Bicycle touring means independent cycling trips for adventure and pleasure rather than sport or exercise. It can range from single to multi-day trips. The participants themselves can plan a tour for their enjoyment or a fund-raising venture.
If you are one of the bicycle touring enthusiasts and planning your first-time bicycle tour, you may feel excited with all the information available on the internet. But it’s hard to say that those data from the web will be useful.
We will try to give you complete guidelines through which you can make your first bicycle tour memorable and hassle-free. So, we’ve made a list of touring tips. Some tips might seem like common sense, and some make you think about life on the road.
Take the Tour Easy: Don’t try to cross 100km a day on a bicycle. Too much cycling can bring you down.
Learn the Language Basics of the Country: When you plan to cycle in a country, you have to remember that you will be able to order food and ask for directions. So, learning the language basics is essential.
Don’t Buy Expensive Gear: Buying expensive gear isn’t good at all during a bicycle tour. Keep it as simple as possible.
Don’t Feel Afraid to Ask: You may need help when you are on a bicycle tour. It can be water or directions. Don’t be afraid of asking someone.
Don’t Be Shy to Bargain: You can save a lot of money, asking for discounts at hotels and markets. Don’t fight over a few cents with someone in unknown places.
Ask a Lift if Needed: If your bike breaks down or you get sick, there’s no shame in asking for a ride when you certainly need it.
Keep a GPS with You: When you lose your way, a GPS will help you a little.
Make Yourself Involved in the Bicycle Touring Community: You can undoubtedly find the internet filled with great bicycle touring forums, blogs, and groups where you can take advantage. It’s a great way to make a plan, ask questions, get advice, and communicate with other bicycle tourists.
Don’t Need Pre-trip Training: As a beginner, you don’t worry about pre-trip training.
Want to Set a Camp: Camping will save you an unbelievable amount of money while on tour. Bring your own tent or camping hammock.
Be Careful of Speed Bumps: It is necessary to watch out for speed bumps because they can cause some terrible injuries.
Recharge Yourself from Time to Time: If you’ve had some rough time on the roads, you need to have some good food or a nice room to rest for lifting your spirits.
Take Plenty of Pictures: When you are on a bicycle tour, you can take a lot of pictures of different activities like camping at night, cooking and cycling. The photos will be the memories in the future.
Look for Fruit Trees: Fruit trees, especially in tropical countries, are the great sources of afternoon snacks.
Get off the bike Carefully: You need to be careful when you get off the bike. You may get injuries.
Put Abandoned Clothes: You may need some abandoned clothes to clean your bike.
Keep a Notebook: Writing is a great way to use your mind. You can write at the end of the day or during your lunch break.
Keep Your Bike Well-maintained: Simple maintenance such as cleaning and oiling the chain is necessary.
Use Ortlieb Panniers: If you want to carry some repair kits, you may need Ortlieb panniers.
Start the Tour as Soon as Possible: You have to make someday today for starting a bicycle tour.
Learn from Your Surroundings: Touring is a great way to learn new skills such as cooking or languages.
Get Used to Being Asked: Some people may ask the same questions over and over. At that time, try to keep a smile on your face.
Make a Look at Hospitality Websites: You may need to look at some hospitality websites such as Couchsurfing and Warmshowers.
Hire a Person to Understand the Local Language: If you’re traveling a country in which the language is complicated, then find someone who can translate it.
Keep Yourself in a Safe Zone: If you are traveling with a partner, especially with someone of the opposite gender, it’s best to say that you are more than boyfriend and girlfriend.
Protect Yourself from Sunshine: You can protect yourself from sunshine by wearing a lightweight, long sleeve shirt and a pair of polarized sunglasses.
Taste the Local Food: You should try the local food such as delicious fruits and dishes for gathering a different experience.
Take an Interval: You will need to take an interval from time to time for recharging your body and mind.
Find Podcasts: You can listen to suitable podcasts while cycling.
Don’t Be Too Much Friendly with Street Dogs: Becoming too friendly with street dogs may be harmful. So, be aware of them. If you touch them, remember to wash your hands as well.
Carry Plenty of Water Bottles: You have to carry a lot of water bottles and refill them often. Finishing of water in the middle is a terrible feeling.
Keep a Bar of Soap: If you keep a bar of soap with you, you can wash your hands after changing a tire.
Don’t Need Ultra Cycling Clothes: You don’t need to bring cycling clothes on your bicycle tour. Carry some comfortable casual clothes with you.
Roll with the Weather and Road Work: You have to be flexible when you are traveling in changing weather and road work. You may change your tour plan, as well.
Don’t Bombard Other Bicycle Tourists: It’s unnecessary to bombard other bicycle tourists with a million questions such as how many times they make a change in their bicycles.
Don’t Give up Your Plans: Giving up the plans you made is not right during your tour. You make sure to take them easy.
Take Care of Yourself: You have to eat well, have a shower, and wear sunscreen.
Don’t Leave the Main Road: You can explore wherever you want, but don’t leave the main road to explore the routes.
Write to Your Parents: While you are traveling far from your home, your parents want to hear from you.
Don’t Feel Afraid to Carry Some Extra Weight for Enjoyment: There are a few non-essential items that bring me a bit of enjoyment.
Don’t Think About Others: There will be a lot of people telling you are crazy to go traveling by bicycle.
Remember the Hard Times: The uphill climb will ultimately lead to a fantastic downhill.
Carry a pair of Ear Plugs and an Eye Mask: If you want to sleep outside, the sunrise will prevent you from getting extra hours of much-needed sleep. You can carry them with you.
Invite Your Friends: You may be surprised by your friends who would be willing to join you on the road.
Hide Your Passport and Cash: keep a small amount of money on your handlebar bag for daily expenses.
Don’t Overthink Going Slow: The slower you go, the more you will get experiences.
Have Some Fun: Don’t take the tour seriously. Enjoy the ride.
As a whole, if you are a beginner, we hope you will find these tips useful for your first bicycle trip.