Cycling through Europe is an amazing experience, but there are a number of things you have to think about before you go, to avoid any snags in the program. Due to all of the different countries in Europe, I can’t just broadly tell you how your trip will be. There are different foods, culture, and languages in each country, even though they all share the common Euro. Because of the size of the counties, how much space they take up, and the geological differences, I couldn’t even really advise you about the weather either. (Broadly anyway) These are some of the world’s favorite cycle tours and trails, along with helpful tips for your journey regarding costs, setting a budget, safety, preparation, and travel. I hope this information helps your dream tour to be the most hassle-free, and memorable experience of your life!

Costs

If you have the money to stay in hotels, eat out, and live the high life, you can do that for about 100 Euros a day and up. By the same token, you can save your money and stay at campgrounds, cook your own meals, and “rough it” for about 20-30 Euros a day. You can make it for less than that. but not really. You need more than ham sandwiches and water realistically, right? I mean, especially if you’re biking. Remember to stay hydrated as well. There are over 10,000 campgrounds throughout Europe, so you should have no problem finding one nearby.

Budgeting on Your Journey

You should take out the money you estimate that you need for your main things, like travel, lodging, food, and flats, and set it aside, along with some more for an emergency fund. You’re in alien territory, on a bike, and to make it worse, your going extra long distances, and in some cases, treacherous terrain. You need an emergency fund. After that, you’re probably going to want to see the sites, eat out, or maybe catch a festival or a wine and cheese tasting, so plan way ahead, save enough money, and play smart.

TIP – If your camping, plan out your trip ahead of time, and call the campgrounds/hotels first to make sure they can accommodate you. As a lot of travelers have found out the hard way, when we are traveling, by time we stop somewhere, we’re ready to relax. It’s so annoying to be scrambling around for a warm spot if it gets cold, so it’s crucial for an outing like this to circumvent any kinks that might try to clip your schedule, and if you think out every step before you get there, and do your homework, you will have a much smoother, happier journey.

Cycling Through Europe

– Ireland –

The best time to travel to Ireland, even though it stays rainy a lot, is June, July, and August. April is supposed to have the least rain if you want to avoid it. In May, June, and September, you can get cheaper prices usually, because it is the outer edges of the peak season. 

The Three Best Trails of Ireland

The Kingfisher Trail – is said to be really beautiful, and not so domesticated. There is not much traffic on this stretch, so prepare for the trip accordingly. If you like “the scenic route”, then Kingfisher is Ireland’s most beautiful ride. It’s over 300 miles long and has some really remote areas and hills, so be ready! 

The Beara Peninsula – Quiet, light traffic, and country await at this favorite spot to cycle. West Cork, better known as the Beara Peninsula, is a perfect territory for the adventurous, yet quiet type.They have 4 local marked cycle routes, and lodging just look around. You can even find places online that do bike packages that are all inclusive. Bring your camera! 

The Derroura Mountain Bike Trails – 16 km in length, with incredible panoramic views into the Maam valley, and west to the Twelve Pins. Long climbs and thrilling descents, so make sure your bike is up to par.

Denmark

The best time to travel in Denmark is early summer in June. The days are longer then, with no rain and warm temps. July and August are also noticeably nice, offering lots of outdoor events, and pleasant temps. July and August are also huge tourist months, so you may experience higher prices and increased traffic, so they may not be the best cycling tour months. May, September, and June are recommended for biking, because of the off-season traffic and mild enough to work with temps.

Top 3 Bike Trails in Denmark 

Tornby Plantage Hvid Rute – Rated 5 Stars, and offers a #1 rated scenic, single route trail with water and night riding.

Hammer Bakker – Also Rated 5 Stars, Best track for MTB in Demark. Scenic, woody, and fun, this track has lots of flow and technical sections. Come prepared.

Roed Route – 4 Stars, and 27 kilometers, this route is said to be really nice, with no significant drops.

Italy

The best months for travel in Italy are July and August, because that is holiday season for Italians, and they are on vacation. There is less traffic, and navigation is really easy and lax. Most cities in Italy have lots of nightlife if that’s what you’re into, including a Latin dance festival at Fiesta, or go dance ‘al fresco’…”under the stars”.

The Three Best Trails of Italy

The Val Venegia – Dolomites – The best bike trails in Italy are The Val Venegia – Dolomites – Rated 5 Stars, and has a top elevation of 1,538 m above sea level. The Venegia is said to be a difficult trail, and at one point, you go underneath the glacier of the Pale di San Martino, so dress warmly. The peak of Baita Segantini is breathtaking, with pics that will have FaceBook hating you for a good while. the Dolomites are said to be the MECCA for MTB.

The Alpe Lusia – This is a favorite of many, ad also has also been rated 5 Stars, and if you get a chance, eat at the Malga Bocche!

Paneveggio Nature Park – If you prefer an easier ride, this one you could bring the kids on. Not a lot of climbing and the forest and lake are said to come to life with the energy of glacier water.

France

Burgundy, France is proclaimed by many as absolutely remarkable, with rolling hills, vineyards, and Road of the Great Wines. If you come through here, please don’t drink and bike lol. Seriously stay safe. Cheese and Wine tasting are bound to win, it’s just in our blood, but keep in mind that if you’re continuing your journey after drinking, it makes it really hard on a bike, so you might want to lodge nearby until the next day. 212 kilometers, rolling hills, and famous waterways are sure to make a peaceful ride, with lots of beautiful pictures. Avoid the heaviest rainfall season in October and November, and come when the weather is mild or hot, in June-August.

Three Best trails of France

Route des Grand Crus – Named “road of the great wines”. Vineyards and back hills will make your journey a memorable one Bring your camera, this area is the most beautiful thing, as famous as the wine that is cultivated here.

Vole des Vignes – You guessed it! A ride through wine country! Beautiful rolling hills and a 35 km bike ride into the heart of Burgundy!

Canal de Bourgogne – 212 kilometers, rolling k=hills, and famous waterways are sure to make a peaceful ride, with lots of beautiful pictures.

General Recommended Cycling Months

In general, I would say that April and October are the best months for cycling. If you are going to be in Italy, Spain, France, or Greece in August, plan around very high temperatures, and hydrate your body to accommodate, because it gets HOT!

Seasons

This is a good one. it depends on where your want to go, but the locations listed above tell you a time frame for each. Those are the best times according to reputable sources, blogs, and reviews. Northern Europe is in top shape for travelers in May- September, and if you happen to go in August, come ready for a battle because it get’s scorching hot! If you travel in the winter, try the southern regions of France, Spain, and Italy for a bit milder weather. if you’re the type that likes the cold weather, you are at an advantage to many, because you don’t have o worry about when to come. Just the rainy season. 🙂

Getting Around

Trains are the main mode of transport in Europe, and usually, don’t pose a problem transporting your bike from one place to another (if the need arises). Of course, folding bikes like Brompton or Bike Friday, along with the ones that can fold into a bag or case, won’t really be noticed, because they look like luggage.

You may have to avoid high-speed services like TGV or the ICE trains in Germany, but for the most part, you should be ok, especially outside of peak schedules. For longer distances, take the City Night Train, because they run between major cities, and generally will cost under 30 Euros.

NOTE : If you get a cheap seat on a long train, the seats are very uncomfortable. Just a heads up!

I hope this all helps!

2 Thoughts on “How to Tour Europe on a Bike

  1. Britanica on December 17, 2016 at 2:52 am said:

    This is quite fascinating! I had never considered it but if me and my husband are in good enough shape come his long vacation in 2018 from work, I think this would be something we would both enjoy a lot. He will be off all summer which sounds perfect weather wise!

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