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29mile. After spending 6days off at kamp Kito and watching the rubbish England game, I pack up and go for the catamaran to Korcula. After struggling up the steep gangway onto the vessel it’s of the Markaska 1st then to the island of korcula. After exiting the catamaran I start riding towards Vela Luka but after doing a long climb then checking the rest of the route with more long climbs I decide to visit some small villages instead of seeing luka which looks similar to the rest of the marina towns I’ve seen before. I arrive back near korcula old town and board the 5.30pm ferry to orebic. There’s a long climb over to trpanj so I decide to camp out at Orebic at camp garva. Nice little site and the owner speaks very good English. So after shower, tea and a walk, I have an early night.

Catamaran

Kamp Kito

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Only 26ml. Beautiful route today, very hilly again but worth it for the views. Up a 20% climb out of the bay 1st but managed to pedal up in the granny gear lol. Went to Pucisca first, Wow. Named on wikipedia as the most beautiful village in Europe. There is a school for stone carving and all the stonemasons come here to learn their craft. The white stone that comes from the quarry’s is even in the white house as well as Vienna and Venice. The quarry’s date back to the roman times.

Pucisca village


From Pusisca I rode over the mountain to Bol to get my ferry to the next Island. After finding out i can’t take the bike on the catamaran that connects the islands, I decide to go to a camping site and decide what to do. Camping Kito which was a good site, the owner looked like Jurgen Klopp. great restaurant and bar there and England are playing tomorrow so i’m staying here. Zlatni Rat is the beach here and is one of the best in Europe. the picture of the beach front’s many a holiday brochure. After much asking around and searching i have two options. I can get a small boat to Hvar but can’t get from there to Korcula, the next island down, so that’s a no. I get the ferry back to split and then catch another back to Korcula. Not a good option. I find out i can get a car ferry from Sumartin back to Makarska on the mainland then from Ploce, ferry to Trpanj on the peninsula and from there cycle to Orebic and then the ferry to Korcula. Update, I’ve just found out a ferry company with the catamaran will take the bike to Korcula from Bol here. It works out about £10 more in ferry’s but saves me over a day time wise. I think i will choose this option and stay here for the next England game on Thursday. We play Belgium and i’ve made a new pal, Henrick, the guy in the next tent who is Belgium. He used to cave, hike and wild camp all over Europe but after an accident, a new hip and being in a coma for a week and only just surviving, he’s here for a week and we have already built up a rivalry for the match on Thursday. A classic example of live your life and don’t wait to do what you want, (Like I have all these years) just do it as we never know what lies around the corner.

Bol bay

Zlatni rat beach from above

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36ml today. 25 to split but mapsme had me down a goat track for about 4 miles where I’d to push a fair bit of the way. Was off the beaten track today.  More abandoned houses on deserted roads. Really hilly but wow, was it worth it coming over a summit to see split from above. The track down must have been 25%. Had to keep stopping to let the brakes cool. After cleaning the drive chain and washing the bike in split I caught the ferry to Brac island. I looked for wild camping but found no where suitable so just kept going on the sea gravel path and came to a flat piece of land on a cove and asked a man who lived there who said I could pitch under the trees. Brilliant.

Off the beaten track.

View to Split.

Waiting to catch the ferry to Brac

Pitch for the night.

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Some roads turn into this

Abandoned Hamlet

57ml today. Set off and windy again. Went through abandoned villages again on deserted roads. Went through Kaka national park with some lovely views but quite hilly. Stopped to ask for water at a house on top of a hill and he sat me down and gave me lots of orange and offered me food. He was a soldier in afgan army. Left there went down and up another big climb and decided to wild camp early as a thunderstorm was coming my way. Got tent set up just in time.

Kaka national park

Kaka national park

 

 

 

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Pag town

Approaching Pag town

Bridge onto mainland

51miles today. Got up and the wind was horrendous again. I set off and made it to Pag where I bought some food and decided to go slow with the wind being so strong. Was nearly blown off a few times and don’t know how I managed not to come off. Good job the road was fairly quiet. Got to the bridge over to the mainland and had to walk between the barrier and fence as it was so exposed to the wind. As I got a bit further headed for Zadar, I decided to go inland rather than follow the coast to Split. This was a good move as I hardly saw any traffic. I rode along a road with lots of abandoned houses and the road turned into a bad state of I’ll repair. Not sure if this had anything to do with the war but it felt like a ghost trail. Got to 7pm and decided to wild camp off the road nice and hidden.

 

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30miles today. Leave campsite and go for boat to Pag island. When I arrive there’s already 5 bikes on board. Only a small boat so I take my bags off and load the bike before any one else turns up. After the half hr journey I set off towards Page town. Was going to wild camp but England play 1st match in world cup tonight so I decide to head for a small camping site on the beach at Kosljun. I arrive and there’s only 1 campervan there. Very quiet, in fact so quiet there’s no bar or anywhere to watch the game. Oh no. I speak with the women who owns the site and she agrees to let me waywa it in her house. Yippee. Although it wasn’t too good of a game we win 2/1 and score last goal in xtra time. I’m camped in the garden so lovely and quiet pitch.

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Well I get up early and leave my wild camp so I can cycle around before getting the ferry to Pag. It’s only 10miles to Rab town. It’s so beautiful here I go to the marina and find the ferry is a catamaran and foot passengers only. I go to the tourist office and the guy says a small boat leaves every day at 12 and will take you. I go to see the boat owner and he says ok 80kuna. About £10. I try the Padova 3 campsite just to see how much it costs and to my sirpsurp it’s only €12 per night. Not like the last place of 18. I decide I’m stopping here for 3days as it’s my birthday on the 17th. It’s a beautiful place and peaceful.

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The wind in the night is horrendous, luckily my tent is still intact ha. Well I precariously ride to the bridge in the high winds and am refused to be let over. No caravans or bikes due to the wind. I ask and it seems the wind is in for the day and tomorrow but might drop a little late afternoon. I decide to thumb a lift with a small vehicles but no success. Then a van stops. Great but he wants€10. That’s expensive but he says it’s his buisness when it’s windy to take bikes across. I agree and arrive at the other side.  So busy with traffic on this main highway so i take a small road and  cycle around to a lake and to Krk town. Change some money in the bank and decide to try to make the 4pm ferry to Rab. I arrive at the port with 10minutes to spare. 80 kuna for me and the bike. 1.5hrs later I am on Rab. The camping is so expensive I decide I will wild camp tonight so I hide in a field near a factory, make some tea to eat and have an early night.

 

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50miles. After a lovely breakfast and conversation with Emillije, I set off just as the rain starts. I shelter after 3miles as the rain is so heavy. This sets the pattern for the day. I visit Opatija and Rijeka on the way and was hoping to make it to Krk island over the bridge but after so many stops I decide to head for a campsite Ostro on the coast just before the bridge. Big mistake as I find out the next day.

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After another day off at Ivo’s to rest my legs, and lovely breakfast, I set off for my next warm shower host in the village of Sembije. 40miles later, with some steep climbs and a stop for some fruit to get there, I arrive but as I look at my phone I have no signal, so can’t remember what number house it is. Just my luck, a massive thunderstorm breaks out but luckily I have some shelter under a canopy. I looked at my offline map and luckily Emillije’s house number is in the saved address. Phew. Well I’m met at the door by Matjez, her husband and made to feel right at home. Showed to my bedroom above the garage and invited in for a shower and lovely pasta and salad meal. Was very good conversation with Emillije and retired to bed about 10.

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Ivo and Irena lovely, kind warm shower hosts

48miles today and two more big climbs on route. Again great scenery passed the Italian border at Nova Gorica. Headed for warm shower host Ivo and Irena’s house at a lovely peaceful village called Temnica. It was so nice and quiet with great views that I asked if i could stay another night. They were such generous and hospitable hosts. I watched Ivo and the amateur dramatics group practice foe a premier play and it was one of the actor’s birthday so we all called for some food and wine at the birthday girls house. Really great evening.

Rence village on the way to Temnica.

Coming into Nova Gorica

Memorial on the way

cycle path through Gorica

homemade side car in the village.

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28 miles easy day. Followed the Soca river. Absolute beautiful scenery, the water seems to be a Turquoise colour. Had a look in Bovec town but it was busy with tourists going on kayaking and rafting tours down river. Lovely picturesque town though. Koband had two campsites. The 1st one was not too good for camping with all the luggage as its on steps and the ground was stoney. The Lazar camping was great for the  tent pitch and only 1 euro more. Great restaurant also.

The beautiful Soca river, Bovec’s

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27ml today. Hard day climbing Vrsic pass today. Setoff from Dovje and rode10ml to Kranska Gora and then it was 5.5ml climbing, the sign at the bottom said 14%. Took short of 2hrs to reach the top and i had to rest a few times as the gradient got steep, it was hard to maintain pedalling with the fully laden bike. great views on top and had to Stop on the way down to let the brakes cool down.

Look closely and you can see a face in the rock face

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Had a day off in Ljubljana and went down the river in an inflatable boat with Matjaz who hosted me. Great guy made me a great breakfast of oats with fruit and yogurt. Had a drink that night and met his girlfriend. Left the next morning and rode up to Bled and looked around the beautiful lake then carried on to a lovely campsite at Dovje. Met a German woman cycle tourer who did the vrsic pass that day and said of all the passes she’d done, that was the hardest, which didn’t make me feel good as i was doing it the following day.

Matjez great host in Ljubljana

Bled, a Beautiful lake

Route up to Dovje

View from Dovje campsite

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70miles. After my ham and eggs breakfast at Boris’s lovely home I set off for Ljubljana. Good day but a long climb 30ml from destination. Also rained last 10 ml but at least I was on the edge of the thunderstorm clouds. Arrived at Mataeus flat, who Boris arranged for me. Great guy and made a lovely tea as what I would description as a thick hearty soup. Yummy.

Ljubljana city

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Boris and his parents.

28mls today. Left Anton’s farm and rode into Maribor for a look around. Not as big as I thought. Then on to warm shower host Boris. Not much to report on the way here today. His house was up a big hill, as usual lol. His parents were home and made me feel more than welcome till Boris arrived home. Lovely house with great views. His mum made a lovely tea and Boris phoned a friend in Ljubljana to arrange my stay for the following night. Top man. Also showed me, what seems to be a better off line navigation app than mapsme.

Maribor

Maribor

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22miles. Quiet day today, had already arranged my warm shower host just north of Maribor in Slovenia. And what a great place. Met Anton on his farm and it was beautiful and all the surrounding views were breathtaking. Anton made me feel at home straight away and we had a beer and exchanged a few stories before he did work around the farm. There’s Donkeys, horses, pot bellied pigs, goats and even lamas. Wow i was taken aback with his generosity. He gave me some great advice for my trip and i will stay in Slovenia a lot longer than anticipated thanks to his touring knowledge. A very experienced touring cyclist and a great guy.

Anton, great host from Jarenina. Warm shower host.

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47 miles. Left Jennesdorf and Hilly day but knew it was coming. Got as far as Gosdorf and saw a camping place so just pulled in and called it a day. knees were sore from all the climbing.

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52 miles. Got a good start this morning only to be stopped right on the Austrian border, to shelter from a massive thunderstorm. waited 3 hrs but set off when it eased and decided to go a direct line to save some time and ended up going up and over some big hills but great scenery and quiet roads. Was wet through and caught up with 6 mountain bikeing Austrians who i rode with for a way until they got to their hotel. We said our goodbyes and i carried on as wet as them. I carried on for another 2 hours before it got dark and found a lovely campsite at Jennesdorf. No pictures today due to the bad weather.

 

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42mile today, following EV13 in parts and ended my day at Koszeg, An eventful day where the signs seemed to have been changed around at Klostermarienburg and i ended up going through a forest and being eaten alive with mossie’s as i ended up at a dried up swamp where the trail ended. Although my highlight was reaching a great campsite at Koszeg for 6 euro in a beautiful garden. Lovely town square and it was double for a beer here compared to local bars out of the square.

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Well after leaving the campsite i headed for Hungary and visited Sopron which was a nice place to look around and skirted in and out of Austria and Hungary following the border line south. It was late when i had to wild camp  between the borders really. I hid in the woods off the road and was attacked with flies and mossies as i made a cup of tea and made some soup before an early night.

border crossing near where i slept

Roman centurion on the edge of the road

Sopron sights

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After leaving Vienna on the quiet route Phillip showed me i was heading for a campsite on a lake at Rust. As the day went on I felt really sapped of energy so i changed route and headed for a campsite at Neufelder,again on the side of a lake, really nice spot and very quiet. 6 euro for camping here.

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Great route and bike paths all the way down to Vienna. 60mlies. Had a swim in the Danube off the 21km island in the middle of the river. Was in touch with Stephanie and Phillip my warm shower host’s for the evening in Vienna. They gave me great advice on my route in and really looked after me.

Stephanie and Phillip my warm shower host’s.

After making me some great food including Kaserkrainer, we took off to see the city sights at night. They really took care of me, made me a great breakfast in the morning and Phillipp advised me on a great quiet route out of the city. Cheers guys.

 

 

 

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My 4 bed cabin all to myself 10 euro a night.

Left Havaranky today and a great cyclo camping place. 42miles tp Poysdorf through the border at Hevin. Changed my route, was going to go to Valtice border crossing but was 20miles onto route. and i had a late start. Set tent up and a massive thunderstorm for half hour so was lucky there. After eating in the lakeside cafe i returned to pay for my camping when i was invited to eat salami, cheese and bread with the camp site boss and his wife. Oh and drink wine. Had a great night also a Harley davidson rider called Fred came back from a wine tasting fest and joined us. Great night.

Met an American couple going the opposite way who told me about the campsite at Poysdorf both with Surly bikes