Summer 2019 - Germany - Greece - and back

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by franken, Sep 22, 2019.

  1. franken

    franken Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2006
    Oddometer:
    319
    Location:
    near Munich, Germany
    Hi all and FYYFF,

    round 10 years after our tour to Kerkira we decided to visit Greece again. We went down via Austria and Italy and took the ferry from Ancona to Igoumentisa. We spend some time on the main land and then took the way back via North Macedonia, Montenegro, Albania, Bosnia, Croatia, Slovenia and Austria.

    First the map of the complete tour.

    Greece 2019.JPG

    So let's start to tell the story and more important - show the pics.

    Day 1: Highway-day
    Map of day 1:
    map day 1.JPG

    Profile of day 1:
    day 1 profile.JPG
    We packed our KTM in the mornig and had good weather, but 15 min before we wanted to start, it started to rain. -- Heavy rain -- so we took our rainclothes, jumped in and started.

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    Start pic - as always

    At Innsbruck rain was gone, so we jumped out of this hated rainclothes. We climbed Brenner-passroad and get down to Sterzing. Tempratur get up to 25°C.
    One hour later we reached Lago di Garda and it started to be hot.

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    Dashboard KTM -- 39°C -- 266 km to go

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    Cooling and drinking, drinking, drinking

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    At Faenza we left the "Autostrada" -- a huge fire in a factory produced a lot of smoke

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    Late afternoon we arrived at Badia della Valle to visit our friends here.

    DAY 2: Relaxed in Italy
    Map of day 2
    map day 2.JPG

    profile of day 2
    day 2 profile.JPG

    After the long tour yesterday we wanted to have a relaxed day. So we went to the next valley and entered a small off-road trip for round 10 km.

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    highest point, best view

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    view back - the way we came

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    Some km behind San Benettedo in Alpe is a place to meet bikers. (Valentio Rossi and Loris Capirossi are born in this area). We spent nearly 2 hours here. (and again it was hot).

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    the famous bar (very good pannini)

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    We went on - took some small roads to reach Marradi.

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    Back in Badia della Valle, we enjoyed the fantastic food and local beer.

    Day 3: to the ferry
    Map of day 3
    map day 3.JPG

    profile day 3:
    day 3 profile.JPG
    Leaving our friends (Rita and Beppe) we had to reach Ancona. First stop in Brisighella, to get some money.
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    Brisighella, between Marradi and Faenza

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    looking for an ATM.

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    in the afternoon we reached Ancona and prepared to enter the ferry.

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    the ferry was late, so we had to wait a longer time. And again it was very hot.
    While waiting with other bikers we became friends with Orestis - a greek biker. We spent a nice time on the ferry with him. His cabin even was close to ours. He invided us to visit him at his home. (but we didn't reached his place - we hope we make it next time).

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    our cabine.
    The mad thing was, that Tina wasn't allowed to ride on the bike with me inside the ferry, so she had to walk. Took us nearly an hour to find us again on the boat. (I didn't know our cabin nr., because she had the paperwork).

    Day 4: Greece - Start
    map of day 4:
    map day 4.JPG
    profile day 4
    day 4 profile.JPG
    When we woke up on the ferry and had breakfast, we faced Albania near the boat. We could see some places we've been years ago.

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    Albania

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    close to Greece

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    leaving the ferry with 2 on the bike was possible - strange. So after we've been out, we sorted our things at the port.

    Target of the day was Ianonnina. We took small roads through the mountains.

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    Nice sign - at 35°C.

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    view direction Igoumenitsa

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    next bigger town - stop to view and..

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    get some cold drinks and ice

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    we found a very nice Hotel at Ioannina near the lake

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    fall in love with Mythos Radler

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    and had great dinner

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    and found out what are this little churches for.

    Day 5: Meteora monastary
    Map of day 5:

    map day 5.JPG
    profile day 5

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    a short part on the highway - then down to Kalambaka - view from distance

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    getting closer

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    the first we saw

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    so we took the small road which leads us to all the fantastic monastarys

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    close to one

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    very impressive

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    so much nice views

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    impressive rocks

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    Kalambaka in the valley

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    even very nice

    So - it was too hot to walk around in bike gear, and even we faced tons of tourists - so after the nice round on the road, we started to go back to Ionnanina.

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    At Metsovo we took a very smal road into the mountains - this part was very beautyful.

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    comming up here from the highway

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    at the top - cold drinks

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    high plateau. nice views

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    ACT Europe track (by Touratech) is also in this area.

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    nice big lake - for some km.

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    the beginning of a long descent direct. Ioannina

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    where we passed this little lake

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    sometimes gravel

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    ancient bridge

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    and the newer one nearby. ;-)

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    late afternoon - nearly back at the hotel. Ionnanina and its lake.

    Again hot, a lot of cold drinks and fantasitc food at night.

    So - enough for today....
    to be continued ....

    have fun
    Andreas
    #1
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  2. franken

    franken Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2006
    Oddometer:
    319
    Location:
    near Munich, Germany
    let's go on with storytelling -- and pics. :-)

    Day 6: going south to Patras
    map of day 6
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    Profil of day 6
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    After another fantastic breakfast in our Hotel in Ionnanina we decided to go south, but first go north for some 50 km to have a small look to the famous Vikos gorge. (Wikipedia).
    We rode along the lake to leave the city.

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    lake at end of town.

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    after round 40 nice twisty km we reached Vikos.

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    and it was hot again - so we got ...

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    cold drinks (this works realy great in total Greece).

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    from here you can go on a 10 km walk into the Gorge. Nothing for us with all the bike gear and round 25°C before noon.
    So we went on to go south.

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    we followed a very nice valley for quite a long time direction Arta

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    a closer look.

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    After a short discussion we decided not to go to Lefkada (all Hotels have been booked or have been to expensive for us). So we followed the road through Arta and Menidion.

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    Poseidon 435 passed us

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    we reached Amfilochia - very windy

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    shaking boats

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    me - a rare pic ;-) (german beach outfit).

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    some km later - another nice valley in front of us

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    we passed a nice church - full flagged

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    close to Patras

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    coast line

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    fantastic bridge to reach Patras (Charilaos Trikoupis Bridge) -- (Wikipedia)

    We got a Hotel near the harbour and walked a while arround. Had some dinner and met a group of bikers from Israel in our Hotel. Was cool - Crew Chief of Hotel had a Suzuki, BMW from Israel, A 1290 S KTM from Italy and our one. -- a cool bike meeting. :-)

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    view from Hotel 1

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    view 2


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    sunset part 1

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    sunset part 2

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    Tina, my love -- enjoying the warm night at the harbor.

    Day 7: down the Peloponnes (a short distance day)
    day 7 map

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    day 7 profile

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    :-) profile looks like huge mountains - but only from 0 to 160 m. :-) Mountains in the backgroud, but we went along the coast nearly the hole day.

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    out of Patras - near Limanaki

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    we followed a small road to reach the beach

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    was crowded (with cars)

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    next highlight

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    nice church

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    and nice forest

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    Next stop at Kyllini -- (yes cold drinks, and ice cream).

    Some km later we checked in at a Hotel in Katakolo. We had a nice walk along the beach, some fantastic Souvlaki and a good Restaurant at the beach with good sea-food.

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    the beach

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    german beach outfit :-)

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    long shades.

    ok - enough for today - end of week one -- two more weeks of holiday to come.

    to be continued....
    have fun

    Andreas
    #2
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  3. Oldschoolrocker

    Oldschoolrocker a.k.a. EZE Supporter

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
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    Wunderbar Andreas und Tina! Danke! :beer
    #3
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  4. franken

    franken Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2006
    Oddometer:
    319
    Location:
    near Munich, Germany
    Weiter geht's :-) (let's go on) - still a lot to show. So after 7 days we are very south in Greece. It was very hot all the days. (the hole tour haven't seen a day below 30°C - two times rain, but not too much).

    Day 8: - to Kalamata, the most south point - Peloponnese
    Day 8 - Map

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    Profile day 8:

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    We left our Hotel - went into the City for an ATM. Found one near two bike-cops. Had a nice chat about their Suzuki Police bikes and german BMW Police bikes. (Suzuki police bikes are good - not much pain at the garage, easy to maintain/ service).

    Then we followed the coast nearly the hole day.

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    here we nearly crashed in some deep sandholes.

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    beautyful beach to the left

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    beautyful beach to the right.
    Tina realy hates this. A nice beach, and bike-clothes.

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    some km later we reached Paris. Paris? No -- Le tour Eifel in Filiatra.
    Wow :-)

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    next beach, very crowded

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    shadow parking. (it was hot). :-)

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    some km later we reached Pylos and it's beautyful bay. (tourist info english).
    One 300 m alt. climb and some km later we reached Kalamata.

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    Walking along Kalamata Harbor at night.

    Day 9 - The middle finger of Peloponnes
    Day 9 - Map

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    profile day 9

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    what are we doing today? We salut you (adv-rider salut) -- but no - we ride the Pelopennes middle finger. :-)

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    short after Kalamata the fun beginns. We follow a small twisty road and got cool views.

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    shadow - (yes - it was hot).

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    the view

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    the commercial Tina was reading :dukegirl

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    back to sea-level

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    and up again.

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    the most south point we reached. (down to the beach and city and up the next mountain).

    When we went north at the other side of the finger. We passed Sparta and run into a beautyful valley - to go back to Kalamata.

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    the beginning of the climb to reach Kalamata

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    spectacular road

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    closer look

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    top of the road, then down to the sea

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    impressive rocks

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    and spectacular last part to reach Kalamata.

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    our roof-top-pool at our Hotel in Kalamata

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    walking around in the late evening

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    Signs of the big earthquake in 1986 - still visible (Town was nearly complete destroyed).

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    the harbor - catwalk at night ;-)

    Day 10 - to Nafplio beach
    Day 10 - map

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    profile

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    as we had so much fun yesterday we decided to take the same road to Sparta.

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    in the background the mountains we passed.

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    closer look at the church

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    3 greek army jets passed us here. (combat training). We followed small, and empty roads to reach the other side of Peloponnes.

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    you know that already -- shadow, ice cold drinks ;-) (in a beautyful touristc place in the mountains)

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    our way down to reach the sea again

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    nice views

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    another spectacular monastery at a difficult to reach place

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    last 15 km to the sea

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    and whoop - here we are. So we went north.

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    many nice beaches.

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    like this one

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    or this one

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    close to the target of the day

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    Nafplio

    we made an extra 15 km and get a Hotel direct at the beach in Tolo.

    Day 11: the 0 km day
    no map
    no profile.
    :-)

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    view from our Hotel room
    we didn't toch the bike today. Just spent some time at the beach, wandering around and enjoyed the greek food.

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    our "Hotel-beach".

    so - enough for today -- hope you enjoy it.

    to be continued ....
    have fun

    Andreas
    #4
  5. Oldschoolrocker

    Oldschoolrocker a.k.a. EZE Supporter

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2017
    Oddometer:
    2,296
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    Wonderful ride section!! I can just imagine the language used in German as you almost crashed in the sand! Haha! Never fun riding 2 up in that shit. And you doing the ADV salute...priceless!! Prosst!
    #5
  6. plumer1kt

    plumer1kt Adventurer

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2015
    Oddometer:
    1,250
    Location:
    Hellas
    No training.There are almost daily air combats between greek and turkish air force above the eastern aegean sea and western turkish coast.
    Those combats are real to the point of "locked on " .
    Judging from your place , combat probably took place above dodecanese islands.
    Nice R/R .Keep posting!:lurk
    #6
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  7. franken

    franken Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2006
    Oddometer:
    319
    Location:
    near Munich, Germany
    here we go

    Day 12: to Volos with an error and some extra km
    Map day 12:
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    profile day 12:
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    after breakfast we left Tolo and went on normal roads to Korinthos. We took the highway and missed the exit to view the canal. So we took the next exit and did some extra km (the first for this day).

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    the often fotografed Canal (Wiki)

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    lot of tourist - watching "bungy jumping"

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    white ripons?

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    at this side of the canal the have a special bridge. Here you see it comming up again from the water

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    on the way back to the highway - a look to the bay

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    we decided to use the highway to make some km and we decided not to go to Athens. (heat). Beautyful stop at the highway.

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    after going north at Megara we reached Psatha.

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    closer look

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    and up into the mountains with a beautyful look to the bay.

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    near Thiva

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    back on the highway - 120 km to reach the other side. (we did not use the ferry)
    And we missed the Volos exit. I was thinking for some km where my navi wanted to lead me. After the next exit (50 km extra) we turned and reached...

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    Makrinitsa above Volos

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    the beautyful sunset

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    our hotel room

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    Volos at night

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    we found a beautyful Taverne with fantastic food.

    Day 13: last day in Greece - to Kastoria

    map day 13:

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    profile day 13
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    first we went a bit more up on a nice curvy road, but did not go down on the other side to the coast.

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    Volos in the morning

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    after a cool break in Elassona we passed the Olymp mountain

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    way down to Limni Polyfytou lake

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    pasing the lake on a bridge

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    in the late afternoon after some km on highway we reached Kastoria

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    our very nice Hotel

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    we did a walk along the lake
    We found a good restaurant near the lake and so we spent our last night in Greece.
    The next day we will pass North Macedonia and go to Albania.

    to be continued ...

    have fun
    Andreas
    #7
  8. NSFW

    NSFW basecamp4adv Super Supporter

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2007
    Oddometer:
    23,288
    Location:
    Burbank CA
    i'm going to Greece in 2 weeks and glad to read your ride report.

    thanks.
    #8
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  9. crashkorolyk

    crashkorolyk just happy to ride

    Joined:
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    Location:
    vancouver island
    Looks like a brilliant trip,great pictures,thanks for sharing.Good luck with the rest of your adventure!
    #9
  10. franken

    franken Been here awhile

    Joined:
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    Hi Joel,
    i hope you will have a great time there.
    Just some add. suggestion - if you dont know yet already.
    ACT (Adventure Country tracks) Greece -- (by Touratech) -- you find here (Link)
    TET (Trans Euro Trail) section Greece -- you find here (link)
    have fun
    #10
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  11. franken

    franken Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2006
    Oddometer:
    319
    Location:
    near Munich, Germany
    before i go on with the story i thought a small "special" would be nice.

    Let's have "Foodporn". :-)

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    ITALY: Badia della valle - close to Marradi - fantastic place to eat.

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    GREECE - Calamari (Squid)

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    GREECE -- French Croisants and a cheese cake in a fantastic backery in Kalamata

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    GREECE - Kalamata - grilled Salmon

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    GREECE - Kalamata second night, differend place (in the harbour)

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    MONTENEGRO - Kolasin - very good place to eat - local, regional typical food. Excelent prepared

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    CROATIA - near Dubrovnik - good seafood

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    CROATIA - Trogir -- wrong food - Italian Pizza, but very good. ;-)

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    SLOVENIA - Krsko - fantastic Food -- fantastic cake -

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    SLOVENIA - Hotel Kunst - yamy

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    AUSTRIA - last night - Cheesesoup

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    AUSTRIA - Soup with "Frittaten". (Flädle in my language)

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    AUSTRIA - Wiener Schnitzel -- germans most loved meal

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    AUSTRIA - Pasta filled with spinac and sauce of reginal chees and salat

    I think i'm hungry now.

    have fun
    Andreas
    to be continued ... ;-)
    #11
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  12. NSFW

    NSFW basecamp4adv Super Supporter

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    finding different food is another good reason to travel. i always go for the local favorites.


    thanks. i know TET but ACT is new to me. i would do both of them if i have a riding partner.
    #12
  13. DC950

    DC950 Microadventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2004
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    Location:
    Seattle and Las Cruces, NM
    thanks for this. One day my wife and I will ride in her ancestral homeland.
    #13
  14. franken

    franken Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2006
    Oddometer:
    319
    Location:
    near Munich, Germany
    So ja -- weiter geht's
    Here we go

    Day 14 -- leaving Greece, to Tirana

    Map day 14:
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    Profile day 14
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    leaving Kastoria by passing this church

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    short after Kastoria we started to move up into beautyful hills.

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    horses at the top of the passroad

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    an army post at the mountain - no photos allowed.

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    down on the other side of the hill we found (and resucued) this little friend

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    as you might know we have turtles at home, so we had to take care of him. The first greek turtle we saw alive (3 dead ones before near the road).

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    Florina, last bigger town in Greece

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    at a shop in Florina

    So - after some more km we left Greece and entered ...

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    Republic of north Macedonia (actual name of the country) -- formerly known as "Former Yugoslavian Republic of Macedonia"

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    we passed Bitola and went on to lake Ohrid.

    and whop -- some km later we finished our very short Macedonian visit and poped into ...

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    Albania (border)

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    somebody had fun with painting

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    Elbasan

    some km later we droped into Tirana - a beautyful city.

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    10 years before Tina collapsed close to here at 40°C, and we booked into Rogner. So we did this year, without a collaps (had only 38°C :-) )

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    we had a walk into the city late afternoon

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    some art

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    enjoying the night, found a good restaurant, had fun

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    city center - (viva la revulution? ;-) )

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    way back - close to our hotel

    Day 15 -- going to Montenegro (Crna Gora)

    Map day 15:

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    profil day 15:

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    leaving Tirana - very hot in the morning (42°C) and a lot of traffic until Shkodra

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    close to Shkodra

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    one of the milion Albanian bunkers - now a Tatoo studio. :-)

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    still in Albania and it was ... -- yes.

    Most bike travelers go to Theth from here, or to Montenegro. We wanted to explore a differend route, we didn't take 10 years ago. So we took the road to Kelmend to reach Plav in Montenegro. (and it was fantastic).

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    beginning of the road to Plav near the cross

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    the road up

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    fantastic view at the top of the passroad

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    the way down - newes tarmac

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    yeah

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    we followed that beautyful valley many km and reached the next pass. There a thunderstorm catched us. We passed Plav and decided to go to Kolasin. A place we also visited 10 years ago.

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    the look back on our small road to Kolasin.

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    top of the road is close - then down to Kolasin. Private accomondation there.

    to be continued ....
    have fun

    Andreas
    #14
  15. NSFW

    NSFW basecamp4adv Super Supporter

    Joined:
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    23,288
    Location:
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    Andreas. Good chance I will use your tracks next year. Thanks.
    #15
  16. franken

    franken Been here awhile

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
    319
    Location:
    near Munich, Germany
    Next set :-)

    Day 16: Kolasin - Tara - Kotor

    Map of day 16:

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    profil of day 16:
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    so this day was like -- oh shit -- let's change the plan. :-)
    We wanted to go to Tara valley and Dumitor national park. But after some 30 km we faced havy thunderstorms in the montains. So we decided to turn arround and go direct. Podgorica and see how the weather will be at the last chance to turn up.
    At the last possible point we still saw heavy rain so we went down to Podgorica.

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    church at Podgorica

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    main entrance

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    road to Kotor

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    often photographed view down to Kotor.

    20 hairpins later we were down at the sealevel.

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    view from our Hotel - 20 km away from Kotor at the other side of the bay

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    Hotel beach

    Day 17: Kotor - Dubrovnik

    Map of day 17:
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    profile day 17:
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    Today we followed the coast the hole day. Huge part was the bay of Kotor.

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    cruise ship arrives at Kotor bay

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    crowded island with a church

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    look back to Kotor from the other side of the bay

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    church from the other side

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    Cruise boat

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    along the coast - beautyful views

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    Above Dubrovnik

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    closer look

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    we found a nice Hotel some km outside Dubrovnik - more cheap there.

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    and we had a great roof-top pool. Tina and me enjoyed it very much -- it was still hot -- you know.

    so - still some days to tell
    to be continued ....
    have fun

    Andreas
    #16