28th July : Wetteren - Maribo
Hardly slept and ... there's that alarm clock already! Sis will arrive around
5am, so time enough to get ready, start up the pc and take a few piccies of
Mika. I will miss him!
At 5am sis puts the bikes on the car and ... off we go. Denmark, here we come!
Traffic runs smoothly, even in the land of the Germans with its many
"Baustelle". We have a very early lunch (when you've been up since
4am...), lots of yummies prepared by sis. Around 3pm we catch the ferry to
Denmark, after some confusion about where to get your prepaid tickets. Seems
it's queueing at one of the manned ticket windows. The GPS says: "Drive
onto the ferry" and that's what we do. We see several Belgian rope-skipping
teams on their way to Sweden for the European Championships. We also meet a very
cute seagull eating bread out of a passenger's hand. It even demonstrates
why seagulls fly "with" the wind and not against it ... I'm dying for
a coffee, but when I see what they charge ... I decide I can wait! Marianne
finds out that Alex was here... The crossings lasts about 45 minutes and we now
enter Denmark. I expect the GPS to say: Drive off of the ferry ... but that
doesn't seem to be an option. To Maribo it's only a few kilometres and suddenly
the GPS says: "You reached your destination". We are parked in front
of the biggest hotel in Maribo, but it's the wrong name. Ha, when we turn our
heads we see it's the other side of the street: Ebsens
Hotel. The managers
are very nice and we get room 2. As I want to unpack my suitcase I notice
something missing! There is NO wardrobe, only a couple of coat
At 6pm we have dinner, outside on the terrace. It's a buffet with turkey, pork
and beef on the BBQ, an assortment of cold dishes and veggies, a delicious curry
chickensoup and fresh fruit and cake for dessert.
After dinner we go for a walk and find a "cache", a hobby of my sis,
which is very exciting. For more information about caching, click geocaching...
She manages to find it and after taking some more piccies we head back for the
hotel. There sis finds out she hasn't uploaded the phone credit for her
cellphone. Shouldn't be a problem, but ... it just doesn't work. She uses mine
to ask Lauren to do it from home ... guess what .. all of a sudden mine says:
Can't find a network (although it worked for some time). Same problem the next
day. Seems we'll have a cheap cell phone bill this month. But ... it's very
useful when we lose sight of each other. Ha, I switch it off and on again and
... it works. Good on me!
29th July : to RØdby and Dannemare
We slept like
a log and the sun is already out.
After brekkie we fill our lunchboxes and set off for RØdby
and Dannemare. We choose the long distance of 73km (45miles) and soon
enjoy the sunshine on our skin. It's going to be a sunny day!
Lolland is as flat as a pancake and boy do I love that! (Ok, we'll have to
"adjust" our opinion the following days and make that: as flat as a
sloping pancake...) Part of the cycling track is next to the sea: wonderful!
Plus... we have the wind on our backs! We leave the road, both on the way there and
the way back, for a cache. At RØdby
Station, we find the first tree from the hint, but .. no cache. We notice that
there had been a party near the tree: remainder of a camp fire and plenty
empty drinks packings, but .. like I said.. no cache.
The cache in Lysemose ... same story ... no luck... We have to follow this narrow path through the wood and then sis leaves the bike with me and continues
into the wood. A real paradise for beavers, it is, also what the
hint says, but too swampy when wearing cycling gear. No caches found
Back at the hotel sis can use their pc to mail Lauren to fix the cellphone
problem. Not easy, cos ... everything is in Danish...
For dinner we choose the 3-course menu:
Starters: scampi fritti, wrap of salmon with iceberg salad,
tomatoes and green asparagus. Garlic sauce and spicy spring roll sauce.
Main course : steak with French fries and broccoli.
Desert: ice ream and fresh fruit
30th July : to Birket and the Isle of FejØ
having breakfast, it is really pouring with rain and we think: "Oh
oh!" But ... it gets better. There are dark clouds though and the
weather forecast doesn't look promising at all. So we decide to wear the rain
gear. The lady who takes care of the breakfast gesticulates (she doesn't speak
a word of English) she feels sorry for us.
We leave at the same time that Hanneke and Cor, two Dutch people who are one day
ahead of our cycling schedule, are ready to head for Marielyst. They too
decide on the rain gear.
After 10km (6miles) we arrive in Østofte Mølle where a cache is hidden. We
decide to take off the rain gear, since the sun is really trying to come through
the clouds. The rest of the day we'll have gorgeous weather.
I spot the cache, the first of the three we will find today.
A little before noon we find the 2nd one. We follow the GPS instructions and are convinced this doesn't match the
provided hint ("cache is hidden next to two
stones nearby, but outside the graveyard") at all. Here we are, in the middle of
nature, in a wood, next to a lake, next to an old shed... No sign of a
churchyard. While I stay with the bikes, Marianne keeps following the directions
of the GPS and enters the dense wood. She takes a glove with her and leaves
it on a fork so she won't get lost. A little later she's back with the good
news that she's found the churchyard and the cache. See... geocaching takes you to
places you'd never otherwise find ...
We continue our trip and cycle to the ferry that will takes us to Fejø.
Here we realise Lolland isn't as flat as we thought it was... The countryside is
pretty hilly and ... the wind is ... against us! Ai-ai-ai!
Along every road you find these small stalls with fresh fruit, veggies, marmalade and all kinds of knickknacks. We decide to buy a jar of
my pen-friend Grethe whom we'll visit in a few days. You just put the money into
the small piggy bank on the table.
After the tour of the isle we return to the ferry. We have to wait a while and
look for shelter from the wind outside the waiting room.
On the way to the hotel we find another cache, clearly visible at the back of the
"Grafheuvel" (burial mound). Sis puts it back in a more discreet spot.
Meanwhile we're sort of blown off our bicycles.
The route runs through the Knuthenborg Safaripark, but when we get there the
barriers are down and there isn't a living soul about. So we decide to ride
around the park ...
For dinner we
choose the buffet again.
31st July : from Maribo to Marielyst
Today we leave
Maribo and cycle to Marielyst on the isle of Falster, where we'll be doing a tour
We clear our room out and leave the luggage at the reception so they can take it to
Marielyst. When we are ready to leave, the manager tells us to wait. He
will fasten our luggage onto our bikes, he says with a big smile...
Sis notices she has lost part of the zipper of her windbreaker, and getting
another one out of the luggage is a hopeless task. So she starts with the
windbreaker flying behind her. Not much use that way...
We ignore three caches, because they are too far off our route, and ... find
three others. We eat our packed lunch at a very small station that ... hides the
smallest cache we have ever seen.
We reach hotel NØrrevang
in Marielyst in good time and go to the restaurant with Cor and Hanneke. What a big
contrast with Maribo, where all is very quiet and small-scale. Here there's a
prodigious buzzing and some confusion about our seats in the restaurant. We can
choose between a buffet and a 2-course menu.
We choose the 2-course menu: tapas with chorizo, serrano ham and antipasti, followed by veal steak with roast potatoes, a mix of peppers and
asparagus and sauce from Mr Knorr..
We end the day with a walk along the beach and enjoy an icecream on the way back
to the hotel.
1st August : StubbekØbing
we say goodbye to Hanneke and Cor. They ride back to Maribo and travel to
Today's route says 51km (32miles). We decide to follow the advice of Hanneke and
Cor and when we reach the turning point we go on and cycle as far as StubbekØbing.
We cycle through the woods and along the sea and ... through the wood along the
sea... What a wonderful route! We have lunch on a tree trunk next to the sea.
At the BogØ
Ferry we treat
ourselves to coffee and Coke. But ... we hadn't reckoned with the many insects
that are after our drinks, the ice creams and other goodies of the drinking and
We find the second cache of the day and then hear this loud
clattering. Sis is just in time with the camera to catch a glimpse of the bride
passing by in an old car with screeching tyres.
Back at the hotel, after a 85km (53 miles)tour, I need to lie down a bit. Sis
goes searching for a cache near Strandkirchen Marielyst. On the way there she
notices lots of oldtimers visiting Marielyst, so off she goes again to take some
terrine with dillsauce, salmon eggs and salad. Pork with roast potatoes,
carrots, green asparagus, a mix of steamed veggies and sauce of Mr Knorr.
2nd August : from Marielyst to Maribo
We leave our
luggage at the reception and find out once more that spoken Danish is totally
incomprehensible to us. There's a couple who wants to check out and it appears
that they don't agree with their bill. The conversation seems to last forever and we
haven't got the faintest idea when it will end...
We have chosen the long route and will try to find more caches along the way.
The first one takes us to a place where they are preparing a rummage sale. We
decide it's not a good idea to search intensely for the cache. (Back at home we
will find out that this cache is temporarily unavailable)
More luck with the caches along the sea, even the one that says, "under a
stone"... Ha! The hiding place consists of a huge pile of stones!
In Nysted we catch the first raindrops and for the last kilometres it isn't
We enter Maribo through the Friedlandmuseum, which is a mini-Bokrijk.
For our last supper, we choose the 3-course menu, a kind of vol-au-vent with
asparagus (Danish specialty, the manager says; but when we ask Grethe in
Odense, she's never heard of it..) We get a real giant portion, but very yummy! Main
course is bread crumbed veal steak with a mix of veggies, mushroom sauce and
roast potatoes. For dessert: ice cream.
It starts raining harder and all covered seats are taken. The manager asks
Hanneke and Cor to sit at our table and we chat cheerfully. We are
convinced the people at the other tables don't understand a word we're
saying. We share our experiences of a sunny, active cycling holiday.
3rd August : to Odense
From our room
we see Hanneke and Cor loading their luggage and their bikes in and onto the car.
They are ready to leave while we are having breakfast, so we hurry outside to
We run some errands in the local supermarket and choose a cold plate with chicken
and potato salad.
Time to pay the bill. There seem to be a few obstacles, because the only person
on the staff that's present doesn't speak a word of English. But after a phone
call to the manager all problems are resolved.
To get from Lolland to Funen, we need to catch the ferry to Tars. At the cash
desk we are asked if we'd made a reservation, which we hadn't. Seems that might cause some
troubles and we may have to wait 2 hours. We have to wait in "the special
row" where we get the third place. There's the ferry and ... we can go, and
so can the car behind us! Sis gets a spot in the middle lane, but then she's
told to park on the left so that a Dutch couple with a caravan can also
travel on this ferry.
The GPS takes us to Grethe, my pen friend of 12 years. It's the first time we're
ever meeting and it's a very pleasant experience. For the next two days, Grethe will be
the best hostess ever.
We explore the neighbourhood and go searching for two caches. We don't find the
first one, but have more luck with the second. That one is more important. Sis has
brought a travelling bug from Belgium. She wants to leave it in the second cache so
that it can start its journey back to Belgium via Holland.
For supper we have meatballs with french fries and a mix of veggies. Delicious!
And then we talk for hours over a glass of rosé, as only girls can.. (sounds
better than middle-aged women...).
4th August : Odense
bikes stay in the shed. We're going to visit Odense. I get an improvised seat in
the back of the car (the seats stayed in Wetteren) and off we go.
We visit the old town, good for sis, and the shopping centre, good for me...
We walk through narrow, picturesque streets and pause, of course, at Hans
Christian Andersen's house. Statues of characters from his fairy tales and of the
master himself are seen all over the town. Near the museum, during
summer, you can attend a crowded show, mainly meant for children. In no time the
lawn is full of children, parents, grandparents, tourists ... We watch for a
little while, but the play and the songs are in Danish and once again we don't understand a
The shopping centre is very crowded. We eat hotdogs and croques and observe life
in the city. We see a barefooted man on a bench sleeping it off. Seems the world
around him is slipping him by. A social worker approaches him, but apparently he
doesn't want help. He just continues his sleep.
After visiting the town, Grethe treats us to chicken with veggies and roast
We look at photo albums and friendship sheets and Grethe gets a real computer
lesson where tips and tricks are demonstrated, using a Danish Vista operating
system -- which causes quite a bit of giggling.
And then it's bedtime, our last night on Danish soil. We'll get up early and
drive back home.
5th August : back to Wetteren
we are treated to a luxurious breakfast and we also get lots of goodies for
preparing our lunch. We fill up the cooler, load the bikes on the bike carrier
and the luggage in the trunk, and then we are ready to leave.
A big hug and three Flemish kisses and off we go.
Just before we leave Odense, there's a traffic jam. Oh no, we only just left and
have quite a few kilometres to go! A bit later we see it's caused by an accident
between a caravan and several cars. We see a woman trying to recover as much
stuff as possible out of the caravan, which is badly damaged.
But once we get past, traffic runs very smoothly. To reach the mainland, we have
to cross Lillebælt
Brücke. We drive
through very dense fog, seeing nothing at all.
In Germany we have to pass lots of "Baustelle",
which divert the traffic over one normal and one narrow lane. Quite scary when
driving between a crash barrier and a huge truck.
Suddenly a small stone hits the windscreen. This means a visit to Carglass when
we are back home.
Around noon we eat our lunch.
It's about 7pm when we are back in Wetteren, where Werner awaits us with a
Denmark 2009: a wonderful cycling holiday with lovely weather!