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EuroTour An area to discuss potential European trips, and to ask advice about long distance touring.

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Old 02-05-09, 09:47 AM   #1
Liam9188
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Default First euro trip

Hi, me and some friends are planning a trip round europe before we all go our seperate ways in september. We are planning on taking the ferry from Portsmouth to Santander then riding to Barcelona and following the coast all the way round into Italy before crossing the Alps into switzerland and back through France to Calais and a ferry home.

Does anyone have any advice on where is worth a visit, what to expect and how long it will take?

We estimated 2 weeks, going at a leisurely pace so we can stop and see all the sights. We plan on camping pretty much every night
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Old 02-05-09, 10:28 AM   #2
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Default Re: First euro trip

Also, i was wondering how you ensure your bike arrives the correct way up when you take it on a ferry? I would imagine you strap them down, but do i have to take the straps with me or would they be supplied?
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Old 02-05-09, 07:24 PM   #3
fizzwheel
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Default Re: First euro trip

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Originally Posted by Liam9188 View Post
Also, i was wondering how you ensure your bike arrives the correct way up when you take it on a ferry? I would imagine you strap them down, but do i have to take the straps with me or would they be supplied?
Yep they'll need strapping down. Nothing to worry about, leave your bike in gear and dont arm the alarm. Somebody will strap the bike down for you, using the ferry companies ratchet straps. Theres proper tie down points on the deck.

You might want to take an old towel to put over the seat though to protect it from the straps. But sometimes they'll have some sponge for this purpose.

If the weathers rough they might well also put chocks against your wheels to stop it moving to.

On one rough crossing back from Ireland I got paranoid so I zip tied the brake on as well and I bunged the side stand so that if the bike rocked up right on its stand the stand wouldnt flick up.

No need to worry, they'll have tied down 1000's of bikes and in my experience the ferry workes will be happy for you just to stand and wait whilst they strap it down so you can double check it / make sure you are happy with it.
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Old 02-05-09, 07:46 PM   #4
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Default Re: First euro trip

never done it - would love to one day - sure youll have wicked time
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Old 03-05-09, 12:31 PM   #5
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Default Re: First euro trip

I'm planning on doing pretty much the same thing but the other way round. Dunno if I want to camp though as I wouln't want to carry so much gear.
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Old 03-05-09, 07:22 PM   #6
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Default Re: First euro trip

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Originally Posted by Liam9188 View Post
Hi, me and some friends are planning a trip round europe before we all go our seperate ways in september. We are planning on taking the ferry from Portsmouth to Santander then riding to Barcelona and following the coast all the way round into Italy before crossing the Alps into switzerland and back through France to Calais and a ferry home.

Does anyone have any advice on where is worth a visit, what to expect and how long it will take?

We estimated 2 weeks, going at a leisurely pace so we can stop and see all the sights. We plan on camping pretty much every night
Book your sites in Spain, I found them difficult to find. Watch out for really bad Spanish drivers. You really have to go over the Millau Bridge. I found France much more friendly a place, with services every 40km. Much easier to find camping sites, they're better signposted in France. Didn't do Italy. If you get a chance, Monaco is stunning.

Go here http://www.afil.co.uk/BBF/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl they are British Bikers based in France and are very helpful...unfortunately I didn't find this site until I came back!
And have a look at the blog, the link is in my signature, it's my trip through France and Spain, might help
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Old 05-05-09, 04:55 PM   #7
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Default Re: First euro trip

Thanks for the replies guys, it puts my mind at rest. now i just have to save up for it!
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