A Travellerspoint blog

September 1992

Turning back the hands of time...

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That's me in the red and white polo shirt. Next to me and not really helping lift the tree is my good friend Ivan Benda. Ivan is a lifelong motorcyclist and inhabitant of Brno.

The story behind this picture is folklore. In the harvest time in many village and towns across the country (and no doubt elsewhere in Europe) a tree is hoisted in the town square. It is (was) all done using manpower and the tree if lifted and then chocked as it goes up and the trunk slides into a hole in the ground. At the time I had no real idea why we were doing it. It seemed like a good idea at the time of the visit to Lanžhot

Plus of course, everyone was enjoying the free bubbling wine still in its first fermentation know locally as burčák. I over indulged and didn't eat enough but luckily by Monday I was able to teach okay!

More information on Tripadvisor.

Posted by InvictaMoto 17:13 Archived in Czech Republic Tagged lanžhot burčák Comments (0)

Čzech Centre Invader Rally - New Rally Shirt

New Rally Shirt


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One of the traditions of the Suzuki Owners Club local centre in Kent was to go to rallies and wear Hawaiian shirts. I have decided to reinstate the tradition and have invested in a couple of new shirts to take with me.

Firstly:

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Posted by InvictaMoto 14:11 Archived in Czech Republic Comments (0)

Veselé Velikonoce!

Happy Easter!

To all my Czech friends and former school colleagues and students!

VESELÉ VELIKONOCE!

Velikonice Kraslice.jpg

Posted by InvictaMoto 00:00 Archived in Czech Republic Comments (0)

Čzech Centre Invader Rally - May 2022 Part 4

Schengen Borders


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With the trip starting in Dover UK and with the first port of call in Dunkerque in France, we will be entering the Schengen zone. As UK decided to leave the EU, we are now a third country and to enter the Schengen area we are only entitled to be there for 90 days and then we will be taken to a PoW camp. Or so the threat goes.

This means that on arrival in France there will be along queue to show out Covid QR codes and also our "honneur" form to the French border guards. They should stamp out UK passports. Mine is still the maroon EU issue!

It looks as though as we cross Europe through France, Belgium and Germany before the Czech border we may have to stop and show our Covid QR code at every brder. How this is managed I have no idea as Schengen means that once in the zone there are no internal borders. Unless someone that might read this knows?

So it looks like having a few QR codes printed out and handy in the tank bag along with the passport for the duration of the trip?

Posted by InvictaMoto 16:55 Archived in France Comments (0)

Čzech Centre Invader Rally - May 2022 Part 3

Days 7 & 8


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Day 7

From our hotel near Augsburg we head off to do a little more of the Romantic Road. I guess this ought to be in the Germany Blog but once I had gone down the rabbit hole of having a different blog for each country I was a bit screwed.

If only there was a tool on Travellerspoint that could merge blogs and organise by date when it was over.... Then I could merge all the European blogs into one place and climb out of the rabbit hole!!!!

Anyway, from Augsburg we head north until we meet the A6 autobahn and turn westwards. This is probably the same junction that we joined the A6 to go eastwards on Day 2! One massive figure of 8!

I hope Phil and Giles don't mind but I have shoehorned the Sinsheim Technical Museum back into the route. It's right on the side of the A6 and a short detour. Maybe lunch at Mc Donald's!

With a stop at Dinkelsbühl and Nördlingen catered for in the route planning we should arrived in our final overnight stop in Baschange in Luxembourg at around 6pm or so. Plenty of time on the road, but much today on the A6!

Day 7

Day 7

Day 8

Homeward bound today. We have a stop planned in Bastogne to visit the Bartle of the Bulge Museum. This ought to be plain sailing!

Let's see!

Posted by InvictaMoto 16:54 Archived in Germany Comments (0)

Čzech Centre Invader Rally - May 2022 Part 2

Days 3 to 6


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Day 3

This is the day that we trek across the country to end up at the Hotel Reoneo in Vernirovice, the rally hotel for the weekend.

Hopefully even with a few stops between Plzen and the rally, firstly at the Church of Bones and then at my friend Rosta's house in Hradec Kralove plus a "bag a country" trip across the border into Poland, we should arrive mid afternoon. Plenty of time to get checked in and meet our Čzech hosts.

This will be my sixth Čzech Centre rally. All the previous five have been held at Pod Horkou in the village of Chudcice near Brno. As it seems that we are the only British making the trip, it will be between Giles and Phil who gets a prize for furthest travelled! Although we may be surprised and see some other foreigners have attended.

Day 3

Day 3

At the moment we have no idea what the programme will be for the rally itself. As someone that rarely drinks alcohol any more (it makes me sick!) I should be okay with the Čzech Republic's 0% alcohol in blood to drive. Usually on the Saturday there is a ride out to somewhere of interest. Looking on the map I have no idea what that might be!

So days 4 & the first part of Day 5 are a mystery.

Day 5 PM

Probably much earlier the afternoon we need to be away from the rally hotel and on our way south. You'd think that UK would be west, but to meet the targets of places we want to stop at we need to go south to Brno, and then further south into Austria. I have friends in Brno, or nearby actually, and so I have arranged a short stop over for a coffee and chat before we head into Austria. I had hoped to call in to Zastavka where I lived in the early 90's to see my old apartment and school.

With Phil wanting to try the Romantic Road he then saw that Neuschwanstein Castle was actually at the southern end of the Romantic Road. So we added that. That was quite a detour and so we had to drop a proposed stop at the Sinsheim Technical Museum to get the mileage down for the next day.

Juggling with distances it looked as though we would need an overnight in Austria. We had already decided to buy the 10-day toll ticket for the Austrian motorways to speed up the crossing. In the end we have decided to stay at a motel in Lenzing. It makes the day quite long but the motel has a bar and restaurant on site.

Day 5

Day 5

So the that will be Day 5.

Day 6

Looking at the route that MyRouteApp proposed showed that we would cross from Austria to Germany bound for Neuschwanstein near Salzburg. This would mean passing close to Berchtesgaden. So that was added to the route.

The day is probably one of the shortest we have on the entire trip!

Then Phil tosses into the discussion a meteor crater that's not far off the Romantic Route as we head northwards along it. So that was added and eventually shuffled to Day 7!

Day 6

Day 6

Our day ends near Augsburg. Part way along the Romantic Road. As we have done a part of it on the way down on Day 2 we will have done about 80% by the end of today!

Posted by InvictaMoto 17:24 Archived in Germany Comments (0)

Čzech Centre Invader Rally - May 2022 Part 1

Days 1 & 2


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Could it be all systems go after all the pandemic?

I started to plan the trip last year and advertised it as an "event" on the Facebook page for my not-a-motorcycle-club - the Old SOCS. This is a chat and reminiscence group for those of us that were members of the Suzuki Owners Club in the UK from the 70's to the 00's! Those that have left the club but like to keep in touch with other former members and friends.

I had two takers contact me about making the trip. Phil who I have known since the 80's and Giles who I have met a few times but don't know as well.

I outlined the idea I had to the 8 day (7 night) trip across Europe to Vernířovice in Northern Moravia. My original plan was to set off along the "southern route" from the Channel port via the A3 (Frankfurt to Nuremburg) and then into Čzech. The return on the "northern route" back to Dresden and the A4/A44 route to the Rhine and the channel.

With other travellers on the road trip we made some concessions. Phil wanted to include the "Romantic Road" if possible on the return route. Some Googling and I found a website with a satnav route with all the twists and turns included. That meant the "northern route" was scrapped.

Instead we would take an even more southerly route before coming back to the A3 near Wurzburg. To make the days not simply riding, we need to be careful of the mileages and arrival times at our overnight stops, and also plan "sightseeing stops".

So "What's the Plan"?

Day 1

Cross early on the DFDS ferry to Dunkerque in France. The current entry requirement is that we need to fill in an "honneur" form to say that we don't have covid and have been vaccinated. We also will need out QR code to prove vaccination. At least here the EU and UK have agreed on that!

Once free we have along day to our overnight hotel near Koblenz. If we went on the autobahns all the way we'd probably have about half the hours in the saddles.

Motorway/Autobahn across France and Belgium and into Germany. From there we will take off through the Eifel Mountains and then along the Mosel river. I have planned a lunch from at the Bikers Ranch. A chance for the first bratwurst of the trip!

Day 1

Day 1

Day 2

Another longish day in the saddle to get from Koblenz on the Rhine/Mosel to Plzen in the Czech Republic. This route has some scenic sections and then to link them together some blasts on the autobahn to click off the miles.

Day 2

Day 2

Of course, on the day and on the road, things are liable to change. All the routes will go into the TomTom and I will be taking my MS Surface with me.

Posted by InvictaMoto 12:53 Archived in Czech Republic Tagged czech_republic vernířovice northern_moravia Comments (0)

Čzech Entry Requirements - 14 March

Today the Čzech Republic via the UK Government's page have announced a relaxation for us triple jabbed, but we still have to complete a Passenger Locator Form.

As out planned trip has several stops I guess we have to add them all to the form.

The trip is still GO.

FAB Virgil!

Posted by InvictaMoto 12:28 Archived in Czech Republic Comments (0)

2022 - Possible trip

2021 becomes 2022?

So 2021 was Covid off! So we move to 2022....

Things are lookin way better as we enter and work our way through 2021 into 2022. The vaccines are widely available and despite the odd flare-up from mutations things look for be getting as near as "normal" as possible - the so called "New Normal".

https://invictamotoczech.travellerspoint.com/26/

Posted by InvictaMoto 22:26 Archived in Czech Republic Comments (0)

Sedlec Ossuary & Prague

"Dem bones, dem bones"

I had seen this on the "Long Way Round" TV programme where two actors and a large film crew and "fixers" and "minders" had ridden around the world on BMW R1150GS-Adventure motorcycles. Although I have been to the ČR many times, and had lived there for a year, I had never been here.

We were on the way home from our friends' house in Popůvky and our overnight was to be in Prague at a hotel we have stayed in many times since the mid-90's.

I had read about Kutna Hora in Czech booklets aimed at the business tourist and they seemed to be more interested in the area as the tobacco growling region of the ČR. In fact Philip Morris, the company that gave us the Marlboro Man (and him lung cancer) has a museum here.

Sedlec Ossuary is actually to the north-east of Kutna. The fame of the place has spread far and wide and finding somewhere to park wasn't easy. We ended up a street or two away and walked back. Once inside though and WOW! As you can see from the web link below, and the photos I took. WEIRD!

Church of Bones - Kutna Hora

Church of Bones - Kutna Hora

Church of Bones - Kutna Hora

Church of Bones - Kutna Hora

Church of Bones - Kutna Hora

Church of Bones - Kutna Hora

Church of Bones - Kutna Hora

Church of Bones - Kutna Hora

Church of Bones - Kutna Hora

Church of Bones - Kutna Hora

Church of Bones - Kutna Hora

Church of Bones - Kutna Hora

Church of Bones - Kutna Hora

Church of Bones - Kutna Hora

Church of Bones - Kutna Hora

Church of Bones - Kutna Hora

I guess once you are dead and only the bones are left you don't really care what happens to them? Maybe made into coat of arms design or stacked up with a few mates?

Once we had finished we set off to S2 and the run into Prague. One night again. I had booked the car-parking at the Hotel Extol Inn in Přístavni Prague 2. It's small and it makes it easier than messing about in the streets. Once parked it would stay there until we came to leave. Getting around Prague is much easier combining foot and tram.

I first stayed in the Extol when it was just coming put of the communist doldrums. It had been a hostel for water workers. A place for them to come to Prague and see the sights. When I say water I don't mean people generally with water, but those that worked in providing fresh water for drinking and of course, the opposite end of the water cycle. Okay. Sewage.

In the mid-90's is began to transform from a hostel into a hotel and for a while you could stay there cheaply with an International Youth Hostel card or pay more for a better room and hotel it. Either way the breakfast buffet was the same! And good it was too. it does make me a little annoyed when western teenagers brought up on the sausage and egg McMuffin culture moan and carp about local dishes. This trip we had a load of them on a coach trip bringing the good old Dixie religion to the pagan Czechs. Grrrr.

Anyway, once checked in to our room, we changed into walking out clothes and set off for the tram around the corner on Komunardů. A short ride into the city and a walk around all the places we have been before but wanted to experience again.

On my first visit to Prague in 1986 a lot of the centre was run down and in need of a coat of paint. It was also deserted. So much so that two Suzuki motorcycles with British registration plates attracted crowds. It was marginally better in May 1989 with a bit of a tidy up. Now it's like any other city with bright lights and the same stores that you find anywhere. Gone are the kiosks selling "smažené sýrové sendviče" (friend cheese sandwiches) or "párek v rohlíku" (Czech hotdogs) and there are McDonald's and other chain restaurants instead.

Although the párek they served at the kiosk at Brno railway station was a good of the very last resort. Whether there was any meat in it might be open to debate!

If anyone has read the Terry Pratchett Discworld books you may have come across a character called CMOT Dibbler. He would have been a purveyor of párek.

Anyway. Into the city and a digital camera flash bang wallop.

Praha - Václavské náměstí

Praha - Václavské náměstí

Prague - Powder Tower / Praha - Mihulka

Prague - Powder Tower / Praha - Mihulka

Praha - Václavské náměstí

Praha - Václavské náměstí

Praha - Vltava pohledu z Karlova mostu

Praha - Vltava pohledu z Karlova mostu

Praha - Vltava pohledu z Karlova mostu

Praha - Vltava pohledu z Karlova mostu

Praha - Vltava pohledu z Karlova mostu

Praha - Vltava pohledu z Karlova mostu

Praha Staroměstské náměstí Hodiny

Praha Staroměstské náměstí Hodiny

Prague

Prague

The journey home was less eventful. n autobahn slog through Germany and Belgium back to the Channel port.

But what a great trip and so many great sights.

Posted by InvictaMoto 10:05 Archived in Czech Republic Comments (2)

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