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ADV NewsFemale Rider Breaks Social Barriers With Groundbreaking Journey

Female Rider Breaks Social Barriers With Groundbreaking Journey

ADV rider opens new ground for Iranian women while traveling the world.

Published on 12.17.2018
WATCH: Maral Yazarloo rode 110,000 km through 64 countries, 40 of those while pregnant, and became the first Iranian woman to openly enter the country on a motorbike without being arrested.
The BBC published its “100 Women” list, an annual celebration of what the global news outlet feels are the world’s most influential and inspirational women. For the first time a female RTW rider has made the cut: Maral Yazarloo-Pattrick, an Iranian Ph.D. who’s completed a 17-month ride traversing 64 countries and all 7 continents riding solo aboard her densely-packed BMW F650GS.

And yeah sure, there is a stack of super-cool women soloing around the globe these days, but what sets Yazarloo-Pattrick apart is her unique position to represent Iranian women in the quest for riding freedoms. While foreign-born women can ride in Iran with little hassle (think Lois Price and Kinga Tanajewska’s outstanding coverage), it turns out Iranian women are not allowed to ride motorcycles in public.

Maral Yazarloo Adventure rider breaks stereotypes

But Iranian women very much want to ride, especially because many are allowed to race on closed off-road and road courses, yet risk arrest and/or persecution if they ride on public roads.

While this inspiration had been ever-present during her RTW ride it really hit home on the final leg as she became the first Iranian woman to openly enter her own country’s border on a motorcycle without being arrested. She started thinking about all the messages she’d received from Iranian women telling her how lucky she was and decided she would try to make a difference.


Maral started her RTW journey in 2017, riding over 110,000 km by the time she completed her adventure in August 2018. So much happened along the way. For example, when she first set off from India she was just Maral Yazarloo. As she traveled, her long-time boyfriend proposed while visiting her, then flew to Macchu Pichu to get married, never once asking for her to give up her RTW ambition. It turns out one of those visits started a family for the couple and Yazarloo-Pattrick rode pregnant for the last six months of her journey, raising eyebrows and awareness of women’s rights.

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What shocked most of the people who I met along the way wasn’t a girl traveling the world on her bike alone … was about my ride partner who I was carrying with me upto 6months and a week till I reached back home-india … I admit I broke many society rules and stereotypes and proved the fact nothing is impossible… And human/women are powerful beyond anyone imagination … 2days back we welcomed the youngest world traveller “Nafas Elizabeth Pattrick” my ride partner- to breath, experience, and live her own life In this world 😊 She has been with me over 40 countries and 3 continents on the bike shared the same tent – eat whatever we could get and went through crazy roads of this world with extreme weathers and helped me to break all limitation which society keeps for women ! And show the important fact of life “if we wanna achieve our dreams- WE CAN and nothing can stop us” Wishing you the best year ahead full of happiness -peace – simplicity ❤️ Pattrick lil family Photo credit: @amandadesireebrown

A post shared by Dr. Maral Yazarloo-Pattrick (@maralyazarloo) on

A baby girl was born shortly after Yazarloo-Pattrick returned home, already a RTW traveler in her own right (40 countries!) with a bright future ahead in a world where – fingers crossed – all women can know the unique freedom of exploring on two-wheels.

Yazarloo-Pattrick is currently home in India, where she moved 14 years ago to get her Doctorate. She is elated by her travels and proud that she was able to complete her ambitious RTW journey. “My goal is to support Iranian girls who love riding motorbikes,” says Yazarloo-Pattrick. “I want them to be able to experience the joy of riding.”

Author: Jamie Elvidge

Jamie has been a motorcycle journalist for more than 30 years, testing the entire range of bikes for the major print magazines and specializing in adventure-travel related stories. To date she’s written and supplied photography for articles describing what it’s like to ride in all 50 states and 43 foreign countries, receiving two Lowell Thomas Society of American Travel Writer’s Awards along the way. Her most-challenging adventure yet has been riding in the 2018 GS Trophy in Mongolia as Team AusAmerica’s embedded journalist.

Author: Jamie Elvidge

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14 thoughts on “Female Rider Breaks Social Barriers With Groundbreaking Journey

  1. Occasionally there is a story that gives me hope that the world is still on the right track. I hope others follow Yazarloo-Pattrick’s example.

  2. not a life choice to praise here, a mother’s intuition and safety for her child to be is not present with this one
    sure it makes one hell of a story, but this is really a disgusting risk for both their sakes

    • Your comment reflects you’re own negative opinion and if taken to its logical conclusion suggests that pregnant women should be sequestered for the duration of this pregnancy – a primitive practice that has been abandoned in all modern cultures. Consider the statistics for auto accidents and fatalities for example. Certainly there is a risk in riding in a car but I doubt you would make the same comment in response to a pregnant woman doing so. This lucky girl comes into the world fortunate to have a brave and determined mom.

      • yes it was an opinion, we can breakdown logic in two ways
        1. the women who developed a sense of fear and concern for their offspring are a result of yours and mine existence aka mankind’s survival
        2.true you could say the primitive practice is partly lost today, only b/c we live in such a quality of life where our medical knowledge and tech has allowed us to live longer and survive through most injuries and illness, so if this broad lost her baby during the journey, science could have fixed her up from her crash, she could have her frozen eggs artificially incremented from her husband’s sperm (also frozen) and if she was badly injured to the point of not being able to carry… she could hire a surrogate mother BAM
        she could tell her newborn that he/she was in this very image and “survived” the journey
        boy what a lie that would be to a kid, but hey… in today’s world, people can be so selfish with theirs and others lives and get away with it

  3. Pingback: มารู้จัก Dr. Maral ไบค์เกอร์สาวชาวอิหร่าน ผู้ออกเที่ยวรอบโลก เพื่อเรียกร้องสิทธิ์ให้ผู้หญิงใน

  4. Maral, you were lucky because you had only one nationality, Indian. If you got into country on an Iranian oassport, they would stop you or arrest you.

    • I am envious because I can’t take risk and go to Iran and ride a motorcycle even if I was on an Australian passport and not pregrnant. I enjoy riding in Alps and dolomain in Europe. Very similar roads in the north of Iran.


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