As planned we stood up very early and got everything ready for the stage. We found a bicycle route online which should led us through Bosnia and Herzegovina to the Adriatic Sea. But first we needed to cycle onto this route. We followed the main street and after some kilometers our navigation showed us to turn into a gravel road, so we did. Just a few hundred meters later we found us in a place which reminded us of a dystopian movie. It was a garbage dump where no other people were and a lot of stray dogs were running around and barking. When we saw the piles of garbage big raven were also flying around. So we pushed our bicycles back on the road under the barking of the dogs. A very stressful situation but also a bit heartbreaking because one of the small puppies tried to follow us 😢. But back on the asphalted street we could increase our speed and got away from this area.
Only a few bridges in Bosnia and No ferry for today
The next kilometers we could cycle on minor roads. There was not much traffic going on and from time to time we had a nice view on the surrounding mountain ranges covered by forest. We saw some stray dogs along the streets but we did not have any problem with them anymore. In Podnovlje we finally came to the river Bosna. On both sides of the river was a road in the same direction. Our track followed the minor road on the other side. Just two kilometers away from us there should be a ferry to cross the river. But when we got there we had to call a phone number for the operator. We thought that would take too much time and decided to follow the main road with more traffic because there should be bridge in around 20 km.
Following the main road was not much fun. Most people let us enough space but it just takes a few to make cycling a bad experience. Some cars overtook us that close it just would take a small mistake and there would be a crash. And even worse were the two to three big trucks which passed us with just centimeters of distance and without speed reduction. Before we came to Doboj we could cross the river and took the chance near a playground for a break. A little dog was curious and joined us for the meal.
Back on quiet streets in Bosnia
From now on there was less traffic going on but the heat was increasing. We cycled through many small villages and forest area. But the streets were not covered by shadow so it was getting hotter and hotter. After a while a car was honking at us and the driver waved at us in a friendly manner. He stopped in front of us and also we did. We talked a bit and he was really pleased about our cycling adventure in Bosnia. As goodbye he gave us a beer from his car. What a friendly man 🤩.
In the heat we made some rest from time to time when we found a shadow place. We drunk a lot of water so we hadn’t that much left. In a village we saw a man filling up bottles at a water source. Alina took two bottle and also went there and wanted to fill them. But she recognized the smell of sulfur in the water. The man said it is good (with a insane smile 🤪). But Alina was skeptical and we didn’t drink the water. Good for us that just a few kilometers later we came to a small store where we could by some cold drinks.
A long lunch break in Maglaj
After a few more kilometers we arrived Maglaj, a bigger town were we wanted to eat lunch. It was around noon and the sun was burning, so cycling was almost pain. We stopped by what we thought was a restaurant, but actually it was a café where we only could drink something. So we did and afterwards we went to a real restaurant. The young guy from the staff was really nice and friendly and could speak good English, so he helped us with our order. We spent almost three hours there because there was an air condition and outside it was 39°C.
Our goal of the day was the Eko agro Farma Ljubatovici. There were just 10 km left but we had to turn onto a major road again. So once more we had to deal with heavy traffic and in addition we had to cycle through a tunnel which also was an unpleasant experience. However, we finally arrived and Dragan, the father of the family who runs the farm, greeted us with a warm welcome. We built up our stuff, watched the animals of the farm, and could also get us some fresh vegetables for dinner. In the evening they had a family gathering which we also joined later. We had some friendly chats about the farm, Bosnia and also they were quite interested in our trip. It was a great experience and also showed the great hospitality of the local people🥰.
The total distance can be viewed on the “Sabbatical 2021 – Europe” page.
Max elevation: 260 m
Min elevation: 104 m
Total climbing: 667 m
Total descent: -543 m
Average speed: 17.13 km/h
Total time: 10:53:35