Planes, Trains and Automobiles

Welcome to yet another obsession of ours!

Planes, Trains and Automobiles is an unapologetic page dedicated to the many ageing, much-loved, abandoned and darn right cool cars, trains and flying machines that we have spotted on our travels over the years. You won’t find any modern stuff on this page, however: no Ferraris or other supercars, no Airbus A380s or ultra-fast TGVs. Instead, we’ve got Ladas, Volvos, Yugos, ZAZs and a fine collection of work-a-day vans. You will also discover (mostly) Soviet-era locomotives, the odd civilian aircraft and a few buses, scooters and even caravans that have been thrown in for good measure. 

Most of the collection, which we will be adding to as time goes on, comes from Eastern Europe, the Balkans and the Caucasus and is predominately four-wheel based. In particular, with the last two regions, there is a wonderful antiquated feel about much of the transport still in use, especially in rural areas. In fact, the Balkan region features so heavily that originally we wanted to call this new page Balkan Beauties but, after working out the connotations of this, we decided to settle on the title above (*).

(*) Although, there is an argument that Balkan Beauties has the potential to increase the traffic (no pun intended!) to our website!

This page also features mechanical contraptions from further afield, places such as Cuba, Thailand and Morocco. Our only criterion is nothing new: if we like a certain set of wheels, flying machine or train engine and we think it’s retro enough, it gets in.

We would love to own many of the vehicles featured for ourselves. Mark especially would kill for a top-of-the-range Lada (is there such a thing!) and every time he sees an old-school van, he starts on about how we should buy one and convert it into a mobile home. It’s a shame his mechanical expertise only covers filling up with petrol and changing a flat tyre!

And don’t worry. Unlike with our respective passions for architecture from the former Soviet Union and Eastern Bloc, and with street art, we are not going to bore you with facts and figures about the particular models on display. Half the time, we don’t even know the name of the car or aircraft we are pointing our camera at, and we certainly have no idea about trains apart from the fact that shiny, period locomotives look very snazzy indeed. On the other hand, if your interest in these mechanical devices goes beyond aesthetics and you want to fill us in on makes and models etc. then feel free to do so. We would be grateful for the extra information.

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