Hey All -
I'll be traveling with one of my good buddies this summer from Cadiz, Spain to Athens, Greece. Any useful information from riders that have completed this trek before would be much appreciated! We also wouldn't pass up any hospitable folks along the way that have a yard for us to set up our tents on for a night...
Please take a look at the attached route and let us know if you can help out. Cheers!
Sounds like an adventure. Did Athens-Slovenia (so final stretch of your route) but will highly recommend you to go inland. The coast is nice for a little while but it's busy, touristy and not very hospitable. Go inland instead, or at least some of the way.
I appreciate the tip Anton. Going inland seems like the way to go, especially after reading some other forums . Might just stick to the coast when it makes sense to (major cities or sights).
How did you map out your Slovenia to Athens trip? Any must see sites along the way?
You can check out the map of my last trip (https://www.google.com/maps/d/viewer?mid=1WolUWt4yNuVYSaqgifIY4srZyWA&ll=44.06506592097358%2C15.7811681687499&z=6) to get some ideas about Ex-Yugoslavia. I agree going inland can be a good solution against some must-sees along Croatian coast (like Zadar).
Besides, I would also try to get inland along the Levante, in Spain. I travelled there 4 summers ago and found it too overcrowded. Ronda and Granada through Cazorla mountains is a good option.
Yeah I've been thinking about going into mainland Spain because it looks like there's a great national park through there. Thanks for the tip. One other question though, I took a look at your route and was wondering about Croatia - Did you take ferries and island hop in Croatia?
I did. Your bike should be let in any catamaran although it's not official, just ask the captain when the ship docks. However, during high season (July-August) they could be reluctant. I did it in mid-June.
Cycled the stretch between Budva (Montenegro) and Igoumenitsa last Summer - wonderful rides!! Coast in Montenegro we rode mostly on the coastal road which was quite good: not superbusy despite high season (July). We went inland a bit South of Bar, towards the border at Muriqan and then onwards to Shköder. From Shköder we travelled to Tirana on a small road just East of the main road - SH5 to Vau i Dejes and then turning South there - rejoining to big road at Fushe Kruje to cycle in Tirana. The small road is much nicer than the big one, though I should say that even the main road felt very safe as there is a wide shoulder and drivers really made an effort to give us space. Tirana-Elbasan was a beautiful ride with quite a bit of climbing - don't let people tell you that it's an easy ride because of the tunnel, cyclists are not allowed so you have to get over the mountain instead! From Elbasan we rode to Berat and from Berat to Vlore, and from Vlore onwards we stayed on the coastal road. The stretch between Vlore and Himara takes you over a biiiig climb (well, depending on what you are used to... but on my 50 Euro second hand Peugeot with a superbad gearing system, it was a struggle :)) - we overnighted in Himara and Saranda before rolling into Igoumenitsa. Albania was a lot more cycling friendly than we anticipated (no infrastructure, but people really pay attention) - keep in mind that it can be hoooooot (it was around 40 degrees C while we were there). You will have a great time - enjoy!!