Exploring (again) Valsugana and the river Brenta

Cycling day 10/73 km ~ From Bassano del Grappa to Roncegno Terme

So staying at the paragliders campingsite was great as I had a chat in the morning with the guys from the evening before – but now I’m sure I do not want to learn paragliding 😁

The sun was shining, the tent was dry after a horrible night and so I continued my journey. Of course I had a look to the ancient town of Bassano del Grappa...

And coincidentally I found the oldest bakery in town and bought a really good tasting bread freshly made.

Leaving Bassano del Grappa you have to cross the famous bridge – unfortunately it’s under construction…like two years ago on my way to Rome it was outstanding to visit it.

From Bavaria to Rome (2016)

Entering the valley of the river Brenta you experience an outstanding beauty of nature…and against the weatherforecast the sun was shining…

But – as the routine teached me already – after the sun comes some rain…after midday having had my lunch it started again to rain for a short while but this day I wasn’t as good in form like the other days.

So I’ve decided to take a room instead of a night in the tent and did so on the Agriturismo – they’ve got both and everything as perfect maintained.

Agriturismo Montibeller in Roncegno Terme

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On the highway to Gibraltar – EuroVelo 8

Cycling day 9/29 km ~ From Grado to Bassano del Grappa

So after a relaxing day I’ve started again from my first big stop in Grado to Cermignano to hop on the train to Bassano del Grappa. This was to spare some time as it would have been 225 km to go.

On the cyclepath I’ve followed today – the EuroVelo 8 – you can cycle from Athens to Gibraltar – unbelievable. So this trip was made by Andrew P. Sykes, a teacher from London and he wrote a book about this journey.

Along the med on a bike called reggie

So on my way to the trainstation I passed by Aquileia which was great again.

So starting in Grado I’ve had a wonderful weather. At the station I’ve a met a german cyclist couple on their way back home. So we arrived at Venezia-Mestre where I’ve had to change the train – and it was raining like cats and dogs, also with thunderstorms.

It changed a little bit and in Bassano del Grappa there were only clouds. So I’ve managed to reach the campingsite, built up my tent – and than it started to rain 😂

At this site is situated next to a perfect paragliding spot and it’s well-known in Europe for the good conditions.

I met some paragliders and we went into the restaurant next to the campingsite. It was again raining like cats and dogs with thunderstorms – unbelievable! So my small tent did a really good job!

Welcome to the Adriatic Sea

Cycling day 8/55 km ~ From Udine to Grado

This morning was a comfortable one – staying up late and enjoy to have breakfast with new friends. After saying goodbye I left the town of Udine and cycled on small roads to my next highlight – Palmanova.

This city designed by Leonardo da Vinci with its walls formed like a star was definitely worth a closer look. I also met a couple from Germany who did the same cyclepath like me – the Ciclovia Alpe Adria Radweg (CAAR). Many people cycling along this path – but only a few do it self-organized as you can see the panniers of famous companies on many bikes…

On the main place you can find some exhibitions of Leonardo da Vinci – as I’ve seen some of them already in his birthplace two years ago on my way to Rome.

From Bavaria to Rome (2016)

The next highlight was the city of Aquileia with the biggest mosaic in the western world – about 700 s.m. A very special experience to enter the cathedral with these mosaics – especially if you have a closer look to the meanings which are explained in a flyer you get in the entrance.

The whole town is covered with excavations where you experience the roman life. At this day we had about 30 C so I had a closer look also to the Gelateria 😁

Now I had to cycle the last kilometers to my first big stop – the Adriatic Sea!

After more than 450 km I’ve reached finally the sea and it was great to have finished the first part of my trip of 2018!

I found also a very cosy campingsite with a nice restaurant – and met many cyclists who experienced the same cyclepath like me – what a great day!

Approaching Udine

Cycling day 7/55 km ~ From Gemona to Udine

The night was windy – and so my tent was dry, breakfast was easy in the sun with a view to the mountains. I bought new biking sunglasses which you definitely need in Italy in the summer – and the guy from the bikeshop had a look at my recumbent-bike…

So having made the daily shopping and got new glasses I followed the track – now I was on the EuroVelo 8, which brings you from London down to Brindisi – unbelievable!

Exit the valley in the open country it’s great what the builders of the cyclepath made – as you leave the crowded roads and enter a nature park which was incredible! Along a river, through woods and lonesome fields – absolutely fantastic.

So I reached the wonderful town of Udine and cycled to my hosts which I found on couchsurfing.com.

It was great to join an italian family as you have the opportunity to get to know the real life of the people living in the country you visit. In the evening some friends came around, we had a wonderful dinner and chatted about the journeys, the daily life and where to go on the next holidays – and all in an mixture of my low-level italian language skills mixed with english! What a fantastic experience!

Discovering an outstanding valley

Cycling day 6/77 km ~ From Tarvisio to Gemona

Having left the wonderful hotel after breakfast I continued the former railway track from Tarvisio. A perfect cyclepath with new bitumen let you run without trouble till…heavy clouds came up and I thought how long could I wait to put my rainclothes on – it took about 5 minutes and I just maneged to protect my backpack and the trailer. After a while I reached a small town with a café and all the cyclists gathered around there – even the motorcyclists…

After this break I continued in the rain – but shortly afterwards it stopped and the sun came out. So a good moment to make lunch and dry my stuff 😁

I followed the track again and the valley opened to the south – with a bright sunshine 😀

In 1976 in this area called Friaul there were some earthquakes who destroyed so many ancient buildings – but they are all rebuilt again – great work!

Finally I arrived at the campingsite near Gemona, built up my tent, cooked a meal – and heavy rainshowers including thunderstorm came down. I searched for shelter in the restaurant of the campingsite and met a couple with their small son – so we talked till 11 pm – and I wasn’t motivated to write a post for this blog.

From Spittal to Tarvisio – Benvenuto in Italia!

Cycling day 5/84 km

Leaving Spittal this morning I had sun in my eyes – just great! Following the river Drau it was easy to reach Villach but I didn’t visit the city as I’d like to go into the countryside.

Cycling along the Drau is a little bit like making the Danube cyclepath – always straight and a little bit boring… but it’s okay.

Making a turn and following the small and more wild river of Gail was much more fun! Interesting nature and a nice cyclepath.

So after about 60 km there were some ascent to do – approaching the Austrian-italian border – or what is left of it.

Is didn’t watch out and missed the beginning of the italian part of the cyclepath – just a small path on your right-handside goes up a little bit.

The former italian border

So now there came the most nicely part of the day – through the woods and in the end following a former railway track – you can find even the old signs on the track.

The cyclepath through the woods in Italy – next to Tarvisio
The church of Tarvisio

After 84 km I reached my hotel – they’ve got pizza with organic ingredients – and this I didn’t know before! 😁

Crossing the alps by train

Cycling day 4/55 km

After a good and dry night – there was no rain even if I had a tent for the tent – I’ve started my day quite late at 9:30 h and had to climb up to Bad Gastein.

An old town with so much history, so many famous visitors – and now many closed hotels as there aren’t so many people who like to spend their holidays in an old-fashioned town.

The famous waterfall in Bad Gastein

So I had to hurry to catch the train to Mallnitz through the Tauern – the so-called Tauernschleuse.

Like in my childhood I was now crossing the alps by this train…great!

But when we reached the other side of the mountains I couldn’t believe what I saw…dark and heavy clouds!

So I pushed my self to hurry up and get to Spittal where my next campingsite was. Cycling in the woods the dark clouds where now always behind me so I saw always the sun – but only when I looked in front of me 😁.

Finally I’ve reached my campingsite, met a friendly german couple who invited me for dinner in front of their camper – and we talked about journeys already done or to be done…what a wonderful day – even with the smile of the sun! 😁

Up the mountains

Cycling day 3/53 km ~ Bischoshofen – Dorfgastein

So today I’ve had my first camping breakfast and it was great! Not with the new fantastic ground coffee (I’ve got to use the instant one from last year) but with muesli and a marvellous “Wurzelbrot”, a special kind of bread…

As there were heavy rainshowers in the night I had to dry my tent – but this job was quickly done by the help of the sun.

The first 15 kilometers or so were easy as you just follow the river Salzach. But after Schwarzach it went uphill very steep so I had to pull my bike – well, it’s a travel and not a mountainbike… But I knew already this part of the trip as I cycled the Tauernradweg last year – but that time the other way round – so downhill.

The view were outstanding even with this great weather. So I was proud to to have done this part of the trip.

The next highlight was to enter the valley of Gastein – you have to use the Klammtunnel (1,5 km) which is really noisy.

After leaving the tunnel you enter the wonderful valley and it’s now flat, cycling is easy. Finally I’ve reached a really cyclist-friendly campingsite – with a tent for the tents, a roofed restingplace and – two trees for my hammock! 😎

So tomorrow my journey will bring me to Bad Gastein and the train through the Tauern called Tauernschleuse.

This trip is a really relaxing one – I enjoy it so much! See you tomorrow! 🏕🗻🚲

Discovering the ice cave ‘Eisriesenwelt’ at Werfen

Cycling day 2 – From Salzburg to Bischoshofen (40 km)

This morning I left Salzburg at the home of my friends and followed the EuroVelo 7 along the river Salzach which was great. So at the small town of Golling I took the train as it was recommended in my guide book because of the traffic on a narrow road for just 15 minutes.

I arrived in Werfen and took a bus to reach the valley station of the cable-car. After that you’ve had to walk another 20 minutes to reach the entrance of the ice cave.

In the cave it was not allowed to take pictures as the guide would have to wait all the time – so there are perfect pics on Facebook.

If you want to make this visit you need about 4 hours and a warm suit – there are only 0 Degrees C – as there is ice 😉

The ice cave ‘Eisriesenwelt’

After being back to my bike I cycled only a few kilometers, set up my tent, cooked a meal – and it started to rain like cats and dogs – but fortunately on this campingsite you’ve got a big tent with chairs where you can enjoy a beer or pizza – and WiFi 😁

On to road to Italy

Cycling day 1/64 km ~ Salzburg

Finally I’m on to road for my next trip – and this time the preparations were much more relaxed than last year.

Yesterday I’ve packed everything till 7 pm and had a nice dinner on my balcony.

Today the plan was to leave my home at about 9 am…could have worked – but coincidentally Theo came along with his recumbent-bike. He lives just a few kilometers away from my home and wanted to explore the area – so we’ve been talking for about half an hour about our special kind of bikes.

So I left my hometown and cycled through the outstanding countryside of upper Bavaria – really great and fantastic weather!

One of the highlights were the lake Waginger See which is not that far away so I made a rest there.

Here you can have your perfect lunch

Finally I’ve reached Salzburg where I’ll stay overnight at a friends house and continue my trip tomorrow. Looking forward to explore the ‘Eiswelten’ at Werfen.

Crossing the Alps with my recumbentbike visiting the Adriatic Sea, Lago di Caldonazzo and Lago di Garda

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