European Alps Ride – Part 1

It now feels like too much time has passed for us to recall the emotions that we had when we touched down in Munich. David and Leigh recognised two very excited helmet carrying travellers in the airport lounge and promptly introduced themselves. This was the beginning of our journey as we made the last leg of our flights to Ljubljana, Slovenia together and we found ourselves no longer alone.

Café in Ljubljana, Slovenia

Slowly but surely the different parties that would constitute our riding group arrived from all parts of the globe but mostly they sourced from the southern hemisphere in Australia. The group consisted of Robbie, Sou, Andrew, Amalia, David, Leigh, Bill, Mary, Tom and of course Laura and myself. Ljubljana was the starting and finishing point for the adventure and it couldn’t have been a better choice. The Slovenian capital has a Soviet era backdrop that is slowly washing away. River cutting through the centre of the old city that is lined with cafes and shops. Great local hotels and pedestrian friendly with museums and parks. We both instantly felt at home here and will make sure to return. Thankful for being early risers who enjoy morning runs, we managed to see a great deal of the city in our short time there.

Rest stop on Italy/Slovenia Border

Two nights in Ljubljana and we all packed into a van and headed out to Adriatic Moto Tours to pick up our steeds for the next three weeks of travel. Six BMW’s and two Honda Africa Twins would make up the stable. Robbie was to be our tour guide as he had planned out the route, accommodation and bike rentals. This was a monumental task of herding cats that we can honestly say was greatly appreciated by every member of the entourage. 

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BMW GS – Zell am See, Austria

The first day was really a little taster for the half day ride to Bovec. Organise the bikes in the morning and shake out the legs and get everyone comfortable on the bikes in the afternoon. Laura and I had a brand new BMW 800 GS Trophy to saddle up. I was a little sceptical of us doing two up on an 800 since we had done this previously in France a couple years ago. We were not overly impressed with the bike then, however, I was very happy this time around. I will not by any means be giving up our three cylinder machine at home, but the amount of technical riding that was about to be thrown at us proved to be a perfect setting for the nimble Beemer.

Martinov-Hram B&B – Bovec, Slovenia

The Slovenian countryside is stunning. Villages, churches, rivers and forest. The first half day to Bovec took us on some twisty roads and after a group decision to take a closed mountain pass through Italy (we were on off-road bikes!) we arrived at a small Bed & Breakfast for lunch. Espressos and hearty Slovenian stew and we were off to Bovec. This small town is dedicated to outdoor sports. We both mentioned that on our next visit we will take advantage of many activities here. Our small, family-run inn had a traditional Slovenian restaurant with somewhat limited gluten-free options so we enjoyed the “Slovenian Meat Platter for Two” that could have fed a family of five. After a boisterous night on the patio, we headed off for an early night to be well-rested for the next day’s ride to Innsbruck and the first monumental mountain pass – Großglockner.

Laura & Tony

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