Aug. - Oct, 2019 Czech-Slovakia-Hungary-Austria-Italy Recommendations

Discussion in 'Europe' started by NSFW, Jul 2, 2019.

  1. NSFW

    NSFW basecamp4adv Super Supporter

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    instead of posting in the planning thread, i thought more EU residents will see this one here and be able to chime in.

    this is how i will roll
    [​IMG]

    this will be the continuation of my 2018 trip

    basically looking for mountain roads, twisties, old world charms, history, museums, local food, and culture.

    looking for advice on where to go and visit. taking mostly backroads until i ran out of options.

    below are the destinations, with the number of days including travel time. there's a google link, please feel free to redirect me to interesting places. i'm very flexible, but only thing i prefer to do is camp for 3 days and motel for 2 days, then repeat.

    i have a total of 70 days to burn in the mainland.

    1st leg, Dusseldorf to Berlin, 604 kms, 5 days

    https://goo.gl/maps/kqtifXLPeM7L4gvk8

    2nd leg, Berlin to Warsaw, 566 kms, 6 days

    https://goo.gl/maps/Sh4pD4EA32inLp2D8

    3rd leg, Warsaw to Prague, 616 kms, 6 days

    https://goo.gl/maps/F48VpjArcG5eJMf86

    4th leg, Prague - Brno - Bratislava - Budapest, 557 kms, 6 days

    https://goo.gl/maps/DBEEhAy4vjoUEYcp6

    5th leg, Budapest - Vienna - Graz - Salzburg, 721 kms, 8 days

    https://goo.gl/maps/TSSDtyfphV6TYN4H8

    after Salzburg, i will head out to the Dolomites (Ponte Di Legno) where i secured a place from Sept. 7-14 or 7 days

    places to see lol. just too many of them in a week!

    https://advrider.com/f/threads/ridi...-than-i-thought.1341483/page-13#post-37641974

    6th leg, Dolomites - Florence, 1,200 kms, 11 days

    Lake Como, Moto Guzzi Factory, Milan, Turin, Finestre - Briancon, Genoa- Cinque Terre - Lunigiana Garfagnana - Lucca - Pisa - Florence

    https://goo.gl/maps/iWStnWVRuQxeCGQh9

    7th leg, Florence - Rome, 330 kms, 7 days

    Florence - San Gemignano - Rome

    https://goo.gl/maps/ENyDabL4taEua2za7

    8th leg, Rome - Naples - Amalfi - Brindisi, 706 kms, 4 days

    https://goo.gl/maps/xZvrqLabYvQh6gRSA

    Final leg, Brindisi - Ferry - Meteora - Thessaloniki (Oct. 19th), 4 days

    thanks in advance for your advice!
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  2. glitch_oz

    glitch_oz Long timer

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    Is that 5 days incl. time spent in D'df and Berlin...or 5 days on the road between those 2 places?
    Just asking, as it makes a huge difference. That Gmap bypasses all and any "motorcycle-worthy" areas , places, roads etc. as well as nearly all natural attractions or local "sweet-spots"(with their own local food+drink, dialect, architecture etc)

    There's the Eifel area to the south-west of Bonn, playpen of all the local riders and known for its narrow, scenic roads and ancient volcanic lakes and hot-springs.
    (don't miss hopping across the border for the Belgian part of it, the Hautes Fagnes = the Royal Belgian Woods)

    For curiosity, there's the Wuppertal Suspension Railways snaking its way through the narrow valley on stilts and girders above the Wupper river.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wuppertal_Suspension_Railway

    The Siebengebirge along the Rhine (Bonn-> south to Neuwied) with its steep vineyards and castles/ ruins.
    Just south and east of Bad Honnef (more Hot Springs along the Rhine river) is the Westerwald area, yet more hills and fab narrow little roads, the Birkenstock Footwear HQ and small related factories all over the hills. Hills, woods, castles, wine.

    Stunning views into the steep Rhine valley from the top of the vineyards, i.e. https://isn.page.link/hRoJ

    The "Bergische Land" (Hill-Country) spreads for about 80km east/ south-east of Leverkusen.....morphing further east into the Sauerland, the Mecca for the local riders from the Kohlenpott area (Dortmund etc) and winter-skiers.

    Endless twisting countryroads east of that again towards Kassel ....then another 90km east for the Harz mountains, yet another Hot Spot for the German riding community, very scenic, historically jammed with old railways, castles, estates, historic factories and commerce, the Brocken mountain .....there's an easy 5 days alone in that.

    Or follow the National Parks of the Elbe river for a day or 2, maybe?

    Lots of good stuff around and no shortage of small, windy roads, hills and mountains and everything else.
    Things get decidedly flatter (and therefore straighter) towards your next targets.
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  3. bout2ride

    bout2ride Been here awhile Supporter

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    you might consider changing from Lake Como to Lake Garda...check best riding roads on both the east and west side of the lake.
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  4. nickguzzi

    nickguzzi Long timer

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    Motor/technical museums around the Mannheim area (home of German machine engineering)
    Mannheim Technical Museum, Sinnsheim, Speyer, Neckarsulm. The tiny private Benz museum at Ladenburg, and a pretty little village in itself.

    Before GM sold the Russelsheim plant, You could have a guided tour of the Opelwerke. No idea now, but it is still near Frankfurt.
    In Frankfurt itself, the Goethehaus, well worth the visit. See the Roemerberg, the Dom and St Pauls, where one of the worlds first democratic republics was declared. All with in a few minutes walk of each other.
    The are lots of museums and galleries. The Stadel and Museum of Modern Art for modern art.
    The Leibighaus along the river for old masters and whatever special exhibition is happening. The Museum of Craft and Design, Museum or Architecture and Museum of Film (movies) Museum of Communication (very interesting) are all tightly packed along the southern bank of the Main. In summer, there is a floating imbiss (imbiss of all sorts are slowing being replaced by chain "food" joints) for hot dogs, frites and beer - maybe even coke. The southern edge is a mecca for people to go chill chat, sunbathe, bar b que etc. Lots of food and drink outlets, all extremely casual.
    For echt Deutsches Kuchen, try the Aepfelweinwirtschaft around where my sister lived. Wagner's and Zum Gemalteshaus are the ones in the guide books, but a mooch along Textorstrasser will find you more relaxed ones without tourists. Don't bother going to "Alte Sachenhausen" unless you want to visit the Hooters or similar shoddy and erzatz places.

    If you have ever worked on a German car or bike or in a vehicle workshop then you likely have come into contact with Wurth products. The owner is big into modern art. He has built a museum of modern, even Avante Garde art, in Swabisch Hall. In the brief section that explains Wurth beginnings, you can take a few of their fasteners.
    #4
  5. glitch_oz

    glitch_oz Long timer

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  6. nickguzzi

    nickguzzi Long timer

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    I forgot to mention the old Jewish cemetery on BattonnStrasse - a very moving memorial. Also an adjacent Museum Judengasse as well as the Jewish museum in the old Rothchildhaus, overlooking the river near the Untermainbruecke.

    For folks who have never had access to decent public transport (like most of us in the UK) the offerings in Frankfurt are outstanding. My sister who lived there for over 50 years was saying how bad it is now, apparently Zuerich is much betterer, but compared to everywhere else, it is terrific.
    Trams, Ubahn (underground), local trains and S bahn, which goes about 30ish miles to the outlying towns.

    You can get group tickets and individual day/week tickets to dazz around all day/week, otherwise it is about a $1,50 a ride. The driver is not a conductor or ticket seller. The ticket inspectors are anonymous and ruthless - you will pay the fare and fine then and there - so don't board without a valid ticket.

    One thing that I really like is that a mainline rail ticket from say London or Paris or Berlin, will also be valid for the last few miles from the Hauptbahnhof to the nearest stop/station to your final destination.
    Yet more cool stuff, buying a ticket to a concert or opera? The ticket gets you free connections on public transport, so you can have that glass of champagne/Sekt at the interval. And not have to worry about DD home or finding a parking space.

    I am yet to go into a station or wait at a stop and feel threatened or had to put up with loads of shit left laying about. Sud-Bahnhof, which is nearest my sister and most used by me, has an arcade of shops for papers & mags, bread and rolls, fruit and drinks. A nice coffee shop and ice cream parlour too. MacDoh addicts are catered for also. The larger interchanges have an almost whole shopping experience down there.
    Vehicles are modern and clean.

    The reason I mention all this, is that Frankfurt like many other other German cities have introduced restrictions - which apply to visitor too - about vehicles entering the central areas. While I don't have much love of cities generally, the German ones express a dual identity.
    Many were separate little duke/princedoms alone to themselves with there own customs (in the literal and well as revenue sense) The rise of Bismark and the Prussians culminating in the Unification of Germany and the establishment of the Second Empire in 1873. Then the 3rd Empire... the result of that far right experiment resulted in the Zerstörung, and the subsequent rebuilding of a society with the initial intention of making it impossible to repeat history. In the Federal Republic, the individual states were made more powerful, and their identities re-enforced. Almost back to the pre unification model, except larger units, and each with a degree of self containment.
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  7. NSFW

    NSFW basecamp4adv Super Supporter

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    all, thanks for the advice. very hard to filter what's on the net, and my best source is from fellow riders.

    the days shown is the total days on the road and exploring the city by bike or on foot.

    i know it's not much given my passport only have max of 90 days in the Schengen area. if i need more time in a particular road or city, i can adjust, cut my trip shorter. maybe end it in Milan.

    only reason chose Lake Como is so i can visit the Moto Guzzi factory open house, but after i googled Laka Garda, nice and adding it to my list.

    https://www.guzzi4you.at/Veranstaltung/it-moto-guzzi/
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  8. NSFW

    NSFW basecamp4adv Super Supporter

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    thanks NG. i love the taking the train. my first experience was very pleasant even with a couple of big mistakes.

    first one is we bought a Eurail Select Pass (good for 4 bordering countries) and towards the end of our vacation, we were asked by a train inspector that we don't belong to that car. he asked as to move out, and we did to search the correct car. when we found it, wow it has first class accomodation. we didn't realized that our tickets are for that class and we've been boarding the regular cars. anyway, regardless of what type or class, the trains are clean and comfortable.

    next was when we were disembarking from our first train ride in Holland, fellow passengers were shouting at us to hurry up. i thought they were rude, later we realized they were trying to help us. we got to the door and it closed right in front of us. we missed our stop and ended up in the next city many miles away. have to take the next train going back to our destination. from then on, we learned to be alert and fully ready to get off once the door opens.
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  9. bout2ride

    bout2ride Been here awhile Supporter

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    be advised, the trains, for the most part, leave on the minute, don't board a train 10 minutes early without asking the destination, I could tell you about my $457 taxi ride to Zurich but it is too long of a story. :eyes
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  10. babisadve

    babisadve Been here awhile

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  11. nickguzzi

    nickguzzi Long timer

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    Yes, double check you are boarding the right train, to the right destination. I can tell stories about this too.

    Frankfurt HBF has lots of distinctively dressed folks with waistcoats and red caps who will give you the proper timings and Gleis. They may still carry around a very thick and well thumbed timetable book.
    I presume all other mainline stations will be similar - you are in Germany (don't expect anything like this in UK).

    I remember there being a bit of Schadenfreude in Germany when the Director of SBB (Swiss Federal Railways) was forced to make a public apology because the trains on his watch could only manage 98% departures and arrivals on time. So don't you be late there either.
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  12. benedikt.m

    benedikt.m Adventurer

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    We're at a rate of around 78 % in Germany right now iirc. On time means not more than six minutes late and canceled trains are not even taken into account. So swiss is allways mentioned as role model regarding trains which actually arrive on time in recent discussions on this topic.

    I'd recommend the App from Deutsche Bahn to get the most recent informations about your connection. Especially since they like to change tracks in the last minute, arrive late or in the wrong order ...
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  13. NSFW

    NSFW basecamp4adv Super Supporter

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  14. nickguzzi

    nickguzzi Long timer

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    I got the impression that in Switzerland, "on time" means "on time +/- 1 minute".
    In UK it means if the train has not been sent to the wrong station completely, in which case if or when it arrives.
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  15. bout2ride

    bout2ride Been here awhile Supporter

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    :imaposer
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  16. NSFW

    NSFW basecamp4adv Super Supporter

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  17. NSFW

    NSFW basecamp4adv Super Supporter

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    Dusseldorf to Berlin. 875 km or 18 hours Dusseldorf-Berlin.JPG

    Attached Files:

    #17
  18. glitch_oz

    glitch_oz Long timer

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    Not along those highways and major cities, sorry.
    It's not really inspiring motorcycle (or even scenic) country along that route.

    Lots of good stuff going north from Berlin towards the Baltic Coast (Spreewald, Lakes District of Mueritz etc, the Darss coastal strip, the Island of Ruegen and the sandy beaches, Haffs and Nehrung along the Polish Coast, or the Carpathian foothills along the Slovakian border in the south...
    None of it any good if the interests are rather city-related though...
    and looking at your first post, it's cities-all-the-way.
    Most probably the reason that there isn't much traffic in this thread as many (and the locals in particular) rather escape those places than seek them out.
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  19. nickguzzi

    nickguzzi Long timer

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    My sister did Frankfurt/Main - Warsaw and beyond in the soviet era. On her own. (she was already feeling the influences the disease that took her).
    Many undocumented stops and delays. Fierce police and border guards, but the locals were stoic and shared their meagre rations.
    Like all good adventures, the retrospective contemplation was sometimes better than the "now".

    How you find as much of that spirit as is still available.
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  20. hansen

    hansen airhead addict

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    Boring, would be done in two days including visits of the historic districts of Poznan and Torun. For six days I would chose another route:

    From Berlin via Niederfinow Boat Lift go to the island of Usedom, enjoy the Bäderarchitektur and one of the piers (e.g. at Ahlbeck), then follow the Polish coastline to Gdansk. From Gdansk go to the Copernicus Museum in Frombork, among other items and instruments of early astronomy they have a Foucault pendulum, with a breathtaking view from the top platform of the tower it is built in. Next stops should be the Elblag Canal and Malbork Castle, a guided tour of the castle is a must if you are there. The Masurian Lake District is well worth seeing too on you route to Warzaw.
    #20
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