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Old 03-19-2013, 08:26 PM   #16
Gnarly Adventurer
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Joined: Sep 2010
Location: Western Oregon
Oddometer: 197
Good start...... we need more.
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Old 08-07-2013, 03:21 AM   #17
Joined: Oct 2012
Oddometer: 45
Again, apologies to everybody reading this for the very very long time I am taking between posts. A lot of stuff happened to me in the meantime. I got the bike running really well during this winter after the Caucasus trip (I will tell the story about that one soon, I hope), then after a few K kms of riding again problems...the I changed my job, the city and country of residence. Bad part is that my bike is stuck back home with problems and with nobody to give it a little TLC...
Pretty disappointed so far, but at the least the money I make should allow me to afford a long ride in the quite near future.

Anyway...enough with my frustrations, on with the little Albanian story and then hopefully with bigger and better things.

It seems in Albania some men really respect their wives:

And some cows ran out of water to bathe in:

At some point we are reaching a main road and things get very easy now. It's basically just as good as any good road in Romania.

At some point we pass by a police car and a policeman holding up something that appeared to be a radar gun. So what the heck...I was doing about 120kmh and the sign said 40kmh...oh well. Lucky for us, he did not stop us. Later I heard that they generally do not stop bikers. They know they can't catch them if they decide to make a run for it, so they don't even bother. You have to do something really really bad, case in which they might set up a roadblock and eventually catch your sorry ass.

Not much time to think about possible complications though, as we have to leave the main road and cross some small mountains again before we reach the sea. From wide and straight, the road is becoming again narrow and curvy:

So we stop for a little brake to relax our asses a bit.

Passing over the top of the hill holds a little reward for us:

And finally, in a pitch black night (seems these guys have not really heard of street lighting) we reach our (al)most southern point of this journey, Ksamil. Apparently there were many nice guest houses around (as we found out the next day) but with almost no light around we did not see any, so in the end we crashed at a dirty camping near town. This was probably the worst we've experience so far (bushcamping is luxury compared to this, me thinks) and it also had a boom-boom disco right near to it. Well anyway, we were tired enough to be able to sleep while overhearing the Albanian manele. Good part is at some point they stopped and we could only hear the waves...sweet dreams now...

Next morning, pleasant surprise: the spot was not actually all that bad, nice sea view, nice sandy beach nearby and Kerkira island on the horizon.

After a well deserved bath, we packed our things, headed into town, found a nice guesthouse and went to find some food. And we found something, simple, yet very very tasty:

We have to admit, the food in Albania is definitely one of the best we ever had the chance of tasting. They have a really special way of making these lamb meats melt in your mouth and taste so so good. I suppose it's similar to greek food, but since I have yet to go to Greece, this is all I know. anyway, I totally recommend it. And Korca beer is really good too, unlike the goat-piss Jelen from Serbia or crappy Niksic from Montenegro (IMHO!).

And, according to Lore, the coffee is brilliant! Personally, I have no phreakin' idea, since I don't drink any coffee, but since she's a really devoted coffee drinker, I suppose she knows what she's talking about.

And from the bar we can see the beach...and this guy, riding the waves like a bo$$:

Later we go to Butrint. Some nice old castle, but the entry is overpriced for tourists. We feel free to say no.

And here's the lake as well:

And after this we found the most beautiful and interesting beach of this trip. Bunkers turned upside down by the waves, nice sand and pebbles, warm and crystal clear water, olive trees, cold streams flowing down the mountain all the way to the sea. And almost NO people. Great place to spend an evening. And the next days, because, I admit it...we got lazy and spent another 3 days in this area before starting the journey back home.

Next day we even saw one of this guys:

Did not know they were still doing that with the poor bears.

But....more form the beach:

And finally it was time to go back here's some pics from the road:

Astounding road up the mountain:

Riding on it:

And some views from above:

And finally back in Romania, by the Danube (I know it's not a relevant pic...but we did not take that many on the way back, the road was quite crowded, the winds were very strong and we were getting a bit tired).

Overall - very nice, and especially Albania, a (very!) pleasant surprise.
Hope you enjoyed this, and are looking forward to my next report.

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Old 08-07-2013, 05:39 AM   #18
Old Motorcyclist
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Joined: Mar 2003
Location: Jennings, Louisiana
Oddometer: 3,471
Enjoying your report and pictures. Love learning about the countries, people and customs. Thanks very much for the time and work to share.

A '00 KLR 650 40,000 miles, A '07 1250S 74,000 , A '03 5.3L Chevy Truck 78,000 + '43 style dude , Simper Fi ;-)
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