Author(s): Trevor Carroll
Crossing Continents with Top Deck, the travel revolution of the 70's-90's is a story through the eyes of a tour leader travelling overland between London and Sydney in the late 1970s. The heady days of the 1978 Afghan coup and the Iranian revolution were on the itinerary for adventure seeking colonials. The journey from Sydney to London crossing three continents and through 21 countries took 20 weeks. An adventure alternative for young Aussies and Kiwis getting to and from Europe, aboard Top Deck's alternative mode of travel in caravan style converted Bristol Lodekka double deck buses. The Top Deck Sydney to London tour described in this book, perhaps one of the lengthiest and most arduous of its time departed Sydney in March 1980. The first hop crossed Australia to Perth in two old Sydney era double decker buses with 30 passengers. A series of flights, trains, buses, ferries carried them to Indonesia, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and Burma to Kathmandu. Guesthouses and budget hotels provided roofs over their heads. In Kathmandu this group grew to 60, where they boarded three double-deckers, Casper, Tadpoles and Dinger bound for London. The 1955 model Bristol Lodekkas fed and housed 20 passengers each from Nepal through India, Pakistan, Iran, Turkey, Syria, Jordan, Israel, Greece, Yugoslavia, Italy, France and to London over ten weeks suffering major breakdowns, collisions, illness and the US hostage crisis in Iran. This book is a page-turner, written in a humorous witty style and tells of the author's exciting adventures in 1978, 1979 and 1980 in Asia. The stories will interest: baby boomers and those who travelled in the camping tour 'boom time' of the 1970s. Travellers in general who want an exciting entertaining read, in particular those who experienced the 'hippy trail' between London and Kathmandu. This book provides an insight into the turmoil of Iran and Afghanistan from 1978 to 1980, an eyewitness account. Skroo Turner the founder of Top Deck and today's Flight Centre provides an introduction to these stories, his foresight has continued his travel revolution from those lumbering old buses to today's conglomerate, The Flight Centre Group.