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Adriatic Rollercoaster yet again! - 4SC1504

Monday, October 5, 2015 | Wim Doms | Europe

Riding day 6 - Otocec back to Klagenfurt

Not exactly outstanding skies on our last morning.... The ride back to homebase Klagenfurt in Austria started off pretty wet and cold...
But a group of proper hardcore riders doesn't worry much about a bit of rain. So even after a very wet and challenging morning ride, everyone was still in good spirits.
The last lunch stop of our tour may have been a highlight all on its own. Restaurant Planinka in Ljubno ob Savinji provided once again the best service ever. Thank you so much for opening especially for our Edelweiss-gang!
One last border crossing was on the schedule for the day. Mary really enjoyed coming back to Austria.
And the views coming down Paulitschsattel weren't exactly shabby either...
So here's a final tribute to our small, bur very diverse and happy group. One rebellious youngster from Taiwan living in Boston. One very distinguished and friendly Colombian. One laid back Aussie enjoying a cold beer whenever possible. One German knowing veeeerrry much about cars and computers and how they work together. Two Americans enjoying life to the fullest on two wheels. And two Brits from the lovely countryside in Southern England... Only at Edelweiss tours you will find a bunch of such interesting and diverse backgrounds...
... oh and we almost forgot: a tour guide from Belgium. And guess how he celebrates the end of a fantastic and trouble free tour? That's right! Cheers everyone, and thank you so much for making it a wonderful Adriatic Rollercoaster! Santé!

Riding day 5 - Plitvicke to Otocec, Slovenia

No more sitting around on this day. No matter what the weather forecast said, Slovenia was waiting for us. So the group left Plitvicke and headed for the first stop of the day: the little village of Plaski in the backcountry of Croatia.
The Serbian-orthodox father of the church was happy to explain us about the very tumultuous history of his community. From almost 7.000 people in the village in Yugoslavian times to hardly 1.500 today... A moving story....
After Saint George (with an authentic prayer in Cyrillic script) and an angel sent us on our way, Adriatic Rollercoaster continued towards the north of Croatia.
Somewhere along the way, tour guide Wim knew a place where there was a nice fire burning...
And nothing makes an Australian feel more at home than a nice piece of meat cooking over a wood fire. Neil, even though he never has any lunch, appreciated the cooking style.
Onwards it went after lunch, and Krkna river welcomed our group back in wonderful Slovenia. One of tour guide Wim's favourite countries in the world, and you can see why...
Arriving in Otocec, the view called for only one thing: boot beer!
.. or actually, Christian found it also brought back some childhood memories!
The view over the valley even made Charles sit down and go quiet for a while. And those who know him understand that that is a pretty rare event

Riding day 4 - oh no hang on - riding Day 4 - Plitvicke National Park

This is how our day started on our second rest day... Even more fog than yesterday, and not exactly warmer or drier either... no rest day loop on the bikes, as all our guests preferred spending a day in the national park.
Part of the group went on a combination of walking-busride-ferryrides trip in the morning. And even being very cold and damp, Plitvicke still has some pretty wonderful sights on offer.
One moment you stand right beside a huge waterfall thundering down the mountain...
... and just a few minutes later you walk alongside the most peaceful lakes. Some suggestions on how to cook duck for dinner were raised, but we let little duckling along his way in the end.
Sometimes Plitvicke looks so gorgeous it actually seems unreal... A place to remember.
The weather being very anti-Italian-sportsbikes, Charles took off with tour guide Wim for a second loop of the parc in the afternoon (a whole lot of walking for a slightly out of shape Belgian tour guide , but this time the visit was done the Yee-way: get in, accelerate, take the pictures, get out again. Done. Some Mandarin words were learned though, so tomorrow our guests may get left- and right-directions in Chinese ! Joh! Tsoh! Or something along those lines...
Getting back to the hotel, one last surprise for the day: Wim and Charles met a Korean world-traveller on an F800GS. Out on the road all alone for four months now. Wonderful personality, we wish him all the best on his travels and maybe meet him again somewhere on the Edelweiss Worldtour. Tomorrow we head back north to Slovenia again. Maybe not a worldtour but still pretty exciting!

Riding day 3 - Opatija to Plitvicke 

What a rollercoaster of a day. Bora winds over Kvarner Bay really messed up the schedule. No ferries running between the islands, but then also the bridge from the mainland to the isle of Krk was deemed unsafe for motorcycles. So tour guide Wim had to improvise a coffee stop along the coast road. Well... Could have been worse...
Further down the road, lunch was improvised too. But the town of Senj offered some quite spectacular seaviews. Christian, even being from inland Germany, has a soft spot for rough seas. Perfect weather for sailing, he said!
Not perfect weather for riding motorbikes though... Croatian police actually shut down the road further south while we were enjoying the view. The winds got too strong and safety was no longer guaranteed. Time for tour guide Wim to figure out another route to Otocac. Done deal, (and many thanks to the group of Slovenian bikers we met in Senj) and the group went over a nice little mountain pass to rejoin the original route towards Plitvicke.
A bit earlier than expected, the whole group made it safely into Otocac. Getting closer to the Bosnian border, the first scars of the sad war twenty years ago are still showing here...
At some points even pretty badly... The weather contributed even more to the gloomy atmosphere, and in very cold and dense fog and rain, Adriatic Rollercoaster went on (very slowly) to the safe haven of Plitvicke National Parc. Let's hope the weather clears tomorrow for a nice walk and visit in the wonderful parc. Fingers crossed...

Riding day 2 - Rest day ride West and East again

Sunrise over a nice collection of bikes this morning. Time for the group to go out straight across Istria, all the way to the west coast and back again. Twisties, countryside, seaside and, well, a dog were on the day's program...
... you see? Here he is, our trusty friend in the ancient little village of Pican. Showed us all around town.
For a moment there, tour guide Wim thought he had taken a wrong turn and ended up in Italy by accident.
But no, Christian confirmed he was still taking a picture of a Croatian landscape.
Further West it went, right until we ran out of land at the harbour town of Vrsar. No further to go...
... so Chris thought he might as well take a little nap.
Tour guide Wim turned back to where there was land in stead of sea, and so we ended up at Limsky fjord. Well, still technically sea, but still...
One last picture stop on the way to Opatija. And a picture stop well worth the visit! Not many seas in the world look quite as spectacular as the Adriatic.
Sergio will take the view with him to far away Medellin in Colombia.
Time to just sit there and dream away... Wonderful second riding day comes to a close, time for a nice bootbeer back in Opatija before setting course towards the heartland of Croatia tomorrow. We'll miss the sea breeze.

Riding day 1 - Klagenfurt to Opatija

Hardly one hour away from Klagenfurt in Austria, and look where our guests on this Adriatic Rollercoaster ended up already...
One country done! And welcome to the wonderful and peaceful countryside of inland Slovenia.
Nothing you can do about roadworks... Between Idrija and Postojna, the group had to wait ten minutes... Bummer in the daily schedule...
... but Winston didn't seem to mind and kept us all in a good mood
A bit of a longer wait than expected, but Postonsjka Jama caves were well worth the visit.
We think it was Jamiroquai singing about "going deeper underground", and now we understand why you would want to do that. Amazing sights far below the surface of a Slovenian mountain...
And hardly 90 minutes later, the first riding day ended on a view like this... Hello Adriatic Sea! It was a rollercoaster of a first riding day, very promising for what's up next. Tomorrow: rest day ride straight across the Istrian peninsula. We get a feeling there might be a bit of seafood involved

Arrival day - Klagenfurt am Wörthersee

Only one day ago the previous group left Klagenfurt. But in that very same place, a tour guide got his hands very dirty and 6 motorcycles very clean and sparkly again. Five big BMW's, one rather small BMW (for tour guide Wim) and a growling Ducati Monster are anxious to go out on the road tomorrow... Watch this space!
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Monday, October 5, 2015 at 19:32

Oh, yeah! We know this Aussi!
The first beer of the evening never touched the table....

Neil was our outstandig sweeper on the fantastic tour through the pyrenees.

Have fun everybody...
Neil
Monday, October 5, 2015 at 20:52

Thanks Andy for the kind words. This tour was great, although the weather wasn't quite as good as the Pryanees tour. But the scenery and the good times more than made up for it.
Allan&Mary Freeman
Monday, October 5, 2015 at 13:26

Good trip with European weather. Nice small group with a good guide (Wim) Belgium,ish.Look forward to the next one.

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