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Old 07-20-2014, 05:40 AM   #346
iny46
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Take some pics for me please

Last year Jan and I missed that road 😁
We had to turn back north at Biograd because
Of too much heavy rain

Enjoy the magistrale
The best part is along the island of Pag
From Starigrad to jablanac
In karlobag you should take a side trip just a few
Kilometres to Gospic. It's a great view over the islands.

Best regards
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Old 07-20-2014, 09:58 AM   #347
young1 OP
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Dubrovnik

Is there another town that is as pretty as Dubrovnik? This place is stunning with the harbour



The buildings inside the wall



And little bays / beaches to swim at



It is crowded with tourists and they do that well to, even to people in the choke points at the city gates (and at pedestrian crossings) to help keep everything flowing smoothly. There is a large bus park near the city gates with what looks to be well planned procedures to get cruise ship passengers on to the right buses.



It is very clean, no signs of graffiti, I had the felling that if I sat down on the footpath for more than five minutes I would have been swept up.

However with all of the above it felt to me a bit like Disneyland, built purely for tourists. I wonder if anyone actually lives within the walls now who isn't involved with the tourism industry? It is almost one big restaurant, the little alleys are full of tables and chairs and the shops are all there for tourists.



There is no missing the war history though, this sign is at the main entrance showing the buildings that were damaged by shelling between 1991 and 1992.



Don't get me wrong this is a beautiful place. But after seeing the "working" towns of Fez, Essaouira etc it does feel like a town now only existing for tourists. Saying all of that though I would like to return with Leanne.

Tomorrow I head to Sarajevo via Mostar. I was going to do that over two days but will now do it in one and the day that I catch up I will have as an extra day in Split.

Unfortunately the weather forecast is not the best (typical my riding pants are spotless now - I don't want to get them wet!!)
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young1 screwed with this post 07-20-2014 at 10:06 AM
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Old 07-21-2014, 09:07 AM   #348
young1 OP
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Dubrovnik to Sarajevo (Bosnia)

Today's update is in two parts

I got away early this morning to beat the heat and it worked. The border crossing into Bosnia was not busy and I was through quickly



I find these signs at the borders very useful. They did not have them in Montenegro or Macedonia and I still don't know what speed I was meant to be doing there. In many instances towns only have a sign saying the name of the town, and not a speed limit sign like in NZ, so you have to watch for those and slow down to the correct limit



I didn't know what to expect scenery wise from the ride. My route took me close to the Montenegro border, at the start I was riding through kilometres of quite scrubby bushes



Then the geography changed and it became a lot like the wonderful road I was on in Montenegro. Bosnia also has long tunnels, entering this one felt like walking into the beer chiller at the bottle store back home (actually the temperatures were good today, the highest I saw was 28)



I then entered the Sutjeska National Park, beautiful scenery and roads (not good for a car though, there were no passing lanes until I reached Sarajevo). I climbed quite high



I saw this in Montenegro too, advertising as biker friendly - nice :-)



This gorge went for quite a few kilometres





And into Sarajevo. These are still signs of the war, from early 1990s on many buildings, the worst buildings with bullet and shell holes I couldn't stop to take photos of. I saw one window that was surrounded by hundreds of holes, I wonder who had been in there. It is hard to believe now that the city was was under siege for four years!



I wanted to see the spot where Prince Ferdinand and his wife were assassinated in 1914, which led to World War 1. Yes Leanne I have been shopping, how do I put this...... some parts of my clothing get a hard time sitting on a bike seat (over 14,000 kms so far), and needed replacing lol



Luckily the rain held off, it only started when I was walking in the city. Tomorrow I head to Split via Mostar.
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Old 07-21-2014, 10:05 AM   #349
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Srebrenica

I also went to see this memorial exhibition. Srebrenica was the 1995 genocide of more than 8000 mainly men and boys during the war

Some of the pictures, to me as a father, I found disturbing. I find it difficult to imagine that this happened during my lifetime.

That is enough words, a couple of photos, the wall of names of the dead and missing.



Cameras weren't allowed in the exhibition



Powerful words

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Old 07-21-2014, 12:39 PM   #350
Blader54
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In split you may enjoy exploring the remains of the "retirement palace" of the Roman Emperor Diocletian. One of the few Roman emperors who did not die in office, he retired here to a massive palace. As I recall, he was Dalmatian. Pretty fascinating. If you have time you might want to hit Plitvice Lakes after your time in Split. A deep limestone gorge/valley with a big series of stair step lakes. Each lake has a small waterfall into the one below, and some of the dissolved limestone accretes there, where over time it turns into marble. A UNESCO world heritage site, the park can get pretty full of tourists so I'd advise either going early or late in the day if you would like to avoid crowds.

As you approach the park you may pass small roadside tables selling farmstead cheese. We found it delicious and bought a bunch to snack on over the next couple of days.

When we were there we stayed at a hotel called "Winnetou" that looks like something out of the American wild West or maybe British Columbia. The owners were very nice and explained that back in the 60's and 70's several "Euro-Western" films were shot at the lakes. One film was "Winnetou", if I recall correctly. They also said that the area was the scene of a lot of fighting during the civil war and they packed up and moved to western Europe for safety and then returned and rebuilt the hotel.

Loving the report!
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Old 07-22-2014, 09:51 AM   #351
young1 OP
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Sarajevo to Split (I return to Croatia)

First BIG news, Bosnia-Herzegovina is a civilised country, my first for a while. How do I know this? They have......



Lucky kids hmmmmm

It was a nice ride today; beautiful scenery following a river / lake to Mostar, then I took the back roads towards the coast (and border crossings - Croatia just waved me through), a 50 km blast on a new motorway before I turned off to ride through the Valley of the River Cestina (you may have seen the post where it was recommended) then I followed the coast into Split.

I suppose as I was going to stop in Mostar for lunch, today should be bridge day. In actual fact I saw some beauties that helped frame the awesome countryside that I was riding through.

A railway bridge











And Mostar. I am learning that as soon as a town / city etc calls an area "The Old Town" it will quickly be over run by tourists and there will be shops selling the same trinkets (but with the town name changed) as the last town.

You may remember that the bridge was destroyed in the war but was rebuilt with UN assistance. I reckon some of the other bridges I rode past today were more impressive?



What was nice at Mostar is at one of the bars where the road ended (and the old town started) you could park your bikes and they would look after helmets etc. Cost was €2.50, I don't know how "official" it was but it was good initiative. I arrived with a group from Spain (their bikes by me in the photo) and as I left a group from Turkey arrived, one rider on a KTM 1190 arrived suffering from the hot seat problem (for you non riders the new 1190s have problems with heat from the exhaust heating the seat! Hot nuts anyone lol)



Andreas I will post pics from the river valley later

Now that I have cooled down (there were a few light showers today so I stewed in my wet weather gear) I will go and see what Split is all about
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young1 screwed with this post 07-22-2014 at 12:29 PM
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Old 07-22-2014, 12:27 PM   #352
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Valley of a River Cestina

Quote:
Originally Posted by iny46 View Post
Hi Mike

from Montenegro heading north you should ride along the Croatian Coastal
Visit Dubrovnik and Split
Take a side trip before you reach Split through the Valley of River Cestina


https://www.google.de/maps/dir/43.40...fa8a71!1m0!3e0

You will love it

Best Regards
I think I went along the route you suggested. It had rained and the roads were very slippery. I had a couple of moments with the rear slipping out as I headed into a couple of the hairpins, that slowed me down.

Pictures

By the way what do you call someone from Slime - Slimey?

Where the road starts.



Looking into the valley



Hairpins



In the valley



There was a really nice estuary near the end of the road. Unfortunately, as so often happens, I rode past the best place to take a photo



And the last bridge, in my post above, is the bridge that crosses the river that I had followed

the blur in the top right of some pics is the lens cover not retracting all the way, it is hard to see that when taking a picture
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Old 07-22-2014, 02:41 PM   #353
Frgich
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Oh man, I can smell the pine in those pics, keep them coming Mike, thanks for sharing
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Old 07-22-2014, 11:46 PM   #354
young1 OP
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Quote:
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Oh man, I can smell the pine in those pics, keep them coming Mike, thanks for sharing
I have sent you a PM, hopefully see you in Zagreb?
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Old 07-23-2014, 12:46 AM   #355
Te Hopo
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Simply awesome mate, thanks for sharing this all with us
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Old 07-23-2014, 08:20 AM   #356
young1 OP
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Split

A day off the bike today, KT stayed parked under the trees looking after some scooters.

Early start, no need for an alarm clock when this bell, approx 15 metres away starts chiming at 7 am



As I sat having breakfast (I found a little restaurant full of locals so that shows it us a good one) the first wave of tourists arrived. I decided that a swim maybe in order so headed out. On the way some of interesting sites;

Classic BMWs (bit blurry unfort, I must have been shaking with the excitement of seeing them!)



Fish market (you don't want to live downwind of this!)



And Leanne will be gutted that she missed this (do people really pay money to see this?)



There is a big park on a point in the harbour, I carried my towel and walked looking for somewhere to swim. Lots of nice spots but as I was enjoying the walk I didn't stop. It was a good hike, over 3 hours walking. Nice to see cars blocked from entering



This is something we have seen a few of in Europe, coming from NZ it is unusual, quads registered with plates etc to ride on the road. In France, I think, we passed two quads in a row of traffic and they were doing 80+ km/hr



Can you imagine having enough money JUST to pay the upkeep and staff on a boat like this!



Off to Zagreb tomorrow (for two nights) staying in a newly opened B & B run by Frgich (an inmate on this site) see http://www.lobagola.com
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Old 07-23-2014, 08:41 AM   #357
GiorgioXT
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Excellent report !

If you come back to the Alps, I could show you some hidden gems of Dolomites .
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Old 07-23-2014, 10:25 AM   #358
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Te Hopo View Post
Simply awesome mate, thanks for sharing this all with us
I am glad you are enjoying it :-)

I know my mother enjoys reading each day where I am and what I have been up to.

We / I do keep a written diary also when we travel, when I get home I will print this blog out to keep as another record.

Mike

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Old 07-23-2014, 10:52 AM   #359
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GiorgioXT View Post
Excellent report !

If you come back to the Alps, I could show you some hidden gems of Dolomites .
Thank you :-)

We have only scratched the surface of what we want to see in Europe. At times it was hard to decide whether to take the left or right turn as they both led to places we would like to go.

My trip is also coming to an end as my green card runs out two weeks today and the bike will be in London for that. The longest trip I had done on a motorbike before this adventure was less than two weeks!

Next time when we come back (we will as Leanne missed seeing Dubrovnik) we will take you up on that offer.

Of course we could show you New Zealand as well?
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Old 07-23-2014, 12:24 PM   #360
Jim pedley
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Been fantastic reading all your reports and give me lots of ideas of places to visit . Il be leaving the UK in 6 hours and hope to meet up with you in Hungary enjoy your stay in zagrebe
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