After packing up camp the day started with a visit to the local hot baths in Sarein. The water temp was up near 52deg C and very soothing to laze around in. Men and women are separated when bathing.
We we managed to drag ourselves out of the relaxing baths and headed to the coast which ran along the Azabijan boarder for some time. The region was mountainous with forests and many villages spread throughout the area.
Everywhere we were stopping the local people were very intrigued by our bikes and Steve and I. When they realised where we were from we were constantly offered Chai (tea) and food which was typically fruit due to the warm temps. People were asking “did we like their country?” And they were very generous.
Unfortunately we we found those same people who were out picnicking for example would simply leave all their rubbish behind which resulted in the majority of sites we stopped at being littered with vast quantities of rubbish which sort of took the shine off stopping.
For lunch we stopped at Astara which gave us our first view of the Caspian Sea which was a landmark moment for both Steve and I.
After lunch we headed south along the coast line to end up at the “International Tourist Park” in Talesh. The name may have been a slight over statement however it gave us the opportunity to set up camp 20m from the sea shore and relax with the locals for the evening.
Swimming in the Caspian sea was a great experience, with very warm, calm water. Men and women were separated once again while swimming.
We were unaware when we arrived that the park was actually open all night and the locals would soon turn up to set up and have dinner (around 9:00pm) and proceed to party till the small hours of the night. Steve and I resorted to ear plugs to get to sleep.
Once agin the locals were proving to be very welcoming with Steve being given a whole water melon at one stage (only to be stolen over night). We were invited to sit with families and sit on their mats and relax which was a welcome relief after the experiences we had while riding.