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Eastern Europe Trip August 2017

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Tarquin View Drop Down
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    Posted: 21 Sep 2017 at 13:35
Our Summer Euro Trip August 2017

On the 23rd September 2017 myself, Gary ( “The Lad in the Shed” ) and two other friends John and Peter, set off on a European trip which was scheduled to last 16 days.

The whole trip was organised and run by Gary and as per usual he did a superb job.

I was on my trusty Honda ST1300 along with two further Pans ( John and Peter ) and Gary on his Triumph Trophy 1300.

For a change, seeing as we all live in the North East, our trip to the Ferry was completed in about 25 minutes only having to get on the boat at North Shields.

Four of us in one cabin meant that Firearms standard Ear Plugs were the order of the day if any sleep was to be had.

The Ferry left at about 5.30pm and after several sherberts a wonderful meal and a nights sleep, we eventually arrived at Ijmuiden in the Netherlands the following morning.

The first day involved a 440 mile ride down to Colditz in Germany where we were booked into a nice Hotel. The bikes absolutely ate the trip but we were all ready for a shower and a good meal that night.



The next morning we booked a guided tour of Colditz Castle and it really is an amazing place but paying for the tour was money well spent.










After lunch we were back on the bikes again and had a lengthy ride into Czechoslovakia where we were booked into a Hotel in a lovely little Village for 3 nights arriving here on Friday 25th August.

The Czech Republic offers unbelievable value for money and as it was my first visit I couldn’t get over how cheap everything was.

Two rooms in the Hotel for 3 nights B&B was £120 in TOTAL

The Restaurant was just as good and we visited all 3 nights.

16 pints of Czech Lager and 4 meals came in at £32. Happy days indeed.



Gary had timed the Hotel booking to coincide with the International Road Racing meeting that was taking place a few miles away at Horice on the Saturday and Sunday and it was absolutely incredible.











On the Monday we had a ride around the circuit before heading to the tallest wooden structure in the world which is the WW2 Radio Mast at Gliwice in Poland.








From here we headed down to Auschwitz and again, Gary had come up trumps booking us into a great Hotel ( quiet at the back ) for two nights and within walking distance of the Concentration Camp.

The next day we took a Guided tour of Auschwitz and Berkinow and to say that it is a sobering reminder of what atrocities took place is an understatement.







The next morning we set of on our travels again and headed for Wieliczka Salt mine which was the largest in the world.

This place is absolutely staggering in it’s size and again, a Guided Tour was essential in order to get the most from it.







https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iFugraEqpGg

After the Salt mine we headed further into Poland and as late afternoon approached we stumbled onto this place which was a cracking find at £20 per room per night including breakfast.

They also sold wonderful lager and the restaurant on the evening was equally cheap.




Gary went for the Burger and this one was £1.15p.



The next morning we headed for a really classy Resort called Zakopane in the extreme South of Poland next to the border with Slovakia.

It’s a wonderful looking Ski Resort and has bid for the Winter Olympics previously.







We then continued over the border into Slovakia.







A nice spot to stop for an afternoon cold drink.



Sights along the way.



Another great hotel that night. Very cheap and great restaurant.



The next morning the weather changed and we started to head North.

We had enjoyed glorious, baking hot sunshine every day up until this point but that was about to change.

Not too far from the Russian Border.



The next stop on our tour was “ The Wolf’s Lair “ a complex deep in Polands Woodland where Hitler spent more than 800 nights. It is also where the famous assassination attempt by Colonel Claus Von Stauffenberg on Hitler took place
( No it was not Tom Cruise )












http://www.intopoland.com/what-to-see/world-war-ii/wolfs-lair.html




On leaving here we went to another one of Gary’s must see attractions and no surprise, it was another show stopper.

This is the Elblag Canal where boats are moved through locks on rails via a hauled carriage. We even had a go on one of the boats and experienced first hand how it worked.












https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L_mSO6KehzU



The next day we headed North again and eventually stopped at Gdansk where we had two nights.

We visited Westerplatte where the first shots of WW2 were fired by German Battleships







http://www.intopoland.com/what-to-see/world-war-ii/westerplatte.html

We then had a look down to the Gdansk Shipyard which was famous for the Solidarity Conflict involving Lech Walesa in the early 80’s





After leaving Gdansk we headed for Peenemunde the Germans WW2 Rocket Site.

They currently have an old Russian Submarine on display here so of course we paid our money and went on board.

I am definitely too old to run and swing through the round metal hatch between each compartment and the amount of equipment crammed into these things make it even more claustrophobic.

















We stayed in a nearby hotel that night and the following morning we got the Ferry to PRORA the Nazis huge holiday complex ( Butlins with a Goose step)

Certainly another Nazi Megastructure but all done with forced labour.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ke66Jo26HLI


On leaving here we headed further west into Germany just getting some distance done towards getting back on the Ferry on the 9th and that evening we found a lovely little hotel off the motorway in a peaceful old village. Grat accommodation and food BUT the prices had gone up a lot compared to Czechoslovakia and Poland.

The next day ( 8th September ) we rode through Germany and back into the Netherlands where Gary had pre booked our final nights accommodation in a truly wonderful town called Harlingen. It was picture perfect and the accommodation consisted of a huge flat in the centre of town overlooking the Canal.

I will definitely return here with SWMBO.











My three Amigos in the Pub that night.



The next morning we only had about 60 miles to do to get back to Ijmuiden Port so Gary had organised a couple more attractions en route.

The first was The Afluitsdijk enclosure dam where the water level on each side has a 9 metre difference. Incredible engineering.












https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Susmmk6DegI


Finally, mid morning we stopped at this place in Cruquius where there is an incredible pumping station that was used to reclaim so much land from the sea.

Incredible some of the metal work on the beam engine had been produced in Sunderland which is only a few miles from me and the whole machine was British made






https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_mYQb6vAMtg&list=PLjGqThcQLLLlm0B7eHD5RN_D0NCsflNjo


That evening on the boat we had several more Sherberts and headed for the Buffet Dining that we had booked.

This was my starter







All in all a fabulous break where we covered 3000 miles in 16 days but none of it would have happened without the Lad in the Shed so a big thankyou Gary.








Edited by Tarquin - 12 Oct 2017 at 20:17
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote red leader one Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Sep 2017 at 14:26
Great stuff.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote V7Chris Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Sep 2017 at 18:42
Looks fantastic, well done to your pal Gary!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tarquin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Sep 2017 at 19:07
Originally posted by V7Chris V7Chris wrote:

Looks fantastic, well done to your pal Gary!



Yes he's a class act
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Dave P. Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Sep 2017 at 23:47
Looks to have been a great trip,smashin'photo's and thanks for the write up.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote GU221 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Sep 2017 at 01:17
Brilliant and very interesting trip report. Thanks for sharing this.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote italianmotor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Sep 2017 at 09:25
What a fantastic tour, great pics too. I've been to Peenemunde, fascinating place.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tarquin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 Sep 2017 at 15:08
Yes, planning underway for next year

Edited by Tarquin - 30 Sep 2017 at 15:45
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Barry Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 Sep 2017 at 15:36
Underfoot? Not underhand?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tarquin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 Sep 2017 at 15:45
Originally posted by Barry Barry wrote:

Underfoot? Not underhand?




Could be ! Another Senior Moment.

I get my pension in a few months Barry and mistakes like that are deeply worrying for the future


Now corrected thanks.

   
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Barry Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 Sep 2017 at 15:55
You and me both, matey. Anyway, underhand arrangements sounds quite exciting for an Eastern European trip.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tarquin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 Sep 2017 at 16:12
Originally posted by Barry Barry wrote:

You and me both, matey. Anyway, underhand arrangements sounds quite exciting for an Eastern European trip.



I'll tell Ivanka that you are en route
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Glawster Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 Sep 2017 at 20:22
That sounds like a fantastic trip Tarquin, thanks for sharing. I've visited some of those places, but there's many more that I need to put on my must do list. Very very interesting - thanks!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tarquin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Oct 2017 at 16:53
Wonderful Countries and very friendly people.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Omobono Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Oct 2017 at 06:35
Beautiful trip, organisation and report! it must be very convenient to have someone who organises all the events and places in such an efficient way for you! ;) 



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