A Short Walk in the Hindu Kush and over 2 million other books are available for Amazon Kindle . Learn more

Buy Used
Used - Good See details
Price: 1.77

Have one to sell? Sell yours here
Sorry, this item is not available in
Image not available for
Image not available

Start reading A Short Walk in the Hindu Kush on your Kindle in under a minute.

Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here, or download a FREE Kindle Reading App.

A Short Walk in the Hindu Kush (Picador Books) [Paperback]

Eric Newby
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (63 customer reviews)

Available from these sellers.

There is a newer edition of this item:
A Short Walk in the Hindu Kush (50th anniversary edition) A Short Walk in the Hindu Kush (50th anniversary edition) 4.6 out of 5 stars (63)
Currently unavailable

Book Description

4 Dec 1981 Picador Books
A humorous overview of Eric Newby's travels from Mayfair to the mountains of the Hindu Kush, north-east of Kabul, offering insight into the numerous eccentric characters and adventures he met along the way, and descriptions of the spectacular wilderness of Afghanistan. Last published in 1981.

Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought

Product details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Picador; New edition edition (4 Dec 1981)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0330266233
  • ISBN-13: 978-0330266239
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (63 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 408,510 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, and more.

Product Description


'The master storyteller. He transformed travel writing' Independent

'One of the most enjoyable reads of the last century' Herald Tribune

'The most successful travel writer of his generation. It's impossible to read this book without laughing aloud' Observer

'Endlessly entertaining and self-deprecating' Daily Mail

'Full of serendipity and surprise' The Economist

'A total success' New Yorker

'Notable addition to the literature of unorthodox travel … tough, extrovert, humorous and immensely literate' Times Literary Supplement

'”A Short Walk in the Hindu Kush” established him as a traveler who not only journeyed fruitfully but had the ability to bring his readers with him' William Trevor, Guardian

'I still think the last few sentences of “A Short Walk in the Hindu Kush” the funniest ending to any book I have read' Geoffrey Moorhouse, The Times

'The book that made [Newby's] reputation … typically ironic in its understatement' Observer

'Newby is easily the best of the bunch' Sunday Times

'All the lyricism, and spirit of adventure and discovery [in] Newby's work' The Times

'As good as its hype' Wanderlust

--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Book Description

When Eric Newby, improbably earning his living in the London haute-couture trade, sent his fateful cable – CAN YOU TRAVEL NURISTAN JUNE? – it was the first step on a legendary journey from Mayfair to Afghanistan and the mountains of the Hindu Kush, north-east of Kabul. Ill-prepared and inexperienced, Newby and Carless endured a month of hardship with great good humour in one of the most beautiful wildernesses on earth. ‘The most successful travel writer of his generation. It’s impossible to read this book without laughing aloud’ Observer ‘Tough, extrovert, humorous and immensely literate’ Times Literary Supplement ‘Full of serendipity and surprise’ The Economist ‘A total success’ New Yorker --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
Browse and search another edition of this book.
Browse Sample Pages
Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover
Search inside this book:

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best Travel Book of All 29 July 2007
From the pathetically inadequate preparations to the cooking of Eric Newby`s watch to the meeting with Thesiger...One absurd incident follows another as the two brave and foolish climbers fail to achieve their declared aim. It is such a funny book, every page is a joy. It is the kind of book you hope will never end. Sadly it does. Nothing to do but read it again...but, alas, I lent my copy to someone, and then it went out of print.
Luckily I managed to find a replacement in a second hand book shop.
So glad its in print again,now I can lend my copy without risk of being unable to replace it if it strays..
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
31 of 33 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
This book describes an incredible story about a climbing trip to the remote Hindu Kush. Their preparation for the climb consisted of a weekend under the instruction of a pub waitress in North Wales. Along the way (driving by clapped out car from London to Afghanistan) they have numerous adventures including being arrested for running over and killing a nomadic herdsman. They had actually stopped to help him!
Most people will go through life never experiencing an adventure of this magnitude but for Eric Newby this is just one of several. Newby's other books include "Love and War in the Appennines" and "The Last Grain Race" both of which I thought were excellent.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
31 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Newby's best travel book 23 Oct 2000
By T Brown
Format:Audio Cassette
It has to be said that "Short Walk..." is the best of Newby's travel books. I certainly think it should go down as a classic. Newby's books always have a very readable and charming style. You can't help but enjoy his books, especially this one.

"Short Walk..." is enjoyable because it's very down-to-earth. They go and climb this mountain in the middle of nowhere just because it's there. They don't do it for fame or fortune, the two of them just simply have a yearning for adventure. This whole amateurishness of the escapade makes it a delight to read... I loved it and would highly recommend it.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
Eric Newby's account of his trip to the Hindu Kush is a book both daunting and delightful. He makes light of the incompetence and ignorance of both himself and his companion in the realm of climbing and exploring. Yet what they achieve is nothing short of remarkable, given their level of amateurishness. Perhaps a more experienced team would have sensibly given up in the face of hunger, illness and cold. Messrs. Newby and Carless soldier on and the account, understandably slightly incoherent, is both funny, self-deprecating and very, very readable. Their account of a chance meeting with the famous explorer Wilfred Thesiger is recounted, far less humorously, by the great man in one of his recent books.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
By Chris F
As per the other user reviews, this tells the story of a trip to the Hindu Kush taken in 1956 - apparently on no more than a whim.

Eric Newby was working in the fashion industry for some years before the journey and the opening chapter covers some of his time here.

As with other parts of the book, this can be a little confusing. Mr Newby also neglects to mention his time in the SBS and his earlier endeavours before and during the 2nd world war.

This book worked well on 2 levels for me -

Firstly, a charming travelogue chronicling the adventures and mishaps of 2 supposedly entirely inexperienced climbers going from a 2 day crash course in the Welsh mountains to the Hindu Kush in the space of weeks.

Bear in mind this lies in Afghanistan - "Kafiristan" - or Nuristan - is a region of that country rather than a country in its own right.

Secondly, many of the places mentioned on the way to the mountains are also mentioned in Rory Stewart's excellent book - "The Places In Between". In this book, Mr Stewart describes his walk across the mountains of Afghanistan in 2002.

The differences (or lack thereof) in the near half century gap are fascinating.

I would highly recommend this book to anyone with an interest in either travel or the current situation in this region. On one level it is a simple and often funny story, on another an insight into a culture and way of life which must surely be living on borrowed time.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A real adventure story to enjoy 17 Oct 2008
This incredible story dates back to 1956, when two very English gentlemen decided on a whim to go into one of the most inaccessible corners of the planet. This book will amuse and surprise you on at least two levels: firstly, the challenges they happily take on and endure are terrifying by modern outdoor travel standards (they undertook just one session of mountain climbing practice in Wales and brought along brand new hiking boots, not yet worn in, for example) and secondly, their unshakeable "Englishness" above all, at all times, almost comes across as something out of a Noel Coward play. Several times, the trip might have come to an end, but they lived to tell the tale, and Mr. Newby has told it very well. I would agree this is by far his best book. Enjoy.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars typically British adventure 2 May 2012
This book was my introduction to Eric Newby's writing, and it inspired me to read most of the rest of his stories, which are all equally funny and entertaining. The constant comedy of the duo's unsuitability to mountaineering due to almost total lack of experience & knowledge is the star turn of this book. Doing Damon Runyon (old style N.Y. gangsters) impressions 3/4 of the way up one of the highest mountains in the world gives you an idea of how they approached their challenge. Fortunately the farce does not devolve into tragedy and there are instead hilarious encounters with wild tribes who have never seen a white man before. All in all a top informative historical travel book which will appeal to those with a sense of humour.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
Would you like to see more reviews about this item?
Were these reviews helpful?   Let us know
Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars As Del boy would say - "Cushty."
This is as good - and as warm and funny - as travel writing gets.
Published 6 days ago by Neil
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
good book
Published 21 days ago by NJT1978
4.0 out of 5 stars A short walk in the Hindu Kush is as funny as when originally...
I read this book because I wanted to know more about the area. I have been reading Three Cups of Tea and Schools from Stones which are all about the Pakistan and Afghanistan... Read more
Published 2 months ago by aries
5.0 out of 5 stars Stiff Upper Lip
Newby was working as a milliner in 1950s London when a journalist friend of his convinced him that it was a good idea to go for a wander through Afghanistan. Read more
Published 4 months ago by High Seas Drifter
5.0 out of 5 stars Mad Englishman in even madder icy situation.
Eric Newby is one of the greats that demonstrate the hard Englishman who was a gentleman first, tough nut second, comedian (self inflicting) third. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Dr Syn
5.0 out of 5 stars Travel story in strange lands
Very enjoyable travel book with excellent dry humour. Loved the way Western culture interacted with Eastern culture - especially the bit about his Rolex watch! Loved it.
Published 5 months ago by Hi-tech Ted
4.0 out of 5 stars Nobody in their right mind would try this, unless they are British.
Typical example of British adventurism with minimal practice or experience. A bit like rowing the Atlantic or swimming the Channel.
Published 5 months ago by Ted Wingrove
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
Was exactly what was ordered, I had read this many years ago, and wanted to do so again. Highly recommended.
Published 5 months ago by Davey
4.0 out of 5 stars Understated English humour from the mid 20th Century
This was a fun read whilst also giving insight into the problems of the region that exist today. I really rooted for them to succeed in their expedition. Read more
Published 6 months ago by sy
5.0 out of 5 stars Great travel book and so Englishman of an age gone by.
Selected this book by mistake but so glad I did. Much more than a travel book, the humour speaks of an age gone by. Will definitely read more of his books.
Published 6 months ago by Carol B
Search Customer Reviews
Only search this product's reviews

Customer Discussions

This product's forum
Discussion Replies Latest Post
No discussions yet

Ask questions, Share opinions, Gain insight
Start a new discussion
First post:
Prompts for sign-in

Search Customer Discussions
Search all Amazon discussions

Look for similar items by category