Self guided cycling travel guide


Imagine cycling past sublime scenery, safe in the knowledge that your luggage is waiting for you once you dismount. That's just one of the benefits of a self guided cycling tour and if you prefer to place yourself far from madding crowds with just a few close friends or family members then this is certainly an option worth investigating further.
Choosing a desirable destination and daily distances will be dependent on both your interests and fitness levels with chances to dip in or dip out of extra mileage always proving to be yet another popular feature. Professional support, routed rides, hand-picked accommodation and fully serviced bikes all help self guided cycling vacations bridge the gap between small group cycling tours and totally independent alternatives which has to be good news no matter which way you spin your wheels.
Have a cruise through our self guided cycling travel guide.

Is self guided cycling for you?

Responsible Travel recommends

Go on a self guided cycling vacation if...

you like to enjoy things at your own pace. Although you will be given a full range of routes and 24/7 support, going on a self guided cycling vacation lets you cycle independently without the need to catch up or wait for other members of a group.

you don't want to lug all your gear around. Your luggage will be transported from one point to the next which means that all you have to do is make sure you meet it.

you like to listen to advice. A local point of contact will be on hand to oversee your tour and offer a gold mine of recommendations that are well-worth paying attention to.

Don't go on a self guided cycling vacation if...

you're a complete couch potato. If you'd rather be lazing on a sun lounger, there's no point kidding yourself that a self guided cycling vacation is for you. Why not hire a bike for a day and see how you get on rather than going the whole hog with little or no training?

you fancy an exotic adventure. Self guided cycling tours are designed to be less reliant on support and guidance so tend to take place in areas that aren't too far off the beaten track; mainland Europe, for example. Small group cycling tours are much more varied in terms of location as they feature a guide and support vehicle to accompany you whilst en-route.

When to go on a self guided cycling vacation


Going on a self guided cycling vacation can be dependent on when you can take time off, especially if you're traveling as a family. Summer months are obviously going to be hotter and it's worth bearing this in mind when considering how far and how hard you want to cycle over the course of a day.
Winter will conversely be colder and conditions can be treacherous when cycling in Europe with ice and rain adding to darker days.
In general, the spring and autumn are both considered the best time to go on a self guided cycling vacation as you'll encounter fewer crowds, milder temperatures and much more variety in terms of natural landscapes.
Photo credits: [When to go: Glenn Beltz] [help desk box: Michael Dorausch]
Written by Chris Owen
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