Tag Archives: planning

The big Plan

The big plan is to keep cycling facing south and when I hit the sea, I’ll turn left!

The trip is due to start around mid August 2009. After I pack and send all my stuff to Greece, I will load my bike, leave the house key and the confort of my room and start cycling. The first destination won’t be very far, probable one of the Train stations in London to go to Portsmouth or Bournemouth. From there I’ll take the ferry to Bretteville in Normandy, from where the actual bike tour will start. Many people suggested to me, rather than taking the shortest route, I would rather go by the west coast of France which is a lot more beautiful. Depending on my strengths at the time, I may attempt to go through the Pyrenees mountains which everybody says are gorgeous. Then I cycle next along the south coast of France in the Mediterranean sea and cross to Italy. There I’ll head to Venice from where apparently there is a boat to Greece. If I do make it all the way there, I feel strong enough and I still have money, I may attempt to cycle further down to Ancona or even Bari. The boat goes to Patra in Greece, from where I am sure my parents will be waiting to drive me back to Athens. Unfortunately cycling from Patra to Athens (300km) will probable be more dangerous than the rest of the trip. Greece is one of the European countries with the most fatal road accidents and drivers are not used to cyclists at all.

The plan is by no means fixed at all, but it will be adapted on the spot, based on the mood, strength, money and what locals and other cyclist suggest. And of course there is always the possibility that for one reason or another I’ll have to quit the mission and I may have to take the train or the plane to the next destination or even to Greece. The route is about 3000km and I’m giving my self about two months to cover. I’ll be camping along the way as much as possible in order to save money for baguettes, cheese and red wine.

I will try to update this blog as often as possible, to let people know how I am doing. I’ll be having my mobile with me, so if you want to find out how I am doing at any point, don’t esitate to call me.

How it all started

It was around April and I was out with one of my friends Stephane. He was telling me about his plans to leave Uk after 10 years to go to Barcelona and the fact the he was planning to go by train. I found the idea very appealing and thought that I should do something similar for my return to Greece. But as I was a little bit tipsy at the moment, the idea sloped to the extreme and thought that cycling all the way would be a lot cooler. Then I went home and checked on google maps for a possible route. The shortest distance to Ancona in Italy was 2500km! I freaked out and thought I should better think about it again next morning when I am sober, kind of hoping I will have changed my mind by then. The days passed but I was still thinking about it more and more, until I got to the stage that I started using my favorite quote to further convince my self. It’s better to regret for something that you did rather than something that you didn’t, which is a thought that has helped me in the past several times to make a decision and luckily with always a good outcome.

After that point, I started looking into it more and more, by reading loads of  articles and forums on the Internet about bike touring and asking people that have already done long rides in the past. Then I bought the first piece of gear which officially marked the beginning of my very ambitious trip. That was a  £0.99 mini compass.

2 pounds compass