Who doesn't love taking a long road-trip in their beloved vehicle to the far corners of the country. But what if you plan to travel abroad in the same car and don't want to transfer it through an airplane or a ship (that would cost an insane amount of money). Yes, we are no Europe when it comes to cross-border road-trip, but with a handful of countries sharing their boundaries with India, you can easily traverse between the two countries. And the good thing is, you can move ahead to more countries, which are connected to countries connected to India (confusing, right?).
Here's a list of countries where you can take a road-trip from India!
Border - Sunauli border, Uttar Pradesh
Conversion - 1INR = 1.60 Nepalese Rupee
Distance - 1172 km
Nepal, the home of the mighty Mount Everest, is also one of the most beautiful country in our neighborhood. The good thing is, Nepal is well connected via road if with India and taking a road trip is a relatively easy task as compared to some of the other mentions in the list. One doesn't require a Visa to cross the border and you can enter Nepal without any prior approval. All you need is the documents of your car, and a photo ID proof. It is advisable to carry the Passport along for a hassle free journey. The distance to Kathmandu from Delhi is just 1172 km and the border is just 185 km from the town of Gorakhpur.
Border - Jaigaon-Phuntsholing border, West Bengal
Conversion - 1INR = 1 Bhutanese Ngultrum
Distance - 1763 km
Like Nepal, Bhutan also has a free movement agreement with India and crossing the border is a breezy affair. In fact, going to Bhutan on a road-trip is on the checklist of adventure junkies across the country. While the Visa and Passport are not required for the journey, you need to pre-register your personal vehicle at the border before entering the 'Land of the Monks'. Cities like Paro and Thimphu are famous in this small country with High Happiness Index and one should visit the famous Tiger Nest Monastery to have a thrilling experience. You have to pass through the state of West Bengal to enter Bhutan and while coming back, you can have a bit of relaxing time in Darjeeling. The distance from Delhi to Thimphu is 1763 km.
Border - Petrapole–Benapole border, West Bengal
Conversion - 1INR = 1.17 Bangladeshi Taka
Distance - 1771 km
Well, first thing first, Bangladesh nothing has anything exemplary to offer in terms of adventure or the nature, if that's the reason you take road trips. But then again, for a road-trip junkie, it is a place directly connected to India via a road network, again passing through West Bengal. The erstwhile Eastern Pakistan is easily accessible to Indians and not much documents are required to enter the country. Although, a much ancient form of a document, called the 'Carnet' is required at the border to take your car inside the country. Carnet is a temporary import document which shows that you are bringing an outside item in the country and will return it back. The distance from New Delhi to Bangladesh is 1771 kms.
Border - Moreh-Tamu border, Manipur
Conversion - 1INR = 17.65 Burmese Kyat
Distance - 3222 km
The longest of the all the road-trips from India is the visit to the Myanmar, or Burma (Rangoon) as it was earlier called. Visiting Myanmar is not as easy as visiting some of the earlier mentioned countries, but it is worth every trouble caused. Here are a few documents and pre-requisites to visit the country in a private car from India-
· Carnet (200% of the car value to be paid for the doc)
· Mandatory local Lead car (even if you are alone)
· Mandatory government approved local guide
· Vehicle and driver details to be submitted a month advance
· 50% advance payment to hotels and guides.
The good thing though, is, you can carry your journey forward to Thailand, as soon as the new proposed Indo-Thai highway is built. The highway is the extension of the 3000-odd km long India-Myanmar highway.
How we wish this could have been possible. India and Pakistan don't enjoy a good diplomatic relations and the current situation has worsened the affairs. While foreigners can pass from India to Pakistan or vice Versa after acquiring tons of documents and permissions from both the governments, it's almost impossible for an Indian national to do so. Nevertheless, the enchanting beauty of Karakoram range and the charm of meeting the people who were Indians too, will surely entice the idea of visiting the country, at least by the bus (India-Pakistan has a friendly bus service passing through the famous Wagah border).
*Note - All distances mentioned are sourced from Google Maps and shows the distance between New Delhi to the respective capital cities.