What's the best way to go see Europe on a motorcycle? - BMW Luxury Touring Community
 
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post #1 of 23 Old Mar 29th, 2011, 7:32 pm Thread Starter
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Question What's the best way to go see Europe on a motorcycle?

Hi guys,

I just got this bright idea to go and visit Europe on motorcycle one of these days but I'm stumped with trying to figure out the best way to go about it, so I thought that I'd ask you people here in case you've done this before and have some advice to pass along.

One option is to go with the motorcycle tour companies, like Edelweiss Bike Travel, IMTBike.com, Ayres Adventures, etc... It looks like they have some really nice packages but they sure ain't cheap! But then again, you usually get what you pay for too.

Would you recommend going with one of these touring companies or is there a way to have just as nice a holiday and manage to do it more affordably?

Any areas of Europe in particular that are a "must see"? I'm thinking that the Alps would be pretty stunning.

Any advice would greatly be appreciated.
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post #2 of 23 Old Mar 29th, 2011, 7:49 pm
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Re: What's the best way to go see Europe on a motorcycle?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Humbucker
Hi guys,

I just got this bright idea to go and visit Europe on motorcycle one of these days but I'm stumped with trying to figure out the best way to go about it, so I thought that I'd ask you people here in case you've done this before and have some advice to pass along.

One option is to go with the motorcycle tour companies, like Edelweiss Bike Travel, IMTBike.com, Ayres Adventures, etc... It looks like they have some really nice packages but they sure ain't cheap! But then again, you usually get what you pay for too.

Would you recommend going with one of these touring companies or is there a way to have just as nice a holiday and manage to do it more affordably?

Any areas of Europe in particular that are a "must see"? I'm thinking that the Alps would be pretty stunning.

Any advice would greatly be appreciated.
Europe is a large area. Try a country or two to start.

I have toured twice with IMT . Scott Moreno (an American and managing director) knows how to treat his clients. Great locations, hotels (Paradors in Spain) and delicious food and drink.
I did the "Perfect Pyrenees" (Alps w/o the tour buses) and Morocco. Both great adventures. Highly recommended.

PM me if you want to chat.
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post #3 of 23 Old Mar 29th, 2011, 9:05 pm
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Re: What's the best way to go see Europe on a motorcycle?

Short hi-jack. If you receive BMW ON magazine, there is a nice write-up in the April issue about Paul and his various travels around the globe!! Including the note that after some pretty serious surgery, Paul shocked his physical therapist by explaining that he wuz back on the LT two weeks later!!!
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post #4 of 23 Old Mar 29th, 2011, 9:18 pm
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Re: What's the best way to go see Europe on a motorcycle?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dick
Short hi-jack. If you receive BMW ON magazine, there is a nice write-up in the April issue about Paul and his various travels around the globe!! Including the note that after some pretty serious surgery, Paul shocked his physical therapist by explaining that he wuz back on the LT two weeks later!!!
Awwww Dick. I'm just an average rider according to BMWMOA!

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post #5 of 23 Old Mar 29th, 2011, 9:25 pm
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Re: What's the best way to go see Europe on a motorcycle?

Quote:
Originally Posted by PMitchell
Awwww Dick. I'm just an average rider according to BMWMOA!
Yeah, Paul - I saw that. What the heck does that mean?? Average mileage? Boy, I'd say you are anything but!!!

Congrats on the award, Paul.
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post #6 of 23 Old Mar 30th, 2011, 5:26 am
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Re: What's the best way to go see Europe on a motorcycle?

For me, just renting a bike from some of he rental companies and heading out by myself was incredible. I have done it a couple of times. Never had a plan nor reservations and never had a problem finding something eventually. But that is part of the adventure. The Alps is a must. Switzerland is VERY expensive with some great riding and gorgeous scenery. French countryside is gorgeous. So muchto see. Enjoy!!

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post #7 of 23 Old Mar 30th, 2011, 7:41 am
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Re: What's the best way to go see Europe on a motorcycle?

Trying to see Europe in one trip, is like trying to see the entire US in a week.

Where I live you can be in 4 different countries each with different scenery, languages and culture within 4 hours.

How long are you planning to come over? This really will have en effect on what you could expect to see.

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post #8 of 23 Old Mar 30th, 2011, 8:50 am
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Re: What's the best way to go see Europe on a motorcycle?

Also, where are you starting from?
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post #9 of 23 Old Mar 30th, 2011, 8:59 am
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Re: What's the best way to go see Europe on a motorcycle?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Humbucker
Hi guys,

I just got this bright idea to go and visit Europe on motorcycle one of these days but I'm stumped with trying to figure out the best way to go about it, so I thought that I'd ask you people here in case you've done this before and have some advice to pass along.

One option is to go with the motorcycle tour companies, like Edelweiss Bike Travel, IMTBike.com, Ayres Adventures, etc... It looks like they have some really nice packages but they sure ain't cheap! But then again, you usually get what you pay for too.

Would you recommend going with one of these touring companies or is there a way to have just as nice a holiday and manage to do it more affordably?

Any areas of Europe in particular that are a "must see"? I'm thinking that the Alps would be pretty stunning.

Any advice would greatly be appreciated.
Decide on a general area you'd like to go to and there are lots of folks here and on www.UKGsers.co.uk who will happily help with routes and hire company contact details etc. Might even get some new riding buddies.

Ideas

UK / Scotland / Ireland

France - North all the War Memorials (some Canadian there too very impressive at Vimy Ridge). South - Route Napoleon, Alp passes, Cote de Azure.

Spain - (my favourite) all the way down to Andalusia, Gibraltar, Portugal and possibly Morroco if you've that type of bike! (all these are doable in just a couple of days BTW if you ride hard ish).

Any number of locations really. just decide on a general area and watch out for the barrage of help and support LOL.

***********************
Dominatio (Ian)
***********************
R1200RT (Arty) is in the house!
R1200GS (the Grey Goose) is No More!
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post #10 of 23 Old Mar 30th, 2011, 11:20 am
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Re: What's the best way to go see Europe on a motorcycle?

Edelweiss. Alps. Two weeks. Big $$$. Wonderful time!

- Bob

Cowboy Bob Menton
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post #11 of 23 Old Mar 30th, 2011, 1:18 pm
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Re: What's the best way to go see Europe on a motorcycle?

Quote:
Originally Posted by PMitchell
Europe is a large area. Try a country or two to start.
I did the "Perfect Pyrenees" (Alps w/o the tour buses) and Morocco. Both great adventures. Highly recommended.
Little nitpick: Morocco is Africa not Europe
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post #12 of 23 Old Mar 30th, 2011, 2:09 pm
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Re: What's the best way to go see Europe on a motorcycle?

Ha ! Is Europe, europe any more ?. You should know.
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post #13 of 23 Old Mar 30th, 2011, 2:23 pm
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Re: What's the best way to go see Europe on a motorcycle?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SurfMan
Little nitpick: Morocco is Africa not Europe
OK, OK, but I did start in Sevilla and Ceuta is considered part of Espaņa!

Yes, I would consider Morocco North Africa.

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post #14 of 23 Old Mar 30th, 2011, 2:34 pm Thread Starter
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Thumbs up Re: What's the best way to go see Europe on a motorcycle?

Hey guys, thanks for all of your posts!

I should have mentioned that I reside in Atlantic Canada. I know that I wouldn't be able to see everything that Europe offers in one trip but if I had to try to zone in on something, I think that that 2-week long Edelweiss Alps tour would be a real hum-dinger. Pricey, yes, but if we do it for our 20th wedding anniversary coming up in a couple of years, I think that I could live with the high price tag.

Actually, I've never given this type of trip any thought until now, and I must say that it's mind boggling trying to decide on where to go. To me, traveling by motorcycle is the most enjoyable way to spend a holiday.

So, I'm going to take the opportunity to try to get up to speed on where and how to go about traveling. We're just getting to the point where the weather around my area is almost nice enough to start riding again, I should have started reading up on this during the winter months, it would have helped to pass the time.

I really envy you fellows that have the time and the money to go out on these adventures, wow, I can't think of anything more enjoyable to do!
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post #15 of 23 Old Mar 30th, 2011, 2:52 pm
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Re: What's the best way to go see Europe on a motorcycle?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dominatio
Spain - (my favourite) all the way down to Andalusia, Gibraltar, Portugal and possibly Morroco if you've that type of bike! (all these are doable in just a couple of days BTW if you ride hard ish).
I have been to Morocco twice, once on a R1200C and once on an LT. In other words itīs not essential to go on a GS.
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post #16 of 23 Old Mar 30th, 2011, 6:28 pm
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Re: What's the best way to go see Europe on a motorcycle?

Quote:
Originally Posted by simoncharles
I have been to Morocco twice, once on a R1200C and once on an LT. In other words itīs not essential to go on a GS.
I too found the paved roads to be excellent!
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pm
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Life is too short to do anything
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Ride till you can't!

"Der Weg ist das Ziel"

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post #17 of 23 Old Apr 13th, 2011, 12:15 pm
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Re: What's the best way to go see Europe on a motorcycle?

Give me a call and I will get you sorted, the bretheren are always welcome in Slammerland.
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post #18 of 23 Old Apr 26th, 2011, 9:10 am
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Re: What's the best way to go see Europe on a motorcycle?

Packaged motorcycle tours are really expensive and we prefer a little more independence.

Here's some ideas to explore.
1. Offer a motorcycle swap. Tricky to find someone and then protect both parties' interests, but it can be done. We swapped the use of our CA bike with a member in the UK.

2. Ship a bike to Europe. My brother and I shipped my '99LT to Europe this November. We will each use it every year for the next few. Shipping and storage is much less than renting a bike. Because it's only used by a tourist it can imported and used without paying taxes or licences. You have to get liability insurance (green card) for the time you are on the road and keep the registration current in your state. It only works in states that don't require a physical inspection to keep it licensed. We might even consider adding another user to share expenses. My wife in I are using it for 5 weeks starting May1. I'll know more about what's possible when I get back in June. Here's who's handling our bike in Europe. http://www.knopftours.com/Web-Site/Hello.html There are others.

3. Knopf offers rentals and brokers the sale of US registered bikes after the owners are finished with Europe.

Best of luck. It touring in Europe is a marvelous experience. Doing it affordably is even better.

Richard Wright
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post #19 of 23 Old Mar 22nd, 2012, 12:33 pm
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Re: What's the best way to go see Europe on a motorcycle?

Quote:
Originally Posted by PMitchell
Europe is a large area. Try a country or two to start.

I have toured twice with IMT . Scott Moreno (an American and managing director) knows how to treat his clients. Great locations, hotels (Paradors in Spain) and delicious food and drink.
I did the "Perfect Pyrenees" (Alps w/o the tour buses) and Morocco. Both great adventures. Highly recommended.

PM me if you want to chat.
I realize this thread is a year old, but I was wondering if the bike in your 2nd thumbnail is a rental or provided by one of the tours you mentioned, and which model BMW is it? It's unfamiliar to me, but looks very nice.

Jeff
Big D is my neck of the woods

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post #20 of 23 Old Mar 22nd, 2012, 1:16 pm
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Re: What's the best way to go see Europe on a motorcycle?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bikerj
I realize this thread is a year old, but I was wondering if the bike in your 2nd thumbnail is a rental or provided by one of the tours you mentioned, and which model BMW is it? It's unfamiliar to me, but looks very nice.
Jeff - I think that model BMW is an R1200RT. I agree with you - that is a nice lookin' bike.
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post #21 of 23 Old Mar 22nd, 2012, 1:44 pm
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Re: What's the best way to go see Europe on a motorcycle?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dick
Jeff - I think that model BMW is an R1200RT. I agree with you - that is a nice lookin' bike.
It looks rounder than what I thought. Aren't the new/newer ones more angular?
You're probably right. I can't zoom in enough to read clearly the graphics on the upper left fairing. I can make out the R in front, but it looks to me like a "KT" on the end- most likely "RT", and I guess that only leaves "1200" in between.

Jeff
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post #22 of 23 Old Mar 22nd, 2012, 3:38 pm
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Re: What's the best way to go see Europe on a motorcycle?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bikerj
It looks rounder than what I thought. Aren't the new/newer ones more angular?
You're probably right. I can't zoom in enough to read clearly the graphics on the upper left fairing. I can make out the R in front, but it looks to me like a "KT" on the end- most likely "RT", and I guess that only leaves "1200" in between.
Jeff,
It was an R1200RT w/ very low mileage. I did that trip in the Fall of 2008 so it was probably an '08.
We did switch to quads when we got to the Sahara.

There was a "water feature" that we had to navigate as well.

After that trip I lost 50 pounds and took up dancing lessons!
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pm
--
Life is too short to do anything
other than that about which you
are absolutely passionate . . .
Ride till you can't!

"Der Weg ist das Ziel"

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Last edited by PMitchell; Mar 22nd, 2012 at 6:54 pm.
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post #23 of 23 Old Mar 22nd, 2012, 10:21 pm
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Re: What's the best way to go see Europe on a motorcycle?

It's all Great. But.
If we could only do one area.
Northern Italy.
The Dolomites.
Start in Bolzano and enjoy.
West till Megéve. East till Graz.
That will keep you amused for a very long time.

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