Go Back   Horizons Unlimited - The HUBB > Ride Tales, Trip Reports and Stories > Ride Tales
Ride Tales Post your ride reports for a weekend ride or around the world. Please make the first words of the title WHERE the ride is. Please do NOT just post a link to your site. For a link, see Get a Link.
Photo by Michael Jordan, enjoying a meal at sunset, Zangskar Valley, India

I haven't been everywhere...
but it's on my list!


Photo by Michael Jordan
enjoying a meal at sunset,
Zangskar Valley, India



Like Tree446Likes

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1291  
Old 10 Dec 2016
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Fixed Address (formerly Toronto)
Posts: 1,847

I join in on the cobblestone fun. Also, proof that I ride a motorcycle on this trip too!


This is the courtyard of where we're staying. Our bikes share the parking spot with a lady selling clothing and souvenirs

Every time we ride in and out of our apartment, the old Albanian lady has to move her little storefront out of the way. But she does so obligingly. She's very friendly and always smiles at us!


The building on the right with the umbrellas in front of it is where we are staying


Walking around the Kala. There are a few people actually living up here inside the fortress walls
__________________
Gene - http://www.RideDOT.com
Reply With Quote
  #1292  
Old 10 Dec 2016
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Fixed Address (formerly Toronto)
Posts: 1,847

Neda knows all the nature tricks. Here she is making me laugh by making this snap dragon flower talk.


An old Jawa motorcycle from Czechoslovakia rests up against the inside wall of the citadel.
It's more of a decoration than a vehicle at this point



We walk through one of the gates in the wall to get a view of the mountainside below


Beautiful greenery everywhere. I can't believe the weather we are having!


We can see that a few kms outside of the old city of Berat is the more modern city centre
__________________
Gene - http://www.RideDOT.com
Reply With Quote
  #1293  
Old 10 Dec 2016
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Fixed Address (formerly Toronto)
Posts: 1,847

This face seemed a bit odd and out of place


More Albanian ladies enjoying the weather and scenery


Neda balancing on some of the ruins of the castle walls


One of the beautiful churches inside the Kala. The Holy Trinity Church of Berat


Totally enjoying Berat!

You'll have to excuse me now. I have to get back to planning our route through Albania...
__________________
Gene - http://www.RideDOT.com
Reply With Quote
  #1294  
Old 14 Dec 2016
Mac-1769's Avatar
Gold Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Sokuluk Kyrgyzstan
Posts: 100
Thanks for sharing

Great photos and write ups. You two are having a great time, thanks for taking the time to share with us. When you get to Central Asia look us up. We live in Kyrgyzstan.

Mac
__________________
Every day with the Lord is an ADVENTURE
Reply With Quote
  #1295  
Old 15 Dec 2016
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Fixed Address (formerly Toronto)
Posts: 1,847
Updated from http://www.RideDOT.com/rtw/325.html



Our tour of Albania continues.


Leaving our Albanian castle accommodations behind. So sad!


And back down the steep cobblestone road to the old city of Berat

I can't believe the beautiful weather we are continuing to have. Our friends all over Western Europe - from the UK, Belgium, Germany and Switzerland - they've been constantly PMing us to ask, "Where are you? It's been raining for weeks now! Are you here in town? Are you to blame for this?!?"

Sorry guys. It's absolutely perfect where *we* are! RideDOT.com curse is broken! (knock on wood)
__________________
Gene - http://www.RideDOT.com
Reply With Quote
  #1296  
Old 15 Dec 2016
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Fixed Address (formerly Toronto)
Posts: 1,847

From Berat, we backtrack north a little bit to ride past Fier towards Vlorë


At Vlorë, we turn back inland towards the mountains. Nice seeing where the road will take us up ahead!


Admiring the valley below us. We were Vlorëd by the beauty...

SH76 follows the contours of the Vlorë valley carved by the Shushicë river somewhere far below us. Not much traffic here, but the pavement is surprisingly nice and twisty. We enjoy the curves, the scenery and the perfect riding weather!
__________________
Gene - http://www.RideDOT.com
Reply With Quote
  #1297  
Old 15 Dec 2016
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Fixed Address (formerly Toronto)
Posts: 1,847

We turn off the main road and head to an archaeological site that Neda found online

About 40 kms south of Vlorë is supposed to be the site of the ancient Greek ruins of Amantia. Not a lot of signage, but we manage to find the turnoff to the gravel road that leads up to a stone fort up at the top of the hill.


"Oooh! Ancient ruins! I'm excited now!"

We park our bikes at the bottom of the hill. By the 3rd century BC, Amantia was quite a developed city, it had it's own temple as well as an acropolis. The city was abandoned by 6th century AD. Since then, most of it has been looted by illegal diggers and treasure hunters, but some of the foundations still remained for the archaeologists to dig up and showcase.


This is the Amantia stadium. It looks like they played football here. Neda sits at the 40-yard line: "This is not even in the same league as the Pula amphitheater."

So far not that exciting. We try to find the rest of the ruins, and it looks like the only direction is up the hill. The road looks pretty steep and rough so we opt to leave the bikes down here and hike up. I'm not too jazzed about that, but I'm trying not to complain too much, otherwise I'll be stuck planning and leading this entire trip forever!

It's about a one km steep climb to get to the top. We should have left our riding jackets on the motorcycles. I'm huffing and puffing and sweating profusely carrying all the cameras and my jacket. But I'm not complaining. Excessively. I think...
__________________
Gene - http://www.RideDOT.com
Reply With Quote
  #1298  
Old 15 Dec 2016
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Fixed Address (formerly Toronto)
Posts: 1,847

Halfway up, we can see the road we took to get here. Nice!


This Albanian man was watching us hike up the hill.

"Why hike when you have a horse?"
"Exactly, Albanian Man. I have like a hundred of them sitting in that field down there... "

At the top, the stone structure is just a little village, it doesn't look like it's part of any Greek ruins. We walk to the other side.


Are those the ruins? They don't look very impressive from up here...

Neda wants to hike down to the ruins. It's basically the same level as where we parked our bikes! I perform a quick reward-to-effort ratio calculation in my head and the number I come up with is waaaay too low. So I ask to be excused from this section of the hike.
__________________
Gene - http://www.RideDOT.com
Reply With Quote
  #1299  
Old 15 Dec 2016
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Fixed Address (formerly Toronto)
Posts: 1,847

I waited for Neda at the top while she hiked down. I took some pictures in the meantime.


She made it to the bottom. I'm using the extra-super-zoom feature on the camera here.


Neda says, "I walked all the way down here for *this*? What a waste!"

I felt pretty smug at the top of the hill. Saved soooo many calories! I waited for her as she hiked back up and then we trudged back down the hill towards our bikes. Neda doesn't seem to mind all this extra exercise. She's so weird.

When we reached the parking lot/field we saw two other motos with Austrian plates. We talked a bit with the riders and exchanged riding stories. Then off they went leaving us alone, except for another Albanian:


This guy travels even slower than we do! But not by much...
__________________
Gene - http://www.RideDOT.com
Reply With Quote
  #1300  
Old 15 Dec 2016
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Fixed Address (formerly Toronto)
Posts: 1,847
Despite SH76 looking to be more twisty roads south through the Kurvelesh Mountains, we instead double back north towards Vlorë.


There are random war memorials and statues scattered all over the countryside in Albania


Made it into Vlorë for a very late lunch

It's a pretty seaside town. We head to the boardwalk to try to find a restaurant. Lots of pizza places here in Vlorë. We had some really greasy pasta for lunch and then jumped back on the bikes for the main course of the day! The reason why we doubled back to the coast was because I had read there was a must-do road in this area.


The coastal road south of Vlorë towards Sarandë has consistently placed on many top ten lists of Best European Roads
__________________
Gene - http://www.RideDOT.com
Reply With Quote
  #1301  
Old 15 Dec 2016
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Fixed Address (formerly Toronto)
Posts: 1,847

The road doesn't just stay on the coast, it also jags inwards and up the mountains into the clouds. Rainsuit required.


Riding into the clouds of Mount Çika. Neda says it's pronounced Mount Chica. haha!


Coming down the other side of La Montaña de las Chicas. ¡Hola Mola! Muy hermosa!

I don't know why this blog has suddenly turned Spanish... in Albania...
__________________
Gene - http://www.RideDOT.com
Reply With Quote
  #1302  
Old 15 Dec 2016
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Fixed Address (formerly Toronto)
Posts: 1,847
Our helmets were like bobble heads. The mountains and scenery were so breathtaking, we didn't know which way to look. We opted to keep our eyes on the road whenever there was a turn ahead of us. Which was most of the time:


Staircase of switchbacks back down to the coastal road


More beautiful coastal scenery


Neda is riding off into the sunset

Okay, so the Greek ruins were not that impressive, but such a great day of riding though! So far, Albania is surprising me. I didn't know what to expect beforehand, but we're both super-happy that we're here!
__________________
Gene - http://www.RideDOT.com
Reply With Quote
  #1303  
Old 15 Dec 2016
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Fixed Address (formerly Toronto)
Posts: 1,847
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mac-1769 View Post
When you get to Central Asia look us up. We live in Kyrgyzstan.
Thanks Mac! We'll certainly let you know!
__________________
Gene - http://www.RideDOT.com
Reply With Quote
  #1304  
Old 15 Dec 2016
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Outer Sydney, Australia
Posts: 366
Fantastic pics & report as always Gene
Don't let Neda wear off your well earned Asian excess pounds without a fight Gene
__________________
My memory is becoming that good, I should be able to organise my own surprise party soon
Reply With Quote
  #1305  
Old 24 Dec 2016
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No Fixed Address (formerly Toronto)
Posts: 1,847
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bucket1960 View Post
Don't let Neda wear off your well earned Asian excess pounds without a fight Gene
I keep telling her I'm in shape.

Round *is* a shape, right?
__________________
Gene - http://www.RideDOT.com
Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
cuba, rtw, visit


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 2 (0 Registered Users and/or Members and 2 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


 
 

Announcements

Thinking about traveling? Not sure about the whole thing? Watch the HU Achievable Dream Video Trailers and then get ALL the information you need to get inspired and learn how to travel anywhere in the world!

Have YOU ever wondered who has ridden around the world? We did too - and now here's the list of Circumnavigators!
Check it out now
, and add your information if we didn't find you.

Next HU Eventscalendar

HU Event and other updates on the HUBB Forum "Traveller's Advisories" thread.
ALL Dates subject to change.

2024:

2025:

  • Queensland is back! May 2-4 2025!

Add yourself to the Updates List for each event!

Questions about an event? Ask here

HUBBUK: info

See all event details

 
World's most listened to Adventure Motorbike Show!
Check the RAW segments; Grant, your HU host is on every month!
Episodes below to listen to while you, err, pretend to do something or other...

2020 Edition of Chris Scott's Adventure Motorcycling Handbook.

2020 Edition of Chris Scott's Adventure Motorcycling Handbook.

"Ultimate global guide for red-blooded bikers planning overseas exploration. Covers choice & preparation of best bike, shipping overseas, baggage design, riding techniques, travel health, visas, documentation, safety and useful addresses." Recommended. (Grant)



Ripcord Rescue Travel Insurance.

Ripcord Rescue Travel Insurance™ combines into a single integrated program the best evacuation and rescue with the premier travel insurance coverages designed for adventurers.

Led by special operations veterans, Stanford Medicine affiliated physicians, paramedics and other travel experts, Ripcord is perfect for adventure seekers, climbers, skiers, sports enthusiasts, hunters, international travelers, humanitarian efforts, expeditions and more.

Ripcord travel protection is now available for ALL nationalities, and travel is covered on motorcycles of all sizes!


 

What others say about HU...

"This site is the BIBLE for international bike travelers." Greg, Australia

"Thank you! The web site, The travels, The insight, The inspiration, Everything, just thanks." Colin, UK

"My friend and I are planning a trip from Singapore to England... We found (the HU) site invaluable as an aid to planning and have based a lot of our purchases (bikes, riding gear, etc.) on what we have learned from this site." Phil, Australia

"I for one always had an adventurous spirit, but you and Susan lit the fire for my trip and I'll be forever grateful for what you two do to inspire others to just do it." Brent, USA

"Your website is a mecca of valuable information and the (video) series is informative, entertaining, and inspiring!" Jennifer, Canada

"Your worldwide organisation and events are the Go To places to for all serious touring and aspiring touring bikers." Trevor, South Africa

"This is the answer to all my questions." Haydn, Australia

"Keep going the excellent work you are doing for Horizons Unlimited - I love it!" Thomas, Germany

Lots more comments here!



Five books by Graham Field!

Diaries of a compulsive traveller
by Graham Field
Book, eBook, Audiobook

"A compelling, honest, inspiring and entertaining writing style with a built-in feel-good factor" Get them NOW from the authors' website and Amazon.com, Amazon.ca, Amazon.co.uk.



Back Road Map Books and Backroad GPS Maps for all of Canada - a must have!

New to Horizons Unlimited?

New to motorcycle travelling? New to the HU site? Confused? Too many options? It's really very simple - just 4 easy steps!

Horizons Unlimited was founded in 1997 by Grant and Susan Johnson following their journey around the world on a BMW R80G/S.

Susan and Grant Johnson Read more about Grant & Susan's story

Membership - help keep us going!

Horizons Unlimited is not a big multi-national company, just two people who love motorcycle travel and have grown what started as a hobby in 1997 into a full time job (usually 8-10 hours per day and 7 days a week) and a labour of love. To keep it going and a roof over our heads, we run events all over the world with the help of volunteers; we sell inspirational and informative DVDs; we have a few selected advertisers; and we make a small amount from memberships.

You don't have to be a Member to come to an HU meeting, access the website, or ask questions on the HUBB. What you get for your membership contribution is our sincere gratitude, good karma and knowing that you're helping to keep the motorcycle travel dream alive. Contributing Members and Gold Members do get additional features on the HUBB. Here's a list of all the Member benefits on the HUBB.




All times are GMT +1. The time now is 11:01.