Day 14 From Cesky Krumlov we were riding straight north to Bechyně village. And I didn’t read the roadsigns well enough… the road was closed! We had to turn back to the big road and from there turn to west and find this bridge:
On the northside of Praha it started raining but only for about 30 kilometers. Then we made a short stop at Želízy village and we were climbing to the sandstone hill where we found these:
Finally we reached the small town of Ceska Lipa and the old town was nice surprise!
You can find some more pictures from here! The route for this day was like this:
Day 15 This day started very grey and it looked like it will rain very soon!Because of this risk of rain I skipped the famous motorcycle cave. Luckily the sandstone castle was on the way and stopped there to take the picture.
Then we were riding about 60km’s in Germany (12th country in our trip!) and there it started raining. The route for this day was about 310km’s and from that we had the rainsuits on about 170km’s! But we saw at least two nice/ strange buldings on the way!
And when the entered to our destination city Poznan it didn’t rain anymore and we could go walking to the beautiful old town!
And because I had to pay 10€ of parking this hotel was the most expensive on our trip -about 82€. You can see more pictures from this day here. The route for this day was like this:
This guesthouse was one of the nicest places where we spent the night. Especially the breakfast was very nice!
But after breakfast we were riding again. First we took the road 311 down in the walley and then we turned north following the Dientenbach river. This road is very nice as the river runs deep in the walley but it’s not very long… and then we took the “Hochkönig Road” to east. This road was first climbing to Mühlbach am Hochkönig -skicenter & village and then going down with very nice sweeping corners! Then it was road 159 north following the Salzach river (and A10 Autobahn) and then Lammertal Straße to east towards Postalmstraße. This is a tollroad with 5€ payment. The speedlimit is 40 and it’s almost like going back to middle-age… The phone network wasn’t working and there was cows everywhere!
Right after this panoramic road we had Traunsee…
And then the mountains were gone! I had little bit sad feelings even we had quite nice countryside roads after the mountains. I was thinking: “Ok, we will see Tatra mountains in the north part of Czech republic but that’s about all…” Luckily there was some nice places still to make a short stop…
I had made the route to go over Vltava river in a ferry (Frydava-Frymburk). This was 4€ (Euros were just fine to use as payment!)
Then we arrived at Cesky Krumlov and I had made a booking in the middle of the old town!! It’s not very wice because you can’t ride there at all! But after few tricks we had our stuff in our room and the bike was parked outside the old town… Here’s few pictures of the beautiful old town (Click any of the pics to see them bigger!):
There is absolutely enough of restaurants in this city! We didn’t choose the best one but it wasn’t too bad either… This town I can easily recommend to anyone. You should visit there! Our 288km route for today was like this:
The most amazing riding day in our tour! We started by climbing to Passo di Giau From the west.
Passo di Giau is well known about the views at the top!
From Giau we rode down to Cortina d’Ampezzo and from there straight up to Passo tre Croci (at 1809 meters) that doesn’t go down very fast on the east side! There you will have first beautiful Lago di Misurina at 1754 meters and then Lago di Landro at 1400 meters. Beside these lakes there are also many hotels and restaurants. We took a short pause at Misurina with some sweet roll and lemonade.
Then it was time to ride to the next country: Austria! Almost right after we crossed the border I took the left-turn to a “secret mountain road” that not too many know about! Usually everyone is riding straight from Toblach (Italy) to Lienz (Austria) and then choosing the Grossglockner. But we took this “Pustertaler” first.
Then after riding a quite long way from the city of Lienz to the south-end of Grossglockner -We were finally there! I’ve been here twice before… (almost). 2014 we took the road from south and it was raining until Hochtor tunnel. Luckily from there we made the northside in good weather. In 2017 we came from north and it was raining too much! We decided to turn back. But now the weather was perfect!! Maybe it was little bit cold (about +10 celsius near the Glacier) but it didn’t bother us at all!! We got many nice pictures there!!
Click any of the pictures to see them bigger! We found a place to stay from Taxenbach village. The guesthouse was nice but we didn’t find a good restaurant from this small village. Our 240km route for this day was like this:
Luckily in the morning when we woke up it didn’t rain anymore. In the evening and during the night the rain was very heavy. So when we started to ride the road was wet and air was fresh…
The road in Raccolana valley starts from about 1300 meters in the east and it goes all the way down to Chiusaforte village (or town) in 391 meters! From there I wanted to ride north and check Passo del Cason di Lanza. But when I turned to that road there was a sign that it was closed. The alternative road SP112 from Pontebba to Moggio di Sotto was very nice too!
Then we were riding little bit north again. The route was about to climb to Monte Zoncolan from east. But I didn’t have routepoints in my GPS so it chose “the shortest possible” road to the top. This shortcut is not even a full road in google maps! But I did the whole road… with many rocks, fallen trees and lots of stuff and holes in the pavement! XR was totally ok with this road too. The actual road that climbs up to the mountain is not much wider. It makes the curves and corners in the middle of the skiing hill and it’s very steep in many places. At the top we had still cloudy weather and even few drops of rain fallin so we didn’t get nice pictures.
We made a short break in Ampezzo village. Found very small local shop and bought something to drink.
Took a small mountain Pass called Cibiana. It climbs “only” to 1530 meters and there are restaurants and trees on the top so not much about nice views there. Then finally started the climb to Passo Staulanza. This I did back in 2017 but it was raining like hell then. Now the weather was nice and I could nicely enjoy the road and the power of S1000XR! I didn’t have any booking made for the night because I knew how it is around here. You can easily find guesthouses from every village! I made my first stop in Santa Fosca village in a small guesthouse called ” Albergo La Rondine” and they had a room for us. Plus there was a nice car parked outside -never seen it before!
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?
After very good sleep and breakfast we took a morning walk in a little bit wet streets of Nice. Rue de Rivoli was the direction about 2km’s away. There was MotorBikeTrip store where I had reservation for bike (3 days) -This was the bike:
I didn’t ride this bike too much before and I have to say that the suspension is not good enought for 2. But I tried to adjust the preload tighter so that it wouldn’t hit the bottom all the time… Then we changed the full riding gear and started riding!
It was still little bit wet in 500 meters high Col d’Eze between Nice and Monaco.
In Menton the beach Boulevard is called The Sunny Promenade -but we had a little bit of rain…
We were standing in the mediterranean beach for awhile and I made a video there.
From Menton we started to climb up to the Mountains. I have been riding here before but back in 2016 it was too hot! Now it was quite nice weather.
This bridge is a part of an old tramline between Menton and Sospel. Tram was in use from 1912 to 1930. This bridge is called “Viaduc du Caramel”.
We stopped at Sospel to take few pictures. This made me think how sad it is when every place is now closed. No open cafeterias or restaurants… These cities and villages live only in the summertime.
Climbing up to Col de Turini… Beautiful nature everywhere!
Up on the top of of Turini it was raining quite heavily and we were inside the cloud.
The visibility wasn’t too good!
Luckily under the clouds we could see some more… But the rain didn’t stop.
The steep mountain walls of this area are amazing… even on a foggy weather! This is Col Saint-Roch.
The staright road home would be about 500 km’s -but not yet. We will still ride the small roads and explore this beautiful country.
On the southside of Pietarsaari is one of the most “Swedish” areas in Finland. Here we saw this:
This “Klacken” is a big party place in “Lillby” (Small village). Most of these kind of places have died in Finland but this seems to be quite active!
Right beside this partyplace was the local shop. Seemed like an ordinary “K-Market” but actually it was more like a mall!
They had clothes, tools and almost everything you can imagine you will need while living in the countryside -even agricultural machinery!
Soon after this “Lillby” we stopped at “Ilveskivi”. This is one of the biggest boulders in Finland. To get to the stone you have to walk almost 1 km and we didn’t change any clothes. It was still quite hot day so walking in riding gear was not a good idea!
Luckily the place is very beautiful and the stone is huge! It rises 16 meters up from the groundlevel and they’ve even built the stairs there so you can climb to the top of the stone!
After this stone we found nice beach to take a swim in Lappajärvi. And soon after the refreshing swim we checked the area full of war-machinery and trench in Menkijärvi.
This area is not actually a museum, but still it gives a good point of view how it was 75 years ago!
Just before we arrived to our next accommodation in Töysä village it was raining. Luckily it was just a short shower so we didn’t get totally wet. We just removed the bags from the bike to our room and changed to a little bit lighter clothing (it was still very hot after the rain) and we went to the small village shop… We did some shopping and enjoyed the dinner in one of their restaurants.
In the evening it started raining again but luckily it wasn’t heavy so we could take a short walk in totally dead Töysä-village. We saw maybe 10 people in the village (saturday evening 8pm).
Töysä beach is in Lake Ponnenjärvi.
Video from my wife about this day:
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!
This was another very hot day. But I was thinking that the gravelroads here are not that bad so I took one in the beginning. This road was actually very nice ride because it was in very good condition.
The first stop we made at interesting cafeteria in Yli-Ii (Wife pronounced this as “ULI-LEE” and I was laughing about it!)
This cafeteria was an old gas station but the gasbumps were already empty…
Then we checked two dams and powerplants. There was also a fireplace (laavu) near the Pahkakoski dam. But this fireplace was in very bad condition. At least there was quite nice place for swimming…
Then finally after 12 days of riding around Finland I found a place to wash my bike! This was in Oulu! And now I had a clean and shiny bike again!
Picture was taken somewhere southside of Oulu. I really don’t have any idea what is this “thing” behind my bike??
We found a place to stay the night from Pyhäjoki, but not from the “city”. It was a bed n breakfast place 7kms away from the village (Puttaan Kartano)
Ok… Pyhäjoki village is not very big, we found only 1 pizzeria where we could have something to eat. And after eating we went to the beach to check how sea looks up here.
Sea was quite ordinary but my wife is very special and beautiful!
And this is a video that she made of this day 13:
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):