Northern Europe

Germany, Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Finland, Norway, Denmark, Belgium & France

May – October 2013
7,700 km
5 months cycling

We flew from Canada to Hamburg and returned from Paris, having made a counter-clockwise loop round northern Europe from and to Hamburg, followed by an extension to Paris. In Finland, we spent a week at the World Orienteering Championships at Vuokatti, where our daughter represented Canada, and we participated in Kainuu Orienteering Week spectator races.

From Hamburg, we cycled east along the Baltic coast of Germany and Poland, and north through Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia, crossing by ferry from Talinn to Helsinki. We rode north through Finland, taking the train from Rovaniemi to and returning from Vuokatti, then continuing north through Finnish Lapland to the Arctic coast of Norway at Kirkenes.  We took a Hurtigruten boat to Honningsvåg, stopping over at Vardø.  We hiked to Kniveskelloden,  rode to Nordkapp, then headed southwest along the Lofoten Peninsula returning to the mainland  at Bodø. We took the train to Oslo, and Stena Line ship to Frederikshavn, Denmark, riding south in Jutland and along the Nord-Ostesee Canal in Germany to return to Hamburg. We took a train to Osnabrück, rode west to the Rhine, south to Koblenz, then west across Wallonia (Belgium) and into France to reach Paris.

For photos, see our Flickr collection.
For a narrative, see our blog
Preparations|Germany 1|Poland|Lithuania|Latvia|Estonia|Finland|Norway|Denmark|Germany 2|Belgium|France|Reflections.

Resources

Guidebooks
Lonely Planet Eastern Europe as a pdf
Lonely Planet Finland, as a hard copy
Many tourist office handouts

Maps
Germany:
ADFC Radtourenkarte (1:150,000 bike specific series, available in most book stores)
Poland:
Pobrzeze Balttyku mapa turystyozna (1:200,000)
Baltic Countries:
International Travel Maps – Baltic States (1:750,000) 
Finland:
Fillari GT (1:200,000 bike specific series, available in most book stores)
Autolijan Tiekartta Suomi 2013 (1:800,000)
Helsinki – excellent cycle route map from tourist information
Norway:
Oslo – excellent cycle route map from tourist information
Denmark:
Belgium:
Long Distance Cycle Routes and Greenways (1:300,000 bike specific, a challenge to find)
Michelin Regional Benelux 534 Belgique Sud 
(1:200,000)
France:
Michelin Departement Maps 
(1:150,000)

Background
Poland, James Michener
A Concise History of the Baltic States, Andrejs Plakans
War in the Woods, Mart Laar (later became Prime Minister of Estonia)
The Singing Revolution, DVD 2008
Paris, Paris,  David Downie

Yellow Marker is WOC 2013 site

 

One response to “Northern Europe

  1. Pingback: Reflections | candmwanderings

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