As soon as I turned off the highway I new immediately that choosing this obscure route was the right choice.
The goal was to make the village of Berat via the back mountain roads. It was going to be 120km of the unknown.
Just the way I like it!
In fact at one junction a local suggested that I should really be taking the nice new highway they built.
It is views, turns and the complete lack of perfection in the path that is the pure reason for not taking the path most followed.
Only other adventure riders will understand the serenity found when you are in the distant lands of a foreign country. To find yourself surrounded by nothing other than nature. No people within site or sounds to be heard other than maybe the odd goat bell off in the distance.
After a beautiful day in the back country I arrived at my destination of Berat. And with no expectations about what to expect i was pleasantly surprised.
As with Gjirokaster the town is overshadowed by a castle. But this town had a definite medieval feel to the town. The neighbourhood below the castle is called the village of a thousand windows.
And with all castles they are at the top which will require some stupid climb. Why is it all the good stuff is either at the bottom of a gorge or the top of a mountain? So, before heading off I need some food and decided on Albania's version of a Gyros. Gyros meat with tzatzitki sauce lettuce, tomatoes, french fries ketchup and mustard all on a pita.
And i wonder why I am gaining weight again!!!!!!!
The castle itself was unusual as it was actually still occupied with a village within.
On the way down I could no resist getting a snack of cherries which are in season.
1kg for 80 cents....... and yes I ate them all if you were wondering
Maybe my next ride.
It just needs a little TLC.