Camp­fires, ca­ma­raderie and a clas­sic bike

The Daily Telegraph - Travel - - HOTELS -

‘Agood trav­eller has no fixed plans and is not in­tent on ar­riv­ing,” wrote Lao-Tzu, the founder of Tao­ism, 2,500 years ago. That con­cept of self-suf­fi­cient, no­madic travel lies at the heart of the hol­i­days pro­vided by Leg­endary Mo­tor­cy­cle Ad­ven­tures (LMA), a new com­pany with a mil­len­nia-old ethos. Its port­fo­lio of wilder­ness mo­tor­cy­cle sa­faris in­cludes a 10-day GB Her­itage tour and two-wheeled ad­ven­tures in Spain, Morocco, Cor­sica and Sar­dinia.

Founders Sam Pelly and Ed Tal­bot Adams have dis­tilled their mav­er­ick charm and prac­ti­cal knowl­edge into de­vis­ing these unique and stylish ex­pe­di­tions built around the con­cept of “good travel”. Key to their ap­peal is the iconic kit – not just clas­sic Royal En­field mo­tor­cy­cles im­ported from In­dia, but Outhaus can­vas dome swags from Aus­tralia (for portable ac­com­mo­da­tion) and Kelly Ket­tle stoves from Ire­land that re­quire no fos­sil fuel but burn any­thing from sticks, pine cones and dry grass to camel dung and drift­wood.

The Royal En­field is a good-look­ing, retro-style bike – easy to ride and tough enough to cope with any ter­rain; the swags are quick and easy to erect any­where and sur­pris­ingly com­fort­able to sleep in; and the Kelly Ket­tle is a true life­saver, ca­pa­ble of boil­ing a cylin­der full of wa­ter in just four min­utes for tea, cof­fee, wash­ing and mak­ing cous­cous, say, while leav­ing be­hind hot em­bers with which to make a slow-cooked tajine.

De­spite a deep aver­sion to camp­ing, and not hav­ing rid­den a mo­tor­cy­cle for sev­eral decades, I was suf­fi­ciently tempted to sign up for an LMA trip from An­dalu­cia in Spain to the Rif Moun­tains of Morocco. First, there was some more press­ing busi­ness – ac­quir­ing my mo­tor­cy­cle li­cence.

A good mo­tor­cy­cle train­ing school can get you qual­i­fied in just a few days, but wait­ing lists for a test can be months long and it’s hard to know which fa­cil­ity to choose. Luck­ily, LMA has a good re­la­tion­ship with Phoenix Mo­tor­cy­cle Train­ing, which has 17 schools dot­ted around the coun­try. They fit­ted me in at short no­tice, giv­ing me a test date just in time for

The Royal En­field is easy to ride and tough enough to cope with any ter­rain, above; Che­fchaouen, left, is known as the ‘blue town’; Chris Caldicott gears up for ad­ven­ture, right

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