From Eceabat, Turkey to Kavala, Greece

Trip Start Jan 31, 2011
Trip End Jul 10, 2011

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Flag of Greece  , East Macedonia and Thrace,
Monday, April 4, 2011

Sunday 03.04.2011 – All of the gang that arrived at the Crowded House Hotel at Eceabat the day before we did set of this morning. Dave MILLIGAN and his group headed north to the Bulgarian border. The rest including Dangerous Darren, Fabulous Phil (both on Blackbirds), Eric (BMW GS1200) & his wife Lou (Aprilia Shiver 750), Pete & his wife Andy (BMW GS1150), headed off to the Greek border. As an aside, Kerrie & Lou discovered they went to the same school and that Kerrie was good friends with Lou's older sister. Small world isn’t it? Whilst they left, we decided to stay another day and catch the ferry back to Cannakale to buy a beanie and woollen gloves each as it had been bitterly cold for the last few days.  While wandering the streets of Canakkale we came across the model of the wooden horse used in the movie 'Troy' starring Brad Pitt and our own Eric Bana. It was also MotGP day, with the big race at Jerez, Spain. We found a nice warm café that was broadcasting the race. We were able to watch both the Moto2 and MotoGP. Bugger that Rossi took out our boy Casey Stoner!

Monday 04.04.2011 – we set off bright and early and made our way north through the town of Gelibolu (we call it Gallipoli for which the peninsula is named after), then onward to the Greek border.  Fortunately for us we chose the right time to cross as we met up with a guy called John riding a BMW 1150GS who spoke fluent Turkish, Greek & English. His mother is English, his father Greek – that accounts for those two languages.  We asked him how come he spoke Turkish as well. He said he moved to Istanbul 7 years ago and being a bike fanatic he needed to learn Turkish so he could get his bike serviced! Talk about necessity being the mother of invention. Anyway, John talked us through both the Turkish exit and Greek entry. No problems when you speak the lingo. We bought John lunch as a thank you and he told us he teaches English at a multi-national school in Istanbul. He went to boarding school in England and his parents live in Crete. He was on the way to visit friends in Thessalonika (abbreviated to Salonika) as he had a four break.

As soon as you cross the border from Turkey into Greece you hit a magnificent motorway that has a 130 km speed limit. It is almost deserted! We rode for nearly an hour eastbound and saw maybe a dozen vehicles both ways. Talk about under used. We then set a bee line to a town called Kavala because it was a by the sea and it seemed the right distance to cover for the rest of the day’s ride. Kavala has a population of about 30,000 and it seems to be a perfect spot for tourists, plenty of water sports, sun baking and relaxing etc.

We set Tom (our GPS) to navigate us to a hotel called the Oceanis Plaza in downtown Kavala, right near the water front which we thought would be nice. We also did a google search the night before and it checked in as the right price – bonus.  As we pulled onto the footpath (a useful bike parking space is the footpath as Europeans have discovered & Melbournians have followed – pity we Queenslanders are slow to learn). To our surprise, bounding out the front door of the hotel came Fabulous Phil. Phil, Darren, Eric, Lou, Pete & Andy were staying at the hotel as well. It was their second night there. Talk about a coincidence – arriving at the same digs 500 km and two days apart! We checked in, secured the bike and reposed to the bar where drinks were consumed and stories exchanged. It seems Darren & Phil were just as surprised that they had chosen the same hotel as the others given they were not travelling together.

We then went for a walk around town and found a restaurant that served pizza and the local Greek beer called Mythos that was consumed by two thirsty travellers.
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Sandra on

The temptation to comment is very high but being that we are Rossi fans I am fearful of creating cracks on our friendship!!! :)

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