Bosnia Herzegovina awaits

Chilly morning at Budva awakened me. After a hot shower and I was all set to hit the border. It’s just 80km away. Fruits, bread and good hot coffee gave me a jump start.

So I was told the route would be scenic and hilly.

Be prepared,  I whisper to Lil G on the 1st gear.

Border clearance on Montenegro side was quick. Hoping and praying would be the same on Bosnia soil.

Again I was told that my Green card is not valid in Bosnia. Some countries is not covered in it. Waited for 1 hour for the agent to arrive and 20 euro went in the agent’s pocket and it’s only valid for 3 days. What a rip-off!!!

Riding in Bosnia is nice, with good road and clear sign where you are heading. Just the hill and climbing slows us down.

Diverted a bit off into Mostar to see the old bridge. It has been rebuilt after being destroyed during the war.

Before arriving here I had already made arrangement to meet up with Mr Tarik, local Bosnian guy. My stay in Sarajevo is under the courtesy of Datuk Hassan. He invited me to stay at his place while I am around here. Thanks you very much.

Arrived in Sarajevo almost 6pm and went straight to Bosmal. The tallest building in Bosnia and most unique design. Built by joint Malaysian and Bosnian; led by Datuk Hassan.

Mr Tarik showed me where to stay in Sarajevo and later we went out for dinner. He showed me a place where I can find some Malaysian food. As we entered the place, we saw Malaysian Ambassador, Datuk Adnan, was having dinner there too with some Malaysians. I was invited to join. Coffee  after dinner and he invited me to drop by the office on Monday. Sure do i will, a courtesy visit.

My Sunday in Sarajevo was awaken by heavy rain and again, the temp dropped. There goes my plan to roam around Sarajevo. So I spent the morning having my breakfast with Mr Tarik’s family and his lovely children.

Stayed home doing my laundry until lunch and the rain did not stop. Later, Mr Tarik brought me to meet Malaysians for coffee. Sure do rather than staying home watching the rain from my balcony. Met Mr Ramlan and Puan Asmah for coffee and it ended up all the way to tea time and then they invited me for dinner at their place. It was still raining outside and there was nothing I could do so I accepted the offer. Malaysian food served for dinner.

And for all you know they invited everyone from the embassy to join for dinner. The plan for courtesy visit is a day earlier  lah. Met Mr Khairul and Mr Nasir too from our mission here. Small team in Bosnia. Dinner was hot and spicy; something I missed for a while for almost 5 months on the road. Thanking everyone for the lovely food and missed talking in Bahasa Malaysia…hahaha.

On Monda,y I managed to roam around the old city of Sarajevo.

It rained in the morning and still no sign of sun. Dark cloud still there and I could not gonna wait long.

Walking around the old town filled with old mosque and its time to grab a bite and cuppa of coffee. Nice one.

And lucky me…i met fellow Malaysian here. From UK.

Another cuppa of coffee session with them and looking forward to meet them again for the next session when i set foot with Lil G.

With the help of Our Embassy here, I finally managed to get my visa to enter Serbia. Got my papers done for the visa in 2 days. Cost me 65 euro for it. Lil G is all filled up, prepared for the another ride.

Early in the morning the next day before leaving, I made a courtesy visit to the Malaysian Embassy in Sarajevo. Lil G getting all the attention and she seems happy.

Some snap session here and there before me and Lil G hit the border.

Time to ride.

Hellowww Belgrade…

Coastal breeze……Montenegro

Left Tirane on sunny morning; a post-war country that is now growing. Headed up north to cross the border. Prayed hard not to get into time delays at the border crossing. Bad roads and riding up and down on 2nd gear on the mountain range had caused Lil G to leak more again.

Scenery was great, mountain view all over.

As I arived at the exit check point, the police start yelling and I didn’t understand what he was trying to say. The post was empty and it was just me and another 2 bikers from Czech in front of me. They requested for their passports but did not even loooking into it and said, “2 euro!” The bikers dug into their pockets and hand over 2 euro and turn 2 me and said, “just give the money and you can go. No stamp required.”

Indeed. I just handed over my passport with 2 euro and the officer didn’t even bother to flip a page and said, “you go”. It was totally different on Montenegro side few kilometers ahead. They greeted me well and asked for my bike papers and my green card.

“We are sorry mister, your green  card does not cover Montenegro. That is the counter and please buy it before we can stamp your passport”. Green card is the insurance you need to ride and travel into European countries. Parked my bike aside and there I went. The guy at the table filled up some forms and said, “10 euro please.”

The guy: whh…you are from Malaysia. Muslim?

Me: Yes.

The guy: Assalam, I am muslim too. Eid mubarak to you, Mister Hussien. This is the map of Montenegro and where you are going?

Me: Heading to budva tonight.

The guy: Nice beach. Camping?

Me: yes.

The guy: Oh…there are many places to camp in Montenegro and they are all very safe. Enjoy your ride and please ride safe.

A total different approached and made my day.

Riding on to Podgorica, the capital city of Montenegro. Nothing much to see  and headed to the beach. Made stops from time to time to make sure I was heading the right way and the locals are really friendly. Even they don’t speak English, they tried hard giving me explanation on how to get there and which route to take.

After hours on the bike, the butt was getting sore. Short distance covered and all I could think was to get a rest. Uphill and downhill winding roads was fun but too much fun is not good too…hahaha.

Lil G among the BIG Gsssss

Finally found the camping spot by the beach and saw some fellow travellers from north; with big bikes. Said hi to them and there was a long pause. They went around looking at the bike and start talking among themselves. They are from Czech.

One of them asked me, “you ship the bike here to ride?”

Me: I rode it here.

Czech biker:  all the way from Malaysia?

Me: yes.

Czech biker: That’s very far.

Me: I know, thanks for telling me. And I just smiled.

Czech biker: We are on the way back home from  south…long ride, but not as long and far as you.

Me: I take it slow and easy.

While I was pitching up my tent, a guy arrived on a bicycle; Canadian-born former Yugoslavian native. A very cool guy and I had a good chat with him, you know, the travellers tale kind, throughtout the evening. He finished his study and now cycling around Balkan countries visiting his native old ancestors motherland. How cool.

Time to get some rest and Bosnia is up next.  Temperature was really low and I had to keep warm in my sleeping bag in the tent.

Khoda Hafez.

Coastal ride
ferry ride crossing some bay