1 to 7: Delhi - Kanpur - Siliguri - Guwahati - Imphal - Moreh/ Tamu border point (Myanmar) - Monywa (Distance: 2,403 km)
Day 8 to 14: Monywa - Mandalay - Lhasio - Muse - Ruili - Dali - Xichang - Chengdu (Distance: 1903 kms)
Day 15 to 21: Chengdu - Ruoergai - Xining - Jiayuguan - Hami - Turpan - Kuerle (Distance: 3,520 km)
Day 22 to 28: Kuerle - Akesu - Kashgar - Sary Tash (Kyrgyzstan) - Osh - Tashkent - Samarkhand – Bukhara (Distance: 1,964 km)
Day 29 to 35: Bukhara - Khiva - Nukus (Khazakistan) - Beyneu - Atyrau - Astrakhan (Russia) - Volvograd (Distance: 2,352 km)
Day 36 to 42: Volvograd - Kamensk - Kharkiv - Kiev (Ukraine) - Lviv - Karkow (Poland) - Prague (Czech Republic) (Distance: 2,589 km)
Day 43 to 54: Prague - Frankfurt (Germany) - Brussels (Belgium) - London (UK) (Distance: 1,269 km)

About the team:

The team is led by Ms. Nidhi Tiwari – Nidhi is an experienced outdoor educator and off-road jeeper besides being an Army wife and mother of two boys. She specializes in outdoor education, off-the-road jeeping, long distance and high altitude driving, with a volume of outdoor and jeeping experience in the Western Ghats, Indian Himalayan states of Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Sikkim, Arunachal Pradesh, Nepal, Bhutan, USA, South Africa and Kenya.

The other team member is Ms Rashmi Gururaja Koppar – Rashmi is a hotel management professor, married, mother of a young daughter. Also an adventure sports enthusiast, educator and amateur long-distance driver.

The third member in the on-road all women crew is Dr Soumya Gopinath – Soumya is a physical therapist, mother of two young boys and a passionate traveler. She also runs an outdoor biking gear company and a campsite in the Western Ghats in India.