France and Spain – 2006

Saturday June 3rd 2006
Set out at 3.45am for the ferry and for once it was not freezing cold, pouring of rain or blowing a gale, but it was a bit foggy and cold. I was supposed to meet the lads around 4.15am at Newbury services but only allowing ½ an hour was mad even for me but I eventually arrived at 4.35. (good job the police were in bed he he)

What a bonus the ferry we had booked was the fast one so we arrived in France at 11.45 UK time in Ouistreham the food on ferry was as crap and expensive as always but the trip was uneventful.  Once we had unstrapped our bikes and ridden off the ferry we set off towards Rennes on the boring motorway but we had to have a bit of a blast to get the cobwebs out.  We continued around Rennes on the periphery and out to Fegreac where we were staying and arrived in good time, it was like having an extra day’s holiday but it was also bloody hot.

We had a trip down town into Redon where we had drink at a local bar before heading back to Fegreac where our neighbours Jackie & Terry did us a barbecue and admired my lily-white legs in my old faithful green shorts (I looked a right prat). We had a great night with a lot beer and loads of laughs.  Miles covered: 450

Sunday June 4th 2006
Got up 5.45 am ready for the early start and set off before breakfast, we had a near miss 18 miles from the house with a roaming Alsatian dog running around in the middle of the road, I braked hard and everyone but Darryl managed to stop, he clipped the side of Ray and shot off down a grassy bank, missing the dog and (all be it gently) stopped but he landed in a grassy bank. We had to pull the bike out the ditch and remove a lot of grass, thankfully there was no damage done.

Next we headed down to Bordeaux on the N137, around on the periphery out on the N250, we turned off on the N134 and on to Pau, travelled about 394 miles today had a problem with bank card in one garage (they don’t like English cards in some petrol pumps) but about 30 miles on found another garage.

We booked into the Ibis hotel (85 Euros per room, bloody expensive!) but it was clean and tidy and nice bar with cold beer.  Miles covered: 400

Monday 5th June 2006
It was an early start but we had a nice breakfast (jam and bread) and then we cracked on across the Pyrenees through the mountains with some amazing views. We headed off down towards Madrid but we end ended up staying about 50 miles past Madrid (sorry I can’t remember the name of the place). The hotel was a truck stop with bar and restaurant and it was cheaper too only costing 50 Euros and another 6 more to park the bikes around the back where they were locked securely at night.

We have done some miles today and I am knackered! got to get a drink or 2.  Miles covered: 460

Tuesday 6th June 2006
The next morning we started off early again heading towards Benalmadena, we made it to the Triton hotel early in the  afternoon but it is very busy here and we had to stay in the annex, which really pissed us off as it’s a bit of a jaunt from the main hotel. This was the only place that wanted the room paid for up front, which really pissed Ray off (don’t mention it, he had the broom cupboard as well) he he.

The price has only gone up slightly from 3 years ago it was 160 Euros for two nights.

The weather was red hot and Bonzo, Ray and Darryl were are all in their shorts whilst me being the part I am wore my jeans! We headed straight down to the bar for plenty of liquid refreshments as we didn’t want to dehydrate in this weather!

I had a nice shower and raced down to the bar for more beer and nice meal at a local restaurant and I fell asleep in the hotel foyer (lightweight) thankfully the lads woke me up and slung me into my room after taking silly photos of me.  Miles covered: 260

Wednesday 7th June 2006
Day off, big breakfast of fruit, eggs and bacon, croissants (don’t mention what Bonzo had) so with full belly lets go for a bike ride! (Must be mad in this heat) Had a lazy day! Only 151 miles or so with a couple of cafe stops. We popped to Gibraltar and back had to do the cable car what a view and again we eat at the top in the cafe (pasty and chips, lovely). Loads of idiots on scooters fly past you at break neck speed and cut in front of you, all you want to do is give them a smack! It was very busy to get off the island, had to show passports again. There must have been a hundred bloody scooters trying to get off the island as well.

We had a late start about 12.00 and got back amount 6.30, nice shower and back to the bar. We went along the promenade to find a restaurant and had a nice meal and more beer.  Miles covered: 151

Thursday 8th June 2006
Had an early start pack bags, make the jaunt back to bikes to load up. Had nice breakfast in the hotel, should have seen the size of Bonzo’s breakfast would have fed a normal man for a week. We started off heading up around Malaga towards Andalusia, went around Granada up the E-902 towards Jaen, then turn off on the A-316 through Ubeda, towards Albacete, then went up the N-322 to Requena by then we are knackered, tried to fine local hotel but the one we went to was fully booked so we headed off towards Valencia on the A3. We found a hostel and stayed the night. This hostel had right funny shower trays very high and small inside (just like a hand basin/ toilet), with just a curtain around. I was the only one with hot water, he he. It was very basic but clean and friendly. It only cost 30 Euros.  Miles covered: 397

Friday 9th June 2006
We had a thunder storm about 4am only Bonzo woke up and heard it, had a sprinkling of rain which made the bikes look shitty, and covered in gray dust.

We then set off towards Valencia on the A3, we then join the A7 heading for Barcelona, we cut around on the periphery and took the C16 and the E9 towards Andorra.

Arrived at Andorra had a touch of déjà vu Ray had to have a new tyre, but if you have to have a new tyre this is the place as it’s cheaper and quicker than Spain. We booked into The Hotel Pyrenees, nice hotel if you go there, highly recommended.

It’s right in the town centre and was only 50 Euros a night per room. They have a lock up garage to park in. We stayed there last time we went down to Spain and they still had us on computer. We went out to a nice restaurant, but walking back to the hotel Darryl and Ray nipped into a fast food store and had a burger (greedy gits, both need worming).  Miles covered: 362

Saturday 10th June 2006
Travelled up through Toulouse and then took the right hand fork in the main road. We stopped at Tournon D’Agenais on the D102 for a drink it’s very scenic this way. The weather is so hot glad I brought some padded jeans for this trip and did not have my leather trousers on; if there had been more room in my top box I would put my jacket in it as well. Room was 69 Euros in the Campanile Hotel just outside Bergerac. We hired a taxi to take us into town where we found a couple of nice bars and an outside restaurant, we meet some nice French and Belgian people who could speak English.  Miles covered: 240

Sunday 11th June 2006
Bonzo and I are up and ready so we oil the chains on the bikes and load our top boxes.

We meet Ray and Darryl have a nice breakfast and we meet the French people from the restaurant the night before, we pay the bill and head for the town centre. Thank god for GPS units. We have spent the morning going across country to Nantes via Noir. It is still very hot, gloves are in the top box and my hands are covered in flies. I had to wash of the dead flies off my hands to eat my food in a services and I am starting to ach a little now. We arrive at our house in Fegreac, strip off and put our hot feet on the cold tiled floor (heaven). We had to open all the doors and windows in the house tonight as there was a strong smell of feet, lovely.

We crawled back onto the bikes to have a Pizza in Redon tonight. Only a couple of beers, then back to house put film on TV then plenty of beer, Darryl went bed first knackered then me about 1am Bonzo and Ray stayed up till gone 2 still drinking (piss heads).  Miles covered: 314

Monday 12th June 2006
Me and Bonzo were up so I flashed up a light English breakfast of 3 eggs 2 sausages 4 rashers of bacon and beans each. We just had to call in to Mont-Saint-Michel so we made good time, got there by 1 p.m. and we then had a nice ride back up to Caen to catch the 5 p.m. ferry.

The boat arrived in Portsmouth at 9.45 pm and we rode up to the M4, said good bye boys, see you next week and headed home. I arrived at 12 midnight, Ray and the boys about 12.30 in Wales.  Miles covered: 360

>

Costs :-
Ferry £130.00
Petrol about £250
Total spent £1100.00

Worth every penny. Bob (I want to go again) he he

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