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Thread: Riding to Poland

  1. #1
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    Riding to Poland

    In one weeks time I have decided to have two weeks off work and ride to Poland. Has anyone any tips or sensible words of advice please. I havent planned anything yet. The bikes going to be packed and then Im going to go from Dover on the Eurotunnel and see what happens. Its a solo ride so it will be certainly and adventure.

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    Poland

    I'd suggest going from folkestone on the eurotunnel as thats where it is, and pre book it as its a lot cheaper even if you do it the day before.

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    Poland

    Cheaper still have a look at speedferries, they will save you a few quid over the tunnel.

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    Just a couple of things:-

    There is NO vehicle border crossing between Germany and Poland north of Szczecin - we were told however that there is a ferry from Swinoujscie to Peenemunde. If in the area The Hansa Ship provides interesting B&B for about 25 Euros http://www.bookings.org/hotel/pl/han...tml?aid=301726 ... N53 54.077 E14 26.126

    We stayed two nights at this excellent resort lodge, great value http://www.turysta.net.pl/turystyka/pensjonaty/teresa/
    ... N53 54.728 E21 51.112

    It is in the Mansurian lakes area and from it we visited Hitler's Wolf's Lair near Ketrzyn ..... N54 04.059 E21 29.222 and the Holocaust extermination camp at Treblinka .. N52 38.103 E22 03.157

    The north coast is beautiful, as is the city of Gdansk

    Polish driving standards are not the best so we stayed off the main roads. Country roads often have rough surfaces so softening the suspension may save your fillings. There seem to be petrol stations every fifty metres - they all take plastic and usually have a good stock of detailed road maps

    We were advised to use secure overnight parking, especially in urban areas, and this proved easy to find

    It will be very hot!!

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    Thanks for all the replies....... great advice and links.

  6. #6
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    I worked out in Poland for 3 months and secure parking is a must. Berkenau/Auschwitz is a must.

    Its a long ride to get to the southern parts of Poland so if you want to get there allow at least a couple of days.

    Gdansk is great and Warsaw is worth a visit - though not sure I'd want to ride a bike through the centre.

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    I took the bike solo to Poland about 6 weeks ago- and loved it, but my 10 days wasn't enough. If you haven't already booked the Eurotunnel, have you considered taking the overnight ferry from Harwich to Esbjerg, then riding across Denmark and Sweden (easily done in about 7 hours) then catching another overnight ferry from Karlskrona to Gdansk, then the overnight Esbjerg to Harwich ferry back to the UK? At £320 for the 3 crossings, its more expensive than the Eurotunnel, but it does allow you to cover big mileages even when you're sleeping and bear in mind that you are saving any hotel / motel costs for 3 nights. A mate of mine rode out via the Eurotunnel to meet me at Auschwitz and it took him about 3 days riding at stupid speeds and for long periods - I think on some days he was riding for 11 hours a day - which at high speeds on boring motorways etc is too heavy IMHO, and I'm sure he regretted his route, but not the trip. The route I took will also give you a day in say Berlin and another day in Hamburg, on the way back to Esbjerg.

    I can't attach the Mapsource file (as its too large) giving you some co-ordinates of the places I visited, but unless you have an interest in military history, you will probably ignore 95% of it anyway, but the Hotel Dworek (a lakeside former palace) at N54 04.466 E21 28.567 was superb. If you are going to the Mazurian Lakes area, don't forget Mosquito repellant the best one can be found in THIS THREAD

    To me at least Hitlers Wolfs Lair nr Ketrzyn N54 04.742 E21 29.599 and Auschwitz / Birkenau N50 01.715 E19 12.317 were essential waypoints, and I'll never forget them. My time was too short, so I didn't get to spend as long in Warsaw and Krakov as I would have liked. At Oswiecim, we stayed at the Hotel Galicja N50 02.277 E19 14.682 which at about £20 pppn was fantastic.

    I used my GPS the whole time I was there, but as City Navigator doesn't allow you to download maps of Poland, I ended up buying "Garmin compatible" maps from a Polish company. More info on THIS THREAD

    There are roughly 5 Polish Zlotys to the £. Accommodation is comparatively cheap - about £15 - £20 per night from memory. The roads generally are poor (pot-holes everywhere) which keeps your average speeds down, although they are building new roads and they are fantastic. Food is cheap as chips, the girls are unbelievably attractive and I would love to go back maybe in 2008.

    Its mostly common sense, but if you need more info, PM me.
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    Hi Mike... great to hear about your Polish trip

    I go with Kritou on this. We stayed at the hotel/Pension Teresa and it was great... a warm welcome form the German couple who run it. Bike's secure overnight in a garage.

    Enjoy...

    Micky

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    Thanks for all the replies!...... Looks like I wil be going to the suggested places and I cant wait! ....... 5 days and counting till I go

  10. #10
    Intrepid Ken
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    Poland trip planning

    My wife and I rode through Poland about a month or so ago, we are riding from London across to Japan. If you are interested we have done a log with distances and average time in the seat. It may help get some ideas

    Good luck - we really enjoyed all of that area.

    Ken
    www.kenandtoni.com

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    Hi Mate,

    Well worth spending a day or two in Krakov. Lots of nice cafes and restaurants, reminded me of the centre of Munich actually. You can also do a day trip to Zakopane (on the border with Slovakia) where the scenery is quite mountainous if you have time. Also white water rafting etc.

    Road surface isnt too bad. Some new toll motorways on the way to Krakov from the west which was very smooth. Some of the main roads were quite badly rutted from trucks etc but gives you concentrate on.

    All in all its ideal GS teritory.

    Gazzr
    www.theworld-ismyoyster.com

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    Quote Originally Posted by Intrepid Ken
    My wife and I rode through Poland about a month or so ago, we are riding from London across to Japan. If you are interested we have done a log with distances and average time in the seat. It may help get some ideas

    Good luck - we really enjoyed all of that area.

    Ken
    www.kenandtoni.com
    Great website!....Im reading it now .... Must have taken you ages to put all that together. Nice job

  13. #13
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    Good luck with the trip mate, Rode to Poland in what turned out to be a much wider "europian tour" 2 months back. Poland was ment to be the main focus of the trip but to be honest we hated the bloody place and most of the people. Our mistake was 1...riding there, dont waste the petrol, get a cheap flight and hire a Polish plated car. 2.. riding a GS there, christ you stand out! The beggers know they are expensive bikes and with British plates they think you are a soft touch This situation was probably worse in Czech, and never felt really threatned in Poland (unlike Czech), however combined with the total ignorance of the "communist / post communist" generation it was a bloody nightmare. Try going shopping in a supermarket in full kit on GS's and you might just get some idea of how Black people feel when they describe their experiances in this country in the 1950's.
    I continue... 3... trying to be self sufficent...DONT!!!! Lugging bloody tents and luggage around which you have to keep an eye on all the time, shopping in previously mentioned supermarkets with the ignorant locals...sod it.... pack the plastic, ditch the tent and stick to Hotels or challets on campsites. 4)....We dont do Cities/towns, i suggest you do since its what most ramble on about as being so bloody good.

    Bike tyres and petrol are wasted on Polish roads, generaly long and straight and poorley surfaced. Driving standards are crap, there are some fine cars over ther now but no bugger has told them how to drive them. Expect no respect for your life when riding, but dont take it personnal, they just drive like tossers any way! Ride like a tosser back at them and they soon move out the way

    All that said it is a beautiful country, Out in the country GPS was a god send. and the Mountain regions were very nice and actually had some good roads. The old school of locals do appear to match the image i certainly had before i left as a wonderful warm people. Food is cheap, petrol was around 84p/L.

    Went to Berkenau and made absolutly no connection with the place what so ever Seriously it was just a place i recognised from the films! No sense of etermal horror etc! Suppose we all take from it what we feel as individuals! Even worse we then "tried" to get to Auschwitz which was knee deep in roadworks, had harsh words with a parking attendant and gave it best. Headed back to the czech border that evening at high speed with the feeling of bugger this place for a game of soldiers.

    It was all a major let down since my Father was Polish and was sort of on a personnal discovery trip. We were on the road for 3 weeks and loved France, Netherlands, Germany, Czech and Austria. But Poland....like i said IMHO take the plane and hire a car.

    Sorry guys, but its how we feel

  14. #14
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    Here one I forgot! Do I need a international Driving license for Austria? cant understand why i forgot to get one and Im off Sunday! bet I cant just get one instantly from a post office

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by mike wright
    Here one I forgot! Do I need a international Driving license for Austria? cant understand why i forgot to get one and Im off Sunday! bet I cant just get one instantly from a post office
    Just spoken to my office manager, Girlfriend Sue, she obtained all the visa's and generally sorted out the paperwork etc. for our trip, and you don't need one for Poland, or Austria for that matter. We got one because we were travelling further afield. We were certainly never asked for it though.

    Enjoy your trip

    www.adventure.gs
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  16. #16
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    Mike,

    Ad this one to your list:-

    Stalag Luft 3 (the scene of the Great Escape)
    N51 35.956 E15 18.326
    It’s half a mile South of the town of Zagan on the 296

    It is an un-commercialised location that did more for me than Auschwitz or Berkenau, it's just 30 miles East of the German/Polish border.

    PG









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