It's been a long time since I sent out a newsletter. After working in Thailand for the last 5 years we have recently returned back to Oz. Our work with a street dog charity was all consuming & left no time for anything else. On our return I hoped that life would be a little easier but we have already started another dog charity called K9Aid & it is set to take over our lives again. So before I get in too deep I thought I would get this news out.. Cheers Derek & Cindy
"Faraway Place with Strange Sounding Names"

Just Released - a new Overland Book...
by Gerald Davis

The 1950's, 60's & 70's were a magic era in adventure travel. Buses crossed continents for Penn Overland, Indiaman & other companies, traversing scenic lands & harsh deserts, to fabled cities of Asia, Europe, Africa & South America.

This book is a window into that time, & for all the thousands who travelled, a chance to relive their journeys of a lifetime. Drawing on memories & mementos of former Penn staff & passengers the world over. Gerald Davis has saved the story from disappearance, & told it in this evocative book.

"It's a great read with lots of pictures to jog those old brain cells". To get your copy please email Gerald at pennoverlandstory@bigpond.com


Read this great article in Vintage Roadscene magazine

several overland companies get a mention Swagman, Trans Asia Shuttle, Intertrek, Safaris Overland, Dragoman, Penn & Indiaman just name some. Has some great pics. Click on image to load the full article.


A Recent Trip to Turkey...

Efes still same if you wait..

till near closing time after the coaches leave

The Chinese have found Pammakale

The coaches have left, peace at last...

Izmir waterfront, very smart these days..

Cindy & I were in Turkey in June & visited Izmir, Efes, Sirence, Pammakale & Istanbul. Izmir has changed, it's very modern these days but very few tourist which was refreshing. Can't say the same for Efes & Pammakale, lots of tour buses from Kusadasi & Bodrum filled with package tourist.

I find girls walking round a Turkish village with the skimpish of clothes on very irritating. They seem to have no consideration for other cultures, they would not even do this at home so how they think it is OK to do it in a muslim village shows a total lack of tact.

I love visiting Istanbul even though parts of it are wall to wall tourist these days. A short ride on the tram takes you to the real Istanbul, more modern but still fun to explore.

Intertrek November 1967...
I traveled from London to Katmandu and return on a February, 1967 departure with Inter Trek, Paddy Cook driving. Here are a few pictures of the vehicle and trailer. I have still pictures and silent video and will share if you are interested. I am enjoying your website. It was a 12 passenger trip, departing in February, 1967 and returning to London in June. The accident in the pictures occurred near Horasan, Turkey. No one was hurt beyond a few bruises.

Bob Simmons


Good afternoon from Brisbane, Australia!

We’ve just discovered your web site - you may recognise this bus (photo taken in 1974) which we named ‘Otto’.The diver was known to us as Scouse (can’t remember his real name) and we have many photos and anecdotes from our trip (i.e: Kathmandu to London) if you’re interested?
Kind regards - Paul & Chris’ Sergeant
P.S: we’re the two on the left of the bearded chap in the white jacket.

Hi Paul I know the bus well rego No OTT 81, I drove it to Kathmandu in 1973. The guy in the jumper with a strip across looks like Fred Fisher. Scouse's real name was Eddie, don't remember his surname.Cheers Derek

Overland October 1960
I recently read in an article in a WA Sunday newspaper about a book ‘Far Away Places with Strange Sounding Names’, a book I am sure with which you are very familiar. I finished it last week (excellent does not even come close to describing it) and sent off an email to Gerald Davis asking if I actually met him one day in Quetta. He replied that I had more than likely met the Indiaman.

In October 1960 my colleague and I, aged 22 and 23, bought a second hand Bedford Dormobile and set out from Bristol to see the world. Our plan was to drive it to India, ship it to Singapore and sell it there, which we did.
The second part of our envisaged world trip was to work in Australia to get enough money to go on to Canada, buy another vehicle and drive through the Americas to Cape Horn. Unfortunately this part did not eventuate as Ian fell in love with a New Zealand girl in Perth and took her home to Bristol where he married her. I stayed on for another few months and to complete my dream of going around the world I sailed to Sydney, through the Panama Canal and back to the old country. The tallest man on that ship met the tallest girl on board, also originally from England, married her back in Australia , near Sydney, produced two offspring and eventually retired in Bunbury, WA.

Sorry about this long introduction – all part of a long story! When Ian and I reached Quetta we parked close to a bus on its way to England. I am sure it was named ‘Waltzing Matilda’. The leader/driver spotted our canvas annex on our roof rack and asked if we wanted to sell it. Actually we had never used it all the way through, so we were pleased to unload it to someone who could make use of it. Back to my Subject question : “Did we meet in Quetta?”. It would have been probably May in 1961.
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In Gerald’s reply to me and backed up several times in his wonderful book, he did point out that you made many, many journeys and had several guides and drivers, so we personally may not have met face to face, just the Dormobile and the Waltzing Matilda !
I look forward to your response,
Best regards,
Clive Overton
Mail Bag
1975 Swaggie re-union for passengers on bus OTT 75

The date is to be the weekend of Saturday 24th and Sunday 25th October 2015. I think it would be lovely to stretch it from Friday 23rd until Monday 26th October if work ( if you not retired yet?) and family commitments allow - grand parent duties??

I have managed to locate Trish Livesey via a friend of Razz's. How amazing!!! Trish lives in Kangaroo Valley near Nowra and she will attend our re-union, as long as it doesn't clash with the Kangaroo Valley Festival for which she volunteers. I have just confirmed that in 2015 the Festival is to be held the 3rd weekend of October so I have selected the weekend following 'coz we want Trish to be with us...don't we Trish!

I mentioned Razz our driver, and for those that are not up to date with the news (or had forgotten), his real name is Kevin Porter but to us he is still Razz. He lives in Young, NSW, a town outside of Sydney and accessible by train. I have spoken to Razz and he has some acreage on a hill with lovely views overlooking Young and he has offered his place for those that have Caravans, campers, or want to tent over the course of the re-union. Razz also said he has room for some people in his home. The beds could be some mattresses on the floor but a bed is a bed. "Remember those foamies?

You may notice that I have CC'd Derek from the India Overland Website as he said he would love to attend even though he was not on our OTT 75 bus in 1975.
Razz has confirmed to me the dates for our re-union and he WILL be there. He said he has some mates who have a bus and he still has his bus license and that maybe he could have it during our stay to take us for a look around the area.

So here we have it. Put aside the dates and start planning/saving. Please do get back to me to re-confirm your definite interest and any feedback would also be helpful. Hopefully the dates work well for all or most and that as many as possible of our overseas Swaggies can join us. Remember, accommodation is taken care of at Razz's for you and I am sure that further accommodation could be offered (????) to visit others after/before the 'shindig' ?

I look forward to hearing any comments and suggestions you may have regarding the re-union. Contact Liz Watson lizzieka88@gmail.com

Overland Africa & India

I just came across your website on overland travel to India in the ’70’s. What great memories!
I’m American and had been traveling in Africa in 1974 and 1975 and took a freighter to India. I traveled around India, Nepal, Pakistan, and Afghanistan for months before jumping on one of the “magic" buses in Kabul in July, 1975 heading west.

I only stayed on until Herat because I wanted to spend more time there and everyone else on the bus wanted to push on back to London. I continued on back to Europe later via public buses.

Since I was on the bus such a short time I don’t remember many people and I’m sure no one would remember me. Doug Rothrock

Penn Overland

On September 1974 I joined Penn Overland RY 290 in Heidelberg-Germany on the trip to Kathmandu. Unfortunately I lost the brochure with the trip route and all the places .It would be great to hear from you and just mentioned this tour was really the journey of my lifetime! Our bus driver was Bernie and Jens Zimmermann.
Manfred Brüggemann 

Intertrek
We travelled Nepal-UK with Intertrek ( Lou & Denny Jones) early 1976 arriving London mid May 1976.
We later travelled London-Jo'burg with Encounter, & saw Lou & Denny with a Nairobi-London Intertrek in Zaire Feb 1977
John & Maureen Nicholson Tamborine Queensland

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