Deep Balkans – a look back

28. September 2013 § Ein Kommentar

13_Deep_Balkans_1174

Another tree-lined country road on the slow way to Gagausia

This has been a very rewarding tour. After the Journey Southeast (Urdorf – Dubrovnik) and the Celtic Arc (Thurso to Porrentruy), I picked up from where I left off in 2011 and rode through seven countries and nine language regions to the far southeast corner of Europe. The 2015 km which I clocked in these four summer weeks jack up the total to about 7000 km. Google Maps tells me that Thurso to Istanbul on the fastest possible track is 4083 km or 40 hours. In a small Greek village I met a man who said he travels the 2000 odd km from Hannover to his old home in 22 hours, loading up on Red Bull continuously but not stopping for sleep.

You will understand that my enjoyment has been in the contrary to all of this: Long days, slow progress, lots of detours on narrow side roads, and every mountain range a challenge to cherish. I confess I have become addicted to these summer jaunts. I thought Istanbul would be the end of my journeys – not least because it seemed hopeless to try and cover 80 languages areas (I have arrived at about 30 so far). But I will have a rethink this winter. There’s the Baltic Jaunt which cries out for completion: Gdansk and onward… Perhaps one day, I’ll really make it to Gagausia.

In the meantime here is the route and stats for the summer 2013. You can click on the image for enlarged views.

Deep-Balkans-Stats

Dubrovnik-Peja

Dubrovnik – Kotor (Montenegro) – Pejë (Kosovo)

Peja-Gostivar

Pejë – Gostivar (Macedonia)

Gostivar-Bitola

Gostivar- Bitola (Macedonia)

Bitola-Drama

Bitola – Drama (Greece)

Drama-Svilengrad

Drama – Svilengrad (Bulgaria)

Svilengrad-Istanbul

Svilengrad – Silivri – Istanbul (Turkey)

Links to the reviews of the earlier trips:

Journey Southeast (2011)

Celtic Arc (2012)

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