Erlangen - Beijing July 30th - August 30th 2009

The first Vintage Volkswagen Challenge from Germany to China

Start Finish Line

Route

Our VW beetle adventure starts on the 30th of July 2009 in Erlangen. The first part of our long trip takes us to Poland, we pass by Warsaw – the city on the banks of the Weichsel River – further on to Vilnius in Lithuania and then to Latvia where we cross the border into Russia, the land of the Tsars. Our journey takes us to Moscow, the largest city in Europe. We follow the route on toward Kazan, the tartar city at the first foothills of the Ural Mountains. From there, we travel on to Perm, the most eastern city in Europe and then to Yekaterinburg, capital of the Ural. The mountain range with the same name also separates Europe and Asia. “Siberia here we come!” We drive eastward on to Siberia – passing through Omsk – following the road to the center of Siberia – the cities of Novosibirsk and Krasnoyarsk. From here, our route takes us to Irkutsk, the “Paris of the East”. This is located on the southern bank of Lake Baikal, which is the deepest lake in the world. Following the tracks of Genghis Khan, we travel onward to Mongolia – the country of the courageous horsemen – to the capital Ulan Bator. “Desert bound” – we cross the Gobi desert in central Asia and arrive at the border between Inner Mongolia and China. Skirting the city of Datong – a city of millions – in the Chinese Province of Shanxi, we slowly approach our final destination. However, we make a brief stop at the Great Wall – the symbol of the People’s Republic of China. On the 30th of August 2009 with approximately 11,000 kilometers behind us, we reach our final destination, the German Embassy in Beijing.

Strecke der Käfer Rallye 2009

Idea

Germany is the home of all of the participants in the rally and the VW beetles. Without any exceptions, we all drive old VW beetles from the post war period. These symbolize durability, quality and mobility. The oldest beetle in the team rolled off the assembly line back in 1949, which is the same year that the Republic of Germany and the People’s Republic of China were founded. Our team wishes to link the anniversaries of both countries in an unconventional way with an icon – in fact, the German icon above all, the VW beetle.
For four years now, China has been the second home of the person who is organizing the rally. In addition to him, four other participants also lived in China for several years, where they got to know the country and hold its people and their culture in high esteem.

Motivation

In the era of frequent fliers and long-haul flights, we are all losing the feeling for time and space. With this first Vintage Volkswagen Challenge 2009, we want to rediscover and re-live the spirit of traveling.