Welcome to the ADVENTURE BALKAN TOUR
We are Franz and Axel and we are your Tourguides on this tour from Edelweiss Bike Travel.
Today is the day´s of the day´s - The day of the welcome briefing/ the day where our riders will get the key´s for the bikes......
How ever - we are alredy excited to hit the road and discover the balkan. It will be a Tour what you will not forget that i can promis already - the landscape is breathtaking and the people around here frendly and if you come withe a motorcycle well you are a hero already.
But befor i spoiler to much - Franz and I (Axel) will have to organize some things for the first briefing on the Tour.
So stay tuned on this block if you want to see and ready more of this great tour starting down here in zagreb.
For now have a great day
Hallo and welcome on tour in the balkan - looking forwad to meet all of you
Hallo as well i´m the other Tourguide on this Balkan Adventure - we will have a great time - see you later at the welcome briefing
So time for the first briefing at the Balkan Adventure
Welcome briefing with Franz and me - it's must do on edelweiss tours but also a must have because this is always the base for a good tour.
It starts with the presentation of the tour and also time tables witch makes the live much more easier to get along on every day all in one if you listening here quit well than you got the perfect base for unforgettable miles on every tour
Well and the important part was the handover of the bikes!!!
After all the information it was still some time to set up the bikes for tomorrow- because tomorrow morning we will clutch out for the first Time on this tour and the first highlights will be discovered.
After playing around with the bikes it was time for dinner and so we did.
well well well now us time for a little sleep that we got enough power for the first day - but I have to say it if you got the chance to arrive early than the tour start in Zagreb- then do it because all the little restaurant, the nightlife is a must have
What a start to the tour!!!!!
The sun is shining everyone is motivated and a wonderful breakfast in front of us - the day couldn't start any better!!!!
After breakfast it was time to pack our bags into the van so that our journey could begin. But before that, there was the first briefing where Franz presented the highlights of our first day and also the first challenge - the Monday traffic of Zagreb - But Franz was prepared for all moments and guided us through the traffic of Zagreb as if he had grown up here - I was in the van today and covered the back of the group, so it went relatively quickly and we were on our way on the first narrow streets through a breathtaking landscape. Today's day started with small, narrow roads through green forests that made motorcyclists' hearts beat faster. We had lunch today in Rastoko - a wonderful water landscape where old mills are lovingly cared for and it is worth a photo at every corner. After the refreshment we went towards the hotel because today the highlight of the day was Plitvica Jezero. There, to crown our day, we made a short hike along the turquoise sparkling lakes. The world is just so beautiful and all the little corners that we will explore with our group over the next few days - will certainly never be forgotten.
All I can say is: look at the pictures and even if it's a bit mean - be jealous because this day was a dream.
Now let's freshen up because there will be dinner soon to recharge our batteries for the next day because tomorrow the journey continues and we will stay in Sarajevo for 2 days.
been excited to see what tomorrow will bring
Franz & Axel
Today it goes from Plitvice to Sarajevo
today will be our first long day on our journey, because we will ride 403 km.
It starts as usual with the ringing of the alarm clock and Franz and I, as always, first check the situation in the sky. Well and this time it looks manageable with sun but really not much up there - and if you look closer the rain is coming towards us. So off to breakfast and a briefing afterwards and the small team of explorer on motorbikes is ready to go.
The first challenge today is the border crossing in Bihac - our first and there will be many more to come Shortly thereafter it was time for the first Bosnian coffee - a specialty that definitely makes you feel better and for sure realy wake and that's a good thing because we will follow the Una River for the next few kilometers and will ride into the National park. I just say: green green - super green!!!!! That is maybe the best discription of The Una National Park. At the beginning of the summer, everything is blooming and growing here, and in combination with the water right next to the road, it's a dream. In the middle of green nature we cross one small village after the other and the charm there is unique! However, one thing should not be forgotten during the ride: it often happens that the asphalt is gone after the curve and it is a gravel track - but not so that you think that you can ride directly at the Erzbergrodeo afterwards - but you should watch out After a few careful meters on the new ground, everyone had settled in well and it was almost the most normal thing in the world When we arrived at the top, we had a great view of the Una Canyon, which was breathtaking, but we wouldn't have had anything against the sun to have. Well, even with clouds and some rain it was nice!!!
It didn't take long and a powerful rain cloud built up in front of us, which let's say - nobody was dry on the end of this day - Franz the lucky one was in the van today - and later he said it was actually very dry in the van well, as a small topping, Petrus still has us gave a taste of what we saw as natural hail pieling. Well, some things can't be changed, but all in one we were lucky because the morning had the most beautiful small roads and spoiled us motorcyclists where it was still dry. Well, at noon we had a nice place which would have offered a fantastic flair in the sun - but today the choice has been easy - inside where is warm and dry - is the place to be - so we were in the restaurant, which was good for all of us because we weren't in the rain for a while. Now it was time to refuel again and off to the last kilometers towards Sarajevo where we are looking forward to a warm shower and even more to tomorrow because we are here for 2 nights and will use the day to explore this beautiful old town.
So now I have to take a warm shower and then we're off to dinner.
Ps.: Today there are only fa couple of pictures because with the rain we used the dry moments to enjoy the bikes on the road
Let´s have a look around in Sarajevo
After a rainy Day we are lucky to be dry and safe here in Sarajevo. Abonndant breakfast gives us the power for a walk to the old town quater of Sarajevo. History everywere! Passing along the river Miljacke we get close to the mix of architecture of several centuries and cultures. Some places feel like Vienna, on the other side you will be lead to the fairitale of 1000 an one night. Only scratched by the scares of the siege of Sarajewo from 92 -95.
Reaching the famous Latin bridge Axel an me told the story how it could happen that the archemperor of Austria-Hungaria was assasinated here in june 1914 and affected the start of WWI.
Getting in touch with the old town markets like the coppermanufacturers an all the sweets you see and smell makes the heart smile again. We all had a swallow from the fountain called Sebilj, following the legend that we all will come back to Sarajevo on some time again.
After this breathtaking walk with all the hihlights along the way - it was time to get some food so everybody went in different direktions to look what will be the best for himself. I would say it is already not to early - that i can say - WE LOVE SARAJEVO
With a lot of Impressions we will leave Sarajevo tomorrow and the next adventur is not far away - I just say Dumitor Natinalpark - and of course we will never forget Sarajevo.
How can you put such a day into words !!!!????
I honestly have no idea and it seems like there are days when even I am speechless!!
So then I'll try it. The start as usual and the briefing directly on the motorcycles so that we are quick on the motorcycles and can leave Sarajevo. After a bit of luck in the morning traffic, we went into the hinterland of Sarajevo and the landscape was already a pleasure here. What no one of our customers knew was: what was waiting for them today except that we drive to montenegro, have lunch in Piva and drive through the Dumitor national park and then set up camp in Kolasin for the night. Well it sounds good and it is good - but it should get even better!!! On the way through the hinterland of Sarajevo we drove on small roads that were just a dream and just before the border to Montenegro there was a coffee break because we wanted to ban another currency from our wallets. At the stop itself, everyone already had a big smile on their face from driving through small gorges along numerous corners and that along several rivers. I have to admit, since I did this tour last year, I knew what´s coming next and so I just said: if you like this, then wait 20 km and it will may be even better - everyone smiles, according to the motto how he can top a topping!!!
Now it was time to cross the boarder and so early in the year there was almost nothing going on. Just after the boarder crossing into Montenegro we followed the river Drina and finaly we came to the Lake of Piva where we had lunch. The way to the lunch stop has been just breathtaking and had definitly increase compered to the morning route where everybody has been happy. The numerous tunnels hewn through the rock has been just on after the other and inbetween there has been a sweepers heaven of road. On the lunch stop i just told that i make a bad that it will be after den lunch getting even better and nobody believed me - so i pointet out the road on the hillside and i said this is where we going to and behind this is the Dumitor national Park wher 48 mountains, all over 2000 meters high will suround us and will blow your mind away. And no doubt it was like that. Unlucky only, let´s say 500 meters befor we ride down from the Valley der has been a a slab of snow blocking the road and this just came down while we had lunch. I said we have been unlucky - but this has been proofed wrong becaus:
well at first we had to ride the breathtaking way back but then i had to creat a new route - and this was one of this day´s where you got a hard time to discripe this R18 road from Savnik to Kolasin. It has been Montenegro in his best way. The smale little road has been winding through the valley in combination with the colurful landscape up and down and to the right and to the left and in front a mountain range where you will dream from for the rest of your live!!!
That has been for me a perfect riding day and if i look at our little family - they can´t stop smiling - and have been saying many times that was the day of the days. What els could Franz and i more ask for - simply nothing -
By the way i felt also a little bit sorry for Franz he has been in the van and have us seen the hole day riding this road´s
Franz official here - next time you will ride this day
Now it is tim to lokk all the go pro videos and check if there are a couple of them are ready to upload here.
Axel and Franz over and out - see you tomorrow
Another day in motorcyclists paradies! A fresh morning, no clouds on the sky, and good mood after fine breakfast. After Morningbriefing we are heading southeast over a mountainpass with some hairpinns in ugly condition. A great challenge as a second breakfast . Nice cofffebreak at a troutfarm and then came our first boarder on this day entering Kosovo. After that and our first kilometers in Kosovo we had lunch surrounded by 200 kids interrested in our bikes!
After lunch we had a ride through 2 little Kosovo towns. We got in touch with the original driving behaviours of the locals. Turning to the south we reached the second boarder entering Albania, was no big deal but we were welcomed with beautiful scenerie and excellent coffe. Axel safed finally a turtle(!) crossing the street and we reached on time our hotel in Bajram Curri.
250 km deep in blacany!
I only say one thing - curve curves and more curves - that was our day today!!!!
100 km of curves in a breathtaking landscape and hardly any traffic. The streets themselves were often decorated with stones and one should definitely not just let one's eyes wander around in the landscape - because the longest straight on the route is around 300 meters long. But you can also stop sometimes or often like us to take fabulously beautiful photos. after 50km there was a break with real Brazilian coffee . Well then we went on the second 50 km of this dream road. I'll put it this way if you love cornering, today is the day of days. Personally, I have to say that day and the day of driving through Dumitor national Park are among the best days of this tour so far. The goal today was Prizren and down by the river in the mosque it is beautiful, so if you want to know more about this day - you have to take the tour with us because we will look at the old town and enjoy an ice cream that is 34 C and you shouldn't do without it.
Franz and I will report back here tomorrow from a region that is worth visiting!!!
See you tomorrow
So we left Prizren on Sunday morning, cloudy weather but warm temperture. The rain from the night had allready finished and the roads are dry. Passing the monstry of the archangels near the town we followed the winding road till the Monument od the UCK. People in Kosovo keep their heroes in mind. Then we needed a break for coffee to be ready for the boardercrossing to Northmacedonia. (Finally they found a official name for this small country ). Friendly Officers but very straight in the rules on import and export.
Axel the days Vandriver handelt it with patience.........
The colorful mosque in Tetovo is allways an impressing monument to see, so much details in there and the calm fills your heart at the moment you enter it. A few blocks ahead we found a nice restaurant to fill up our batteries!
We arrived at our hotel in marovo lake on time so all could drive up the loop to Galicka, a small village up on the mountains and an open range full of alpine flowers an juniper. Challanging steep switchbacks, horses and cattle on the road, deer crossing, balkan nature at its best.
See you tomorrow Axel and Franz
Hallo Again from The Balkan with Franz and Axel
Today we had a long day in front of us - almost 400 km but also som highlights!!!!
First we surrounded the mavrovo lake on the other side as we came in so the first stretch of today was already packed with nice little sweepers. I have to say it was a good start to shake our hips loos
The following part of the route has brought us to the famous Ohrid Lake and his old town. So we parkt the bikes at the gate and discover the little town with the goal of making a picture from St. John. What a beautiful place.
Well well well it is time to move on because 253 km have still to be done. And we went – first section has been the national park of Galicicia – where we find a really nice road !!!! The tarmac has been just new and the grip was amazing. Down on the other side on the Prespa lake we just had lunch and lucky as we deserve it the weather stayed try today.
The afternoon has been a little bit challenging because of traffic. But on the end we arrived in Skopje. A nice dinner has been waiting for us and after the dinner everybody went out to hav a look at the breathtaking scenery at night here – What is so special over here well – look at this view at night and that is just a little impression.
So time do go to bed – the next day will come soon
Franz and Axel looking forward to riding day 8
Good morning everybody! We had best breakfast in town and we are ready to clutch out. Last day was our turnigpoint to go back to the north. No troubles at the boarder this day. Reaching Serbia we were welcomed at the famous abby venerable prohor plinsci, rennovatet like new and friendly popes that blessed our riders. Coffea at the monastery`s mensa we got homemade mintjuice, cookies , hot pastry, and turkish coffee as its best. Following the winding road in shadowed by trees we got to our lunchstop at lake valsine,but we couldnt find a floating island, maybe next time, i am sure. Nice Restaurant with overlooking the lake and excellent meat we had the higlight of the day: 80 km curves and tomac in perfect condition We arrived Nis on time and are looking foward for our dinner.
Axel and Franz
Just a few raindrops in the morning and then out of the city. Relaxing roads lead as to the north-east of serbia. We have to speed up, because we have a long trip today. A short break at a local rocery, with an invitation to the " soup of the day". Some km later we got the first view on the river danube, impressing, if you imagine that it flows from germany till the black see....... could be also a nice mc-tour??
Our lunchbreak was a special one, located on a hill overlooking the Danube inbedded to a woodcarving artist´s gallerie. The familyowned rrestaurant offert a local buffet of its best.
The next hour we followed the River till Golubac and made some Pictures of the fortress.
to safe some time we took the highway and we arrived safely at our hotel in Beograd.
All went out to discover the city, and we are looking foward to hear from their experiences.
Looking foward to tomorrow highlights,
Laku noc! Franz und Axel
Our hotel in Belgrad welcomed us this morning with excellent breakfast, we took our mc out of the garage by elevator and started after morningbriefing our way out of town. Cruising through voivodina, the plains in northern serbia, ist of course not this like we had in the mountains but the vegetation in may is just green and full of blosssoms. We made short picture-stop in Sremsci Karlovici, the first barock site since we left the south. Shortly we arrived in Petrovaradin Fortress, i gave our Vandriver Axel a taxi ride to the top.History History and History, wonderfull located above the danube and NoviSad. Leaving our coffeebreak there we held on to Fruska Gora-Nationalpark. Still cool air under the trees and finally a good winding road, brand new tomac and low traffic. We crossed our last border and entered again into Croatia, near Illoc. Dinner at the famous vineyard with local fish and excellent wine. (Of course not!!)
In the aftermnoon we saw the scar of the recent war of 1992 wich remains at the watertower in Vukovar, nowadays a museum to remember !After this and another Coffebreak while getting gasolin we arrived in Slavonski Brod by time. Wow tomorrow is allready our last riding day...... Aaaaaaah No!!Not yet,please!
Welcome to the last kilometers on this Tour - Slavonski Brod to Zagreb
Last day of ride doesent mean to be boring so the entertainig started with the morning briefing what we gonne see today and where you should watch out ( like Zagreb traffic)
3 Bullet points have been on the list today
First Stop has been the Lipizzaner Horses and the historry what they have been through in the last years. Suely has been on a mission becaus here little girl told her to make as much pictures as she could and of course she did .
As we moved on there has been the next stop not far away for us !!! It is nothing where you go to be exited it is more the shame of human beeing from the past. We stopped at WWII KZ memorial Jasenovac
This place has been touching all of us with the history what are humans are able to do. It is a taff feeling over there when you stay in the museum and you see all the names who have past away for no real reason. I would say i should skip to the good part! Today was a 284 km ride and the road was not challenging but nice sweepers along the way and the blue sky gave everybody the chance to think about the trip - what have we seen and what might be the best day on the tour. From Stop to Stop Franz and i could see that on one side all of the groupe looking forward to get to the hotel to have a refreshing shower because it was soooo hot today and on the other hand the moment and the feeling became stronger and stronger that is almost over and we have to split up - and hopefully we will see us once again on tour.
Last stop just on side has been the Sisak Fortress but at this stage of the tour it was just a stop for a coffe and ice cream and the confersation has been allready about the tour.
Franz and I have to thank all of you for this Tour it was a pleasure for us to guide at the Balkan Adventure!!!!
We both hope it will take not to long to ride along once more
Franz and Axel