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27th September 2012
A bus route linking Birmingham and Kashmir for just £130 has been mooted by Pakistan's Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) regional government
The proposed luxury bus service would connect the UK with Pakistan for just £130 one way. A flight covering the same distance of 4,000 miles typically costs around £600.
The suggested 12-day route would pass through Serbia, Bulgaria, Turkey and Iran with four buses travelling in a fortnightly convoy.
Britain’s West Midlands region has firm cultural links with Pakistan as it is home to the largest population of Pakistani Kashmiris outside the country. The AJK capital Mirpur is even referred to as Little Birmingham.
The AJK Transport Minister has promised a thrilling ride, popular with adventurous travellers. Hamza Waris, from Birmingham’s Pak Travels, added a logistical note of caution, saying: "It would depend on how things were in Pakistan and in the countries on route."
This impressive bus journey is reminiscent of legendary overland services such as the Magic or Miracle Buses of the 1970s, which carried hedonistic thrill-seekers of yore to Athens, Istanbul and beyond.
In The Independent in 1994, travel editor Simon Calder said: “The idea of spending three and a half days on one of these mobile youth hostels did not sound especially magical, but £27 for 2,000 miles of travel did.” In the early 1970s, a double-decker bus nicknamed Albert made 15 trips between India and the UK.
Will you book a seat if this service begins, do you remember the Magic Bus or can you suggest an epic route in need of a long-haul bus service?
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so where do I sign up for it? :)
Likewise, this would be fantastic!
I am up for it. It seems too cheap to be true. I did the overland route in 73 from London to Kathmandu (via Indian Kashmir). A re-run could be interesting. It's a shame that Afghanistan now has to be avoided.
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