The United Nations may have declared June 3rd as World Bicycle Day, but cycling is a popular activity year round, especially for active travelers. With tour operators offering an increasing number of options for those looking to vacation on the back of two wheels, here is a sampling of some of the cycling tours available around the world.
5. Tour d’Afrique
On TDA Global Cycling’s Tour d’Afrique travelers will cross the African continent cycling from Cairo, Egypt to Cape Town, South Africa on a journey that spans nearly 7,000 miles. Traveling through 10 countries in all, guests will cycle along the Nile past ancient temples, through the Sudanese desert, and up and down the biblical landscapes of Ethiopia’s rugged Simian Mountains. After crossing the Equator in Kenya, they will pedal past Mount Kilimanjaro, to Lake Malawi, Victoria Falls, and along the edges of the Kalahari and Namib deserts, en route to the finish line in Cape Town. The entire journey includes 88 riding days, 25 rest days, and three travel days, but those who cannot complete the entire trip can also join for certain segments.
The next Tour d’Afrique departs Jan. 17, 2019 and concludes on May 12, 2019. Pricing for the full tour starts at $16,900 pp. For more information, visit tdaglobalcycling.com/tour-dafrique.
4. Northern Arizona’s Prescott and Sedona Bike Tour
Northern Arizona is known for its unique landscape with everything from desert lands and lakes to red rock mountains. On Sojourn Bicycling & Active Vacations’ Northern Arizona’s Prescott and Sedona Bike Tour, cycling enthusiasts will explore this area starting with Prescott, where they’ll find hiking and biking trails, lakes, and a variety of attractions within the city itself. Sojourn tour leaders will guide cyclists through the Prescott State Forest, Skull Valley, Mormon Lake, and the iconic Red Rock Scenic Byway. The journey ends with a visit to Sedona, home to the famed Red Rock State Park and a growing foodie scene, to reward cyclists after a long bike ride.
Two departure dates are scheduled for October 2018, while an additional four dates are planned for May and October 2019. Pricing starts at $3,145 pp. For more information, visit gosojourn.com.
3. Chef Bike Tour Piedmont
For those who love cycling as much as they love food, Tourissimo offers the Chef Bike Tour Piedmont, which takes travelers through a part of Italy credited as the birthplace of the slow food movement. Cyclists on this trip are guided by Tourissimo tour leaders and accompanied by a chef as they explore Langa and Roero, two important wine regions of Italy, as well as the villages of Barolo and Barbaresco, which are the namesakes of two popular red wines. Highlights of the tour include cycling along rolling hills covered with vineyards and medieval villages, tasting traditional regional foods, including truffles, cheese, and hazelnut Gianduja chocolates, and dining in three Michelin-starred restaurants.
The next Chef Bike Tour Piedmont takes place Oct. 1-7, 2018, and pricing starts at $5,995 pp dbl. For more information, visit tourissimo.travel.
2. Bhutan Bike & Hike Adventure
Going off the beaten path to explore Bhutan, a country perched on the southern Himalayas between Tibet and North India, is possible on Grasshopper Adventures’ Bhutan Bike & Hike Adventure tour. The 10-day journey includes crossing the Bhutan’s longest and highest suspension footbridge, trekking to the Lungchutse Monastery, meeting locals in the valley of Gangtey, exploring a number of ancient dzongs, including Punakha Dzong, touring a recently opened craft brewery, and hiking to the Tiger’s Nest Monastery.
Pricing for the Bhutan Bike & Hike Adventure itinerary starts at $3,500 pp with no surcharge for solo travelers. For more information, visit grasshopperadventures.com.
1. Colombia Bike Tour
Making its debut in September 2018, Trek Travel’s Colombia Bike Tour will guide cycling enthusiasts on a journey that begins and ends in Medellin while traveling through lush green valleys. Along the way, guests will take part in a local coffee experience in the villages of Circasia and Caicedonia, tour an avocado plantation, hike through the Cocora Valley, sample sugar cane juice after a ride through the sugar cane fields of Cartago, and more. Three September departure dates are scheduled for the 6-day trip with pricing starting at $3,899 pp. A 3-day package extension is available for those who want to tackle Alto de Letras, the longest bike climb in the world.
For more information, visit trektravel.com.