A Travellerspoint blog

The End

Limmen to IJmuiden

sunny 10 °C
View Tandem tales on darrenhough1974's travel map.

It's still dark when Kim gets up. She goes to the bathroom during which there is a little tap on the door. When she opens the door both Myer and Noah are standing outside looking up and inviting her into their rooms. First into Myers and then Noahs. They show her their toys and potential Halloween outfits. Noah even gives Kim a few of his stickers. Seems she is a hit with them.

Enjoy a coffee with Nic before she leaves for work. It has been a fun 24 hours and we are so happy we could spend it with friends. It delays the sadness we feel creeping in as the end of our cycle adventure approaches.

Gareth takes Nelson for his morning walk and we join him and then continue into their local village which is very cute. Lots of lovely shops - delis, an artisan bakery, cheese shop, boutiques and cafes. One could easily while away an afternoon here. We buy food for the ferry and have one last coffee with Gareth before we leave.

Today's cycle is 10kms to ferry. The sky is clear and a beautiful blue but it is cold! We really don't want our adventure to end but as they say all good things must come to an end. Why is that? Very pessimistic...I don't know an equivalent saying for bad things.

In no time we are at the ferry terminal. Customs and check in is quick and seamless. We are on the ferry before we know it. So fast that we didn't have a chance to take a photo of us next to the boat. We lock Polly on the bike rack and take Pacman in the lift to our cabin. We are one of the first to board. It's much more modern and cleaner than our ferry from Albania to Italy, and we have a cabin instead of a seat. The cabin has a comfortable double bed and an ensuite. Nice!
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Find a table with a view of the harbour to each lunch and contemplate the end of our adventure. We have loved every minute.

Final stats

29 weeks, 130 cycle days, 66 rest days, 14 countries
Cycled 6,427kms (All our rides on Komoot)
57,270m incline and decline as we started and finish at sea-level
Spent $23,988 AUD

What did we lose

3 hex keys and 1 bag of M&Ms

What did we need to replace

1 chain, 1 front tyre, 2 back tyres, 3 inner tubes, 9 brake pads, an axle on pacman (trailer), a rear freehub, a 3-gear crank, 3 spokes, 1 bike bag for our valuables, our petrol stove to a gas stove.

Accidents

0 crashes, 5 close calls - from a truck taking up the whole road coming the other way forcing us off the road, 3 trucks overtaking uncomfortably close, and hitting a kamikaze cat that jumped in front of us.

Highlights

- The freedom of being on the road with everything we needed.
- The generosity, curiosity and friendliness of the people of the Balkans, as well as their openness to discuss their painful recent history of war and genocide.
- Meeting and staying with Warmshowers hosts through Western Europe. Making new friends. Meeting up with old and new friends.
- Our longest cycle day of 102kms testing our endurance and resilience.
- Hiking up the ladder of Kotor a 942m uphill climb with stunning scenery. Swimming in the Bay of Kotor
- Cycling through the Southern Albanian Alps feeling like the only people and certainly tourists for miles.
- Camping and swimming in the Albanian, North Macedonian, Italian, Swiss, French and German lakes.
- parkruns in Italy, Germany and Holland.
- Watching the opera Tosca at Verona arena.
- Cycling over the Gotthard pass.
- Enjoying a "nearly" Michelin star 6 course degustation meal in Holland.
- Finishing the Amsterdam marathon.
- And, of course the unlimited acts of kindness.

An adventure of a lifetime, yes, but not our last.

Would we do it again - 100% yes in a heartbeat.

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Posted by darrenhough1974 00:00 Archived in Netherlands

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Comments

Followed you all over on your adventure and loved it all. Thank you for all the photos and blogs.
See you two very soon. It would have been sooner if that storm Babet hadn’t arrived in the UK at the same time you did. ❤️❤️

by Patricia Colbert

A beautiful end to a great trip. Loved reading your blog.

by Rachel Holden

Oh no!! What am I going to read in my lunch break now? My lunch break will be so boring now without reading about your adventures. I feel a little bit sad too that’s it’s over but I’ve really enjoyed sharing it with you from all the way over here! Congratulations on your successful and exciting journey.You sure are living life to fullest and I really admire that 😊Kim, I clearly remember the time you told me that you and Daz were thinking of embarking on this adventure and now you’ve done it!! Wow🤩

by Louise

I can't believe it's over! I've loved every blog and adventure you've had, what an amazing trip you've taken. The generosity of the people you've met and your new found ability to say 'yes' has been amazing. Congratulations to you both, you survived, thrived and are still married!! Much love xx

by Rah

I have really enjoyed following your blog (even though I am sometimes very far behind). I think you have inspired a lot of people by your determination. You have also showed that the majority of people you come across are friendly and supportive and have an interesting story to share. Thanks for being part of it all remotely.

by Ingrid

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