I drove into Serbia without a dinar. First I wanted to go to the town of Šabac, find a hostel via WIFI and then decide what or how much money I would withdraw. Well, unfortunately, I imagined it too easy. Everything seemed too expensive and fully booked. I don’t want to pay more than 10 EUR just for letting me sleep once. For several days it would be different.
So I was looking for a place to camp. Unfortunately I didn’t find anything in a hurry and it became slowly later, besides I was a little exhausted with approx. 90 km behind me. Two Serbs were eager to help me and tried in vain for about 2 hours to find a cheap accommodation for me. Unfortunately, without success. They finally got me a spot at the police station. It was a small meadow where I was allowed to camp with the permission of the police. Thank you both for that! Unfortunately, there was also a discotheque there. When I was cooking dinner, many visitors to the disco passed me by and looked at me strangely. That must have looked super funny. The BOOM BOOM of trance music was really loud and in the morning I could finally fall asleep. Nevertheless I was fit around 9 o’clock, could have breakfast, wash in the park and it went on towards Belgrade.
Across the Balkans, older people are still working in their fields
A typical picture: many small shops and bars show the centre of a village
The way led me along country roads. Traffic was a pain in the ass.
When finally a road came along which hardly a car was driving, a group of pigeons next to me flew along a piece, a song with the name “I’m still alive” came, what can I say. I enjoyed this moment as rarely.
Arrived in Belgrade there was a demonstration or whatever where people with flags of kings walked through the streets. Extreme traffic and a lot of people everywhere. I couldn’t find a free hostel via WIFI either. I drove back 12 km to a camping site where I spent 2 days for 20 EUR.
At the campsite I met some people (from Switzerland, England, Poland) and gave my body two days of rest.
Then I went through Belgrade again, where I met a lot of people and a lot of traffic. Only this time I had time and drove through it relaxed.
With my packed bike it was difficult to ride from place to place in Belgrade to see something. So I decided not to look at anything in Belgrade and just drove through.
The further way led me directly along the Danube, well, it was more of a dirt road. The first section was full of holes and stones, the next was overgrown with high grass. It went on jumping and fighting.
Despite the headwind and crosswind that kept pushing me aside, the area was very beautiful. Many birds, much green, but unfortunately also many plastic bottles
My tachometer had grown to over 2500 km.
After a while I saw a thick grey cloud in front of me. Since there was a headwind, it should come to me. But I reached a camping site called “Jabukov cvet” where I was allowed to camp for free. There were showers, WIFI and drinking water. Everything’s wonderful.
The tent was erected, then the rain came directly. You got lucky.
Unfortunately, the headwind was not less the next day. First I went shopping in a village, had breakfast in the park with ghastly crows singing and later again along gravel roads and pitted field paths directly along the Danube. Unfortunately, the headwind became so strong that when it came from the side, I had to steer against it. To the front it went with rapid 11 km/h ahead. After about 50 km I was totally broken and went again to a camping site “Dubovac Danube rooms & camping Marina”, where I talked longer with the Lord of the Guest House. He also showed me his jetty in the Danube, where he fishes from time to time. I really liked this place.
Day three with headwind, unfortunately still so strong. Nevertheless I was well protected from trees for the first 11 km and could drive with up to 20 km/h on the asphalt and hardly any traffic. Then, unfortunately, 6 km of dirt road and the wind came, again. With the ferry it went over the Danube and further over rough asphalt with 11 km/h fighting on.
Have I mentioned how wide the Danube is? If not, okay.
This is NOT the bus from “Into the wild”, there are beehives in there. Many people in the Balkans are beekeepers and occasionally sell honey on the roadside. But also cheese and other things are sold already times
The region behind Grabovac is beautiful
On the way I ate fish and soup and recovered for about 1 hour.
A few kilometres behind the restaurant, on a beautiful camping site directly on the Danube, I enjoyed the evening and talked to the only guest on site, a Dutchman who cycled through many parts of the world. But only for a few weeks at a time, because he has to work.
I hung in the mat and listened to the chirping of the birds and the quiet splashing of the river. The sun went down.
I slept like a baby. At 08:30 o’clock I started again and finally, after 3 days no headwind! On this day I wanted to pack about 100 km to a guest house “Camping for Cyclists and Adventurers” in Negotin.
It went down a bit, through many tunnels (about 20) to a dirt road, which should lead me over a mountain.
The no river on the right gave me a little cooling
I found stones that contained a lot of silver and I’ll get them later. Fortunately there are more than enough of them here (ok, n. A. why the silver shine, metal?)
Another beetle next to my index finger
After a very long climb up to about 400 m I was finally able to descend. With enormous braking and bouncing 12 km/h, evasive over stones and grooves it went downhill.
Then another 300 meters were added. Unbelievable how slowly the km go by when you push. I also had to take a break every 15 m when pushing, because everything was just too heavy. From shadow to shadow. On the descent I was allowed to drive down on a great tarmac. Okay, I had to do a full stop because there was a turtle on the side of the road. I put her in a bush.
The remaining 11 km on the wide asphalt flew like nothing. Arrived in Negotin, I drove to the “Guesthouse for Adventurers”, where I was offered a tent with a mattress, a beer, a shower, oh everything. Afterwards the owner took me to the restaurant where I ate properly. I only had breakfast that day and a hunger like never before.
It was exactly 100 km on this day, the 4th day in a row without a break. So I decided to stay here for two days. Thanks Alex (cyclist from London) for the tip here in Negotin! So far the 100 km have been worth it.
I changed my route again in Negotin. I didn’t want to go to the Black Sea anymore, where I wanted to meet a travel companion. I would go to Lom Cherkovna in Bulgaria to Malka Polsza, where a Polish couple has a house and where you can camp. My travel colleague also comes there and we continue together to Istanbul.
Unfortunately I suffer from travel fever, shortly before Romania I could not fall asleep. I’m probably looking forward too much to new countries and I keep looking at photos of other travellers.
Bojan, the owner, gave me breakfast. Thank you Bojan for EVERYTHING!!!! The village is also a centre for many cyclists who cycle along the Danube. Rooms are also available.
I started very motivated. The kilometres passed quickly. At the border I had some fun with the officials, we laughed together and I left Serbia.