Winding roads, reach culture, UNESCO World Heritage sites, the Adriatic Sea and delicious traditional cuisine washed down with local drinks. An incredible experience on the best motorbike roads of nine Eastern European countries in an amazing 16 day motorcycle adventure!
We started the tour in the heart of Transylvania in the city of Cluj Napoca. The Sunset Mountains opened the trails for us in an authentic motorcycle experience. Mountains, incredible landscapes, ice caves all along the Ariesului Valley River heading to the next destination, Hungary and its capital city, Budapest – the city of Spa’s.
A ride along the famous Balaton Lake made us crave for more. We reached Slovenia in the evening and the city of Maribor, the cultural capital of Europe in 2012 accommodated us, thirsty travellers in an incredible cosy hotel with plenty of local beer.
Ljubljana, the smallest capital city of Europe was to follow. We reached it on winding roads trough the mountain region. A stop at a museum featuring vintage motorbikes was a great treat.
Plitvitze – the oldest national park in Europe was amazing, this should definitely be on anyone's agenda, motorcycle fan or not. A boat ride and a walk on the trails around the lakes and admiring the amazing waterfalls was a blast. The water of the lakes is incredible clear and its colours makes you wonder if this is what heaven looks like.
We continued our journey along the Adriatic Sea to Split and Dubrovnik, the most beautiful Croatian city - paradise on earth as it was described by George Bernard Shaw.
The Dalmation Coast ride offered enormous satisfaction to all the riders (7 in the group). Any description you would try to make it would not do it justice. Perfection.
Kotor Bay – known as Europe’s southernmost fjord, a UNESCO World Heritage Site was the next destination. The rode leading to Cetinje up on the hills above Kotor Bay offered an amazing view over the region. Plenty of photo opportunities as riding the winding rodes from Kotor to Cetinje the royal capital of Montenegro.
Albania was an authentic experience, a country of contrasts, best visited now before modernizing: the favourite business - car wash, favourite car - Mercedes, favourite animals around the house (and on the roads) - goats. Roads in progress (experience in riding on gravel roads required), amazing scenery and a delicious roasted baby goat for lunch as heading for Macedonia to the city of Ohrid. Accommodation in a hotel situated right on the banks of the lake was like buying tickets to an amazing show featuring the most dramatic, beautiful sunset I have personally ever seen. Don't forget to by some jewellery for your loved ones at home, anything with the Ohrid pearl definitely recommended.
Serbia was next on the map and in our route description. High speed, the smell of the road, a great traditional lunch and in the afternoon we are in the city of Nis. A visit of the old citadel and the skull tower made our day.
Derdap National Park – the famous Iron Gates Gorge, the gateway to the southern slopes of the Carpathian Mountains was next. We were kilometres away of a dream ride, or better said two dream rides: Transalpina - the newest, highest mountain road in Romania and Transfagarasan Road - the most croocked and chalanging road for motorcyclists.
Jeremy Clarkson of Top Gear referred to Transfagarasan Road in Romania as possibly the best in the world and so it was: curve after curve, the road was perfectly built, like it was designed to be used as a race track to the clouds.
All in all an amazing Eastern Europeean Adventure that I would do over and over again. Images still come in my mind after this amazing motorcycle tour. The Adriatic, the smell of the road and forest, the sound of the waterfalls at Plitvice and the colour of the lakes, the taste of the incredibly tasty traditional food of the Balkans, the history, the rides, the mountains. I could go on and on about it but best I will let you experience it for your selfs.
Details on the day by day itinerary can be found here: http://www.motorcycle-tours.travel/eastern-europe-motorcycle-tour/eastern-europe-motorcycle-tour.html