I just want to inform you we finished a hell of a trip from Croatia to Togo. First time on a motorbike. Two up old Yamaha Tenere 660 XTZ.
6 month, 12500 kms journey.
After Europe we crossed Morocco, West Sahara, Mauritania to Senegal, than jumped to Cabo Verde (without a bike), back to Senegal, Gambia, best times in Mali, and onward throught Burkina Faso and Togo.
I had known nothing about motorbikes before, and had just learned as much as i could in 2 months before the trip. We had some problems in Mauri (electronic box broken from dirt roads shaking), but none major problems further down... Eventually, thanx God, we had not fallen down anytime nor had a flat tyre!
No terrorist kindappings, no snake intruders, no unbearable hassle, no thieves, no kids stoning us (though some radical muslims threw two stones at my (too pretty) girlfriend from top of the Djenne mosque. No wars and terror, apart from running through coup d'etat in Burkina Faso. Well as another biker (German Frank on RTW tour) we met on the road in Burkina said - "What would the African trip be like if you didn't experience at least one coup d'etat). I don't know if it was really coup, but after all the shootings, explosions, and military looting the centre ville, and before we ran away from Ouaga, people there said it is the coup so it felt like.
Finishing all up in Togo, and flying home there together with the bike...
I've put the shipping report in the appropriate section, and down below i copy-pasted it.
I have not put my photos or travel stories yet on any page, but you can see some photos on my facebook page if you wish. You have to hit "like" in the following link, and then search the photos: Davor Rostuhar - pisac i fotograf | Facebook
Well, text is in croatian, but photography speaks all the languages!
Many times, this webpage and forums were really helpful and i wish to thank all the people who share info and make the travel more easy!
I thank the organizors of this web page for this great idea, and advise them to redesign the page and make it better because it deserves it!
I please all bikers and travellers to travel responsibly and take as much time as they can in order to experience most from the journey!
(2-months-"long"-way-down trips don't make any sense in my opinion - if we travel to faraway lands, we should learn about them and meet their people, not just run through...)
On the whole West African trip, we met only 3 other (single or pair of) bikers on the whole trip. Absolutely amazing Moroccan King Mustapha, German Frank with NY gfriend Nina, and British Daniel. They are all going further south ,through dangerous Nigeria and difficult Congolese rainy season. I wish them best of luck.
We met great SouthAfrican bicyclist (Global Wheeling Foundation is a South African based Non Profit Organisation.
), on around the world tour, who was covering the same ground as we did in the same time (though we had much more free days
We met in Rabat, Morocco, month later in Mauritania, and 3 months later in Togo!!!
To Kayden, Daniel, Frank and Nina, as to all other fellow travellers i wish only one thing:
MAY THE SUN BE IN YOUR FACE, AND THE WIND UPON YOUR BACK!
SHIPPING THE BIKE (AIR) FROM TOGO TO CROATIA
When we came to Lome we had 7 days to ship bike somehow to Croatia, or somewhere close in Europe. I first tried to find a sea cargo, but no luck. I found some agents but they didn't call me back which was not very profesional. The only proper motorbike place in Togo - Toni Togo - that deals mostly with KTM's, people there were very helpful. They told me sea shipping is much more hassle and not much cheaper, and that they always use air. The only proper way to shipp to Croatia from there was with Air France. But the procedure was pretty profesional, very reliable even though expensive. I had to build the box/crate for a bike, and ToniTogo helped me with their workspace and finding carpenter for me, and transporting the bike afterwards to airport. It took me whole day to make the crate as i tried to reduce the volume maximaly. I took both wheels off as well as front suspensions (forks?) and steering wheel, vizor etc... I count i saved some 200-300 euros by doing that. Eventualy the price was 1000 euros, and i payed 50 more to take the bike home from Zagreb airport. Once we brought the box (it costed me aroun 50 euro to make the box) to the airport, the procedure there was not a big hassle. But dont do the mistake i did - don't close the top of the box, before the customs officers check the inside. They wanted to open it, but i somehow managed to persuade them not to...
So the bike was gone, and i was a bit worried how it will go, but everything went well. In the air France they gave me the tracking number, so i could check where my bike is online. They also find the agent (obligatory) there who did all the paperwork for me. Bike arrived 10 days later to its destination, and everything was fine, no problems!