In 2013 BMW introduced this naked superbike! And when I saw it in Helsinki Motorcycle exhibition I simply had to have one! It was my first motorcycle I bought as a new one. Then 2015 came the XR with same engine but totally different bike and the generation 2 was introduced first to the XR and now 1 year later comes totally new S1000R:
It has same engine that XR has. So no shift-cam technology. Same 165hp and 114Nm torque. But it is lighter than previous S1000R (199kg)! So when Kawasaki & Ducati made super naked bikes with over 200hp -BMW decided NOT to go along in this kind of race. BMW thinks the real race is on the racetrack or in the streets.
This new S1000R has some nice options in it! Here’s the list: Three riding modes, Dynamic Traction Control (DTC) and ABS Pro as standard. Optional equipment “Riding Modes Pro” with riding mode “Dynamic Pro”, Dynamic Brake Control (DBC), engine drag torque control, MSR, “Engine Brake” and “Power Wheelie. The swingarm comes almost straight from S1000RR so this is one step closer to a racebike. And BMW promises it will be very fast and enjoyable ride! Who are we to question this?
BMW Motorrad made a quite big miracle when no-one shared any pictures about new model. So it was first time for all of us on November 5th 10 am when they released the new models: BMW S1000XR, BMW F900XR and BMW F900R. Here is the video of BMW Motorrad Press Conference at EICMA 2019.
There was few surprises in technical specs of the new XR. It has the same engine than the new RR has but does not have the Shift Cam technology. I asked about this from BMW Motorrad and they answered like this: “Hi Gozamite. There will be no ShiftCam technology. Above all, since this technology offers great possibilities for achieving maximum engine performance, the use of a ShiftCam has no advantages due to the specific demands on the full midrange power curve in the XR engine. In addition, additional weight could be saved in this way, which benefits the agility of the entire vehicle.“
Second surprise was that even the bike has new engine it doesn’t have more power than previous model! The consumption is also about the same. So for all those who were waiting much more powerful bike this is a big disappoinment!
But the new model looks very nice. I don’t like the color options too much. So I’m thinking I will not change to this yet…. But you never know, maybe I can’t say no when I will see the bike in february in Helsinki.
We took the ferry from Helsinki to Tallinn on wednesday 29th of may. This was my first time with Eckeröline M/S Finlandia.
The ferry arrived to Tallinn 5.30PM so we didn’t have time to visit many places or ride too far. But we did check something…
First was this viewing platform only about 23 kilometers west from harbour. Quite nice views to the Gulf of Finland!
Then we stopped at Keila Waterfall. There is very nice park in this area and you can easily spend 1 hour or more there. We enjoyed it very much!
Second day started with a ride to Paldiski city… Or actually we wanted to see the Pakri lighthouse and the cliffs behind the city.
We continued riding west and soon we’re filling the tank near Haapsalu town. I noticed that I didn’t have my wallet in my pocket and also that someone was trying to call me… I called back and it was the owner of the previous BnB and she told that my wallet was there! First I was little bit in panic -I thought we needed to go back to get the wallet but then we tried my wifes Debit card if it was working in Estonia… and it was perfectly ok. She also said that she had some cash so we could easily get along next 2-3 days and we could go back to get my wallet on saturday evening when we were already coming back. So now with full tank of 95 octane gasoline we checked the Haapsalu castle.
After about 20 minutes walk around the area we continued to the airport:
This is old military airport and it is not in use anymore. Sometimes they are having some dragraces for cars or for bikes… but mostly it’s empty and you can easily try how fast your bike can go! I didn’t take my bags off so I did only 120km/h. Just beside the airport is quite nice ruins of old manor (Ungru manor). The owner started to build the house for his loved one…. But then she died and soon the owner died too and house was never finished!
Then we rode to the Port of Rohuküla to wait for the ferry to Hiiumaa. It gave is nicely about 40 minutes time to relax while the ferry was sailing to the port of Heltermaa. But already before 3pm we were checking the next place: The abandoned church of Paluküla.
Then we took the road “Tahkuna Tee” or road number 113. This is definitely the best ride in Hiiumaa island. It takes you to Tahkuna lighthouse and behind this lighthouse there is memorial monument of M/S Estonia accident that happened in September 28, 1994. This memorial is especially for the children who died in this tragic disaster.
Next we checked some kind of adventure park (?!)
This park is built by one person and it is kind of private place. But after he built this Eiffel everyone wanted to see the place and climb to the tower! We didn’t climb there because we had another tower to climb!
Kõpu lighthouse is probably the third oldest lighthouse in the world that is still operational! It is 36 meters high and the first staircase is about 22 meters straight climb. 1 stair is about 40 cm’s high so it is quite difficult climb for a small person. The railing on the top is totally too low (for me) -I was only sitting beside the tower and not going close to the edge. I think I would’ve fainted if I would go there!
We had a nice Guesthouse in Kassari village and we were very lucky about dinner! The only restaurant in this village was closed but we got food anyway. And this was because there was some big group eating and they served us the same food -and it was even very good! Nicely done and good service, thank you Lest & Lammas!
Third day morning it was raining so we didn’t start riding too early, we took it very slow!
After this chapel we found something very spectacular! One of the most amazing places I’ve ever visited is the Sääre Tirp -peninsula. We left the bike to the parking area and started to walk south. After 2 kilometers walk there were no trees anymore only very narrow piece of land and it was going more narrow all the time. I took my drone up!
It took about 2 hours for us to walk to the end of treeline and back. There was still quite long distance to walk until there was no land anymore, maybe something like 5-600 meters until the total end of Sääre Tirp. Next we checked the small lighthouses on the westside from Port of Sõru.
Then it was time to take a ferry to the bigger island: Saaremaa.
We stayed in a nice Guesthouse and enjoyed dinner in Saaremaakera in the center of Kuressaare (Big recommendations!)
Fourth day started also with the rain but it ended soon. We went to check Kuressaare castle when it was still little bit foggy. Now it is possible to walk around the castle on the top of the surrounding wall. From there you can see the castle from every possible corner!
The we were already riding towards the harbour of Kuressare, but we took one stop on the way:
Then again one ferry, this time from Kuivastu to Virtsu and we were back in the mainland. We checked the ruins of Lihula castle. There’s not much left of this castle.
Then we needed to ride to the first Guesthouse we visited because my wallet was there. But we stopped in Padise monastery on the way. Here was also some renovations going on so we couldn’t get in.
Our last night was in very siple cabin without water. My wife didn’t like this idea at all. But I liked the place!
And I got my wallet beck! The dinner we had in a place called Günther kohvik. No recommendations from this place. Fifth day we only needed to reach the ferry from Tallinn to Helsinki and there was plenty of time… In the boat we took the buffet lunch and ate totally too much. But when you pay you have to get the maximum benefit! Right?
Again they promised rain! But it didn’t look too bad when we started riding. Short stop to take a picture in Col de Eze:
We were riding around in Monaco and checked few places there. But didn’t take any nice pictures. And after Menton we continued to Italy… but there it was raining!
So we didn’t stay there too long. We came back to La Turbie and decided to go and check the Trophy of Augustus. Just beside the entrance there is a nice viewing point and a perfect view to Monaco!
Then with the fee of 6€ we checked this Trophy that was built 6BC!!! Read more about the trophy here.
Then it was already quite nice weather and we continued riding to the mountains. Right from the La Turbie village starts nice road to Peille village and we chose this one!
After Peille it was time for Col de Braus.
And right after this Col de l’Ablé.
Pitty that it was already afternoon and we had to return the bike to MotorBikeTrip. But we had very nice time riding the roads near to City of Nice! We will be back! In the evening we were walking in the city and we saw this beautiful Church -Notre-Dame de Nice:
Next day it was only about breakfast, packing and flight back to cold Helsinki… And my wife made a nice video of this day:
This is the last day of our tour around Finland. We didn’t try to follow borders as close as possible. It just came like this… We went north from the east side and came back from the west side. We tried to check nice places on our way but certainly there was many places that we didn’t see. So there will be many nice spots to visit in the future.
Quite soon after we started riding we had this road. The route has a very nice ridgeroad going through small lakes 2 times! These are very beautiful places to make short stop and take pictures.
These pictures are from Rantalansärkkä wich is the more beautiful one… or at least it is easier to stop the bike there.
When we arrived to Ruovesi area we rode to the forest. With this bike and this load (maybe around 450kg’s) it’s not easy to ride on the forestroads if there is soft sand. We found this interesting “monument” or a memorial sign anyway.
They put the sign because some war-veterans were planting this forest long time ago (I think it was 1972).
Couple hours later we took a short walk in the museum-bridge in Teisko.
It’s called Aunessilta. It’s nowadays for walking only. Usually here you can see also some boats.
Then we checked one of the most famous place to have a coffeebreak (for motorcycle riders). It’s the Vehoniemi car-museum and cafeteria. This is located in a beatiful high ridge in Kangasala. The place is more than 40 meters higher than the lakesurface just beside the ridge! There is also a viewingtower.
After this we didn’t make any stops anymore… We just ride back home!
Video of this day made by my wife:
This was about to be quite short day… (if you think about how many kilometers we made). But we saw many nice places anyway!
First was Kalajoki!
It’s a huge sand-dune area and quite a lot of holiday activities around it. We were there very early in the morning but we took the swim anyway.
Then there was Ohtakari Island at the end of Vattajaniemi -area. These are the biggest sand dunes in northern Europe, the area is about 40 square kilometers wide! Here you can also park your bike beside the sea!
I swam also here, my wife didn’t…
In Kokkola we stopped to check the longboat that was taken from the Royal Navy when they tried to conquer the city in Crimean war (quite a lot of the fights were at the coast of Finland).
This is the Royal Navy longboat from Halkokari fight.
There is one abandoned lighthouse in the northside of the city. This is very interesting place! It would also be quite spooky place in the dark (I guess)…
It’s called Harrbåda lighthouse.
Around 10 years ago there was quite nice motel, beach and restaurant and I spent quite many nights in this place long long time ago…
But then slowly they didn’t have customers anymore, they should have renovate the place and make it modern but they decided to sell it (or it went to bankruptcy?). I think the price was something like 10 million euros first… but quite soon the price went down. The place was so terrible condition!
2015 there was news that they have new owner and there will be totally new hotel and restaurant… But it seems nothing happened there yet! Then we stopped at Öja fishing village and this beautiful cafeteria in the harbour. It’s called Bryggan café.
Here you can easily spend many hours just sitting in the café and enjoying the atmosphere!
Then finally we arrived to Pietarsaari -this is one of the most beautiful cities in Finland!
But the hotel we had was totally opposite to all this nice surroundings!
We had Hotel Vega with quite nice price but there was simply nothing good the place!!
– Reception was totally dark when I went in
– They had lots of strange toys and items everywhere. And when I say “lots of…” I mean like hell of a LOT!
– There was dead bird in front of our door
– Room was dirty, there was sand in my wife’s bed
– The yard was dirty, I think it was cleaned maybe 10 years ago
– Breakfast was not fresh! There was lots of canned food!
– It was like the hotel from the movie “The Shining” but in small size… very spooky!
Here’s some pictures:
But at least I got one nice picture of my wife just outside our room!
Weather was again very warm. This is not at all typical in Lapland that the temperature stays over +30 long time and even the nights are warmer than +20.
We started soon after 9am and it was already stifling hot. I had plans for some gravelroad in the beginning of the day but I choose the paved road because I could ride faster and get some refreshment from the wind.
I didn’t fill the tank in Kittilä which was a big mistake. I soon realized that there’s no big citys or even villages between Kittilä and Rovaniemi -it looked like there’s no places to add gasoline!! But finally there was one! This place was 57km’s south from Kittilä and the gasoline pumps was still working! Many these kind of places don’t have gasoline anymore because the regulations are more tight about spoiling the enviroment.
Quite soon after this we found a place for a break and swimming. There was this big river Ounasjoki and our route was following it until Rovaniemi but the rivers are not so obvious places for swimming…
This was a place to put the boat to the river and it was ok for us to make a quick refreshment. About 1 hour later we were in Rovaniemi and there’s one place my wife wanted to see! The Arctic Circle and the Santa Claus village!
Even in a very hot summer day you can hear at least Japanese, Russian, German, English and few other languages here. I hope these people didn’t come here to find the winter wonderland… We almost went to visit Santa Claus!
But we chose the motorcycle ride to the city… and we didn’t want to ride there too long. It was simply too hot! Our final stop was at Ranua -about 110 kilometers south from Rovaniemi. Just behind our hotel there was a beach so we could relax for awhile and ofcourse go swimmig.
Later in the evening we had a dinner in our hotel but to stay the night here we had chosen the “economy room” which meant a room with very poor air ventilation upstairs of… police office!
Luckily we could keep the window open all night so at least after midnight it was already almost ok to fall asleep.
Here’s video about the day (made by my wife):
This day was little bit cloudy and it wasn’t so hot. We started to ride the beautiful road to Karigasniemi. The route follows the Teno river and you can see to the other side of the river (Norway) almost all the time! From Karigasniemi we turned to Norway, this had to be done because it’s a really nice shortcut to Enontekiö (in western Lapland) -the road in Finnish side would be 340 kilometers:
And if the take the road from Norway side, it will be more than 100km shorter!
Almost right after we crossed the border it started raining! And we were riding in the heavy rain about 5 minutes and then the rain was light and it didn’t bother anymore -but the road was wet.
In Vuottašjávri we made a short sidetour to a small cape in the lake. There was quite nice sandbeach and I’m already regretting that I didn’t go to swim!
I also fell with the bike here but it was so soft sand so no marks to the bike!
It took awhile before the road was dry again and we could actually see some sun peeking behind the clouds. It was very nice to stop beside the road and take a good look around you. This part of Norway is called Finnmark and the surraundings here are simply amazing!
Maybe our visit to Norway was a bit short… We were back in FInland much too soon!
We chose the road to Näkkälä village (40 inhabitants) and this was again a very good choise! This kind of totally empty landscape (beside the road) is very rare in Finland!
This picture is about from the end of the road. There’s a beautiful creek (or a river) and this small village with few houses. Ofcourse in the deepest winter it’s little bit different here! (The sun doesn’t come up in 2 months, it can be -30 celsius with more than 1m of snow…)
We had very nice cabin from Kelotin Rantamajat and we went to have a dinner in Galdotieva -this was unfortunately the worse meal in our trip. Wife had the reindeer kebab and I had the “local steak”. Both of the portions were mostly terrible! Meat was almost burned and you couldn’t tell if it was pork, reindeer or pieces of soil from the yard… We do not recommend this at all!!
This cabin had the kitchen and toilet! It was very nice!
My wife made a video of this day: