World ‘peace’ cyclist reaches England

World cyclist Saurab Dahal, 22, begins the European chapter of his journey in Folkestone, Kent.

Having finished Asia, his plan is now to cover Europe, Africa, the Middle East, North and South America by bicycle.

England is the 39th country he has visited, which will be followed by Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland if all goes to plan.

While most 13 year old boys are still in school, Saurab decided to embark on a mission to cycle through 205 countries, aiming to “flow Peace to all in the world.” The message of Peace which underlies Saurab’s journey started in the context of the Nepalese Civil War.

He was also inspired by the poor and uneducated children in his region of Nepal, Jhapa. He wanted to show them that even if a person has only 25 rupees (20p) in their pocket, as he had when he left home on 28th February 2002, one can still do what they desire to do.

For the entire duration of his trip so far, he has relied on the hospitality and kindness of local people. “If you have motivation, you can do anything in this world,” he says.

But he has also overcome many hurdles, including being detained in Pakistan, facing language barriers and having his bicycle stolen in India, China and Vietnam.

Nepalese communities and the Nepalese Embassy have often helped him pick himself up again. The struggles he comes across highlight the main obstacles to peace, including crime, ignorance, language and money.

Though he is not actively fundraising for poor and educated children, he saves any money given to him on his way, to go towards stationary, computers, clothing and food.

The funds he has saved have gone towards helping over 2,000 children across Asia, from Bihar, the poorest state in India, to South Korea and Australia.

Depending on weather and road conditions, Saurab cycles around 40km per hour and 150km per day.

He had been staying at the Sir John Moore barracks in Shorncliffe road, home to the Royal Gurkha Rifles. On Monday, he started peddling to London to meet Mayor Boris Johnson.