Friday, November 26, 2010

Europe Adventure Ride 2010

3 of its kind
New Gen Vespa
Harderwijk, Netherlands
Harderwijk's Mosque
Where am I?

A short trip to Harderwijk, the Netherlands before heading back home.

Europe Adventure Ride 2010

Cordoba, Spain
Welcome to Portugal
Portugal countryside
Sunset, at campsite Moura

Europe Adventure Ride 2010

Spain A road
Toledo, Spain
Toledo, Spain
Toledo, Spain
Mosque, Madrid

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Europe Adventure Ride 2010

'pop up' type tent used
Entering Eurotunnel train
Toledo,first Mosque in Spain
Cordoba, Sapin
Roman ruins

Nov 18, 2010

Day +14 to +17

Crossing the Channel using the Eurotunnel is fast (under 1 hour) though expensive (37 Quids). The traffic was not unduly heavy at this time. You follow the direction indicated. If make mistake, no worry mate, someone will run by and correct you. I occupy a single carriage by myself. The staff there will keep you company if he is not too busy. It foggy and drizzling after the cross-over in French soil. Big sign everywhere DRIVE ON THE RIGHT SIDE. My thought was to get into Spain as quickly as possible. Not that I dont like France but better discover Spain early so as not get caught cold and unfriendly weather when I ride France on the upward journey later. So I choose the motorway, fast and easy but prepare for tolls. Many of them and considerably expensive too.
France is a big country.Everyday is a long hard ride for me. Cold and raining. Feet and fingers numb and stiff. Frequent stops and coffee break ease your body abit and awhile. Blackie has no heated grip the down side but she performed superb at an average speed of 130 kph. On 16 Oct, I entered Spain. Hello Senior n Senora! Rain persists.
Madrid here I come! Rain and more rain. I only weigh 58 kg but now 200 kg! All is wet now and pitching camp is out of question. Right?Hunting for hotel is best at outskirt of Madrid. There are plenty but depend what you willing to pay. Anything below 50 euro is within my budget with breakfast and parking space.
One of my objective to see Spain is to visit the past glory of the spread of Islam in this country. You know why its fall and what is today. Basically 2 main town to visit; Toledo and Cordoba. The Andulusia historical sites through the reign of the Roman, Moors and Christian left one stunning thing for you - ruin of rocks.

Europe Adventure Ride 2010

St Andrew
UK countryside
UK countryside
Near Tring, UK
Fort William, Scotland
Restricted Visibility, Scotland
0 Degree Longitude
Windsor Castle,UK

UK, Scotland and Wales pics. More to follow.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Europe Adventure Ride 2010

Southampton Railway Station
Oxford University
Loch Ness, Scotland
South Stack, Holy Head
Milford Haven

D-Day - 30 Sep 2010

Its 0300 (local) wake up call. Think abit of late but as I drove to Batu Gajah Rail Station so lucky the train delayed by 12 minutes, so not late after all. ETS travel time to KL Sentral took just over 2 hours. Very new, so everything look good and functioning. I hope Keretapi Tanah Melayu can keep up to that satndard and dont think too much about making profit lah! Where in this world rail transportation make profit? Its providing service! Connecting transport to KL LCCT was like riding the old MiniBus in KL. Zoom zoom here and there, short cut here and there. Was the driver an ex-......? Then the AirAsia flight to London Stansted. Wow! Full house. Pack like anything. Overall the filght rated as Satisfactory. Safely landed in the UK by half hour early.

UK Immigration typical questions, what are you doing in my country, how long you intend to stay, what is your job blah blah blah. Oh! I am retired and going to ride the UK and Europe. Oh! I see, have a nice tour. Off I exit the airport and my adventure really start now.

D+1 to +4

Rain rain and more rain. That the days news. Bought some riding items and a helmet and think I am all set. Contacted Bournemouth Motorcycle and further enquire about my previous booking of the motorcycle. Few snag here and there. Things look gloomy up North in Scotland as rain is forecasted the coming week. Not much to do except wait, furthermore its weekend. Still not wanting to waste time, managed to go to Oxford and area in vicinity Luton. Thanks to old classmates (Ng and Gooi) who are so kind to provide me with shelter and all the assisstance I needed.

D+5 to +13

At last! Suzuki VStrom DL650 is hired from Bournemouth Motorcycle Hire Ltd, 9 Soberton Road, Queens Park, Bournemouth Dorset BH8 9Bg. Its a family runs business. All their bikes well kept in a garage of their house. So dont expect a full flash shop. But they provide a very flexible yet practical conditions for hire. A 4-star rating.
Slowly the ride starts proceeding towards London and gradually Scotland Highland. Avoid the M roads. Too much traffics and tendency to race is always there. The A and country roads are where you should go. Passing through the English countryside, small 8 ft roads, lovely scenary and typical British villages. If you get lucky you might run over horse or cattle shit!
Get a glimpse of Southampton and try to locate the Solent Mariner Hotel where I once live there in 1977. The hotel is no longer there. But the the train station still standing strong with new make up and contemporary look. Well done that.
The weather took to the worse as progress Northerly direction. Rain rain again.
Morning very foggy and drizzling. In Edinburgh stop for look see round the city. Oop! I entered a road accessible for bus only. Ha ha! Stupid traveller. In St Andrew, there was Dunhill Link Championship going on. Free entrance, so stood at the 18th holes to watch. Not many big gunners I could recognise. Press on towards the Inverness via the coastal road, passing Dundee.
A82 along the Loch Ness is a motorbike suggested road if you want some actions. Winding and up and down road few yards along Loch Ness. Passing Loch Lomond then towards Wales.
The South Stacks in Holy Head give among the best view and not to be missed. Breathstaking view with continuous good road for motorcycling.
Milford Haven in the 80s and now have changed much. The dock area looks very tired and only small fishing boats and yatch marina activities occupy the harbour. The bustling activities of the maritime power once no longer the current feature of Milford.
Making a loop turn towards the East and proceeding towards Folkestone to cross the English Channel into mainland Europe.

Europe Adventure Ride 2010

17 Nov 2010