We have officially been on the road for 2 weeks! After nearly 3 years of planning it, we’re not sure if it’s actually sunk in yet.
If you read my previous blog you’ll know, myself and partner Dave decided we wanted to ride our motorcycles around the world in 2015. It took us all those years to get our lives in some sort of order for leaving, in that time we plotted our route, began clearing our debts and the hardest bit, took on three more freelance digital marketing clients each. We realised the dream of leaving wouldn’t actually come to fruition if we didn’t put the time and effort into becoming self-sufficient, we would never have enough money to leave in our savings account. So we worked our normal full-time jobs, then the evenings and weekends. This meant we were building a client base which we could work for remotely, from anywhere in the world.
Something that has become clear to us in the last few years is that things don’t usually just fall into place. We had this dream of travelling on the bikes and no one could make it happen for us, we had to work hard for it! And still, do every day of the trip. We still have no idea if it’s all going to work out for us, or if we’ll not be able to make enough money as we travel and have to return. We’re alright with that though, it’s an uncomfortable feeling but we’d still rather be giving it a go than sitting at home thinking about it.
The idea of leaving to go travelling is a liberating and free concept.
The reality involves a lot of paperwork and organisation. For example, the last few weeks before leaving were filled with;
- Cancelling car insurance and SORN
- Cancelling phone contract
- Confirming travel insurance
- Paying up final house bills
- Photocopying our passports and V5
- Making sure our Carnets were all in order
- Calling our banks and running through the countries we were going to
- Double checking the first few hotels were booked
This doesn’t include all of the preparation on the bikes or working out how we were going to pack everything we needed. Both Dave and I work on the road so need quite a lot of gear, as well as filming weekly episodes. We needed to bring our laptops, camera equipment, charging ports – which all take up the room!
So we set off from our home in Knaresborough at about 10:30 am on the 31st March, our Eurotunnel was booked for 16:50 that day. It rained the entire ride down South; typical! We made the train in time, we were drenched through and freezing but still in shock from the fact we’d actually done it. We’d set off on the day we had planned 3 years ago.
Once we arrived in France we had another 70 miles to reach our hotel in Lille, and of course it was raining in France. We reached our hotel about 8pm and passed out, leaving was one of the most stressful, exciting days of our lives and it was exhausting.
The next few days we stuck to the big motorways as we wanted to head South as quickly as possible, searching for the nicer weather. We were riding from 9am to about 7pm most days with usually 2 stops, 1 for breakfast and then lunch later on. I had a couple of shots of espresso each time and Dave was on the Red Bull. We were happy doing these long days as we really wanted to start seeing some sun, our intercoms were in full use at all times, either chatting or listening to music as we went.
We rode through France, Germany and Austria within 3 days.
Italy is one of our favourite countries, so we wanted some time chilling out there; we had one night in Venice.
After Venice we stayed in Trieste for two nights to catch up with work then made our way down to Croatia, I am currently sat writing this blog in a little town called Bibinje. Croatia is definitely a lot cheaper than the countries we have been passing through so far, we are staying in this small apartment for two nights which is costing £17 per night…for an apartment?!
The ride so far has been amazing. We’ve already met some awesome people. The roads haven’t been that exciting yet though. The scenery started to get more interesting in Southern Germany which made the time go even quicker.
I hadn’t ridden in a long time before setting off, my bike was in bits getting serviced. I was quite out of practice, my body wasn’t used to sitting for that long. As waking up the next morning after these long days I felt rough, almost hungover. My back was killing, hands were aching from the fairly heavy levers and had a headache most mornings. After a couple of Paracetamol and coffee, I was ready to go again. 2 weeks in and the aches and pains are all gone! I am used to rides now. Nothing is more exciting than packing our bikes in the morning and setting off somewhere new.
We met up with my parents in France.
They have been travelling down with us, they’re on a BMW 1200GS. We are riding with them till Istanbul. They’ll then head North to carry on their holiday. We’ll continue East where the roads get a little less like roads. At the moment we are in the holiday section of the trip. We are staying in nice but cheap hotels while the weather still isn’t great, and sitting down to work at least 4 times a week. After travelling to Turkey, we will be in the tent full time, which we’re really looking forward to. We love camping and can’t wait to get our tent out again. The last time we stayed in it was our Spain trip.
Roughly our route so far!…
Working as we go means we can carry on travelling. If the money stops then we’ll have to turn around and head home. As I wrote in my last blog, travelling is the most exciting thing Dave and I have ever done. But also the most unnerving. It’s scary not having a safety net. Things will either work out really well or they won’t, there isn’t anything in between! We were at the point in our lives that we had to try this though; we didn’t have a mortgage and aren’t planning on kids anytime soon.
The next blog will be coming soon!… (psst… it’s here) We’ll have made our way down to Greece, Turkey and into Georgia by that point. This is when things will start to get harder. We will be travelling by hitting the trails and seeing places neither of us has ever been to before.
Any questions let me know and I’ll get back to you as soon as I get Wifi!