Updated: August 26, 2018
My name is Mark Wallace. I’ve been exploring the world full-time since 2014. I’m single, I have no children, and I work as a photographer as I go. I’m currently traveling on my 2016 BMW R1200GS Adventure motorcycle, named Shifty Drifty.
Shifty and I have traveled across every continent except Antarctica.
In The Beginning
The trip on the motorcycle began in February 2016, but the journey around the world began in December 2013 in the city of Kochi, India. That’s the place where my friend, Lex, and I agreed to sell our possessions and travel the world for two years. Two friends with a shared love for travel.
Lex and I left the United States in early 2014 and traveled by plane, train, bus, tuk-tuk, and automobile. We visited nearly every country in South America, drove a camper van across Australia, and swam with dolphins in New Zealand. We made our way across Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam. We explored Nepal and India. We lived in Paris for a summer and spent weeks exploring Portugal and Spain.
In November of 2015 Lex returned to the United States, we’d been traveling for nearly two years and our time together was finished. But although Lex could no longer travel full time, I was not ready to end the journey. There was still so much to see and explore.
I decided I would fulfill a life-long goal, to ride a motorcycle around the world – solo.
Six Continents: one bike
I rode from April 2016 until May 2018 and was able to ride Shifty across six of the seven continents – sorry Antarctica.
The journey has been fantastic so far but, once again, there’s so much more to see. I had to skip much of North Africa, severe weather caused me to turn back in Mongolia. The Middle East, China, and Japan remain unexplored.
The ride continues…
Why Ride a Motorcycle?
I’ve been around the world before, but I traveled much of the distance in an airplane, bus, or train. Cities and people go whizzing by at hundreds of miles per hour, and you’re isolated from the environment. A motorcycle gives me the freedom to travel to more places, see more things, and experience the climate in a tangible way.
How long will this trip take? I don’t know. I’ve made a general list of all the places I’d like to go and the things I’d like to see. It may be three years, or five. I don’t know. The journey is more important than the timetable.
I might be riding by myself, but I’m certainly not doing this all alone. There is a vast community of adventure travelers in the world. Thousands of people are taking similar trips at this very moment. I’m in contact with many of these people and will be joining with them at different parts of my journey.
In addition to connecting with other travelers, I meet locals in each place I visit. If you’re reading this right now, you’re already part of the community. Leave a comment on this page so I know who you are and where you’re from. We might meet one day. Maybe we’ll share a meal, or perhaps you’ll join me for a few miles along the journey.
I am not on vacation. I’m creating videos during the journey. I’m still hosting Exploring Photography on AdoramaTV. I’m writing articles for magazines and blogs. I do photography and travel workshops whenever possible.
I intend to share my travel experiences with you. Although I have years of world travel under my belt this journey is a new experience for me. I’m not sure what to expect, and that’s what makes it exciting. This blog is an ongoing project. I’ll be adding pages, creating new sections, posting photos, and doing everything I can to share my experiences with you. Come back often.
For two years I traveled with my good friend, Lex. Just before we left, she wrote something that I thought was brilliant. I’ll leave you with her words.
What we do have on our side is passion and time. If you don’t care where you end up, it doesn’t matter which way you go. On this journey, there are no wrong turns.