September 20, 2011 GMT
Oops not Kosova - Montenegro, Serbia and Bulgaria

Hi there again folks - hope you enjoyed the last blog - here's the latest update. It'll be a bit long as we have been without any IT support for days !

First of all -- on the last posting it should have read : ' Colin's day was made by the lady at the Dubrovnic apartment hopping on the bike and riding sidesaddle up 3 floors to the garage ' !!!!! - I left the most important bit out !

Ok - the night before we left Dubrovnik ( Thursday 15 Sept ) Colin just happened to check on the border crossing from Montenegro to Kosova. Just as well he did as it said that the border would be closed on 16 ( which was the day we intended to cross) and troops put in place.

On the news next day we saw troops, helicopters, road dug up and barriers across the border. By then we had altered our route, of course ----- going the long way round through Serbia and into Bulgaria.Put about a day and a half on the trip - but was safe.

So -- 16 th we left Dub ---- after Colin had pumped up the front tyre after someone had nicked the valve caps over night!-- and that was in a 'secure' garage ! Along the coast road and entered Montenegro about 11 am. Drove past lines of lorries waiting to cross the border- these lorry drivers must have the patience of a saint !Showed passports --- and were through - no customs control at all.Had to buy insurance for 10 Euro as we had no Green Card for Montenegro.

It was hot - 35 degrees and we are back to the wet head and T shirt syndrome. The coast road was as stunning as Croatia but covered with a thick heat haze.The heat was really sapping to our energy.

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At Budva we swung inland to a National Park area through deep gorges and softer mountains.It was a slow ride and Colin did'nt get out of 4 th gear the whole way due to the traffic and roads.

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The whole length of this road, - 160 miles at least there was advertising on rocks and bolders for an auto recovery firm with the telephone number ! These were at least every mile , if not more ----- how about that for advertising !

Got through to the Serbian border about 4. 30pm and were stopped at what we thought was the border queue. ----- No, it turned out that it was road works and here they just close the road for a period of time and everyone waits ----- ( in the sun ! )-- we gathered that it was due to reopen at 5. 30 pm and it did.

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Through the border to Serbia - once again passport checks only and no isurance asked for.
Met up with a Polish couple who had been to Albania on their Goldwing. He said that ' there are no roads in albania and not good for the bike !'

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It was nearing dusk and we pulled into the nearest motel- 17 euro per night.Thought that was good but a litle further up the road they were 10 Euro.

Next day and we were through the mountains and quiet traffic till we came to another road block and this time the wait was 2 hours ! -- The guys let us through the barriers as there was a restaurant 200 metres up the road and it would be cool there.And so we waited = but at least we were in the cool. At 1 pm the road was open and on a brand new road what should be the first thing along it --- well a horse and cart, of course!

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Serbian towns were heaving--- police are everwhere and at each road junction are directing the traffic with a baton. Some parts are really run down, elderly cars , peasants with pony and traps and selling their wares on the side of the road. Then there there are areas that are ultra modern and swish brand new cars and petrol stations. Everyone is friendly and helpful. Some speak a smattering of English although it's not taught in the schools.

Signposts are in Cyrillic with English underneath. Petrol is about the same as UK but food and hotels are cheap.Road surfaces are good.

I got stung by a ???? through my jeans - boy did I jump !---- Colin wondered what on earth had happened .

Marlborough cigarettes are 1 Euro for 20 and smoking is allowed everywhere. There are many large lorry parks on the side of the road through Europe and flatbed lorries towing the same length as the lead truck.

We overnighted in Pojate in an ultra modern motel for 55 per night inc breakfast, meal and drinks.Security was tight here with a security lock on all entrances to the motel.

Sun 18 and we went on to the peage for a change and through to the Bulgarian border.Showed passports only and we were through.

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We transitted Bulgaria bypassing Sofia and stopping for the night at a motel about 90 miles from the Turkish border. Bulgaria is very Russian with Cyrillic signposts and out in the country appears to be poor. People were , on the whole, helpful and would take Euro. The roads were reasonable and petrol about the same as UK. This part of Bulgaria is flat.

The babushkas sit outside the loos and collect your 50 cents.
At 5pm we stopped at a roadside motel for the night --- it turned out that they took Euro but there was no restauant ---- 'down in the village'. By this time she had our money , so we were committed to staying. It offered romms for a rest at 11 and condoms were for sale at reception ! We had to pay up front and it was 3o euro for the night, We hiked 1 kilometre for a mealto be told that they would'nt take euro. When she saw the look of horror on our faces , she relented and said 'da'. We resorted to the picture bookand had a meal of ??????? -- don't know but it filled a hole.

Coaches were calling in through the night at the motel as a loo stop.

Mon 19 Sept and we were at the border to Turkey at noon. This I will cover with the next blog. Hope this makes sense as I have had to move several times due to various reasons ! We are currently in the Ibis at Istanbul --- more to come.

Below are some photos of Bulgaria for you ----

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img alt="serbia and bulgaria 026.JPG" src="http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/tstories/masters/images/serbia and bulgaria 026.JPG" width="640" height="480" border="0" />


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More to come !!!!!

Posted by Dee Masters at September 20, 2011 05:28 PM GMT
 


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