It's beautiful in Croatia, while in the north of Europe the autumn slowly arrives, in Dubrovnik the best weather is waiting for us. Our hotel is fantastically located and the Adriatic invites you to swim. That's a good start.
In the afternoon we have our welcome briefing and take a first look at our bikes. The first day of riding can come. We are ready.
Jan and Thomas
So this is our first day of driving. The weather is perfect the mood is good. After a short briefing, we're off. We leave Dubrovnik and follow the coast of Croatia. After a few kilometers we reach the border to Montenegro. The border crossing is quite fast and the adventure can begin. Our first destination is Kamenari where we take a small ferry across to Lepetane. This saves us the traffic that rolls along the coast in the direction of Kotor. And since we are talking about Kotor. We take the adventure to visit one of the, if not the most beautiful city of Montenegro. For traffic, this city is a bottleneck but it is definitely worth a look. After lunch and a short walk around the city. we continue. Finally we reach the mountains from where we again enjoy the view of this incredibly beautiful landscape. The roads are narrow and winding. A dream for all those who love technical riding. Finally we reach Podgorica, the capital of Montenegro. Although we only cross the city, we get a good impression of the bustling life in this metropolis. No sooner have we left the city limits behind us, than we are led around endless curves through gorges and up over mountains to our destination for today, Kolasin. Where we find an oasis of peace in a small hotel on the outskirts of town.
today is the first rest day of our tour, but why only? One might ask. After all, we only started yesterday. Well the answer is simple Kolasin is located on the edge of Durmitor National Park and this region is too beautiful to just drive through. Since Kolasin is more known as a ski resort, at this time of year up here is quite little going on. But that also means little traffic, so what are we waiting for. The first almost 100km take us along the Tara river, the road winds through narrow valleys as if to keep up with the river. A coffee high above the river must not be missing, of course. Some brave ones even dare to cross the gorge on one of the numerous ziplines. After that we continue on narrow and even narrower roads to our lunch stop. A small restaurant in the middle of nowhere where we get, so they say, the best sausages ever. The afternoon is all about tight curves and typical Montenegrin mountain roads. The whole in spectacular scenery. That means riding!
We are back early enough at the hotel to enjoy the afternoon and the beautiful weather. The day ends with an excellent dinner.
Albania, a fascinating country! Rugged mountains, wild rivers and very friendly people.
Good morning Shkodra, today is not much but so much on the program. Sounds confusing at first, but from the beginning. In our briefing we learn that today is essentially about exploring the hinterland of Albania and in the afternoon to reach northern Macedonia, no world heritage sites no ruins. So let's get going. We leave the lovely bustle of Skhodra behind us and make on well-developed country road and a piece of highway first of all some distance. After about 60km, however, we leave the main traffic arteries and drive into the mountains. After an extensive coffee stop. We experience an incredible variety of roads and landscapes. The first kilometers we drive along a road which nestles close to the rock, to our right a wonderful turquoise river. The curves are numerous and the asphalt is in good condition. A little later, however, the picture changes. In the valleys before Burrel the road condition is... we say, as made for adventure bikes. Then we cross a beautiful, framed by mountains, cultural landscape. To find ourselves shortly thereafter on one of the, so far perhaps most spectacular motorcycle routes of this tour. Almost perfect asphalt, countless curves and a magnificent view characterize the picture. In the middle of nowhere we stop to enjoy a great and very healthy lunch, despite all language barriers. We continue through small villages to the border of North Macedonia.The people at the edge of the road accompany us with a smile. After crossing the border, we descend through a mix of mountain and forest landscape to Lake Ohrid. What a day.
What a special country North Macedonia is. Tucked away in the heart of the Balkan it has a unique atmosphere. And one could say that about Albania as well! Now we know how the currency and road behaviour works we're looking forward to go back there. Our final destination will be Gjirokastra, the birthplace of the former Enver Hoxha.
After we made it uphill yesterday, we have to master Gijokaster of course also downhill. But hey we are explorers, that should be no problem... and hey we have mastered this first adventure as if we had never done anything else. We continue towards the last border crossing of our tour. Greece is only 30km away. The border crossing is easy and quickly it says, welcome to Greece. After a short coffee stop we head into the mountains, the Pindos National Park is waiting for us. Our first stop is the Vikos Gorge. After all we hear probably the deepest in the world. and where we are just with superlatives, the driving in this region is spectacular. After lunch, countless curves await us. Partly the condition of the roads together with their course is a real challenge. But it is so much fun to ride through this almost deserted landscape. Of course, a stop at one of the ancient stone bridges, which are so characteristic of this region, must not be missed. another felt ten thousand curves later, we finally reach our destination. Meteora or more precisely Kastraki, a small town in whose backyard is a cultural treasure.
9Millions off years ago the current mountains off Meteora were the floor bed off an ocean. When tectonical movements pushed up the rocks the wind carved the rocks in their current pillar shaped form.
Leaving Meteora means that you have to go thrue a huges valley. But after that you enter the mountains, one off them is Mount Parnassas wich is the birthplace of the gods. Our destination today is Delhpi! Here you dive into proper ancient Greek history!
Good morning Delphi, our day starts with breakfast on the hotel terrace. The view down to the Gulf of Corinth gives us a nice foretaste of what we will experience today. But first we set out to explore the world famous ruins of Delphi. Afterwards we go down towards the coast. Normally coastal roads are full of traffic, but not so today. And so we enjoy the curves and glide along the Gulf of Corinth to our first coffee stop in Galaxidi. A perfect location to pause for a while. Afterwards we continue to Nafpaktos, where we visit not only the impressive castles of the city but also the place where Jan surprises us with a picnic, right on the beach. After the meal we cross the Rio... or Rion-Andirrio bridge, an impressive structure. The last kilometers of the day we cover on beautiful, gently winding and deserted roads. Until we finally reach our destination, Olympia.
Today we have a beautiful day ahead of us off riding thrue valleys and mountains. But first we kick off with visiting the site of Olympia. The stadium, temples and also the place where still, every four years, the Olympic flame is being lit. Our destination Kalamata is famous for it's olives: best in the world!
Good morning Kalamata. A new day in the biker's paradise is in the starting blocks. At breakfast we enjoy the fantastic view down to the Mediterranean Sea. After the briefing, we're off. It goes up into the mountains, more precisely on the Langada Pass at 1524m. The route is curvy and challenging, so it should be. On the way down we don't miss the opportunity to drink a coffee in nearby Sparta. We can now claim with right "We were there" After we have crossed the plain, it is again some mountains to overcome because our goal is the coast. It goes again through countless curves up and down. In the mountains hang heavy the clouds. But we are still spared from rain. Finally we reach the coast. The road and the view are fantastic. After a leisurely lunch right by the sea, we tackle the spectacular coastal road. No traffic and 1000 curves are waiting for us. When we have to climb some mountains again, the rain hits us as well. But the spook is already over after a few minutes. We enjoy the last coffee directly at the sea and make ourselves along the coast on the way to our hotel in Nafplio. What a day.
Nafplío, a very nice city on the sea with little streets filled with bars and restaurants. Unfortunately we have to leave it, but as our next goal is Athens we have something to look forward to. And don't forget the Epidaurus amphitheatre! Built in 330 by and still in use it's the best preserved one in the world. Our last stop off the day, and the tour, is the channel off Corinth. Fascinating to see how ships pass this man made channel.