GBI Europe 2022 _ Copenhagen to Berlin, Germany by bicycle _ 637km _2950m

It was time to pedal again with hundreds of ambitious hobby cyclists from all around the world through Europe. From the Danish capital Copenhagen we cycled through southern Sweden and finally arrived in the German capital of Berlin. No mountains this time, but endless and beautiful landscapes in four European countries

I must say, I am gratefully my family and few friends made it this year but to be honest this year was mentally hard. It was so strange. this was the first open GBI Europe after covid 19. You could tell mentally and physically that something was off. One of the things I noticed was that we were few in number compared to the previous events, the second thing was that the majority stayed in hotels than tents or open halls. This affected the socializing and the fun we used to have after the long rides. The other thing was that it was colder than all previous GBI events I had attended, not forgetting that most of my friends did not come due to visa denials and also GBI had become too expensive for everyone than before.

Day 1: Copenhagen (DK) – Elsinore (DK)
After the official starting at the GBI hotel in Copenhagen, the individual teams first crossed the Danish capital on almost perfect bicycle infrastructure. Of course, photo stops at the numerous castles and the city\’s landmark, the little mermaid, were a must. After we had left the city, we stayed always close to the coast and within the woods along the Öresund Strait to Elsinore, our first stage destination. On the way we found nice restaurants for a short stop.
Route character: flat (Flat roads are never in my favor). When I ride with a heavier person, that require me to use double effort to keep up. The distance was so short today (53km_300m only)

Day 2: Elsinore (DK) – Höör (S)
Shortly after the start of the stage we reached the port of Elsinore and took the ferry to the Swedish city of Helsingborg. From here we headed away from the coast into the southern Swedish hinterland of the Skane region. 

Our destination for the day in Höör was located at an idyllic lake. As Mondays typically many Swedish restaurants are closed, we were advised to count this fact in our day planning.
Route character: hilly _ 76km _450m

Day 3: Höör (S) – Ystad (S)
On this day we crossed southern Sweden, passing some beautiful lakes. The nutrition point was on a lake too and there was the option of jumping into the water but not me. Some of us were freezing.

The last few kilometers to the port of Ystad we cycled along the Baltic Sea. In Ystad there were various possibilities for the teams to have dinner, because We had been informed that there was NO dinner to be offered on the night ferry at all and even no dinner can be booked by the participants themselves on the ferry. In the end we found everything possible on the ferry. there were drinks and meals at your own cost.

It was a night Ferry, 9 hours journey. Therefore,in the evening we boarded the ferry to Świnoujście, where all participants stayed overnight. It was MANDATORY for participants to be at the ferry no later than 20:00 in the evening in order to check in and collect our luggage.
Route character: hilly (We cycled 87kms to the ferry)

Day 4: Świnoujście (PL) – Neubrandenburg/Wulkenzin (D)
In the early morning the ferry reached the port city on the Szczecin Lagoon. After getting off the ferry, we first took a free ferry across the Świna River before we soon reached the German border. 

On the Usedom peninsula we passed some seaside cities with nice beaches that invited us to take a dip in the Baltic Sea. 

on this day, the nutritionpoint was at the city of Anklam, which also had numerous opportunities for a lunch break. We continued to cycle through Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania area to the destination near Neubrandenburg.
Route character: flat to hilly

Day 5: Neubrandenburg/Wulkenzin (D) – Eberswalde/Werbellinsee (D)

Day 6: Eberswalde/Werbellinsee (D) – Storkow/Hirschluch (D)

Day 7: Storkow/Hirschluch (D) – Berlin/Tropical Islands (D)
The last, short stage took us first to the Scharmützelsee and on good cycle paths through the federal state of Brandenburg. Later we reached the northern Spreewald area and the participants stopped over at Schlepzig to ride the last kilometers together in the peloton with music and escorted by the police to the finish. 

At our tour destination at Tropical Island, there was welcome party before the participants either go home or maybe spend the day or even the night at Tropical Island.
This is one of the stressful days of the event, where you are assembling and packing your belongings. Making sure nothing is left behind and at the same time saying goodbyes.

Like I mentioned on day one, this year was not good somehow. It was also the year we lost a participant during the event. We had had accidents but never had we lost a life. May His Soul Rest In Peace and Until we meet again.

For new Participants, this could have been fun or boring, trust me If I tell you, it is also new to me, but I hope for the best next year.