This week has sped by in a blur of countries and straight flat roads. We started off the week with some boiling hot days in Slovenia.
Slovenia was beautiful, quiet and friendly. We found some amazing gravel tracks through big forests in the hills, and kept an eye out for the Slovenian brown bears while riding. I really enjoyed our short but sweet time there and we have already decided that we should go back for some bikepacking sometime!
In Slovenia we experienced our first kit meltdown, with my battery bank dying, shortly followed by my new battery bank and the realisation it was caused by our USB plug. So we got to visit a massive mall next to a motorway which was… Interesting. But nearly three months without anything breaking is pretty good.
Slovenian highlights include having a great chat with a local (despite not sharing a language) while we sheltered from the torrential rain under his farmhouse’s overhanging roof. He brought us some squash to drink and clearly thought we were mental. We also arrived at what we thought was a campsite but was actually a holiday water park. A pricey night’s sleep but we did get to go for a swim and on the water slides!
We soon crossed into Croatia, and with the rain came cooler weather (yay!) And boring cycling (boo!). I’m sure there is alot of beautiful great places to cycle in Croatia, but we managed to cycle along one long, straight, flat road which didn’t seem to change for days. Quite boring, but our singing is improving!
The Croatian scenery (combined with the rain) made us feel quite at home, although we passed through another area full of storks nesting, including on houses. Jim is winning at the spot a storks nest game!
We have stayed with more lovely warm showers hosts, and had our first night wildcamping, which we enjoyed except for the mosquito bites!
Another great moment happened when we were cycling along the aforementioned boring straight road, and suddenly out of nowhere a very elderly man on a MTB overtook us, then settled in front of us and motioned for us to stay on his tail. We did a few km speeding along behind him before he pointed to his house and waved goodbye.
Finally we crossed into Serbia and all the road signs turned into Cyrillic. It’s weird suddenly feeling very far from home. But we found an amazing campsite in a nature reserve before heading into Belgrade.
We jumped on the eurovelo 6 route along the Danube for the last 10km into Belgrade, then had an explore of the city. We are heading on a train to Sofia tomorrow because we are getting a bit antsy to get out of Europe and into the unknown, and the flat straight roads were becoming a bit of a pain in the bum…
Jim’s words – Bear, Kindness, Croatia, Wild, Hummus, Serbia and Danube.