Touring in Poland.
Especially for motorcyclists: Back roads from
Gdansk to Stettin in Poland.
In June 2003, from the 5th
to the 9th, Claus, Asger and I went on our annual
MC tour. This time the destination were Gdansk, Poland.
was easy to reach from Copenhagen, because there were a daily ferry
departure. The Ferry was the Glorious Dana Anglia, which used to sail
from Esbjerg to Harwich, England. Many people uses this ferry as a 24
hour cruise, where you can shop in Gdansk and go right back with the
ferry again. This way you can also retrieve the cheapest tickets. But
we didn't want to return from Gdansk, we wanted to drive to Germany
and take the Rostock - Gedser ferry back to Denmark. This increased
the prize a bit but what the heck it's vacation and things was cheap in
Poland and it was a blooding long way if we needed to drive forth and
We got on board to a 1/4
filled ferry after we had shown our passports to be allowed to leave
the "Schengen". Before that we had our motorcycle papers
looked through meticulous, actually a comforting thought that vehiles
can't leave unless papers match, so the risk of stolen vehicles being
exported is minimized.
our cabin, it was okay, we could lock the door and keep our MC gear
there in "safety". Got a quick wash in deodorant an went to
grab a beer on the sundeck. It was so so with the sun, but the
Carlsberg beer was okay, at least for Asger and I.
and Poland didn't really shown it's friendly face at the begining, we
got of the ferry as the last of 30-50 cars and got to the Toll.
Customs went even more slow than in the Cold War, they
looked for 'Gods knows what'. The sun was in good shape that day, and
we were steam cooked in our leader suits. We though that maybe the
custom officers wanted to demonstrate that they where still in power,
because it was an ending era, soon Poland will be in the
"Schengen" and they will be laid off.
1½ hour we were all through and went downtown, except for a single
contact made by a "gangster type", who wanted to know if I
needed to exchange some danish kroners to zloty, Gdansk was a nice
City, where I probaly will spend some more time later in my life. The
problem when travelling on motorcycle is that you need to leave your
gear, suit and helmet, somewhere safe while roaming the streets and
thats allways problematic if you don't plan to accommondate your self.
it was the guys on tour we offcource wanted to see a real castle with
dungeons and perifically defence walls, what would be more naturally
to see Malbork a couple of hours drive south of Gdansk. This marvel is
maybe Europes largest fortification. Malbork is one of Polands most
popular turist attractions. Its construction dates back to 1270. In
WWII it was heavily damaged, I don't know why the Russian did this,
except from it was a Nazi headquater, but it didn't have any defensive
value in 1945. But the polish people steady and with care restored it
to it's previous glory. Malbork is magnificant and I would suggest
everybody with a favorable juncture of circumstances that brings them
in this area to visit the Castle.
stayed one night in Malbork, we found a small pension just outside the
city, we had some beer at night on the river boats, it was quite cosy
The next day we drove
westward on highway 22. The roads were heavily loaded with trucks and
cars, here was overtaking common and was often done in a hazardous
way. I had to soften my suspension, otherwise I felt like being thrown
off the whole time. The road was not particular suited for
made a stop in Drawsko Pomorski, found a cheap hotel in the periphery,
the owners kindly offered us to lock the motorcycles up in the fenced
yard with a watch dog. We accepted happily and the next day paid the
ward a tips for taking good care of our bikes. For the evening we
found a descent joint and got some grub and beers.
were heading for Peenemünde in Germany so it would be easiest for us
to drive to Swinoujscie and cross the border there, BUT even though we
were smiling at the picture below we were pissed because the border
was only open to pedestrians. There was nobody to blame other than
ourselfs, we haven't read the legend of our maps correctly. There was
a long drive to Szczecin where the closest border were, so we decided
to take pitstop in one of the small citys on the road. We found newly
build place with heavy curtains and carved wood beds. The place was
what I would call tastless.... But after some beers, who cared!
destination next day were as said Pennemünde, where we wanted to see
the birthplace of rocket science. At Peenemünde
Historisch-Technisches Informationszentrum it is possible to visit
this historical place.
the pictures we took of the V2 rocket were pretty bad so take a look
at this site
instead. The Museum was worth a visit, but the outdoor collection was
somewhat neglected, which of course is a pity.
evening we camped at Ludmin near Greifswald and next day we took the
ferry from Rostock back to Denmark.