Overlanding is a fast-growing industry and it is currently taking the world by storm. It encompasses the self-reliant and exploratory adventure journey through remote locations, with an emphasis on the journey, rather than the destination itself.
The term traces its origins to Australia in the mid-19th century. During that period, pastoralists used to drive cattle over long distances throughout the Outback. However, modern Overlanding is on a whole new level. You do not have to navigate the challenging Canning Stock Route in the Outback or have herds of cattle.
Modern Overlanding is facilitated by off-road capable means of transport, from bikes to trucks (though it should not be confused with off-roading, as we will discuss later), with the main form of accommodation being camping. You will often find Overlanders fitting their vehicles with rooftop tents. An Overlanding adventure can last for weeks, months, and years, and it can span over multiple countries.
What Makes Overlanding Different From Other Vehicle-Dependent Travels?
Overlanding and off-roading are not one and the same thing. Even though in Overlanding you might come across tough and challenging terrains, overcoming these obstacles is not the focus of your adventure. The whole purpose of an off-roading adventure is to take on the challenges presented by unsurfaced roads and rough terrains. However, the main purpose of an Overlanding adventure is to explore. In Overlanding, you will come across all kinds of terrains and go through cities, urban areas, and rural areas experiencing different cultures.
Overlanding should also not be confused with road trips. While road trips have a destination and often have a pre-planned form of accommodation, Overlanding is primarily focused on the journey and enjoying the landscape, scenery and cultures with camping being the overlanders’ primary form of lodging.
An expedition, on the other hand, is a journey that is undertaken by a group of people and it is guided by a particular purpose such as research. But as earlier mentioned, the main purpose of Overlanding is the journey itself.
As you can see, there is a clear distinction between Overlanding and other forms of vehicle-dependent travels. If you are looking to explore and discover the world on your own means and terms, then an Overlanding adventure is one for you. The experience and memories are like nothing you can find anywhere else, which explains why some adventures take years as the Overlanders just cannot get enough.
Is Overlanding Reserved for A Specific Group of People?
Absolutely not! While life on the road comes with its own set of challenges, Overlanding can be a fun family activity that can be undertaken by everyone. You do not even need to be in peak physical condition to go an Overlanding adventure.
In addition, thanks to advancements in mobile technology, it is easier to take with your tools and devices that you might need. A portable generator can come very much in handy in ensuring that you are not cut off from your electronic devices. Even if you are a busy working person, you can work remotely on your laptop while on the road.
How to Prepare for Overlanding
Since Overlanding often takes longer than other types of vacations, proper planning is essential. There are several factors that you need to put into consideration before you set out on an Outlanding adventure
– Budget: You need money, and enough of it. The last thing you want is to run out of money while you are miles away from home. You need to figure out home much you will need for the entire journey and carry some extra. The best way is to calculate your expected daily expenses and scale it up.
– Vehicle: You need a capable vehicle. You don’t want to put yourself in danger in a remote location. If possible, go for a powerful and raised 4×4 vehicle.
– Overlanding Equipment: Considering the nature of Overlanding travels, you need to be prepared with the proper tools and equipment. From first aid kits, vehicle spares, car maintenance equipment, cooler, a portable generator, a satellite phone, a rooftop tent, and so on.