I was sent to live in Cyprus for a month or so for work and what else was I going to do with my weekends? I was based in Limassol for the summer and it’s a touristy area so I found it to be no trouble to come across a few motorbike rental places. I found myself looking at my options and I saw a little KTM Duke. It would be my first experience riding a KTM and I didn’t want to pass it up. It was only a little 390cc but it would be perfect for those Cyprian roads. Plus, I was riding with no gear for the first time, no gloves, no boots. Just a helmet (not closed), shorts and a vest.
I decided to take the KTM Duke for a ride up into the mountains in the middle of Cyprus. The roads are swervey and quiet up in the Troodos mountains. It’s very scenic too which is what I was looking for. You pass waterfalls and beautifully greenery on the way up to the mountains. The KTM had enough power to surge through the corners nicely and get pass those slow, lugging buses. The bike was a treat to ride, I did notice the lack of power that I’m used to, but I also noticed how easy it was to control. I could take it off-road and explore a little more.
Troodos is proclaimed to be one of the most beautiful parts of the island. Many people who visit Cyprus are unaware of the outstanding charm it has. There are thousands of indigenous Cyprus Cedars so very gracefully reach up for the skies and where things are so quiet that you could probably hear a pin drop and then there’s me tearing around on a KTM Duke 390. Bliss.
The next weekend I was down the rental shop looking for my next bike for another weekend ride. There was only one option for me. A chopper. I had never ridden a chopper (or cruiser) before and that would be a fun ride with the sun being so hot and the roads being nice and flat. I didn’t have many options (I wanted a Harley Davidson) but I had to settle for a Honda Shadow. This was fine with me because you don’t see too many of them about these days. It was only a 600cc but that was ideal for someone who has never ridden a chopper.
I was wearing the bare minimum again (just an open lid for protection) but that didn’t bother me. It was a bit funny at first with the placement of my feet but I soon got use to the ride and it was brilliant. I absolutely loved it. I didn’t have a destination in mind, I just followed the coastal roads and occasionally stopped for a beer and some grub. I really loved it. I was being noticed on the Honda Shadow, more so than any other bike I’ve ridden. There’s something about a chopper that just draws attention. The bikes have such a reputation that it carries into the rider.
It was a completely different ride, no sharp cornering, more cautious handling and a slow acceleration but it was still a lot of fun. The bike is a cruiser, so you just cruise and enjoy the ride. It’s no surprised why they are the most popular bikes in the US, you can sit back and enjoy the ride along big open roads. I toured around Lanarka, Oroklini and Protaras on the Honda Shadow 600 and it was immensely enjoyable. I think if I rode a chopper everyday I’d soon get bored but to ride one occasionally is well worth it and one of the coolest rides I’ve done.