"Ashgabat", our guide Dima said slowly, choosing his words carefully between mouthfuls of steaming meat pie, "is paradise".
The 51st Traverse team are treated to overwhelming hospitality as they journey through Tajikistan, writes Rob Gray.
The 51st Traverse team's journey through southern Kyrgyzstan is a sobering experience, writes Rob Gray.
Hospitality from an ex-pat Kiwi family in Kazakhstan provides a restful break for the 51st Traverse team.
As I watched my bike disappear down the dusty road and out of sight, I began to feel rather stupid.
A mishap on the road sees one of the 51st Traverse team members being sent back to NZ.
As the 51st Traverse team continue on across the Mongolian steppes, they encounter some local hospitality.
Rob Gray finds that all you really need to ride around the world is a motorbike and a fair bit of determination.
An encounter with a corrupt border guard almost sees the 51st Traverse team stranded in no man's land.
Despite warnings of bandits, corrupt police and endless forests, the 51st Traverse team make good progress through Russia.
A visit to a tiger sanctuary and a beer-infused sauna are all in a day's work for the 51st Traverse team.
Rob Gray marvels at the contrasts in hospitality as he and his friends set off on their overland motorbike trip from Vladivostok to London.
Before hitting the road for a 25,000km motorbike odyssey, Rob Gray meets some of the children at Living Hope, the charity in Vladivostok that will benefit from funds raised on the trip.
A dozen naked blokes crowding into a freezing cold plunge pool, while socially unacceptable in New Zealand, is apparently perfectly normal in Russia, writes Rob Gray.
Language difficulties at the Russian border prove a challenge for the 51st Traverse team as they head for Vladivostok.
Motorcyclist Rob Gray admits to some apprehension ahead of a planned ride from Vladivostok to London.