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:
We started the morning wit a short walk around the Ruka “city-area”. The streets were empty and weather was already very warm! There is a small pond just in the front of the hotels and skiing area.
After breakfast we packed tha bike once again and started the ride from Ruka to Kiutaköngäs. Even this is not a long way there is still one very nice road (and rare in northern Finland) with low bending corners. This Juumantie is very nice ride in this area and I recommend to ride it even if you are not going to the rapids.
To see the rapids it is maybe wiser to change your riding gear to hiking gear. There is about 1km walk to the rapids… but after you find them you will probably walk quite a lot more to see everything and you might even climb or at least take the more difficult paths!
It’s vey rare that the water level is so low here! Normally you wouldn’t see any rocks in the middle of the rapids.
It took maybe about 2 hours for us to check the Kiutaköngäs -rapids.
We continued riding north… and went over the Polar Circle! (In Hautajärvi) Here they don’t make so big number about the Polar Circle even it is quite remarkable “line in the map” when you think about the nights and the sun (summer or winter).
In Salla -village we stopped for a little while to check the nice church (built in 1950).
And from further north we found our place to stay… We chose the “lappish style” hut from Loma Joosula. We really enjoyed the place!
We walked to a hotel nearby to enjoy the “real Lappish food” -The reindeer stew.
And in the evening when I was making a flight with my drone the host of this place recommended that he would like to have photos and video from this area and his place and if I would do it I could have my stay for free! And ofcourse I said “Yes!”
Here are few of the photos I took from this area: Google Album
My wife made a video about this day: