About Escape Adventures

Escape Adventures 

Escape Adventures NZ was founded back in 1999 by John Etherington and Mandy Richards, their full time passion for the past 23 years has been creating and leading adventurous cycle tours in stunning and interesting locations around the world.

The Escape chapter is coming to an end for John and Mandy. Luckily, chapters also have beginnings and we are excited that Escape Adventures is about to begin an exciting new one in a completely new era with Tom and Jaimee Kearney stepping up to be the new guardians.

Escape Adventures has always, and will continue to be, driven by the reward that comes with creating and leading tours that will touch your soul and stay in your memory forever.

Our Philosophy

Whether you join us on an one of our challenging mountainous cycle tours, or one of our more laid back tropical cycle tours the underlying philosophies that guide us how our trip is created are the same…

A Bunch of Mates on Tour. We strive to create a relaxed, fun and intimate group dynamic that feels like a group of friends on holiday. All our cycle tours are led by our own wonderful Escape leaders who each bring their own unique characteristics but share our philosophies and understand your needs. You will get a strong feeling of organization, trust and professionalism. Our personalized groups are small enough to integrate into local communities without taking over and mean that we can offer the best of ourselves and pay attention to the little things that make a difference.

Unforgettable Journeys, Remarkable Places. What we do, where we go and how we get there are fundamental. We love the challenge of finding the most interesting cycling routes and destinations. We know the places we go intimately, have found the quirks and have nurtured relationships along the way so that you can truly immerse yourself in the remarkable places we visit.

Real Adventures, Real People in Real Places. Real adventure contains an element of the unknown. Because we travel to less travelled places, visit and stay with local families and include trips into wilderness environments the unexpected will happen! It is our aim to provide you with as many unique opportunities as possible and let you have your own unique personal encounter.

The Natural Environment. We are personally committed to minimizing our impact on the environment. We believe in taking time to think about how our actions can benefit or how they impact the people, communities, economies, environments and eco-systems we visit, and then use this to make a difference (or sometimes more appropriately – how we can NOT make a difference).

Our History – How it all began


Hi. I’m John – the founder of Escape Adventures.

After many years working in adventure tourism in New Zealand, I headed off to travel through Africa with my bike, in search of my family’s roots. At first it was all about the cycling, but I was soon to learn that the things I least expected I loved the most – how fast humuor broke down cultural barriers, the spontaneous conversations I shared with strangers and stumbling upon another remarkable scene so different and diverse from the one that stopped me in my tracks yesterday.  And how the bicycle was the tool that brought me closest to all this!  I had a strong urge to show these little things to others and that is what I set out to do.

In 1999 Escape Adventures was born with its first cycle tour in Kenya & Tanzania. Luckily for me, what I lacked in business know-how – I did seem to possess a sense what made people say “Wow”.

In the following years I worked hard on evolving Kenya & Tanzania and creating other bicycle tours around East Africa. Some of my bikers started asking for tours in other locations. So I set about exploring some new places in search of that wow factor and found it in the Himalayan foothills of Sichuan (China), South East Asia and up into Central Asia.

Escape Adventures has evolved with me over the years. I now support Tom and Jaimee in a operations management role as the business transitions. Escape is lucky to have a small team who share my passion to deliver amazing experience across a range of beautiful countries. We now enjoy leading a wonderful range of adventurous cycle tours in some magical places around the world. We pay special attention to continuing to improve the experiences we offer and of course are always thinking ahead for new and exciting adventures. Watch this space…