Top 5 Bicycle Touring Destinations
Ever dreamed of seeing the world on two wheels? Here are five of the top bicycle touring destinations to help you plan your next big ride.
This is a nation that’s absolutely crazy about the bicycle, with thousands of designated cycle paths and more bikes than people! Famous for its flat landscape, the cycling in Holland is rarely strenuous, and there’s always something interesting around the corner to explore, including windmills galore, museums filled with the paintings from the likes of Rembrandt and Vermeer, and long beaches along the North Sea. GPS users can download the OpenFietsMap - a free open-source map showing cycle paths across the country. For pre-trip planning, there are also a number of online route planning tools. Type ‘fietsrouteplanner’ into Google and away you go!
Hop the ferry from Melbourne and head over to Tasmania, Australia’s smallest state both in area and population. Tassie, as it is more affectionately known, is renowned among cyclists for its hills, but the effort is well rewarded. The landscape offers everything from high mountain passes to thick forests and roads that hug the coastline. You’re sure to see a wombat or two and if you’re lucky, a Tasmanian Devil.
Stunning scenery, reasonable prices and excellent roads make Taiwan an excellent bicycle touring destination. The cycling can be as easy or as difficult as you want to make it. If you want a challenge, hit the mountains and cycle one of the cross island roads. If you want to take it a little easier, stick to the quiet roads on the east coast. Numerous hot spring towns along the way help to ease sore muscles after a long day of riding.
Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia
Alexander Graham Bell once said: “I have traveled around the globe. I have seen the Canadian and American Rockies, the Andes, the Alps & the Highlands of Scotland, but for simple beauty, Cape Breton outrivals them all.” You too can experience the beauty of Cape Breton by cycling the world famous Cabot Trail. The trail winds through valleys and along the expansive coast into the highlands, revealing Nova Scotia’s coastal beauty at its best. Most people start and finish the tour in Baddeck, riding clockwise through the Margaree Valley, Cheticamp, Pleasant Bay, and Ingonish.
Pacific Coast Highway
From the mighty Rockies to giant redwoods, charming cities and spectacular ocean views, it's hard to find more diversity in a cycling destination. Covering over 2500 km of West Coast scenery, this route begins in Vancouver and continues through the states of Washington, Oregon and California all the way to the Mexican border. Although it may seem like a daunting ride, the Adventure Cycling Association produces some great maps and there are plenty of facilities for cyclists along the way.
Image credit: Flickr user theroadeast