Almost a year after passing the tests for our motorcycle driver’s license, it is time for a weekend together on the bike. Last year we bought one motorcycle (Honda Transalp XL 650V) to see if we like it and we certainly do! This weekend we rent an extra motorcycle, a Suzuki V-Strom at Motoport Amsterdam, from where we leave, each with a small trunk full of luggage. The goal is to drive from Amsterdam to Maastricht by avoiding highways, which turns out to be a hell of a ride…. In terms of mileage it would not be more than 250km and in terms of travel time up to 6 hours, but in reality it proved to be much more…..
Saturday May 23, 2015 | Amsterdam – Maastricht | ‘Nice driving’ by avoiding highways
Fresh and fruity we leave at 10 o’clock on the motorbikes with a small drizzle through beautiful areas: Hilversum, Lage Vuursche, Zeist and along the chickens in Barneveld. Since the first motor driving lesson I have always had problems with my helmet which is too tight. But today is the first time that I drive for more than one hour and the pain drives me crazy. We decide to do a coffee break and my helmet is operated by Erik with a knife from the kitchen in the restaurant. Phew, what a relief, at my forehead a piece of styrofoam is cut off. As with many things in life I think “This is what I should have done much earlier”.
We continue our journey, it starts raining harder and then it happened: suddenly in my mirrors I saw Erik falling. First I was kind of relieved that this happened at a roundabout, where the speed is relatively low, but I was really shocked by the slide he made. When I arrived at Erik, it turned out that a bus driver had helped him to get his bike upright. I looked at Erik’s face and saw that he was shocked! Ai! Fortunately Erik had only some bruises and the bike had only minor scratches. So, we continue our journey. How? That remains a mystery, but the Navigator app on our phone navigates us at some point through Germany. Back in the Netherlands we decide to quickly have a break. Meanwhile, we are on our motorbikes for already more than five hours and it is still 100km to go to Maastricht. And just like the city, our concentration is hard to find. Lunch makes us happy again! We put on our wet coats and decide to drive the final kilometers via the highway. Hoppa, this is much faster! Finally we arrive at half past 5 in the city of the Meuse, tired, but satisfied. We have booked an AirBnB right in the center, next to the central plaza. Although the bikes are officially not allowed to access this part of town, we decide to drive through. Because of the angry looks of neighbors we finally decide to park around the corner out of sight, after we have unpacked the bikes. In the evening it’s time for a Limburg beer and a tasty bikers meal.
Sunday May 24, 2015 | Maastricht – Liège – Maastricht | The castle route
After a great breakfast we leave on the motor and ride to Liège. This is a scenic route of about 30 km over the hills and along castles. Unlike the day before, now the sun is shining! In Liège it is very busy, because of a major Sunday market. Fortunately, we can drive along the traffic jam with our bikes and eventually arrive at a nice parking place for our motorcycles. After some strolling along the market we get ourselves a cup of coffee at a local shop and drive back to Maastricht. During this ride back we visit a castle, but the route to this castle was actually better than the castle itself! In the afternoon we walk through the city in our t-shirt. While enjoying a beer we walk on the city wall and we see all the squares in this city. We finish the day with a real Limburg stew! Hmm!
Monday May 25, 2015 | Maastricht – Amsterdam | Looking forward to our next adventure!
Around noon we drive home via the highway. Along the way we stop at a gas station, where we have a short photo session with our motorbikes. It was a great weekend, and we surely looking forward to our next adventure!