The “Routes of the Olive Tree”´s supporters are mourning one of them.

The “Routes of the Olive Tree”´s supporters are mourning one of them. On Saturday 19th July at 5.30pm, in Abasha (Georgia), one of the initiator of this expedition, Mikhalis Kalogeropoulos, has passed away. A truck driving in the wrong way of the lane has violently bumped into our Expedition´s team.

Mikhalis Kalogeropoulos, 53 years old, architect-entreprenor in Athens, was one of the main “Routes of the Olive Tree”´s supporters, as well as the main collaborator of this trip, he really helped in the realisation of this Expedition.
This tragic event represents the most difficult time the “Routes of the Olive Tree”´s have ever known. It makes all the “Routes of the Olive Tree”´s supporters


20 July 2008: Abasha – Tbilisi

Because of the tragic death of Mikhalis Kalogeropoulos in Georgia, the Routes of the Olive Tree’s participants have had to cope with very painful days.

In such an emergency situation and because Leonidas Damouras, woundered in the accident that killed Mikhalis, had to stay in hospital, we slept under our tents in the hospital’s courtyard.

The riders have then talked about the possible continuation of the trip and the conditions that they had to expect. Deeply shocked and exhausted, 13 of them have made the choice to give up. Some of the organisation members will also go back in order to take part in their fellow traveller and friend’s funeral ceremony. We wish to thank all the riders for their participation and courage they showed in those very difficult moments.

There’s nothing but Mikhalis’ memory and energy, with his passion and determination he gave to the project, that helps us to keep on riding this route today. The expedition continues in tribute to him.


17 July 2008: Izmir – Ankara

We gradually left the mediterranean olive trees to go towards new sceneries, even if still well known by the greek riders, many of our foreigner participants were already discovering unknown lands.

Since the road that leads to Ankara is long and straight, the riders had to keep on focusing on the road and had to be aware of not wasting all their energy at once. Half way, we had a lunch break : a traditional meal consisting of a kind of pancake with tea offered by Georges Karabatos.

All along the Anatolian plateau, we enjoyed wonderful sceneries and had to face a cold wind. We eventually arrived in Ankara, were we had a good rest even if our stay in the hotel wasn´t as good as we were expecting it to be.

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16 July 2008: Soufli – Izmir

After a difficult phase due to the heat, tiredness and borders formalities, the expedition has eventually arrived vey late in the night in the harbour of Izmir.

A huge group of motorcyclists coming from several different local motorbikes societies, as well as a banquet in the Izmir University of Economics were waiting for our riders.

Because of the strong relationships that unifies Greece and Turkey, and links and the working cooperations between the Chambers of Commerce and Industry of Kalamata and Izmir that exist since the first Routes of the Olive Tree’s trips, an olive tree has been planted in the courtyard of the university.

Rolf, one of our riders, has unfortunately hurt his knee and has had to make the difficult choice of dropping this adventure; he’s going to stay in Izmir for a few days and he will then go back to Greece…

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15 July 2008: Amfissa – Soufli

Waking up in the shadow of the hundreds years old Amfissa’s olive trees, the riders went through the Parnasse Mount, to join the roads of Thessalie.

They rode 703 km, from the West to the East, having for main stop Larissa, where the Samarina company has kindly offered us a mineral water package in order to help during the most difficult moments of the trip.
The Soufli Motorbikes Club then warmly welcomed us with a “symphony of hunks|”. We settled our camp site for the night in a school yard. The whole city was waiting for us, people with the folklore committee had prepared a party with  music and dances. Being the Silk Road’s first main stop of our trip, Soufli has enabled the participants to discover the traditional Silk making process.

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14 July 2008: Pylos – Amfissa

The Routes of the Olive Tree’s caravan has started its trip! The adventure began in Pylos, where, right after the 63rd FIM rally, the “riders of the Routes of the Olive Tree” traveled till Amfissa, which is famous for its endless olive tree “sea”.

There, the Phocide Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Amfissa council had organised a press conference, followed by a convivial buffet-camping party in an olive grove (next to the antique city of Delphi.)

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As part of its numerous activities, the “Routes of the Olive tree” Cultural Foundation organizes two extraordinary events in 2008 !

A worldwide riding meeting  / 63rd  FIM rally 2008 in Messinia-Greece (7th-13th July 2008)

This event about “the Olive tree’s Mediterranean area” will take place in Peloponese and gather 3000 riders together, coming from 44 different countries! In an idyllic atmosphere, at the seaside, concerts, tastings of traditional and local products, photos exhibitions, excursions and many other activities are planned for everyone’s pleasure!

The Peace Flame transfer up to Beijing and Moscow on the occasion of the 2008 Olympic Games (14th July-31st August 2008)

50 riders will leave Messinia and go towards Beijing to transfer the “Peace Flame” as well as an olive tree branch, the universal symbol of peace, on the occasion of the 2008 Olympic Games. This trip, that is full of dynamism and symbols, comes within the scope of 2008 “European Year of intercultural dialogue”. The riders will follow the tracks of two main routes: The route of the Olive tree and the Silk Road, in order to pass a message of friendship, pacific coexistence, good development conditions and prosperity on.



The Routes of the Olive tree has been sharing it’s passion with hundreds of riders for already 9 years.They’ve been going together on the road to explore the Mediterranean countries and sceneries.

A beautiful friendship that has never stopped!

The motorcycling supporters and the olive tree lovers met for the first time in 1999, in Greece, to ride a 16 000 kms route, during 40 days, through Mediterranean countries and olive tree populations. They, together, have been aiming at supporting the sustainable development, in aid of the olive oil regions and have been passing a symbolic message of peace and solidarity on for the olive tree. Since then, trips have followed one another, always with the same enthusiasm and dynamism, giving birth to exchanges always greater and greater, stronger and stronger, with contributors coming from all around the Mediterranean areas.


2008-04-16-02The motorbike is an asset in this kind of trip, means of exploring the most isolated olive tree sceneries. The motorbike is also a good connection between local populations and travellers : it attracts curious people and make the passionate ones talk about it, children like it, and that’s where the dialogue begins. More than means of transport, the motorbike enables to have a direct and warm relationship with the people met during the trip. Then, we talk about motorbikes, olive tree… and many other things !
Year after year, the motorbike has become the Routes of the Olive tree’s essential element. A sporting and original trademark. The riders and olive tree’s messengers are adventurers who never weary of travelling through the Mediterranean routes to meet their neighbours.

This summer, they will go with the Foundation, towards new and further panoramas, all along the Silk Road and the transsiberian, having for only luggage, two wheels, an olive tree branch and the pleasure of travelling together!

FOCUS ON MESSINIA…alternative Greece!

At the Far-South of the Greek peninsula « welcoming, idyllic, rich and pretty » according to Euripidus, with mild winters, pleasant summers, mild automns and perfumed springs, the Messinia is year-round a fertile and warm destination!


The fires that have arosen in the Peloponnese area during the summer 2007, have devastated a good part of the Messinian forest prosperity and has affected many sectors in its economy. The thoudands of riders that will take part in the 63rd IMF rally will give that area the chance to promote its beauties and its prosperity and display that it’s still living and can still offer gorgeous scenieries, a nice heritage as well as tourist pleasures that remain unique. Just come and acknowledge it yourself !

For more informations about Messinia, you can log on