Traveling by bicycle is a sustainable and healthy way to do tourism. The focus is on the landscapes we observe along the way and the wind hitting the face. This is a more “slow” tourism, to enjoy every moment of the journey. Although most of the time it is necessary good physical preparation, there are bike tours for all kinds of people.
Where to go?
During the pandemic, there was a growth in the bicycle sales market, considering that cycling is an outdoor activity, which generally prioritizes natural and remote regions rather than large urban centers. With so many options of cycling tours for you to expand your routes, it is guaranteed that you will find one that is just right for you.
Riding a bicycle does not present many secrets, but a successful cycling trip involves a lot of planning and preparation. Check out some tips to undertake a safe and complete ride.
Planning and support car
In cycling trips, the route is the most important part. So if you have a destination in mind and are planning your own trip, it is important to research what the routes to that destination are, and assess whether they are compatible with your fitness level. If the route is next to a highway through which cars pass, it may be important to look for alternatives that go through smaller roads in the interior.
If the route lasts several days, it is also necessary to identify what accommodations are along the way where you can spend the night. If this is the case, you can even allocate a few days in this place to visit the local tourist attractions.
It is also important to evaluate the possibility of traveling together with a support car – in tourist packages, they are usually included. A support car carries the belongings of cyclists from one point to another, allowing the cycling to be lighter and less tiring. He can accompany the group, or just meet him at specific locations. In case of a technical problem, or fatigue, the car can also “rescue” the tourist.
Which bike to choose
Because of the simplicity inherent in cycling tours, it is said that the best bike to travel is the one you have. Although shorter and “affordable” routes don’t require robust equipment, longer and harder routes will require more specialized equipment.
If you plan to travel on asphalt roads, road bikes, also called road bikes, with thin tires, are sufficient. For rougher terrain and dirt roads, mountain bikes, which have thick tires and good suspensions, are recommended.
For roads with paved roads and dirt roads, there are hybrid bikes, which are a crossroads between the two and offer several options of gears and brakes, but are usually more expensive.
There are also folding bicycles, which although not very efficient for long distances, are convenient to be transported within public transportation, and electric bicycles, which use batteries and make climbing easier, for example.
What to bring
If you are traveling without a support car, it is important to try to reduce the weight and volume of the luggage you are carrying to the maximum. Still, there are some essential items that every bike trip should include. They are: water bottle; GPS, map or mobile with route applications that work without internet; documents; emergency contacts; first aid kit; sunscreen; sunglasses and, of course, helmet.
As for clothing, you must take into account how will be the weather conditions in the region where you will pedal. However, coats and pants windbreaker and waterproof are usually a good choice because they will save you in case of a sudden change in weather.
For warmer climates, a light fleece is usually enough; and on the legs, for trips that last several days, it is important to wear a suit that is padded in the groin. It is also important to carry and wear cycling gloves, and you must remember to separate a set of clothes to wear when not cycling.
It is also interesting to take a hygiene kit with toilet paper, and restrict food to energy bars, a “mix of nuts” and fresh fruit.
For any problems on the bike, it is important to know beforehand some principles of basic mechanics, and bring a set of tools and a kit of spare parts. You can also choose to put some accessories on your bike, such as front and back lights, frame and saddle bags, elastic “spiders” and padlock.