The Bikes

Here’s what we’re riding on our round the world motorcycle trip and why…

The Switch…

We originally started our round the world trip on our faithful 2009 Yamaha XT660R back on 1st January 2018. It’s a brilliant motorcycle perfectly suited for travelling. However, the plan was never to ride one bike two-up for the whole trip, but to always have the XT and buy and sell a second bike as we go – this would save us a fortune on shipping costs. But once we got to North America we’d buy a second bike and keep it permanently for the remainder of the trip. 

And we’re now halfway through the trip and the time has come to buy that second bike for the Americas. But instead of buying just one bike, we decided to retire the XT and get two Honda CRF300Ls instead! 

Honda CRF300L
Honda CRF300L

Honda CRF300L

1st June 2023 – ?

We loved the Honda CRF300L after riding it at the Honda Off-Road School in the UK. We knew we wanted single-cylinder bikes that are lightweight, easy to work on reliable, fun and can take us anywhere we want to go. And the 300s fit the brief perfectly.  

We’re back in the UK, preparing and modifying the new bikes and getting ready to ship them to Canada for July 2023.   

Here’s how we prepared our bikes for the next five years of our round the world trip: The Honda CRF300L Adventure Bike Guide

Here’s why we chose the Yamaha XT for a RTW motorcycle ride, what we think of it and how we prepared it for the journey…

Yamaha XT660R

1st January 2018 – 1st June 2023

We used a 2009 Yamaha XT660R for the trip. The reason we opted for the XT is because we already owned it!

Andy bought the bike brand new in 2009 and used it to ride from the UK to Iraq in 2011. It’s a tried and tested bike that’s been battered, bruised and abused. It has endured sandstorms, snowstorms, melted in +40C and froze in -15C, been up and over mountains, through deserts and covered around 70,000 miles so far.

Crating a motorcycle in South Korea
Adventure Motorcycle Travel in Mongolia blue skies

XT660R review

The Yamaha has handled two-up travel, but it has also struggled. But to be fair to the XT, all of the problems it’s had have been due to aftermarket accessories, such as the 2 into 1 exhaust system and aftermarket shock etc. The bike itself has proved bullet proof. You can read about the bike in more detail in our Yamaha XT660R Review. 

Bear in mind, the 2009 single-cylinder bike, has carried two-people, overloaded, ridden hard, off-road (a lot) 50,000 miles from the UK to Japan and then through SE Asia without a single internal problem or anything original breaking. That’s impressive. 

Here’s a selection of articles on how we prepared our bikes for the RTW trip…

And here’s a few articles on choosing a bike and gear for your next adventure…