Vals - Bozen - Kastelruth - Cortina d'Ampezzo - Gorizia - Rijeka - Krk - Dubrovnik
All the preparations are done, the parties are celebrated and the bikes packed. There is the last night we spend in Vals, together with Tanja and Fabian as well as our friend (and sponsor) Yvonne. Next morning there is an apero given on the "Dorfplatz" in Vals by the Cycling Club, and family and friends come plentyful to the farewell party. The emotions rise high and it's not as easy to say good bye as imagined. Some friends accompany us the first day of our trip. The sun is shining, the sky is deep blue and it's extremely warm. The saying; "when angels travel..." came true. One more night we sleep in comfortable beds at our friends place.
The way leeds through the Engadin, a bit of Austria and South Tirol, passing through the famous apple plantations where the trees are blooming. Then up the high Dolomite passes (2300 m) into Gardena valley, and we admire the rockformations and the from ski world cup known stations - where the cracks race down - like Saslat, Alta Badia, Cortina d'Ampezzo etc. Soon we are at the Slowenian border and the hight passes change to rolling hills, covered with a beautiful diverse forest with many shades of green. The air is full of roese and akazia-parfume. We always camp - most of the time we just put up the tent whenever we feel like having cycled enough for the day and there is an appropriate place for it.
One morning - it was still in Italy - we bought breakfast - (as every day if possible we cut fresh fruit and eat our muesli), and we also bought a fruit juice. Only when we wanted to open the tetra-pack, we found out, it was "Vino di Tavola".
Now here in Croatia it's a mediterranian atmosphere, the sea has crystal clear water and the 1100 islands just off the coast are an eldorado for sailers. The people are very friendly all the way and it's a pleasure to cycle along the coast and visit some islands too. We explored many beautiful old walled cities like Split, Dubrovnik with its narrow cabblestoned streets as well as the place of birth of Marco Polo.
So far we have cycled 145o kilometers, 13300 altitude meters with our 45 kilo bicycles. So legs are getting stronger and we are looking forward to our further travel into Montenegro and Serbia.