About Mad Hatter Motorcycle Adventures
Jo Diamond set up Mad Hatter Motorcycle Adventures in order to share his addiction to two-wheeled travel with as many like-minded souls who would like to join him on his journeys to some of the most wonderful places on this earth to be seen from the back of a motorcycle.
He has lived a great deal of his life abroad, which has given him a thirst for travel and an insight into different countries and the cultures of those that live in them.
One of the key aspects of any Mad Hatter adventure is the number of people. We keep the trips tight with a maximum of 6 bikes. This was one of the most frequently repeated comments from other bikers when Jo asked them to consider the most important elements of their best trips. Small is beautiful (except when it comes to cubic inches of course...!) and it means we have no trouble getting into the hotels and restaurants we actually want to visit...
Mad Hatter adventures are all about the journey. They are not for speed merchants who can't wait to get to the next destination as fast as possible. On the contrary, they are about seeing the most breathtaking scenery; about the passion and love of riding through that landscape on fabulous roads, curving through valleys, along waterfronts and up steep mountains on wild switchbacks.
We hope you share this love of two-wheeled adventure and we invite you to join us on one of our trips!
We are delighted to enjoy a collaboration with the excellent Adventure Bike Shop in Sudbury, Suffolk. If you ride an ADV bike and haven't discovered this excellent emporium, then get yourself onto their website immediately (www.adventurebikeshop.co.uk) and graze through their catalogue of all things adventurous! They have a wealth of knowledge and are very happy to provide advice on all motorcycling matters! They have very generously offered a 10% discount on all products to followers of Mad Hatter Motorcycle Adventures, so please feel free to quote MADHATTER in the discount code box when checking out...
About Jo and the Team
My wife, Camil and I live in a lovely old farmhouse in Norfolk with various dogs, pigs, ducks, guinea fowl and motorcycles, all of whom are like family to us. We have 5 fabulous children, all now grown up (or at least in the final throws of adolescence!) and who are dotted around the country (or indeed, the world!) doing a wide variety of things with their lives.
Camilla is a vital cog in the Mad Hatter machinery; she is responsible for finding the excellent hotels in which you will stay after a hard day's ride; taking some of the spectacular photographs on this site and last, but definitely not least, making sure our trips run as smoothly as possible with her excellent eye for detail in the planning process. She rides a gorgeous Indian Scout Bobber and a wonderful Triple Black BMW 750 GS...
Travel has been in my blood from my earliest days - I was born in the Far East where my father was serving with the British army. We travelled round the world, moving every couple of years, often to a completely different continent. Later, I also spent some time in the military, and was fortunate enough to be able to travel to far flung places from the Falkland Islands to Central America.
As far as biking is concerned, from the moment I fell off a friend’s rusty old machine in a field aged 14, I have loved everything about motorcycles. At 16, my parents bought me a bright red Yamaha FS1E (remember those little beauties?) and my life was changed forever!
Many bikes have passed through our hands over the years since those early days and we are now blessed to have some great machinery that include 3 of Milwaukee’s finest (including a Pan America that we absolutely LOVE!), a brilliant and supremely capable BMW 1250 GS, an achingly cool Triumph Bonneville, a stunning Indian Scout Bobber, a sublime 1937 Enfield Model J and an obsession worthy of the front row at a Barry Manilow gig…
Cathy is an old friend of Mad Hatter and has recently joined the team to lead trips and to develop the French market...She is French herself (her surname is pronounced Rob-Air!) and comes from Cavaillon in the south, not far from Marseille. She is a very experienced motorcyclist, having ridden many thousands of miles, touring Europe and America, mostly on her beloved Harley, 'Charlie'. She has lived in London for a number of years, so her English is perfect!
Amongst numerous other skills, Cathy was also an international footballer, having played for France in her youth...that makes her one of the first professional lady footballers in the world! She has a wonderful daughter, Isabella and a vast collection of enormous house plants! She is currently considering what her second bike should be...
We are delighted to have her on the team where she brings a wealth of wisdom and experience as well as a huge grin and undeniable zest for life!
The idea for Mad Hatter Motorcycle Adventures came high up in the Himalayan mountains, trekking towards Everest Base Camp. Our friend and guide* dropped into conversation that the route into Base Camp on the Tibetan side (Mallory’s 1924 Base Camp) was really quite straightforward on a bicycle…”How about on motorbikes?” I asked…"no problem!" came her enthusiastic response...Now that would be an adventure!
And thus it began…
So join us on a Mad Hatter Adventure and introduce yourself to your soul…!
We hope you have enjoyed this website and we look forward to seeing you soon,
Ps - Oh yes, there is indeed a “hat” (as in Mad Hatter…)…The Hat in question is a great favourite and was given to me by a wonderful and very grand lady who in turn was left it by a fascinating man; an artist, musician, biker, collector of “things”, a maker of other “things" and an inveterate traveller to wild and wonderful places…I am merely the custodian for this phase of the Hat’s life…
*(the wonderful Pauline Sanderson - she had completed a monumental feat known as The Longest Climb - from the lowest point on earth to the highest, from the Dead Sea to the summit of Everest. She and her husband completed the climb completely unsupported…)