Cy­cling route to trace Cold War Europe, pass though Thrace

Daily Sabah (Turkey) - - Lifestyle -

OR­GA­NIZED by the Euro­pean Cy­cling Fed­er­a­tion, the Iron Cur­tain Trail (also known as EuroVelo), a 6,800 km cy­cling route that em­pha­sizes Euro­pean iden­tity and shared his­tory, comes to Kırk­lareli and Edirne this year.

Named af­ter the border be­tween the Com­mu­nist East and the cap­i­tal­ist West that came into be­ing af­ter the Cold War, the cy­cling path starts at the Bar­ents Sea along the Nor­we­gian-Rus­sian and Fin­nishRus­sian border, passes for a short stretch of the coasts of Es­to­nia, Latvia and Lithua­nia, Kalin­ingrad, Poland and the for­mer East Ger­many. From Lübeck to the three­na­tion border (Sax­ony-Bavaria-Czech Repub­lic) the path fol­lows the for­mer East Ger­man and West Ger­man border. Then it fol­lows the high­lands of the Bo­hemian For­est, passes Mo­ravia and the Slo­vak cap­i­tal of Bratislava and then crosses the Danube near Vi­enna.

It then fol­lows the south­ern border of Hun­gary via Slove­nia and Croa­tia. Be­tween Ro­ma­nia and Ser­bia it it mainly fol­lows the path of the Danube, and, via Bul­garia, Mace­do­nia and Greece, to end at the north­ern­most point of Turkey on the Black Sea coast.

Cy­clists that fol­low this route will have a chance to wit­ness land­marks of Euro­pean his­tory and the ef­fects of the Cold War on Euro­pean na­tions.

To pro­mote the route, Michael Cramer, a mem­ber of the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment who ini­ti­ated the route, and Orkun Ak­man, the chair­man of the Edirne Na­ture Sports Club or­ga­nized a joint press con­fer­ence.

Speak­ing to the press, Cramer said the route will in­volve cy­clists from 20 dif­fer­ent coun­tries and the route will in­crease tourism ac­tiv­i­ties of the Thra­cian cities of Turkey.

Ak­man, on the other hand, shared his ex­cite­ment for the route and said they are cur­rently im­prov­ing cy­cling routes in Edirne and Kırk­lareli where the Iron Cur­tain Trail will pass.

The Iron Cur­tain Trail should be ready for Euro­pean cy­clists by 2020.

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