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"Kali mera" and "kalo taxidi" (Scouting unknown Greece; SPT1209)

Sunday, April 29, 2012 | Markus Hellrigl | Europe

The headline might sound Greek to you - and you are right - it is! "Have a good day" and "Have a good trip" are the words the locals are using to farewell us at the Edelweiss tour start in Athens.

After tour guide Stephan trailered a fleet of brandnew bikes the long way from Mieming to Athens - using the ferry from Ancona, Italy to Patras, Greece - the bikes are lined up in front of the hotel and waiting for their riders. Meanwhile everybody is here and looking forward to our trip through unknown Greece.

Stephan and the bikes lining up at the ferry

They are all brandnew!

Jim and Steve like their bikes too!

First day out on Greek roads

To avoid Athen's down town we went on the motorway to get around. Surprisingly quick we found ourselves on a small mountainroad leaving the crowded bowl of the city

At the lunch stop in Aliki, an unknown place even amongst the Greek, the "Greek feeling" started to take over. I guess it was the landscape, the beach and for sure, the food.

Good roads, blooming ginster beside the road and snowcaped mountains in the background

Even visiting Greece on a motorcycle doesn't mean that there is no time for culture. The monestary of Ossios Louka gave us a first impression about Greek's past.

DAY 2

Restday in Delphi

All of Europe is celebrating May 1st! A day to honour labour - and so the Greek do as well - everything is closed except the tavernas and bars. So we got an extended version of the planed afternoon ride. Climbing Parnassos mountains we checked out one of Greece' most famous skiing areas. From the coast to skiing doesn't even take an hour - and there is still snow up there!

On small roads we headed North to reach the battle field at the Termopyles, where the Spartanes lost against the intruding Persians centuries ago.

Lutz having a "cafe metrio me gala"

DAY 3

Delphi - Kalambaka

As we couldn't visit Delphi yesterday we had a "cultural hour early this morning.

Roads of all kinds, from wide open to narrow, led us to the town below the Meteora Monastaries. Flowers where ever you look, specially the yellow blooming broom longside the roads.

DAY 4

Restday in Meteora

An easy day! We went to see the monasteries of Meteora. Sitting on top of pinacles now for over 800 years they are still impressive. Hard to imagine a life as a monk here.

DAY 5

Kalmbaka - Ioannina

Leaving the magnificant area of Meteore we headed again for small mountain roads. An endless number of curves took us across a first mountain range and closer to the Pindos Mountains. Snowcaped peaks were greating from the distance. It felt more like riding in the Alps than being in Greece - but it was just wonderful. Breaks in Grevena and Metsovo and the visit of Spileo Perama, a cave, split the day in well dosed sections.

How do you take your horse from A to B?

Fresh strawberries on the farmer's market in Gravena

Hard to believe that this is Greece

Leaving our lunchstop in Metsovo

DAY 6

Ioannina - Nafpaktos

Some more Greek mounatin roads took us to Preveza where we decided to take a side trip to the island of Lefkada. the only difference to what we had before was that this "mountain" was surrounded by the sea. Great roads great views and an excellent lunch in Vasiliki. After getting back to mainland we hit the coastal road which turned out to be a race track with an uncountable number of lefts and rights. At a picture stop we did everybody had a kind of funny grin in his face. All in all - a great day!

view from our lunch place

the road....

...the grin...

....the scenery

DAY 7

Nafpaktos - Olympia

After an easy start on Sunday morning (the Greek are still asleep) we headed for Peleponnesos. Crossing over the new (since 2004) bridge we reached the island and after following the coast for a while we headed into the mountains. What great roads!

The Rio-Antirio bridge, officially the Charilaos Trikoupis bridge after the statesman who first envisaged it, is the world's longest multi-span cable-stayed bridge

On the bridge

Peleponnes' mountain roads

DAY 8

Restday in Olympia

After two days of good riding it is time to do some culture. But after three hours at the sights of Ancient Olympia we could feel the lure of the backroads. And it was worth to go - great roads, an excellent lunch in one of the mountain villages - and some more culture. Just another perfect day!

One of the many small roads framed by flowers

What's hiding underneath?

The Temple of Apollo Epicurius at Bassae, temple to the god of healing and the sun, was built towards the middle of the 5th century B.C. in the lonely heights of the Arcadian mountains.

DAY 9

Olympia - Nafplio

In the meantime we are addicted to the Greek roads. Checking out the smallest roads on the map we are taken in areas with breathtaking sceneries. Mountain villages nestling on the hillside spread their charm and invite for a coffee or lunch stop. We are so hooked to riding on these roads that there are days where there is not much time for pictures

Ena frape metrio me gala - everybody wants one

Main road through a mountain village

That's how hot the roads are......

DAY 10

Nafplio - Poros

Nafplio has a lot to offer! A lively town with approx. 18.000 people living there and a lot of history invited for a stroll through the old part. Real Italian ice cream slowed us down a little bit. After visiting the town we headed for Poros, a small Agean island very close to Pelleponnesos.

Gabi loves ice cream

On the road towards Poros

A short ferry ride took us across

Gabi on the ferry

Island of Poros

DAY 11

Poros - Athens

Is it realy the last riding day? Only about 200 km left? The final day took us to Epidaurus to have a look at the ancient theater and heading towards Athens we stopped at the Canal of Corinth - two more major impressions on this trip.

Having a look at fotos, drinking some Ouzo and remembering an outstanding trip concluded a 12 day dream vacation.

All the brave ones who scouted Unkown Greece......

"Kalo taxidi" - have a nice trip back home!

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Saturday, January 26, 2013 at 07:19

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Thursday, May 17, 2012 at 07:42

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Steve Barre
Monday, May 14, 2012 at 16:58

Hi everyone,
Two days of sleep, and now I can fully appreciate the adventure that we shared. Thank you
all for helping to make it such a fun trip! I wasn't the least bit concerned ( did I fool you? ).
Let me know if coming to New York.
Steve
MarkusHellrigl
Sunday, May 13, 2012 at 17:54

Hi to all of my fellowriders on the "unkown" tour!
It looks like everybody made it home safely - too bad we can't sit together anymore having "mia bira kai ena ouzo" and talk about a lot of interesting things but nonsence too. Thanks again for having been a good and fun group, I'll miss you all. Cheer me up every now and than per @ - I might need it when banned behind my desk.
All the best to everybody and let's stay in touch, Markus
Nicky&Lutz
Sunday, May 13, 2012 at 14:48

Moin,Moin from Kiel/NorthernGermany to all of you heroes of "unkown" Greece...
Finally we made it home, too. Hope you all returned safely back home as well!
At 10°C we wish to be back at "Greek Salads" and "Frappe Metrio me Gala"! Was quite hard to get Ouzo and 5-Star Metaxa in the Duty-Free, so you all must had been shopping...
Many thanks to everyone of you for your comradeship on this very special tour with lots of amazing impressions, especially to Markus and Stefan for your outstanding work and brave guidance!
So we hope to see you somewhere out there on the road again or keep in touch somewhere in the net...
Nicky&Lutz
Josef
Sunday, May 13, 2012 at 12:39

Hello, Everbody,
Well then, I'm also on the blog. Arrived well at home, and I hope so did you!
The tour was great and we have a lot of good and funny impressions in our mind. Thanks a lot to everybody who has been a part of our fantastic group. What's about thinking for another trip through Greece, maybe next year to ride on other "unkown" roads, different to the places and roads we "kow" now! Missing the wonderful accompanied vocals and patter of Georg.
So, keep staying on the top!
Greatings from Vienna
Cornelia & Josef
Aigars (also "KGB agent":)
Sunday, May 13, 2012 at 07:28

Hei, Everyone!
Hope you all are safely back at home!
Last day in Athens was a bit depressing. Every minute my mind goes back to those days when being together, enjoyed every moment of these memories. GREAT thanks to all who have been a part of this spectacular event..off line or on line..and who organized this...Markus, Stephan, Karin (thats pity you missed it), Doris and others.
See you again somewhere on the bike
aigars
Georg Erhard
Saturday, May 12, 2012 at 16:14

Die Tourguides, die österreichischen, haben wieder einen tollen Job gemacht. Auch auf meiner jetzt sechsten Griechenlandtour hat es mir wieder super gefallen, obwohl die Tour diesmal "SCOUTING UNKOWN GREECE" geheißen hat. Die Truppe war Spitze.
Gruß aus Bremen
Georg
Gabrijela
Tuesday, May 8, 2012 at 09:22

Liebe Frau von Waldburg
Wir hoffen Sie geniessen ihre Ferien, Frau Schmidt schaut sich auch gerade die Bilder an & wir haben Freude besonders an dem Bild von Ihnen am Meer.
Hier läuft alles prima & kommen Sie uns gesund zurück!
Viele Liebe Grüsse Schmidt Fashion Team inkl. Frau Schmidt
Tuesday, May 8, 2012 at 08:43

Hey Aigars,
Great to hear that you enjoy the tour. I envy you and George for having the pleasure to do this ride and wish I could join you for just a day!
Please say hello to Georg and please enjoy the rest of the tour!
Karin (your remember our Spain-Portugal tour...)
Tuesday, May 8, 2012 at 17:12

Nur nicht neidig werden
Wednesday, May 9, 2012 at 08:35

Monday, May 7, 2012 at 14:45

Hey Gaby!
Ja fahr dich ordentlich ein - geile Kurven hier!! im herbst hättest also nochmal die gelegnheit! für speiß und trank ist natürlich bestens gesorgt!! kulinarisch richtig gut!!
ja und hoffma dass vom gunter die gabi die beine wieder falten kann ...!?!? oder wie war das????
einen guten start in die neue bike saison 2012!!

Alan
Ursula Peter
Sunday, May 6, 2012 at 22:20

Hi Jim,
amazing to see you on the pic. hope you had a great time.
Regards Ursula
Sunday, May 6, 2012 at 20:57

Hallo Gabi u Gunter! Melde mich sobald ich Retour bin ! Freue mich auf ein Wiedersehn in Schwyz! Jetzt kann nichts mehr schief gehen... Ich kann griechischen Salat zubereiten u der Wein wartet im Keller!bis bald Gaby
Sunday, May 6, 2012 at 20:52

Hey Hey Alan! Das Jahr ist noch nicht vorbei! Schliesslich muss ich mich einfahren und "einfressen" ! Alles klar ?
Gabi
Sunday, May 6, 2012 at 19:08

Hallo Gabi,
ich hatte ganz vergessen,dass Du ja "on tour" bist. Ich wünsche Dir eine schöne Zeit.
Melde Dich ,wenn Du wieder zurück bist
Tschüss Gabi
Bruce Preston
Sunday, May 6, 2012 at 10:38

Great photographs, we could have provided two weeks of non-stop rain here in England. I rode in the Greek Classic Trophy in 2001 on a 1951 BMW R51/3. Great event and great bike. Best wishes to my friends JB and Lynn Safe Riding, Bruce Preston, retired AMA Tour Director and BMW 'Friend of the Marque'
JB
Sunday, May 6, 2012 at 00:20

Today was the best! Great group of riders and way too much fun!

JB
Randy
Tuesday, May 8, 2012 at 18:24

Awesome. Looks like you guys are having good weather. I fwd to Matt, he will be jealous.
WTH happend to Lynn's hair. Never seen it that short.
Bring back olives. I love greek olives.
Gunter
Saturday, May 5, 2012 at 10:10

Von der Ostseeküste ein Hallo an Gabi und alle Mitfahrer! Wartet nur, bis meine Gabi wieder die Beine aufs Moped falten kann, dann planieren wir die Alpen! Gunter
Sissi
Saturday, May 5, 2012 at 01:19

Sieht sehr sportlich und interessant aus!
Nandi und ich trinken einen auf euch und besonders auf Gaby!
Friday, May 4, 2012 at 22:36

Hallo Gaby!!
Coole Sache da in Griechenland! Und ich war der Meinung du würdest auf der Rom - Sizilien Tour mitfahren???? Hast mir da an ganz feinen Korb gegeben ... na ja, um den griechischen salat beneide ich euch nicht - unsere kulinarischen köstlichkeiten sind der hammer!
wünsche eine tolle tour und bis bald hoffentlich!!!
liebe grüße aus cefalu'
Alan
Gunter
Saturday, May 5, 2012 at 10:15

Hallo Alan, ich hoffe, Du hast im Winter viele Unterschriften leisten können. Gunter
Aigars (also "KGB agent":)
Friday, May 4, 2012 at 19:32

Gosh! Its FUN, FUN, FUN! Roads, even during crises are excellent, today more twisty…with some gravel on the road…still manageable. People greeting us almost everywhere. Last few days more silent…tonight looks we are back to civilization!
Friday, May 4, 2012 at 11:47

Ein Hallo an Gaby und Markus und Co. nach Griechenland
Um eure Temperaturen könnte man euch beneiden, ich fahre immer noch mit Heizung obwohl die Bäume in der zwischenzeit Blätter haben. Wüsche Euch allen weiterhin eine sonnige und vor allem unfallfreie Tour.
Grüsse aus British Colunbia, Kanada
Georg
Lutz
Tuesday, May 1, 2012 at 08:55

Hallo an alle daheim...
Ein fröhliches "jammas" an alle, ihr habt hoffentlich chic in den Mai getanzt!?
Unsere Tour läßt sich super an, aber ihr lest ja mit
LG, Nicky&Lutz
Dagmar und Manfred Soff
Tuesday, May 1, 2012 at 20:17

Hallo Nicole und Lutz. Wir haben Euch bereits im letzten Jahr mit Jens in Marokko auf der Edelweiss-Webseite entdeckt und freuen uns, dass Ihr diesmal mit Markus in Griechenland unterwegs seid. Wir wünschen Euch eine wunderschöne Tour und werden diese weiter verfolgen. Mit Markus waren wir bereits in den USA und in SA unterwegs. Wir denken oft an unsere gemeinsame traumhaft schöne Tour durch Chile/Peru. Weiterhin gute Fahrt und allzeit guten Grip unter den Reifen. Herzliche Grüße aus Karben, auch an Markus von Dagmar u. Manfred
Dave Whiteman
Friday, May 18, 2012 at 03:11

How are? Where are you? LOL
Thursday, May 3, 2012 at 15:46

Hallo Dagmar und Manfred, danke für die Grüße. Griechenland ist wie immer ein Erlebnis, verfolgt ihr ja mit. Liebe Grüße
Vroni
Thursday, May 3, 2012 at 18:44

hallo markus
hast es wieder mal super fein, oder?? neid frisst mi schu a bissl, bitte iss an greek salad mit für mi, bis bald und noch eine schöne tour. glg. vroni
Friday, May 4, 2012 at 19:12

Wart bis i da di foto zoag, den griechischen iss i gern.

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