End of May 2007 I drove from Sinzig to
Frankfurt/Oder, from where I drove through northern Poland
to Vilnius in Lithuania. Further on to Klaipeda and
the Curonian Spit. Then to Riga in Latvia and
through Estonia to Tallinn. There I took
a ferry to Helsinki in Finland, drove to the
Russian Border and on to Vaasa, where I wanted to take a ferry to Umea
in Sweden. But the next ferry was three days later,
because of maintenance work, so I drove down to Turku and took a ferry
to Stockholm. Then I drove over the Öresund-bridge into Denmark
and then back to Sinzig. I did this trip without Jayne,
because she was in Afghanistan for 6 month at that time.
| Poland 1 Northwest, by
EuroCart/RV Verlag, Scale 1:300.000
Poland 2 Northeast, by EuroCart/RV Verlag, Scale 1:300.000
Lithuania, by Reise Know-How, Scale 1:325.000 (waterproof and
Latvia, by Reise Know-How, Scale 1:325.000 (waterproof and
Estonia, by Reise Know-How, Scale 1:275.000 (waterproof and
Finland, by ADAC, Scale 1:650.000
South-Sweden (East), by Kümmerly+Frey, Scale 1:250.000
South-Sweden (South), by Kümmerly+Frey, Scale 1:250.000
Planet Estonia, Latvia & Lithuania
Planet Eastern Europe
|The Baltic States sure aren't
a mayor tourist site yet, but it is definitely not a adventure
The best time to travel to the
Baltic States is probably late spring and early fall. Summer is much
too warm to ride a motorcycle (I had already temperatures around 30°C).
Winter is not a good idea anyway, so far noth-east.
There are lots of mosquitoes
in the Baltic Countries and as well in Scandinavia, especially near
lakes, and there are lots of lakes! Autan and other bug repellents are
available in every pharmacy and in many other stores. The local bug
repellent isn't any better or worse than the German stuff, only a
One still needs to pay in the local
currency, the Euro is not accepted in most places. Finland is
the only country where you can, and have to pay in Euro. So, after
crossing a border one has to look for the next town with an ATM. There
are enough ATM's, and they all work in English too. Bigger gas stations
and shops usually accept credit cards.
The road conditions are very
different. All main roads, except for Latvia, are paved and in
acceptable conditions. Deeply rutted roads and potholes are not
unusual, especially in Poland. Small roads, and as well some
main roads in Latvia, are only gravel roads, but they are mostly easily
drivable. There are many road construction sites, where they repair the
road or build new ones with EU-money.
The general conditions are
best in Lithuania and Estonia. There even very poor people paint their
houses and keep them clean, in Poland nobody seems to care. A economic
boom is obvious, probably because of the east expansion of the EU and
the starting tourism.
seen from the Polish river side. With the border station on the bridge.
|There are some nice
forest roads in Poland, and they still have many
beautiful tree-lined roads.
||Vilnius in Lithuania is
a UNESCO-world heritage site, but after one hour in a traffic jam at
30°C and in truck-exhaust-fumes, I turned around.
of Europe. Surprisingly in Lithuania, but Europe expands as
far as to the Ural.
aluminum panniers and top cases
by an experienced motorcycle traveller.
Panniers available in 40l and 33l
Top boxs available in 20l and 36l
Silver/Grey or Black
is essential, not only on a RTW tour.