This summer, I go bike riding

This summer, I go bike riding

Are you planning your first bike ride ?
Bicycle touring can be as simple as a week end gateway and as intense as a round-the-world adventure. But never mind, both approaches offer an enriching and great way to explore a place.

However to make this dream come true, you have to have a plan. This article’s purpose is to help you determine the kind of bike riding that suits you better.

DECIDING ON THE TYPE OF BIKE RIDE

Touring with your “credit card”

While touring with a “credit card”, cyclists only bring their clothes and the necessary gear, and pay for the rest on their roadtrip, that is to say, their meals, supplies and their accommodations.

Bright side: not a lot of constraint, a comfortable trip with the confort of having a stay each night and enjoy a shower and a bed.

Negative side: expensive, limited to the available accommodations, planning is difficult, less equipment in case of injuries, bike breakdowns or simply bad weather.

Autonomous touring

If you’d like to go for an autonomous touring, you should bring all the gear and clothes you will need on your bike! Though you can make occasional stops to buy food and supplies, you are ready for everything that could happen, from having to deal with bad weather to sleeping outside.

Bright side: A lot of freedom and one of the cheapest way to travel

Negative side: Requires you to have more gear with you and will therefore require more effort.

Touring with a vehicle

This kind of touring will allow you to store most of your gear and equipment in a vehicle that will accompany you during your whole trip.

Bright side: bring more equipment without having to haul it directly and therefore be able to travel further.

Negative side: You have to find someone who is going to drive the car, it is costly and the car won’t be able to follow you everywhere you go.

Organized tours

These are planned, organized and managed by an organization. Some offer complete services in which all details are taken into account. Others are services that only provide help in planning your route and your accommodations.

Bright side: not a lot to worry about, ideal for beginner cyclists, perfect to meet new people.

Negative side: the trip is planned in advance from start to finish, there is no possibility to choose your travel partner and it can be quite costly.

© FFVélo – JL Armand

Deciding on the size of the group

Small groups

Small groups of cyclist (2 to 6 people) are easier to manage, especially if they are composed of beginners. They also are safer than individual bike rides, because your bike buddies are there for you in case of a breakdown, injury or if you are lost.

Large groups

Large groups of cyclists (more than 6 people) can also be very fun. But are harder to manage.

Solo

Touring for half a day or a whole day can be an excellent way for beginner cyclists to develop their endurance and their technique and get used to being completely autonomous on the road.

© FFVélo – JL Armand

Other factors to consider when going on a bicycle ride

The size of the group and the type of tour is only the first step of you planning. You should keep these next elements in mind when you plan your route and when you buy your gear :

Proximity with a city

The more your route is next to a city (and bike shops), the easier it is to get help in case of emergency.

The number of kilometers

The number of kilometers you plan to travel has a big influence on the type of tour you will do. More kilometers means less time for sightseeing or visiting places, especially if you designate a point to be reached every day.

Traffic

The presence of cars and trucks can make your journey more difficult and even dangerous. To reduce the risks, plan going on secondary roads.

Road hazards

When planning your route, try to avoid narrow tunnels and bridges, busy roads, construction areas

Date and time

The date and time of departure are two important factors. Some periods of the year (vacations, summers) are busier than others; it is more difficult to book your dream garden on HomeCamper and there are more people on the roads.

Wind and weather

A sunny and cool weather is considered the perfect one for bike touring.
Indeed, headwinds can turn a peaceful journey in a long and difficult one, just as the rain and extreme temperatures. Check the weather before starting your journey.

© FFVélo – Richard Bord

Camp in HomeCamper gardens while you are touring

If you rather go on a bike ride on several days it is important to know where you’ll spend your nights. When going on a journey like this, we look for comfort and security to spend replenishing nights but also accommodations that do not cost too much. This is exactly what HomeCamper offers; hundreds of gardens at a very attractive price (8€ on average per night), with friendly hosts on top of that.

© FFVélo – Richard Bord

You’re ready to go for a bike ride! HomeCamper wishes you a good trip and a nice summer… If you want more advice and information about cycling, please visit FFVélo‘s website.

header image : © FFVélo – JL Armand

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