Part 5 – Transportation (Bicycle)

Photo by Dorothy Castillo on Pexels.com

One of the most common way of transportation used often not only for travel, but also for work is bicycle. You don’t have to be a super athlete to take the bike. It’s enough if you are motivated and made the decision to make bigger distances, generally outside of a city by yourself. People often don’t know what are the first steps to start a bicycle tour. The short answer is pretty straight forward: Pick a destination or a way, get a bike matching your road and pack some stuff. That’s all. Travelling by bicycle almost for everybody, no matter your age, physical conditions, weight, training, cycling experience, mechanical skills, even not your budget. Many bicycle tourists travel with kids and even with their pets.

Bicycle tourism is the cheapest way to travel, maybe only walking can be compared. If you are traveling alone, you spend almost no money for travel. You spend money only for food, accommodation and souvenirs (in case you buy some), however in general you can enjoy the beautiful cities and places almost for free. If you can’t afford the sleep in a hotel, you simply won’t do it, while is very hard to resist those beachfront places in Thailand of Philippines.

Always the first – Destination

Destination, destination and destination. Whatever the others might tell you, always first think of the destination, road you will take. e.g. you are going to Spain, to Malaga and want to take a bike. You can, there are no issues. However you have to know which part of the country/city you want to visit and how many days are you planning to spend it. It’s very important to plan your bicycle trip (at least the basics), when you take a bike. Specially if you are not an experienced biker.

There are many great destination for biking across the Globe. PERFECT page for locations, tips and actually for everything related to biking across the World is Cycloscope.net. You can find cycle routes in every county, advises about equipment, bicycles and everything you need to know for a trip there. So don’t wait, definitively check that page before going on a cycle trip abroad. If you know already where do you want to go the following pages might help you with more information:

  1. North America
  2. South America
  3. Europe
  4. Africa
  5. Asia
  6. Australia and New Zeland

Don’t forget the planning

We are different. Maybe you don’t like to plan, however do it as following. Cycling can be pretty surprising. You might get bad weather, the bike can break, or anything else might happen. If you are going to a 2 weeks trip, plan for 12 days and give those 2 extra days as backup days. In case you don’t spend it and you are safe, then you can walk or take a 1 day tour by car/bus. What do you need to consider:

Trip Planning
 
1. Timing – When (consider timing based on your preferences, limites and climate/weather conditions
2. Destination – Where (consider places based on items highlighted in Part 2 – Destination)
3. Resources – mobile/tablet with apps/maps and guides
4. Training and Preparation – knowing your limits and aims
5. Accomodation – Hotels/Hostels, camping or other places where you can stay
6. The Bicycle and Gear – Get the correct bike based on location and conditions
7. Packing for the road – what else you might need
8. Tools and maintenance – in case your bike is crashing (Yes, it happens often)
9. Security – what if you get in trouble (phone numbers, help, etc)
10. Additional Transportation: Taking your bike on airplanes, trains, bus or car
11. Life on the road – It’s the Other category (what else you can expect)

APPS, APPs and AppS

In the 21st Century each of us have smart phones with applications. According to bicycling.com and bikeradar.com the best application are the following:

Strava
The Road Bike Manual
Wahoo Fitness
Zwift
Cyclemeter
Google Maps
Komoot
Map My Ride
Viewranger
First Aid by British Red Cross
Bike Gear Calculator
Trail Forks
Relilve
Training Peaks
Ride with GPS
What3words
Beanhunter
DotWatcher.cc
MyWindsock

What else do you need? Nothing. Go and enjoy your biking trip! 😉

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