We bought our 110 from you about ten years ago (see your picture gallery, Defender 110 metalic grey) and thought it would be nice to let you know what she/he as been up to and how she/he is doing now.
We used it ever day to and from work, weekends away and of course holidays down to the coast for a bit of scuba diving as well as over to Ireland a couple of times (for the Guinness). She/he performed exceptionally well so we thought let’s give her a bit more of a challenge.
So in 2010, we gave up our jobs, sold the house, kitted her out and set off............................South, not really sure where we were going to end up but thought Cape Town looks nice!
We headed for the coast and camped in the New forest for a few days then got a ferry to France, down the west coast then east along the south coast into Italy to Brindisi, then another ferry over to Greece. We spent about six weeks here exploring the mainland, meeting up with friends and camping on beaches................with goats?
By now we thought things are going to have to get a bit more serious like getting Visa’s for the non European countries, so we went to Turkey (Istanbul) to get a visa for Syria. An Embassy official told us that we had to go back to our home country to get the Visa issued, whilst a man in the street advised us to go to the border and try there, and so off we went to the Turkey/ Syria border. Sure enough we got our Visa. I’m not saying things are always this easy but sometimes, you’ve just got to give it a go.
Once in Syria the terrain changed somewhat, to dessert and less tarmac roads. The Defender loved it and with fuel at about 15pence a litre, we made the most of this and covered as much ground as possible, visiting some fantastic sites in the more remote places.
With our confidence growing we headed into Jordan for more off roading, although we were using Mud terrain tyres we found that once they were lowered in pressure they performed excellently in the sand. We spent three days in the dessert of Wadi Rum wild camping amongst the dunes.
From Jordan we took a short ferry ride into Egypt, then crossed the Sinai peninsular in temperatures exceeding 45°and the Landy once again performed brilliantly until we got into Cairo were we blew a core plug on the brake vacuum pump? This was quickly repaired by an Egyptian mechanic who removed the pump, took it and me to an engineer’s workshop on his scooter, made and fitted a new core plug returned back to Landy and refitted the pump all in less than two hours at six in the evening and all for £12, beat that RAC.
We only had a few snags on the journey, snapped shock absorber, broken half shaft, and one puncture, but considering the miles we covered and the terrain we chose she did us proud (notice the she reference, well she can be a bit of a bitch).
After Egypt we drove through the desserts of Sudan into the mountains of Ethiopia, then the great Moyale road into Kenya, into the fantastic Masai Mara and then onto Tanzania for Christmas on the beach. From here our route was into Malawi, Zambia, Botswana, Namibia and our goal, Cape Town South Africa. This part of the journey took us about seven months but we weren’t ready to come home yet....... Landy and the roof tent were now our home. So, we put her in a container and shipped her off to Australia where we joined her and toured round for another twelve months covering the whole coast from Perth clockwise round back to Perth including a lot of the interior on the old Stock routes.
May so we’ll be in to see you soon for parts and advice and a bit of TLC.
Our travels have now come to an end.........for now anyway, and we feel we couldn’t have chosen a better vehicle, She is currently on a cargo ship heading home ETA 10th
Our journey in all was for 21 months covering some 43.000 miles, although it wasn’t all plain sailing, it wasn’t as difficult as people first lead us to believe so if any of you are thinking about planning a trip and would like any advice or encouragement feel free to contact us.
David & Steph