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!
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!
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.
For those of you who are following my trips every year you know that the last year was a big trip. The preparations started already in September, it was the most expensive journey I´ve done because of the ferries and visa – and it was sometimes cold and rainy.
Considering all these facts for me it was absolutely clear this year trip had to be cheaper with much more sun and less wind or rain. And it had to be much more easier to be prepared.
So looking back to my previous trips and thanks to my colleague Matthias who made some fantastic pics in my new/old travelling-region – under these conditions there was just one option – Italy!
And I´d like to use almost every night my tent – as I hope the weater will be nice!
Thinking back to ideas of other travellers or warmshower guests I remembered the tip from the couple from Patagonia last year visiting my home.
It was the Ciclovia Alpe Adria Radweg they´ve taken from Grado to Salzburg and they told me it was nice and comfortable – if you go the other way round…
So it was perfect to get to the Adriatic Coast!
Ciclovia Alpe Adria – the cyclepath from Salzburg/Austria to Grado/Italy
So here comes the plan…starting at home I´m going to visit a friend in Salzburg and use the Ciclovia Alpe Adria heading towards Bad Gastein.
On my way I´m going to visit some highlights like the Castle Werfen or the Celtic Museum in Hallein. The first night in my old and smaller tent will be in Bischofshofen.
Starting after a hopefully silent night with a great cup of coffee – I´ll be using the first time a real coffee and not just a soluble café – my way will be along the Gasteiner Tal approaching Bad Gastein where I´ll use the Tauernschleuse railway on the next day.
Crossing the Tauern via train you exit the tunnel in Mallnitz and have to have safe brakes – 600 m decent! Cycling through the fantastic Drau valley you are going to visit the nice towns Spittal and Villach.
Leaving Villach you are going to roll along some rivers like the Gailitz and Fella.
I´m going to use old train tracks which are converted to cyclepaths and head towards
my first of three destinations – Grado!
My trip from Bavaria to Grado/Italy on www.bikemap.net