Northern India, especially around the Ladakh region, is undoubtedly the most popular destination for motorcycle tours in India. The route there, to what feels like the top of the world, will take you through dramatic changes in scenery -- starting out from hectic Delhi, to planned city Chandigarh, followed by the lush mountains around Manali, then ascending up the barren landscape to Leh. Many people choose just to do the Manali-Leh stretch. However, one company that will take you all the way is Delhi-based Sadhoo Chakkar Motorcycle Journeys.
Sadhoo Chakkar offers a 14 day tour on Royal Enfields to Leh and beyond (the Nubra Valley, and PangongTso including Chang La, the world's second highest motorable pass at 17,800 feet). What sets the company apart from others is that its two Indian owners are passionate motorcyclists who put their heart and soul into making their tours special. They have seasoned relationships with locals of all regions, and aim to really bring out the flavor and depth of India, in intimate detail.
North East India, with its meandering roads (many of which are in challenging condition) and its abundant natural beauty, provides an appealing landscape for motorcycle tours. Numerous companies offer motorcycle tours throughout the North East region. However, the personal attention provided by Anuj Singh and Shahwar Hussain of Chain Reaction has become quite renowned. This duo are a photographer, and an automotive journalist and travel writer. They've been riding together as a team, doing adventure motorcycle travel stories, for many years.
Chain Reaction have 17 and 21 day tours that will take you through Kazaranga National Park, the tea estates of Assam, Arunachal Pradesh and Tawang Monastery, tribal Nagaland, and to the remarkable root bridges of Cherrapunji.
India's desert state of Rajasthan, full of old forts and palaces, always holds special appeal for tourists. You'll share rustic roads with camel and buffalo carts as you make your way through colorful villages and explore regal cities.
Aboriginal Motorcycle Adventures Tours offers a 22 day Jumbo Rajasthan Tour, which starts from Delhi and does a loop through top destinations including Jaipur, Mandawa, Bikaner, Jaisalmer, Jodhpur, Udaipur, Bundi, and Ranthambore National Park. A stop at Agra to see the Taj Mahal is also part of the tour. If you don't want to spend so long on a motorbike, shorter 14 day Rajasthan tours are also available. The Indian husband and wife team that owns and operates Aboriginal Motorcycle Adventures Tours are avid adventure travelers. Atul Bhardwaj gave up retail business ownership to pursue his passion for motorcycle touring, and aims to provide honest, value for money tours, which he leads himself.
Tropical, laid back Kerala, will delight you with a combination of beaches and backwaters, tea and coffee estates, and scenic hill stations. The pace of life there is slow and unchanged for decades -- people still make their own spices and catch their own fish.
Royal Bike Riders offers a 13 day motorcycle tour through parts of Kerala and neighboring Tamil Nadu. The company is a young and dedicated Delhi-based team who aim to make motorcycle touring fun. What stands out is their flexibility -- they offer both fixed departure and customized trips. The team puts a lot of effort into designing itineraries and selecting routes that are still relatively unexplored, yet offer an exciting blend of adventure, culture, and attractive accommodations. Go on their Kerala tour and you'll even be able to take a motorbike ride along the beach!
If you love the coast, you shouldn't miss a trip along the picturesque East Coast Road, from Chennai to Pondicherry in Tamil Nadu. It invitingly hugs the seashore.
Two motorcycle tour companies that include this stretch of coastline on their trips are Bike Escape and Enfield Point. Bike Escape's 19 day south India tour departs from Chennai and goes as far a Kochi in Kerala before looping back to Chennai. Part is inland, and part coastal. In contrast, Enfield Point's epic 24 day tour departs from Mumbai and ends in Chennai. It includes Goa and Hampi.