Physicist Stathis Eleftheriadis, aged 36, challenged himself to cycle from London to Bologna, Italy. The cycling enthusiast from Kozani decided to take on the feat when on a cycling trip in Serbia a few years ago. It was there that he met a Serbian bike travel guide who urged him to explore the Balkans and the rest of Europe by bicycle.
He dubbed his cycle the “Odyssey” and began on July 5. He completed his task on July 24 after crossing the straits between Britain and France and cycling through the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Strasburg and along the river banks of the Rhine in Germany. The distance covered per day was from 100km to 150 km.
“Cycling at a speed of around 20 kilometers per hour allows you to enjoy the route,” he says. He stopped along the way to photograph the exquisite scenery.
Eleftheriadis rode through the Alps between Italy and Switzerland where there were many demanding uphill stretches and dangerous mountainous roads.
During his 24-day ride he was up against four major storms but managed to overcome adversity by being prepared. He stayed at volunteer lodgings found online.
Asked if he would dare to undertake a similar journey across Greece, he pointed to the dangerous roads and reckless driving.