Saturday, July 20, 2019

Car troubles!

Leaving Yekaterinburg in the pouring rain we continued east. About 200km later there was a bang and then some grinding noises when the left front wheel turned!

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

West of the Ural Mountains

Next destination was Kazan where we wanted to get some seals replaced on the front axle.

Sunday, July 14, 2019

St. Petersburg & Moscow

After a cumbersome border procedure we were again in Russia!

Sunday, June 23, 2019

Along the Baltic Sea (01.06.2019 - 17.06.2019)

After some hectic last minute packing and handing over the keys to our flat to the subtenants we drove off on the first of June.

On the first day we barely made it across the German border but kept heading north the day afterwards. This time crossing the old West/East German border continuing north all the way to Usedom at the Baltic Sea. Here we relaxed a bit and slowed down the pace by enjoying the beach, the famous sun chairs and the sea. Traveling along the coast we entered Poland and then Gdansk which we had skipped the summer before. Exploring the old Hanseatic city and enjoying its many bars and restaurants before driving east to visit the UNESCO World Heritage site at Malbork castle of the Teutonic Order.
Then it was time to cross into Russia, into Kaliningrad to be precise. Armed with our visa and speaking no Russian the crossing was no hassle at all and we reached the old city of Königsberg in due time. This exclave which is surrounded by Poland in the south and the Baltic sea in the west ist connected over the tiny strip of the Curonian Spit to Lithuania in the north-west. Over this land bridge we left Russia again without any problems.
Hugging the coast we drove up to Latvia with a short stop over in Riga, having visited the city a year ago. To the east of it we visited Leg&Go, a Latvian startup producing cool wooden balance bikes for kids. It can "grow" with the child and has multiple add-ons, even pedals. We bought one for my nephew, he seems to like it as he immediately started gnawing on the handle bar 😂
Close by are many lakes and woods where we relaxed a bit and enjoyed the scenery. Even tried my luck with fishing, alas no catch 😟
Next we headed north to Estonia and stayed again on the Baltic coast, meeting up with some fellow Swiss overlanders. We got our gear in order, swapped stories and relaxed by the sea before entering Russia again.

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

The Plan 🇷🇺🇰🇿🇲🇳…?

So after five (5!) years since our last long trip it was time for a bigger break again. Quitting our jobs and heading east this time, overland. Our mature Toyota will be home base, transportation and travel companion in one, but more about it in a later post.

The rough plan is visiting Kaliningrad, St. Petersburg, Moscow, then heading south into Kazakhstan with Baikonur 🚀 and Almaty before entering Russia again to reach Mongolia. Later we go up north to Irkutsk and lake Baikal before driving around China to Władywostok on the Pacific coast. We are not in a hurry but try to escape Siberia before winter hits 😆 
From there we would like to ship the car somewhere warm for the winter, maybe Africa? Stay tuned!

Rough and totally inaccurate drawing of our route: 

PS: Sadly Google Picasa is no more and Google Maps has changed as well, so no more pictures and route tracking for now. I try to build something similar again, just need more time 😉