Already our last riding day .... We took the highway out of Pompei and around Naples before we headed west to the back to the coast again, to enjoy our last lunch stop on the beach. Sperlonga was our place to stop for today. In the afternoon we rode through the "Monte Lepini" mountain range and stopped for a last photo at Castel Gandolfo, the Pope's summer residence.
What a great tour... not one drop of rain when we were riding, breathtaking views, tiny little villages, delicious food and for sure numberless curves.
Thanks everybody for a great ride and a super tour.
Today is our second restday in Pompei. In the early morning we went to visit the ancient Roman town-city. In was founded in the 6th century BC and was concquered and became a Roman colony in 80 BC. 160 years later, its population was estimated at 11.000 people and the city had a complex water system an amphitheatre, a gymnasium and a port. It was mostly destroyed and buried under 4 to 6 m of volcanic ash in the eruption of Mount vesuvius in AD 79. Antonella showed us a lot of details and it was amazing to see how people lived so many years ago.
What a great afternoon on the Amalfi Coast, after a short thunderstorm at lunch we went of to Sorrento, Positano and Amalfi. We enjoyed the sun and were lucky that there was less traffic on the roads than normal.
We started a bit later today and were right on the spectacular coast road around the Golfo di Policastro. We turned for a short loop into the mountains, with very good small and twisty roads. It was really fun to ride there.
Manu prepared us a perfect picnic at "Caseificio Barlotti", a well-known mozzarella producer in this area, Campania is famous for it's buffalo mozzarella production. We said "Hello" to the buffaloes.
After lunch we visited the tremendous temples of Paestum and headed directly to Pompei at the bottom of Mount Vesuvius. We will explore the famous excavations tomorrow morning.
Today was our longest riding day, with a very challenging ride. Amantea was our first stop for a great Cappucino and yummy icecream.
The nearby La Sila mountain range is perfekt for riding at its best. Tiny littel villages along the route give us an impression of rural Italian life. In Altomonte Francesco was waiting with a delicious lunch for us in his very cosy restaurant.
In the afternoon, we rode back to the coast and enjoyed The "Costa dei Cedri".
With a perfect sundown, our last highlight of the day was the Redemer! A big statue of Christ on top of Monte San Biagio with an amazing view over the bay of Maratea. It was fantastic.
Today we are leaving Sicily and heading to Calabria. In the morning we took a nice road in the mountains in Sicily to say "Good bye" before we jumped on the ferry to San Giovanni.
The road up to Francavilla and Novara di Sicilia is fabulous, in fairly good condition and in this season traffic is totally absent. The small break from the ride on the ferry was the perfect way to say good bye to Sicily and to move towards "the continent", as Sicilians say.
The weather is perfect here, so we started in the morning to our restday ride to Etna. Curvy roads, through the lava fields and small villages brought us up to the highest accesible point at Etna. We took a short brake and looked in the Silvestri crater, which is not active anymore.
Today we went all the way east through Madonie and Nebrodi regiional natural park. Perfect curves and road conditions brought us to our frist stop in Castelbuono On tiny little streets we made our way to the main square in front of Castello dei Ventimiglia, where we said "Hello" to Valentina .... guess who was this
Next stop was Sperlinga, first mentioned in 1082 and famous for its troglodyte dwellings. We took a look at the caves and had a relaxed coffee with nice view to the valley.
Further on to Nicosia, Cerami to our lunch stop in Cesarò, and again yummy homemade antipasti and different sorts of pasta.
Our last foto stop was at the foot of Ethna, where we got an impresse of the big lava fields.
A great morning sun, overlooking from the hotel terrace over the Valle dei Templi... a place with 2600 years of history. Amazing. In the 4th century BC Agrigento (Akragas) had about half a million inhabitants, simply insame for that hera.
Today we are crossing Sicily south-north passing through the famous villages of Prizzi and Corleone (The Godfather, anyone?). In the meantime Claudia will prepare for us a delicious picnic in the forest of Ficuzza, continuing then across Roccapalumba and Caccamo towards the nothern shore.
We try to get there early enough to go for a stroll around Cefalù, a charming little medieval village with several centuries of histories and stories...
Everybody was keen to get on his bike to start the tour. So we had our briefing in the morning sun on the terrace in front of the hotel and even before 9 we were gone. Our first foto and coffee stop was in Raddusa, a small tipical Sicilian village. We had a good coffee and headed on to our first highlight. Villa Romana del Casale in Piazza Armerina. In the afternoon, Mazzarino, Sommatino and Castrofilippo where on our way, before we end up in Agrigento with its famous Valle dei Templi.
Alle waren schon ganz heiß drauf endlich los zu fahren. Unser Briefing fand auf der Terrasse in der Morgensonne statt und schon kurz vor 9 waren wir auf unserem Weg. Unser erster Foto und Kaffeestop war in Raddusa, einem typisch sizilianischem Dörfchen. Danach gings weiter zu unserem ersten Highlight, die Villa Romana del Casale in Piazza Armerina. Am Nachmittag führte uns unser Weg durch Mazzarino, Sommatino und Catrofilippo, bevor wir in Agrigent unserem Ziel für diese Nacht angekommen sind. Agrigent ist bekannt für ihr berühmtes Tal der Tempel.
It's still a fantastic late summer weather here and Sicily is ready to welcome our riding group once again. This tour will bring us excellent scenrery, exciting roads, delicious food and plenty of good photo moments... ready to go?
What a great day to start our welcome briefing outside at the pool in the late afternoon sun. A mixed group from the USA, Canada, Brazil, Austria and Switzerland is starting their route from Catania to Rome. The weather is predicted to be very good, so we will enjoy the nice and warm days on our bikes through Sicily and South Italy.
Was für ein toller Tag für unser Welcome Briefing draussen am Pool in der späten Nachmittagssonne. Eine gemischte Gruppe aus Amerika, Kanada, Brasilien, Österreich und der Schweiz macht sich auf Ihren Weg von Catania nach Rom. Das Wetter für diese Woche ist perfekt vorhergesagt und so werden wir die letzten warmen Spätsommertage auf unseren Bikes durch Sizilien und Süditalien genießen.