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Adriatic Rollercoaster: up on the mountains and down to the sea (4SC1303)

Tuesday, September 10, 2013 | Manuel Marabese | Europe

DAY 4

Rest day... but full program today, for those wishing to visit the Plitvice Lakes and waterfall (the most visited Croatian park under the Natural Heritage UNESCO list). An early start brings us ahead the herds of tour coaches and we enjoy a 4 hours pleasant hike trough countless streams, waterfalls, wooden paths and lush vegetation...

Some more shots of the strong walkers... we set the course record of the park! 3 hours and a half for the "6 to 8 hours" path... not bad at all!

A last overview before leaving the park and getting ready for the afternoon ride...

Our bikes parked for the coffee break: here everything looks a bit different the western Europe, fascinating... 

During our last sightseeing stop we pull over to a mosque in a small village, and suddenly the very friendly Imam comes to us and propose to open the mosque especially for us! We are delighted by such good heart and friendliness towards us, maybe the only foreign visitors of this village since long time. He is so eager to tell us about their history and culture that phones her three daughters, asking them to come to great us and to translate in English for us.

This day gave us so many feelings and inspirational thoughts... form the "zen" peace of the Plitvice park to the good will of this population. Despite of the scars and wounds from the recent war (the Yugoslavian civilian war ended less than a decade ago...) it tries its best to move forward, with kindness and open-heartedness.

DAY 3

Good morning everyone! Looking out of the window from our hotel overlooking the Adriatic sea this was a pleasant surprise... Maybe after all the forecast is wrong and we are not gonna be wet all day long... Let's start riding to the island of Krk...

First coffee stop, in Krk town. A fortified town that in the past has fiercely fought against the invaders.

Despite of its touristy appeal, life in this town still maintains some traits of village charm...

Plenty of cafes along the pier of the little yet lively marina.

And finally it's time to board the first ferry! We have the whole garage deck for us! They warn us about possible big waves, but in the end the sea is fairly quite and the bikes can have a pleasant journey as well.

Look at that! It is indeed sunshine! Time for some posing...

and for the group shot!

Once we arrive in Rab we are welcomed by a nice restaurant with a great terrace, excellent food and friendly service, definitely a nice lunch stop!

Seafood is king here... right Janet?

The afternoon brings us some more emotions, like the coastal road towards Senj and afterwards plenty of curvy roads winding trough the mountains, leaving shortly in front of us a completely new landscape. Bye bye sea, now it's time for inland discoveries!

DAY 2

After the long ride we did yesterday (crossing three countries) today it's time to take it easy and relax. Some of us decide to stay in Opatija and enjoy the riviera lifestyle, while some others follow the tour guides for a ride trough Istria.

In the morning we follow the coastal road in direction Labin, while we stop for a coffee on a terrace overlooking the bay and the island Cres.

Karin getting rid of her jacket, it's hot today!

And Edi showing his new Ultimate Alps Tshirt!

The view from the café...

And the lunch break in the marina of Vrsar (Orsera). Many towns in Istria have both Croatian and Italian names, due to the Venetian influence that lasted for centuries.

Dirk and Ramona posing in Vrsar...

And in the afternoon we reach the Limfjord, where delicious mussels are farmed and then eaten in the finest restaurants of the region...

Ladies shot: Ramona, Janet, Maria...

Tomorrow it's gonna be another fantastic day, involving 2 islands, 2 ferries, a long bridge connecting the mainland to the first island, a coastal road, a mountain pass and then the Lakes of Plitvice...

Day 1

Ladies and Gentlemen,

another Ride4Fun motorcycle tour is about to start! A well mixed group from Brasil, Germany, Austria, Mexico, United States, Mexico, Canada, Italy and Russia will cruise between Austria, Slovenia and Croatia! What a cocktail of countries!

Today we are crossing 2 borders, the first one between Austria and Slovenia trough the Loiblpass and then between Slovenia and Croatia just before reaching our destination, the riviera town of Opatija, famous as a glamour beach tourist destination since 1890.

Before reaching the Adriatic sea we go trough tiny twisty roads and small villages like Kropa...

And then we stop for lunch in a very Biker friendly restaurant in the forest....

We are still smiling, despite of the rain making our tables (a little) wet... we could have eaten inside but... 

The highlight of the day: Caves of Postojna, one of the biggest and most spectacular cave systems in the world. In about one hour and a half the visit will bring us trough a scenic journey. We first board a little electric train, then we walk with the expert guides trough stalagmites and stalagtites, and finally we take the train again. Five km of caves on our disposal! and there are 16 km more, but they are not open to visitors, yet...

Some caverns are huge... one of them is called concert hall and can fit several thousands of people!

We spend the next two nights in Opatija, where we will enjoy some relax along the coast or go for an exciting ride trough hills and small villages...

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Mike Darr
Friday, September 20, 2013 at 13:13

What a great trip! We had a fun group of people, every day and night was a blast. A little rain here and there was no problem, it only slowed us down, but not much! I know every tour loves it's guides, but ours were the best! Edi and Manual are pro's, when it comes to riding, routing, or keeping the herd organized and happy. Even though I'm back home to the real world of work and family, I'm re-riding the trip every day on worldtourer.com....and planning the next adventure. Jill and I sincerely thank our guides and all of our riding buddies for making this a wonderful vacation.
Ramona
Sunday, September 15, 2013 at 22:02

It was a great tour with fascinating people as well as fascinating streets, curves, landscape and food. We enjoyed our first Edelweiss-Tour a lot - looking forward to Patagonia Adventure!

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