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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Just got back from this year's monster roadtrip all the way to Croatia - done a few before of similar distance but not one with quite so many countries...

Sitting nice & low on the new Eibach Pro springs, even lower once I'd loaded all the camping gear in






Left home on Friday July 19th and took the overnight ferry from Hull to Rotterdam. Usually do Dover-Calais but will be doing the North Sea route again in future - it was brilliant, bags of room everywhere compared to a crowded cross-channel ferry, no queues at bars/restaurants, and of course it's nice to be able to put your feet up and have a few beers as it's a 12 hour crossing.



Getting ready to go, Humber Bridge in the background









Not a bad little sunset before the sea fog set in and the temp dropped about 10 degrees





Arrived in Rotterdam around 9am (not what you'd call a scenic approach by any means so no photos...) and were off the ferry and onto the motorway by 10.

A NOTE OF CAUTION FOR ANYONE ELSE DOING HULL-ROTTTERDAM - the Dutch police were out in force and breathalysing probably 50% of drivers (myself included) at border control. Remember most of Europe has much lower drink-drive limits than the UK so go easy on the beers on the crossing


to be continued...
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Bazzed it straight through Holland as we had about 500 miles to cover, and with 2 kids on board there'd be plenty of pit stops which are the enemy of trying to cross a continent quickly.

One for Mr SIF...





Then took the A61 Autobahn south into Germany, past Cologne, Bonn & Karlsruhe. Never driven the Autobahn before and it was bloody brilliant. Cruising at 100 mph without having to watch out for the dibble, splendid :D Had a short blast up to 115 but really didn't fancy the idea of the wind ripping the roofbox off so kept it around the 100 mark after that. Some cars were doing some monumental speeds though, a 911 and a Merc CLS in particular must've been doing at least 150. Must admit it's quite nice seeing a properly fast car actually doing what it's been designed to do :thumbs:

Traffic was really good as far down as Karlsruhe and the scenery gets a lot nicer once you're past Cologne, all in all a nice journey.













Turned south-eastward at Karlsruhe onto the A8 toward Stuttgart, and then the traffic started. Not so much traffic really but huge stretches of roadworks with contraflow and very narrow lanes hampered by a 80km/h limit. Our friends who we met up with in Slovenia had taken a different route, more central through Germany, past Nuremberg and said the journey was pretty much free of roadworks although not particularly scenic





Luckily it got a lot better after Stuttgart so it was hammer-down time again through the edge of the Black Forest and on into Bavaria, scenery getting better all the way









Finally got to Dasing (about 30 mins west of Munich) about 6pm where we had a hotel booked for the night




Time for Beer & Currywurst om nom nom :D





Getting pretty toasty down there too

 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Unfortunate incident the next morning at hotel reception where a book Mrs Al was reading fell out of her bag and onto the floor right in front of a load of Germany pensioners waiting for their coach to arrive. She didn't know it had fallen out and it was sat there for ages. Front cover of said book? Great big bloody swastika :eek: :lol:

Time to make a sharp exit and back out onto the autobahn toward Munich. Another 100mph+ blast, past Bayern's ground on the outskirts, and round to the east where the road turns south toward the Austrian border. Traffic was pretty horrendous all the way after then considering it was Sunday morning by that point, but the scenery made the go-slow a bit more bearable. Bavaria really is a nice part of the world.

























Anyone for a frig? :D





Bloody caravans. Portaloos on wheels :mad:





 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
We were headed for a place called Berchtesgaden in the extreme south east corner of Germany, the place where Hitler had his 'Eagle's Nest' summer residence. The route actually takes you into Austria (and the first annoying charges - €8 for a vignette) for about 5 miles before crossing back into Germany and up into the hills. Berchtesgaden town was v nice, really picturesque little Bavarian market town, surrounded by beautiful scenery. They do bus tours up to the Eagles Nest from the town centre the only way to get there) but the website says allow 2-3hours for the trip and a good nosey around. Would have loved to go but alas, had to make tracks so had a quick lunch in the square and offski again

Heading up into the hills, windy roads all the way :cool:













Mmmmm beeeeeer....





Would obviously have bought myself a full lederhosen outfit if we'd had more time





Really nice place













 

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Discussion Starter #5
Then the kids discovered that if you shove your finger in this little fountain, you can squirt half of Germany including anyone walking past so time to saddle up and get gone









Back down the valley toward Austria, picture-postcard landscape everywhere. Bavaria really is even nicer than I thought, and not expensive either. Locals are friendly too, as they are everywhere in Germany in my experience :thumbs:









Back over the border into Austria, good quiet roads so we made good progress.









Hohenwerfen Castle where they filmed Where Eagles Dare - another place I'd like to have visited but no time to spare as we were Slovenia-bound















The Kermit car - a little flourescent green Merc SLK that we first saw near Rotterdam, up it popped again in Austria. Small world - we even saw it the next day in southern Slovenia near the Croatian border :cool:

 

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Wicked Al.
Berchtesgaden looks lovely. Reminds me so much of the Tyrol.

Kids look a little devilish on the first few pics (white eyes) and then it seems drenching passer by's they are :lol:
Mind you at least they never waved a swastika around eh? :tut::D
 

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Discussion Starter #9
yep, suffice to say they're not what you'd call shy & retiring kids :eek: as for mrs al, well she's just a bloody liability. i'm sure it's an imprisonable offence to display a swastika anywhere in germany :eek: :lol:
 

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Looks like a great road trip Al. :thumbs: I fancied doing Germany but failed to convince MrsJim and our friends. It looks lovely.
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
Anyway, on we went over the border through some insanely long tunnel into Slovenia and another vignette, €30 for a 1-month one this time :mad:




Heading down to lake Bled





Very picturesque, even saw the Galatasaray team arriving at a posh hotel there.

I know this is borderline impossible to believe, but seriously it was NOT ME who took this pic :lol:





Very busy at Bled though so we decided to head about 20km further up into the Slovenian Alps to lake Bohinj, where it's even more picturesque and a lot more peaceful. Met up with our friends in their motorhome at a tiny little campsite by the lake, then all got tanked up and all slept in the van - 4 adults & 4 kids. Yep it stunk in the morning. The lake itself was amazing - surprisingly not freezing cold, and very very clear, with scenery that was just jaw-dropping. I'd go so far as to say it's quite possibly the most beautiful place I've ever been in my life :inlove:

Beer & grub. Then more beer. And then a few more beers.



Evening swimming after sundown


















 

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Discussion Starter #13
Next morning woke up bleary-eyed to a foggy morning, albeit nice & cool after the heat of the previous days. Then the mist started to clear so you could see the mountain tops, and eventually just the mist hanging low over the lake surface - it was absolutely stunning, sat down by the water's edge at 7.30am with a cup of tea watching it all change in front of me. Had another leisurely swim in the lake and then set off again about 10. If ever you get the chance to go to Bohinj, do it. It is just paradise.













Me & Bez going for a breakfast swim









Crystal clear water










Mist finally cleared to another hot sunny day :cool:





Goodbye Zlatorog campsite, it's been fun!

 

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Discussion Starter #14
For the first time in the journey we actually had bags of time that morning as it's not a long drive down to Croatia from there, so we decided to take the scenic route through the hills of Slovenia rather than back down the valley to Bled and onto the highway. It was like going back in time - still very Alpine feeling, but ridiculously peaceful & rustic. Probably like parts of Switzerland & Austria would have looked 100 years ago. Spent about 2 hours up there in the wilds, driving through tiny little hamlets, along single-track lanes, locals looking bewildered at the sight of a car, never mind one on British plates. I think we saw maybe 2 other cars the whole time, and heard absolutely nothing other than birds & crickets. Loved it.









But then finally it was back onto the highway and by bye Alps and onward down to Croatia. Lovely country, Slovenia. Shame about the 1 hour queues in 34C heat at the Croatian border. I really though it would've been easier as they joined the EU last month.

 

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Discussion Starter #16
Cheers Keithy.

Finally cleared border control and on down to Istria, the northern bit of Croatia. Stayed at a campsite just outside of Vrsar.





Scumming it in a tent, Pulco style













Campsite was set around a few little coves, each with their own beach. Spot the lit-up sailing ship on the horizon





More beer...





Pulco jr - lady muck





Sea was a bit nice





Girly gossip, aged 9 and 10





Little 'un needs a bit more practice at this surfing lark.









And I need to lose about 12 chins.

 

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Cracking pics Al

Fancy doing a road trip myself


My Mom & stepdad have been round them parts a few times and say how beautiful it all is , there neighbours are Austrian and used to treat them to holidays over there .

The neighbours are now moving to India with work and they've asked my parents to go over there too for a holiday .


Thanks for sharing
 
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