Polly Evans is very cowardly and not at all fond of danger. She does, however, have an unfortunate tendency to seek out discomfort and sometimes even downright pain. It was this ugly trait that led her in 2001 to throw in her comfortable office job – complete with its twizzly chair and free use of the coffee machine – and to take off on a leg-battering bicycle tour of Spain.
The result of her endeavours was one very sore set of limbs and her first book, It’s Not About the Tapas, which was a Boston Globe bestseller and was short-listed for the WHSmith People’s Choice Travel Writing award. She indulged in further escapades the following year, this time swapping pedal-power for a motorbike to travel around New Zealand and to write her second book,Kiwis Might Fly. Polly's third book, Fried Eggs with Chopsticks, tells the story of her sometimes-desperate battle to tour China by public transport while On a Hoof and a Prayer sees her learning to ride horses in Argentina. Polly’s fifth book, Mad Dogs and an Englishwoman, takes her to the wonderful subzero wilderness of Canada's Yukon Territory, where she learns to drive a dog sled. Polly is also the author of Bradt's Yukon guidebook, and Northern Lights: A practical travel guide, also published by Bradt.
Polly’s journalism has appeared in magazines and newspapers including the Sunday Times, the Times, the Independent, the Independent on Sunday, Wanderlust, Condé Nast Traveller, BBC Wildlife Magazine, High Life and Food & Wine. In 2010, she won the British Guild of Travel Writers' awards for Best Guidebook, for her Bradt Guide to the Yukon, and for Best Travel Broadcast, for her BBC World Service radio documentary about Cuba's Guantánamo province. In 2006, she won theIndependent on Sunday / Bradt Travel Guides travel-writing competition for a piece she wrote about dog-sledding in Canada’s Yukon Territory. She was also the winner in 2005 of the British Guild of Travel Writers’ Kenneth Westcott Jones Memorial Award for Best Transport Feature, for a piece she wrote about motorcyling in New Zealand. And in 2002 Polly won a Human Rights Press Award for a series of articles she wrote about racism in Hong Kong.
When she's not writing and travelling, Polly works as a Spanish teacher at Wellington College in the UK.