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 Bicycle Touring
 
 
Bicycle touring is where you ride a bicycle to explore a city or the countryside for enjoyment. It is also referred to as bicycle tours and bicycle vacations. People who do bicycle touring are called bicycle tourists or simply riders.  The distance covered in a day will typically vary from 30 to 100 miles depending on fitness, speed and the number of stops. Wikipedia has a good article on bicycle touring.  There are many websites with personal travelogues (also called travelogs) of someone's bicycling adventures in the world and such travelogues are also part of many bicycling touring websites. See our World Bike Tours chart at the bottom of the page.  many online and print travel guides have a section on bicycle touring for the destination they cover.
 
There are many types of bicycle touring and no standard set of terms. Here is the way it has been generally categorized. For more details see the Touring Cyclist and Wikipedia articles. (Ken Keifer's website has a different list of types that is also worth reading):
 
  • Day touring / Day tours. This is the simplest form of bike touring. This is either a one-day tour you take on a weekend or holiday or you go on a bicycle vacation somewhere and you return to your starting place each day such as your home, a camp ground, or lodging in some city or village. You carry just enough gear for the weather, a small repair tool kit for minor bike repairs, and some food and drink. You usually eat at restaurants along the way. 
     
  • Supported / fully supported / SAG touring. This involves multi-day tours and you do not return to your starting point each day.  A luggage van carries your luggage to the next place where you will be staying overnight. At the end of the day you’ll find the luggage van waiting for you at a designated location or it may already be left in your hostel, hotel or B&B room. This may be part of a guided bicycle tours, including pre-paid lodging, luggage transfers, route planning and often some meals and the use of rental bikes are part of the package.  SAG = Support and Gear
     
  • Credit card touring. This refers to multi-day tours where you travel alone or in an independent group with all your belongings (i.e., there is no luggage van to carry your luggage to the next location where you will be staying overnight.)   You eat at restaurants and stay in a youth hostel, hotel or B&B overnight. This is popular form of bike touring in Europe.
     
  • Self Sufficient / fully loaded touring. This is hard core bicycle touring where you carry all your gear with you including food and camping equipment and you sleep in a tent or just a sleeping bag.  It is like going backpacking but riding a bicycle instead of walking.  If you are traveling extensively in a developing country, this is sometimes referred to as expedition touring.
 
Search The Web
Sometimes the fastest way to find specific bicycle tours is just to do a web search. We suggest the following:

Note:
Using either tour or touring will give you the same results. You can narrow your search by including the type of bicycle touring in your search.  Where there are two or more terms used to describe the same type of touring, you may need to try each one to get full coverage of tour possibilities. bicycle tours and bicycle touring are the most common terms used whereas Bicycle vacations and cycling vacations are not commonly used.  You should also search for some bicycle travelogues (or travelogs) for your destination to get advice on it from others.
Of course, you can also add schedule, price, cost, a date such as August 2008 etc. to your search to try and narrow it down.
 
Include the country if a city name may have a duplicate or if you get a city in a different country or state/province than what you wanted to find.
 
Bicycle Tours Country or city name Bicycle Tours Japan
Bicycle Tours in Country or city name Bicycle tour of Paris France
Bicycle Vacation Country or city name Berlin to Munich Germany Bus service
Bike rides in country or state/province/city Bike rides in Scottish highlands
Cycling in Hawaii
Bicycle supported touring Country Bicycle supported touring Germany  
Bicycle SAG tours Germany
Bicycle fully supported tours Germany
Bicycle Credit card touring Country region Bicycle Credit card touring Danube
Bicycle travelogue Vietnam Bicycle travelogue Vietnam

 
Click Here for Amazon.comWe drop you off at their Travel Books - Bicycle Touring search results that cover books on the subject. Use their search box to find a bicycle tour book covering a country or region of the world. We also show some popular bicycle touring books that you can go to directly. We are an affiliate of Amazon.com.

Bicycle
Touring
Books

Adventure Cycle-Touring Handbook: A Worldwide Cycling Route & Planning Guide

The Essential Touring Cyclist: A Complete Guide for the Bicycle Traveler, Second Edition

Lonely
Planet
Cycling
Guides

Lonely Planet Cycling Britain (Cycling Guides)

Bicycle
Gear

Here are some good websites with information about bicycle touring.
 
Comprehensive Bicycle Touring Websites
These are websites that have extensive information on all aspects of bicycles and bicycle touring for beginners, as well as, experienced riders.
 
About.com - Bicycling  An excellent website with a lot of information on bicycling.  They cover bike events including touring. Their Bicycling In Europe covers everything about bicycling in European countries.
 
Biycletour.us  For beginners. Just brief, one page summaries with practical advice for those new to bicycle touring. There is a separate page on what bicycle touring is all about, and one on selecting a bike, planning your tour and finally a page listing some popular bike touring companies. 
 
BiyclingTouring101.com. A comprehensive website for both beginners and experienced riders.
 
BicycleUniverse.com.  Covers everything from A to Z. Very helpful if you are a beginner. They also have a section with extensive tips on touring.
 
Crazyguyonabike.com. A place for bicycle tourist and their journals. Here is their Touring - How To section.
 
DMOZ Open Directory - Sports/Cycling/Travel.  This is their directory of bicycle travel websites.
 
Ken Keifer's Bike Pages  A good website of interest to anyone who wants to do bike tours.
 
The Touring Cyclist.  A good website with comprehensive information.
 
TourVelo.org.  This is a Do It Yourself Bicycle Touring website by Norma D. Ford who has biked throughout the world. he offers practical advice if you are going it alone.
 
Wikitravel - Tips for Cycle Trips.  This article provides basic information for bicycle touring.
 
Some Bicycle Touring Operators
BikeTourReview.com - Europe.  This website reviews various bike touring companies that have Supported / fully supported / SAG tours of Europe and let's you comparison shop.

Australian and International Cycling Tours and Travel Logs.  This is an Australian website with worldwide coverage.
 
Bicycle Tours - World Wide Bicycle Tour Directory   This is a comprehensive directory of commercial and non-profit bicycle tours and events. Bike touring companies or event directors input their information directly into their database.
 
Cycle Events  They have a collection of interesting bicycle tours for some of the continents offered by various companies.
 
DMOZ Open Directory - Sports/Cycling/Travel/Tour Operators. This is their list of bicycling tour operators worldwide. We also take you directly to each region or country they cover below in our World Bike Tour Websites box below.
 
Experienceplus.com  They have been leading bicycle tours for over 30 years. They specialize in traveling quiet country roads throughout the world. You stay in small inns in the heart of a town or village.  A beautiful website with good selection criteria choices for picking one of their bicycling tours. They have tours for a few countries on all the continents.
 
London Bicycle Tour Company They offer bike hires and tours of London.
 
Specialty Travel Index - Bicycling Touring  An excellent site covering a wide range of outdoor activities. We drop you off at their Bicycle touring page with a list of all their bicycle tours. From here, you can use the pull-down menu to select a Destination and they select Bicycle Touring in the pull-down Activity menu to narrow your search.
 
The Touring Cyclist - Bike Tours.  This is their Bike Tour section with worldwide tours.
 
VBT Bicycling Vacations  They have been in business since 1971 and have worldwide coverage, except for South America and most of Asia the last time we checked. They offer deluxe bicycling tours.
 
Yahoo! Bicycle Tour Operators Directory.  This is their list of bicycle tour operators worldwide.

World
World Bike Tours
Region Websites
Australia DMOZ Bicycle Tour Operators.  This is their list of bicycling tour operators in this region. Some of the websites may have a general bicycling guide for the region or specific countries within the region. 
Experienceplus - Destinations  Select Australia from the list.
Cycle Events  Tours are listed in alphabetically order by country. Australia is part of their South Pacific tours.
Africa DMOZ Bicycle Tour Operators.  This is their list of bicycling tour operators in this region. Some of the websites may have a general bicycling guide for the region or specific countries within the region. 
 
Asia DMOZ Bicycle Tour Operators.  This is their list of bicycling tour operators in this region. Some of the websites may have a general bicycling guide for the region or specific countries within the region. 
Cycle Events  Asia tours are listed in alphabetically order by country.
Experienceplus - Destinations  Select a country in Asia from the list.
Canada DMOZ Bicycle Tour Operators.  This is their list of bicycling tour operators in this region. Some of the websites may have a general bicycling guide for the region or specific countries within the region. 
 
Caribbean DMOZ Bicycle Tour Operators.  This is their list of bicycling tour operators in this region. Some of the websites may have a general bicycling guide for the region or specific countries within the region. 
 
Central America DMOZ Bicycle Tour Operators.  This is their list of bicycling tour operators in this region. Some of the websites may have a general bicycling guide for the region or specific countries within the region. 
Experienceplus - Destinations  They only had a bicycle tour in Costa Rica the last time we checked.
Europe DMOZ Bicycle Tour Operators.  This is their list of bicycling tour operators in this region. Some of the websites may have a general bicycling guide for the region or specific countries within the region. 
BikeTourReview.com - Europe  This website reviews various companies that offer Supported / fully supported / SAG tours of Europe and let's you comparison shop.
Experienceplus - Destinations  Select a country in Europe from the list.
Cycle Events  European tours are listed in alphabetically order by country.
Mexico DMOZ Bicycle Tour Operators.  This is their list of bicycling tour operators in this region. Some of the websites may have a general bicycling guide for the region or specific countries within the region. 
 
Middle East DMOZ Bicycle Tour Operators.  This is their list of bicycling tour operators in this region. Some of the website may have a general bicycling guide for the region or specific countries within the region. 
 
New Zealand DMOZ Bicycle Tour Operators.  This is their list of bicycling tour operators in this region. Some of the websites may have a general bicycling guide for the region or specific countries within the region. 
Experienceplus - Destinations  Select New Zealand from the list.
Cycle Events  Tours are listed in alphabetically order by country. New Zealand is in their South Pacific section.
North America DMOZ Bicycle Tour Operators.  This is their list of bicycling tour operators in this region. Some of the websites may have a general bicycling guide for the region or specific countries within the region. 
Experienceplus - Destinations  Select USA from the list. This is the only North American country they offer.
Oceania
South Pacific islands
DMOZ Bicycle Tour Operators.  This is their list of bicycling tour operators in this region. They only listed Australia and New Zealand the last time we checked but they may have added some South Pacific islands since the, Some of the websites may have a general bicycling guide for the region or specific countries within the region. 
Cycle Events  Tours are listed in alphabetically order by country.
South America DMOZ Bicycle Tour Operators.  This is their list of bicycling tour operators in this region. Some of the websites may have a general bicycling guide for the region or specific countries within the region.
Experienceplus - Destinations  Select a country from the list for Latin America.
United States DMOZ Bicycle Tour Operators.  This is their list of bicycling tour operators in this region. Some of the websites may have a general bicycling guide for the region or specific countries within the region.
Experienceplus - Destinations  Select USA from the list.
Cycle Events  They only had several tours in Alaska the last time we checked.

 
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