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Adriatic Rollercoaster Extreme - 4SC1701

Friday, June 2, 2017 | Wim Doms | Europe

Final riding day - Back to where it all started: Austria

Hey hang on... Where did our lovely view go this morning? Slovenia surprised us with a very misty start in the morning. What would the day bring next? Some rain for Kellee maybe, to finally let her live the experience of being on a moving motorcycle in the rain? Wait and see...
At morning coffee in the little village of Loka, the rain seemed to be very far away again... Would Kellee get to see it in the end?
The wonderful roses didn't seem to be expecting anything else but sunshine.
Further up the road, we entered the major highlight of our last riding day. May we introduce to you Savinja valley? May well be one of the prettiest places in this part of the world. Very wide and green and open at first, then going always narrower until ending in a tiny little road towards the Slovenian-Austrian border. What a place! (And one hell of a ride too!)
The Belgian tourguide realized that what they grow here is actually hop and barley... No wonder he likes this place so much
He likes this place as well for this though: the cute little hotel featuring as lunch stop on our last riding day: Planinka in Ljubno ob Savinj. Not only ran by the friendliest people in the whole of Slovenia, but also... The Slovenian word for Edelweiss! Planinka, we just had to stop over!
And it has to be said: in the charts of best lunch of the tour, Planinka even gave the mussels in Istria a proper run for their money! Hard to decide which one was best, but this sure was up there!
And then, at last, Slovenia provided for the experience Kellee had been waiting for the whole tour: time to go for a first of a lifetime ride in the rain! She did fantastically well! Another box ticked, Kellee! Well done!
Here come Douglas and Kimberly, crossing their very last border on this tour. There's an ending to everything, but they lived it very much in the moment. Not yesterday, not tomorrow, but right here, right now.
And these moments really are about just now: bye bye pretty Slovenia, one last look over our shoulder to the wonderful sights you have to offer. It was a pleasure once again!
Over on the magical road of Paulitschsattel, Austria started to show us what we had been missing these last five days. What a welcoming view!
One last picture stop overlooking the magnificent view at Zell-Pfarre, and then it was time to head for home base Klagenfurt...
... where Adriatic Rollercoaster 1701 officially ended with a proper, true Edelweiss bootbeer! (Well, bootcoke, or bootwater, but still, the boots were on . Kimberly, Kellee, Douglas and Rick, it was a true pleasure riding with you all! Sincerely hope to see you again on another Edelweiss tour! As the Belgians say: santé, en tot binnenkort!

Riding day five - Dobrodosli in Slovenija!

Time for our group to head back to the place that makes the Belgian tourguide a happy puppy: Slovenia. Dobrodosli! Or "welcome", because if there is one word to describe this cosy little country, "welcoming" could well be it.
The first few stops of the day were still in Croatia though, and not just anywhere. In the middle of some amazing rolling countryside sits the village of Plaski, with this quite interesting Serbian-Orthodox age old church.
The father of the church was out on community duties in the city of Karlovac, but his wife kindly opened the doors to the church for us to admire the magnificent old artwork and explain a little bit about the history of their Serbian-Orthodox community.
See that divine reflection in the Cyrillic script? That's a temple of a whole other kind, that is.
Further north near the border, the last stop in Croatia was a memorable one. We have seen the tourist-trap versions of this spit lamb very often on this trip, but here at Mirni Kut it is done the proper and authentic way. Very simple but oh so delicious, and served by the friendliest lady in Croatia. No English spoken here, but you would be surprised how far you go with "mèèhè" and "oink oink"
And then it was time for Slovenia. Rick and Kellee opted to have a short afternoon ride to the hotel, while Douglas and Kimberly took off with tourguide Wim for an extra loop to Kostanjevica na Krki. The whole village center sits on an island in Krki river. Very cool!
They call this place the Slovenian Venice. But... Well... That may be the Slovenian optimism kicking in Still a very pretty village though.
Just outside Kostanjevica is this wonderful 13th century Fransiscan monastery, now housing Slovenia's largest modern art collection. Very pretty!
Being as art-savvy as we are, Kimberly, Douglas and Wim decided that this was indeed modern art. And euhm... That's more or less all we can really say about it
Heading to the hotel, we stumbled upon a place where a very strange dog seems to live...
But no sarcasm whatsoever when we say his old house looked pretty cute!
And to end the day, arriving just before the thunder brought some rain made Douglas and Kimberly behave a bit strangely on their GS! Another great riding day guys, time to enjoy the peace and calm of Otocec before tackling the homerun to Klagenfurt tomorrow!
Cheers Slovenia! It's great to be back!

Rest day morning - Walking in a fairytale

Some places in the world just make you stand around and wonder... Plitvice Lakes certainly is one of them. We made it in very early in the morning to avoid the enormous crowds that come and see this place every day. And having the place to yourself for a few hours truly is an experience to remember.
Even the cute little ducklings were still snoozing in their bed. With mama duck keeping a close eye, obviously.
The views just keep on coming one after the other.
Plenty of artistic picture moments everywhere. Here's Kellee doing the "casually sitting on the dock of the bay-well-more-like-lake" pose.
And then all of a sudden you stand right next to the top of a thundering waterfall.
Mind you, looking at it from the bottom isn't exactly a bad view either... What an amazing place!
Rick and Kellee enjoying the walk.
And then Kellee made friends with daddy duck
Douglas and Kimberly then went on with tourguide Wim to go and see some more of the place, but from higher up. Only one highlight left now...
... and here it is! Veliki Slab! Which surprisingly translates into... Big waterfall! These Croatians just say it like it is Spectacular end to a wonderful morning walk. Time to grab some lunch and then start up the bikes for an afternoon restday loop into the exotic sounding country of Bosnia & Herzegovina.

Rest day afternoon - (mini-)Exploring a new country!

Our guests decided they would like to explore a new country in the afternoon. So tourguide Wim brought them here: by the Una river in Bosnia and Herzegovina, in the town of Bihac. (Yup... That is exactly pronounced the way you think)
The town itself may not be as picture perfect as you would like, but some bits and pieces of it are already looking very promising.
"Now I would like to exchange a Croatian Kuna-coin for a Bosnian Mark-coin, with cyrillic script on it, to put on my charm bracelet made out of foreign coins", said Kimberly, all in completely fluent Bosnienglish. And even if they thought the exchange rate was nowhere near correct, our hosts perfectly understood! A smile and some gestures, and people always end up understanding each other, anywhere in the world
Some of the places in Bosnia, like this old (or well... actually quite new) border crossing, still look quite scruffy, but...
... with a countryside looking this glorious, it is easy to see why Bosnia and Herzegovina really is worth a trip to go and explore this very friendly and upcoming country. Thank you for having us, BiH, was a pleasure to come and see you!

Riding day three - Bye bye blue Adriatic!

Today we head inland again, so it is time to say goodbye to this... But not without getting a proper last view of the Adriatic Sea we have enjoyed so much over the last few days.
Before setting off, Kellee and Rick had a little Romeo and Juliet-moment going on. But as it usually goes with Douglas and Kimberly, this time it was their turn to get things upside down and the wrong way around.
At our morning coffee stop on the island of Krk in Malinska, Douglas met a couple of very friendly Austrians who got him mixed up for one of their compatriots. Those license plates on Edelweiss bikes get conversation going anywhere in the world.
From all that conversation, Douglas developed a bit of an appetite. But drama at first: the ice cream stand had not opened yet! The friendly Croatian people are always willing to go the extra mile though, so they quickly ran to the freezer and brought out... this! Party time!
Took about 21 seconds to have the first order of the day
And has to be said: the view had "time for an ice cream" written all over it.
Going further down south, in the little town of Senj, we wondered why these people were taking pictures of the water...
This is why! A group of cute dolphins came up to say hello to all of us! What a way to get a last salute from the Adriatic!
Simply amazing how crystal clear the water is in this part of the world.
Heading up into the mountains again, we stopped one last time to get some final pictures of the sea in all its glory, overlooking the islands in Kvarner Bay.
Turned out that in this part of Croatia, there are some very peculiar... Apple trees! What are they for?
This is what they are for! Nature's own version of a selfie stick. Very handy that is!
And then, only an hour later, the landscapes completely changed into the wonderful green open spaces of Velebit National Park. They say bears still roam these parts... We haven't met one. (Yet)
Rick and Kellee felt perfectly happy in all that green.
One last stop in the town of Otocac, where for the first time on this tour we see some sad reminders of what this region went through some 25 years ago. Good thing it is now just a memory, because as tomorrow will show: this area in Croatia and Bosnia is absolutely beautiful. Watch this space...

Riding day two - Croatia by the sea... Oh... And some mussels!

A glorious morning over the Adriatic... It doesn't get much more inviting than this to go out for a nice restday ride in the part of Croatia where the sea is never far away: Istria, here we come!
Huddle up to a big red Italian bike for a first group picture, and then we're off!
First stop of the day: the historic little village of Pican... Honestly: it doesn't get much more authentic than this.
Tiny little ancient streets, and...
... some truly astonishing views over the inland of the Istrian peninsula.
Or has that tourguide taken a wrong turn and have we ended up somewhere in Italy all of a sudden?
We've seen on another blog that there are some cat-pictures going on. So here is ours black ones bring good luck, right?
No good luck for chickens though... Before a roast chicken dinner, it is said they walk into a tunnel with a bright light at the end... Just kidding, they look very happy
Further down to the sea it went, in the pretty harbour of Vrsar.
Douglas was pointing out a boat he would like to Kimberly... But once again they got it all upside-down wrong-way-round
So we went to look at some other ones at another highlight of the day: Limsky Fjord, a very pretty place on the west coast of Istria. But boats are not the only attraction here...
The food is the real attraction. May very well be the best plate of mussels in Croatia. Absolutely delicious!
After lunch, Kellee wondered how these Croatian people fit all their luggage in a tiny little Renault 4 car...
After lunch, time for another very impressive look over the Adriatic and the island of Cres. It doesn't get much more blue than this.
Rick admires the view.
And after another wonderful day on the bike... So does Kimberly. Time for a quiet moment to end the day.
Oh one last thing... How many Croatians does it take to put a boat into the water?
In the end: just three. One on the crane, one standing by and one in an overall overlooking the whole thing. We were hoping for a million-view-youtube film when something happened... But it just went smoothly. Can't win them all
How better to end a day by the sea than with a serious straight-out-of-the-sea dinner? Fish on a plate. Nothing more, nothing less. But very nice it was.
And then, as a last surprise, the nearby town of Rijeka has won the Croatian soccer championship for the first time in seventy years! So a little celebration was due... And the Croatians sure know how to throw a party! Congratulations Rijeka! Been a pleasure for Edelweiss to assist to your party!

Riding day one - From the mountains to the sea!

Starting a tour is even more exciting when morning briefing can be done outside in lovely weather. No flipchart outside? A 1200 RT can do the same job just fine!
See? Works perfectly, even with a tourguide striking a bit of a strange looking pose...
Hey but hang on... Who is that selfying the group? That's Edelweiss mechanic Eva who came over to visit the tour start, making a just-in-time delivery of Rick's 1200 RT-slash-flipchart. Thank you very much for the great service Eva, hope you had a great ride back to Edelweiss HQ!
And there they are: Rick and Kellee (and about half a houshold's worth of luggage comfortably settled in on their mobile home for the next week.
Douglas and Kimberly only have a third of a household in luggage, and fitted all that snugly onto their 1200 GS.
So that only leaves a tourguide on a growling Ducati to make the group complete. There he goes. No household on there, but a whole load of tourguidy-things fitted in all the bags and cases. We have already learned that the Italian bike likes fresh mornings just as much as the Belgian rider... Took them both a while to get going...
Off they went, and after a brisk first morning ride, the small but very handsome (if we say so ourselves) group stopped here. A monument in the middle of the very pretty Slovenian countryside outside Kropa.
A good time to sneak in some first pictures... And look at this place! Just passing through this time, on our way to Croatia, but we will see much mure of wonderful Slovenia on our way back north by the end of the week.
Kellee admiring the very detailed mosaic art hidden away just off the road.
Here's Kellee with her chauffeur on this tour, Rick.
And here are Douglas and Kimberly, but they have it all upside down if you ask us...
Summer has really arrived in this part of the world now, and the colourful fields really show how happy they are. So are we...
And how do you think a very hot day on the bike ends in the evening? That's right! Time to cool down a little, with something straight of the fridge ! Hello Adriatic Sea, how great to be here. We'll be hanging around for another day tomorrow.

Preparing for takeoff

See those mountains bathing in sunlight under a bright blue sky? That's the starting view of this year's first Adriatic Rollercoaster, straight out of our cosy base hotel in Klagenfurt, Austria. Watch this space tomorrow, when our guests arrive. Can't wait!
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Eva Köfler
Sunday, May 28, 2017 at 19:45


Wish u a great tour... it was a pleasure to meet u all

Always on service because..

Best ride there is

Cheers eva
Wednesday, May 31, 2017 at 18:50

Great to have met you, Eva! Wim seems to be getting along with the Ducati now!
Eva Köfler
Thursday, June 1, 2017 at 09:37

hey kimberly....

sounds good - otherwise he just needs to give me a call and i ll be right there

hope you had a good week....

Wim Doms
Monday, May 29, 2017 at 22:14

Thank you very much Eva!
Been great so far, so here's a little greeting from a partying town of Opatija, celebrating the national soccer championship!

Tomorrow we're off to Plitvice to see the major highlight of Croatia.

Best ride there is... For sure!


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