Day 65. 90km. Momchilgrad – Ivaylovgrad

Posted: November 18, 2014 in Bulgaria, Cycling
Tags: , , ,

Everything according to schedule. From 250m, up to 630m, down to 200m, up to 800m, down to 200m. Home, done and dusted, and ready for dinner by 4. James had 3, or maybe 4 courses, depending on how you count. It’s good to have some hills. We felt overfed and under-exerted yesterday. 🙂

At 800m, our highest point today - Popsko

At 800m, our highest point today – Popsko

I am amazed how many people speak German here. English is less useful than German. I was told that the reason for this is that many have been in Germany for work. This morning, I even conversed in Dutch. The guy at our hotel in Momchilgrad was wearing a jumper from Albert Heijn (a Dutch supermarket chain) Pijnacker (a tiny village near Delft where I lived for a year). At dinner this evening I was told that all the villages in this part of Bulgaria are empty, as people have all moved to work in western Europe. Ivaylovgrad, once a town with 15000 inhabitants, now has a population of only 4000. They do have a nice hotel which makes good Creme Caramels though. 🙂

Breakfast was bought at the local market. Seeing a milk-looking drink, I had to try it – even though I was warned it was not milk.

Not a milk drink

Not a milk drink

Not a milk drink

Not a milk drink

The first climb was uneventful as it was grey and misty. The second because we were in the balding forest with no views the whole time. We did see a donkey pulled cart, though.

The views are hidden by the balding forest

The views are hidden by the balding forest

Donkey and cart

Donkey and cart

From our humble abode in Ivaylovgrad, we are a mere 5km from Greece, and only 50km from Edirne – one of the gems of Turkey. Turkey sounds so distant from good ol’ Eindhoven, and we are both very excited. Turkey, here we come!!

  1. cyclerist says:

    So you didn’t like boza drink? 🙂 I don’t like it either 😀

  2. giannis says:

    For god’s sake be very conservative when entering Istanbul! NOT on the main road, instead find side ways, please!

  3. Jean-Pierre says:

    Nice to read your blog and see all the pictures. Almost at the crossing of continents and a break of your travel. (if that is still the plan) Edirne is a great place to visit. I don’t know which route the Istanbul bicycle shop provided, I took the D020 and entered Istanbul from the North along the Bosphorus. Happy cycling and enjoy the Turkish culture.

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