I am a British Iranian woman and I’ve been cycling the world for 2 years. I’m currently pedalling across Brazil my 16th country by bicycle. On the 10th September 2016 the Supreme Leader of Iran issued a Fatwa against women cycling in public.
Before cycling the world I was riding and racing for the Iranian National Women’s Cycling Team. On a return flight to Tehran from racing in Kazakstan I knew I had a serious decision to make.
I grabbed my bicycle and rucksack from Azadi Sports Complex and returned to Tehran’s airport to catch a flight to Istanbul. I spent the next 3 weeks cycling Turkey, on my own and in that time I made a life changing decision.
To do what I had always been too scared to do. To travel the world on my bicycle.
I was never going to be the girl who could accept a world of discrimination, bullying and doping for my own personal gain. Walking away from something I had worked so hard for was a tough decision but I followed my heart. I value my life not on personal gain but on the positive contribution I can make to the world as I experience it.
I made formal complaints to UCI, Click to continue reading →
I arrive in Tehran with the British Foreign Office advising against all but essential travel to Iran. I sure wish I had listened to the warnings. I spend 5 weeks backpacking Iran on my own. As you can see from my photos, it was a very dangerous thing to do. I mean, why on earth would anyone want […] Click to continue reading →
To give you better insight into life in the rice fields of Iran, a short video accompanies this blog. This may be normal every day life for the people here but it’s a completely new experience for me. In Britain, we don’t have rice fields. It’s my third day in Taromsar and I venture out on my own to wander the dirt tracks lining the rice […] Click to continue reading →
One of the greatest positives about ditching the package holidays and getting off the beaten track for your annual leave experience, is getting to see so many different ways of living. So what’s so great about that you ask? Seeing so many different lives existing in the world, gives you first hand experience that human happiness is not dependant on material circumstances. […] Click to continue reading →
Still full from last nights extravaganza of Iranian dishes, I feel a small sense of horror to be wakening up in Taromsa at dawn to the sounds and smells of Mohmeni preparing breakfast. Taromsa in the morning sure is a pretty occurrence as the video below shows: I am skilled in obeying Iran’s etiquette of accepting food on offer […] Click to continue reading →
In Iran it is legal for a man to have more than one wife at the same time. The reasoning behind this practice, along with other mysteries of Iran will be explored in upcoming posts. For now, following on from my last blog post about reaching Taromsa for a selfie; being bundled into a car; driven […] Click to continue reading →
Having covered a 25 km distance at a total cost of 1.5 dollars it may have been a first for mankind; a Scottish person handing over taxi fair with a smile on their face. Shared taxis are an extremely economical and quick way to travel in Iran. There are no genetic exceptions to the fact […] Click to continue reading →
Ever wonder how it’s financially possible for people like myself to spend so much time travelling around the world? The answer is simple. We follow the universal rule for prolonged travel … The less money we spend the more days we have exploring the world. One of the golden rules to travelling for longer is not […] Click to continue reading →
Ever wonder how it’s financially possible for people like myself to spend so much time travelling around the world? The answer is simple. We follow the universal rule for prolonged travel … The less money we spend the more days we have exploring the world. On budgets as low as 5 dollars a day we […] Click to continue reading →
I realized I was the only girl on the plane not dressed in Hijab as the wheels touched down on Tehran’s runway. The seat belt sign was temporarily ignored as I jumped up to get my clothing. I was nervous and excited, incessantly checking the scarf was still in place on my head, as I […] Click to continue reading →
Iran’s internet is censored. Facebook and Twitter are illegal. Western news stations are blocked. Websites must be approved. I am only just finding a way to reach you guys. The snap shot below shows the pop up when denied access to the many sites we take for granted in the West. If you do not […] Click to continue reading →
I am having a break from the bicycle and am backpacking around Iran for the next 8 weeks. Apologies for the lack of photos on this post, I am sitting in the airport of Istanbul and have one hour to get this written and out to you all! I am feeling both excited and […] Click to continue reading →
I’ve arrived in Istanbul’s sea front suburb of Buyukcekmece where I am to meet my Warm Showers host for tonight. (www.warmshowers.org) I’m enjoying a rare treat of coffee in a cafe rather than my usual coffee in a bus shelter. A fierce headwind and relentless rain are to blame for this extravagance. ‘A wee treat […] Click to continue reading →