Ils is a Flemish woman who describes herself as someone who is an extrovert, funny and straight forward. For Ils there was no moment when she decided to ride motorcycles, she always knew that riding was something she wanted to do. Her father rode motorcycles as did her first boyfriend, and within six months of starting her first job she had a motorcycle to call her own. She has traveled throughout the world and with her motorcycle throughout most of Europe and South America. At the present moment you can find her somewhere in Latin America as her present trip has taken her through Argentina, Chile, Peru, Bolivia and Ecuador, and she is still riding. You can find and follow her story of her South American trip on her blog, Kiss The Ride. Now on with the interview!
How did you decide to go on an overland motorcycle trip?
Once you made the decision to go, how did you prepare for the trip?
I booked a place for the bike on a cargo-vessel, read a lot on the Hubb, bought a 2nd hand BMW, put extra accessories on it and got my vaccinations.
What advice would you give a newbie rider planning on their first trip?
Choose a bike that feels REALLY comfortable for you, that you can move on your own, also when it is fully loaded and on steep streets.
Don’t worry to much, there are always good people who want to help you.
Get a good travel insurance that can get you home, no matter what.
Learn English, Spanish, and any other language that you might need.
Take less luggage
What do you know now that you wish you had known then?
It’s fun and possible for everybody, I wish I had started earlier with big trips
What was your best experience?
How about the worst one?
Having a broken bike (Moto guzzi, wrong bike),food poisoning (wrong food) and the wrong boyfriend in France 15 years ago.
Your favorite thing about overland motorcycle travel?
Having just a rough plan, and deciding every day to see or try something new.
What is the longest you have gone without a shower?
About 5 days I think ( this was on a bicycle trip)
But as a child, we only took a shower once a week.
Did you have a supportive environment or did people tell you were crazy and that you would be better off at home worrying about a career and a family? How did that influence you (or did it)?
Yes of course, but I didn’t really care about it.
What was your favorite place to visit?
Too many to list! But Northern Scotland is high on the list.
If Hollywood made a movie about your life, whom would you like to see play the lead role as you?
I would choose a Flemish actress. Being proud of my country is also something I learned on this trip
Which ancient place would you like to go?
Not really of my interest, we did not go to Machu Pitchu, although we where very close.
What would your first thought be if you had learned that you won the lottery?
Where can I go with my bike and who will I take with me?
If you were a goddess what would you do to the world?
Take away all the plastic in the world and educate the people about the environment
Who would win a battle between a ninja and a pirate?
Anything else you would like to add?
You are a female overland motorcycle traveller? You have an interesting story to tell? You want to inspire other travellers? This is your chance. Please drop us an email or leave a comment, we have a series of questions that we would send you to fill out, and of course links, pictures, etc. are welcome! Thanks and safe travels!