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Route Planning Where to go, when, what are the interesting places to see
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  #1  
Old 25 Oct 2010
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Europe April 2011

I am planning a trip to europe,it will be my first trip outside the uk. i am planning on going to south of france then on to italy to rome from there i am up for suggestions. am planning on being away for about 30 days but only want to do about 4000 miles. Any info would be very welcome as it will be my first time and know there is a lot of experance out there.
thanks LJ
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  #2  
Old 25 Oct 2010
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Steer clear of big cities... Rome on a bike will be hell. I'd get easyjet there at a later stage and use your 30days to explore the remoter areas with less traffic, cheaper everything and not having to worry about the bike overnight.

I'm not keen on Italy on the bike but am sure someone else will be along to correct me. Everytime I've been there it was a bit industrial and mad drivers...

Me personally I'd go with castellane north of Nice as nightstop, take Route napolean south from Grenoble and base in castellane for a few days... easy day excursion for Nice/Monaco etc and then head east through Italy maybe stopping at Lake Como before entering Slovenia and you have the jewels of Old Eastern Europe plus Austria to savour... don't forget 30days is a longtime.

My last solo trip was 3weeks and on occasion I was going stir crazy not 'really' talking to anyone in that time.... having said that looking back on it now, it was fantastic.... if I could get 30days off.... I'd go again.

For me 300-400kms a day is plenty and don't forget to schedule off days away from the bike and relaxed days with only 80-100kms to do... trying to run to a tight schedule is madness...

L`st point, France is big but bloody marvelous!!!

Enjoy,
J
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  #3  
Old 26 Oct 2010
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Seconded!

Couldn't agree more with all of the above, especially avoiding big cities, especially in Italy.

Additionally, I would recommend that you take a sleeping bag and tent and that you don't book accommodation in advance, instead riding to about four in the afternoon and then picking the first thing that comes your way.

Keep daily notes and take pictures, it all goes by too fast.
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  #4  
Old 26 Oct 2010
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Croatia is well worth a visit and not that much further on past Italy
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  #5  
Old 26 Oct 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LJ.. View Post
I am planning a trip to europe,it will be my first trip outside the uk. i am planning on going to south of france then on to italy to rome from there i am up for suggestions. am planning on being away for about 30 days but only want to do about 4000 miles. Any info would be very welcome as it will be my first time and know there is a lot of experance out there.
thanks LJ
When where you thinking of going? 30 day's is a long time to do such a short distance. As you sound interest in Italy, what a bout riding down to the south and catching a ferry across to old Yugoslavia or Greece. And then riding up the black sea and home.
John933
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  #6  
Old 27 Oct 2010
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Originally Posted by John933 View Post
When where you thinking of going? 30 day's is a long time to do such a short distance. As you sound interest in Italy, what a bout riding down to the south and catching a ferry across to old Yugoslavia or Greece. And then riding up the black sea and home.
John933
was thinking off that ferry to albania then up through montenegro would like to go to transilvania and so on.
do i need visas and road passers
do i need to carry my original documents with me (v5,insurance,mot for bike)?
some off your coments are very useful like not riding in big citys but need to go to rome so i think i will find somewhere close and catch train in for a day thanks
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  #7  
Old 27 Oct 2010
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You could try my 2011 route...

Through France to the south, Corsica, Sardinia, Sicily, then North through Italy and back home.
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  #8  
Old 27 Oct 2010
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Originally Posted by Flyingdoctor View Post
You could try my 2011 route...

Through France to the south, Corsica, Sardinia, Sicily, then North through Italy and back home.
That sounds like an interesting route... never thought of that before... Are ferrys reasonably frequent between the islands. I understand Ajaccio on Corsica is beautiful and always fancied finding Corleone in Sicily!!!
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  #9  
Old 27 Oct 2010
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Don't Over Plan

Make a basic plan of where you want to go and what you want to see and then be flexible, very flexible.

For me I don't like the cities or the main tourist area's, but don't sometimes the tourist area are useful, especially if you need someone who speaks your language.

Also, when you do stop, try and speak to the locals, it may not be a long conversation, but I found that generally people are interested in what you are doing, are helpful, trustworthy and generous. We have had some great unplanned meetings.

You might also want to touch base with "Hubbers" (helpful people ) in the general local of where you are going, apart from helping you out when things go wrong, they will often feed you and put you up for the night and also acting as a local guide.

Happy travels.
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  #10  
Old 27 Oct 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LJ.. View Post
was thinking off that ferry to albania then up through montenegro would like to go to transilvania and so on.
do i need visas and road passers
do i need to carry my original documents with me (v5,insurance,mot for bike)?
some off your coments are very useful like not riding in big citys but need to go to rome so i think i will find somewhere close and catch train in for a day thanks
If you are going to go that way. Look at your insurance, I thinking it will say EEC country's only. There is a couple around there that's not EEC, so you want be covered. That means you'll have to get extra insurance. Or skip the non EEC country's. Which are to my memory, Albania, Macedonia, and that Herz-e-govener place. Now if you can get from Italy to Greece on a ferry. Then you can ride up through Bulgaria and Romanian. Dipping your toe in the Black sea on your way round. Once you get to northern Romanian, Hungary is the next place you drop in to. From there it's make a plan for your way home.

You realy need to go with some one who know's the rope's. As you are a long time out. And if any thing goes tit's up. You need a mate to help you out.
John933
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  #11  
Old 28 Oct 2010
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If you are going to France and Italy then you'd be crazy not to go to the Dolomites in North Eastern Italy bordering with Switzerland, Austria and Slovenia. In fact I would recommend spending at least a whole week of your trip in the Alpine region. Not only is it spectacular but it is probably some of the most contrasting terrain a UK rider could experience.

If you do ride by Switzerland and lake Leman, let me know and I'll join you for a ride and show you some of the better roads Switzerland has to offer. Just send me a PM.
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  #12  
Old 28 Oct 2010
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I hope it's closer to the end of April than the beginning if you're going to venture into the Alps. Most of the ski resorts will still operate into April and a good many of the high passes will still be snowed in (prob 'til June). After having just got through a UK winter you may not want to revisit the world of snow and ice.

The coastal route from the south of France down to Rome is quite industrial in the northern part of Italy but it does pass quickly. Depending on your budget, island hopping through Corsica and Sardinia and then to the Italian mainland may be worth considering. I've not been to Sardinia but Corsica is definitely worth a visit.
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  #13  
Old 28 Oct 2010
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I have to say North Italy was one of the least enjoyable parts of my trip to Eastern Europe this summer.
In fact I ended up deliberately using motorwys to avoid some of teh interminable traffic lights from France to Milan. I was glad to see the back of the roads around Milan. It did improve when I got up past Merino, or even Aprica.
Checkoslovakia was good, but the roads in Poland were very variable
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  #14  
Old 28 Oct 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oldbmw View Post
I have to say North Italy was one of the least enjoyable parts of my trip to Eastern Europe this summer.
In fact I ended up deliberately using motorwys to avoid some of teh interminable traffic lights from France to Milan. I was glad to see the back of the roads around Milan. It did improve when I got up past Merino, or even Aprica.
Checkoslovakia was good, but the roads in Poland were very variable
+1 what he said... ref Czech/Poland!! I loved Slovakia and Slovenia and Hungary was a helluva surprise.
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