1,600 km on a Bike, Time for Showers

We made it.

As the end of the journey approached, we woke up on the final morning of our journey knowing that we had crossed Holland (where we were arrested), Germany (hills and more hills), and the Czech Republic. All we had to do was cycle a simple 100 km across a small part of Austria and into Slovakia.

The night before, we had made ourself a big meal using discarded potatoes.

9 picking up potatoes

We ate this hearty meal under a bridge, 1 km short of the Austrian-Czech border, hoping to avoid yet another thunderstorm.

1 chilling out under a bridge

When morning came, I woke up like a kid on Christmas, full of excitement at the prospect of a warm shower that day. In a month on the road, we only had the opportunity to shower on three occasions and washed mostly in rivers and fountains.

2 cooking dinner under a bridge

As ever, we had picked ourselves a bag of wild fruit while cycling, so we ate it in our porridge for breakfast.

10 picking fruit

3 sleeping under a bridge

Then we cycled a whole kilometre, to find ourselves entering Austria. Knowing that the rest of the journey would probably be flat was a special moment.

4 the bomb

5 welcome to austria

Before we knew it, we had cycled around 80 km and found ourselves in Slovakia. There were some days on this journey (in the mountains) where we cycled all day and only travelled 30 km. Pumped with excitement and on flat ground, we cycled the 70 km without barely stopping for breath and arrived in Slovakia before lunch.

6 welcome to slovakia

We were then very grateful to be met at the Slovakian border by the mother of our Slovakian cyclist who had brought along a delicious picnic. We devoured it and then gave her our panniers as we cycled the last few kilometres through the forest, feeling like we were floating on air. I was so ecstatic, that I didn’t notice a concrete block and ended up face planting into the sand, bending my handlebars, locking my brakes up, and cutting my leg. Despite this, we were only kilometres from a shower.

7 the final cycle through the forest

After stopping for a quick beer and some pear spirit, we arrived. We were overjoyed. After showering, we realised that we’d picked up some pretty bold tan lines.

8 ow sunburn tan lines

But we were clean, we were in Slovakia, and we had just cycled around 1,600 km on very old bicycles.

Part one of my big adventure is now complete. Now it’s time for part two: building a raft to float down the Danube.

By | 2013-12-12T02:12:21+00:00 August 18th, 2013|UK to Slovakia on £30 Bikes|9 Comments


  1. Rachel 27/08/2013 at 20:27 - Reply

    Love that you guys accomplished this amazing feat. Most people wouldn’t even dare to think to do something like that. You are proving to everyone that you really can do anything you put your mind to. Awesome, awesome job!

  2. Gianella 24/08/2013 at 20:20 - Reply

    Congratulations! sounds like an incredible experience. I’d love to join you in one of your adventures some day.

    • Jamie 26/08/2013 at 18:21 - Reply

      If we bump into each other along the road, let’s head in the same direction.

  3. Qing 19/08/2013 at 01:15 - Reply

    Congratulations to you guys! Did you guys camp during the entire trip? and what did you eat?

    • Jamie 26/08/2013 at 18:14 - Reply

      Thanks. We camped a lot, but we also used Couchsurfing twice, got invited into the houses of strangers a few times, and slept under bridges or in abandoned buildings when we had the chance. For food, we used a combination of wild foraging, skipping, and buying produce from shops.

  4. Matt 19/08/2013 at 00:54 - Reply

    Sounds like a great ride (have to catch up on the previous posts). I’d probably take a very long shower after all that. And I doubt my folding commuter bike would be a good choice for that kind of trip.

    • Jamie 26/08/2013 at 18:12 - Reply

      That would be quite an interesting challenge.. ‘Crossing a continent on a folding bike.’ It’s got a nice ring to it..

  5. Dave 19/08/2013 at 00:46 - Reply

    That sounds like an amazing journey. Takes some real sense of adventure to pull that off. Congratulations on finishing such a feat, would love to try something like that myself sometimes. Truly Inspirational!

    • Jamie 26/08/2013 at 18:11 - Reply

      Thanks. If you go for your own adventure, feel free to share.

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