Bike Holiday – Types of holidays
So you want to go on a bike holiday – you’re just not sure what sort. We cast some light on the options so you can select the kind of bike holiday you’ll rave about for years to come.
A guided bike holiday can be a ripper idea for so many reasons.
Expertise – a guided bike tour is an opportunity to get the most out of someone else’s knowledge and expertise. This extends not only to fantastic bike routes in the area, but also historical or cultural points of interest, language (if that is a barrier), regional food specialties, nearby bike shops for extra apparel, even how the weather behaves in that particular area!
Zero hassle – give your brain a break and leave it all to someone else to organise. Aside from getting yourself to the starting point (and even some guided tours will offer to handle this part as well!), there’s little you need to do when you take a guided tour. Except of course, ride the bike! So a guided bike tour is especially handy if you are not keen on lugging your bike halfway across the globe, for instance; most fully guided tours will usually incorporate an actual bike for you to use. Speaking of lugging things around, guided bike holiday packages are likely to take care of all your luggage upon arrival. So don’t worry about packing light! Guided bike holidays can also be great for the level of support they offer. Feeling a little tired? Not keen to head all the way up that hill today? Wait for the support crew in their sag wagon!
Social – guided bike holidays can be a great way of meeting like-minded people. Who knows, you could make some friends for life and want to turn this into a regular holidaying gig!
Well, a guided bike tour certainly sounds like the Rolls Royce of riding holidays, but self-guided tours can also be a terrific option.
Cost – if you’re not drawing on someone else’s expertise and knowledge, support etc, then chances are you could help keep budget down by organising the tour yourself. Just be prepared to do some planning.
Flexibility – you’ve locked in your daily riding route and everything is organised. But once you get to a certain location you decide it’s just too wonderful to leave the following day. If you’ve planned your own riding holiday, then it’s fair to say you should probably have more flexibility to make changes as you go depending on how you feel, where you are, what you decide to do on the day. Just bear in mind if you are bike holidaying during high season, accommodation options could be limited.
How much does it weigh? If you are planning a self-guided bike holiday, just remember that you have to carry everything you need. This not only includes the essentials for any kind of riding (puncture repair kit, bottle of water, some nutrition), but also everyday living items (clothing, wallet or purse, footwear, toiletries etc).
With a support crew
A self-guided bike tour that incorporates a support crew can be a way to combine the best of both worlds. They can give you the flexibility and budget benefits of a self-guided tour, but they also take away a lot of the pressure you might otherwise encounter (if something goes wrong – you can call on them, if you’re exhausted – you can call on them, if you don’t plan to carry everything you need – you can call on them). Our hot tip – make sure you show your appreciation for your support crew! It can be the difference between alpha support, versus your crew hitting the local pub to try some regional specialties whilst you’re standing on the side of the road dealing with a flat!