The best way to see a place on holiday04/02/2015
If you are thinking about travelling through or across parts of Europe this year, there are a number of ways to travel. There are also a large number of countries within Europe that you may want to take in. Planning a holiday like this takes a lot of doing, and really can’t be tackled until you know exactly why you are going and what you want to do. If you are keen to take in the sights and scenery of a single country, you may want to cycle. If you are keen to take in as many cities in your week away as possible, a train may be a better way to go.
Of course, your budget may be dictating some of your choices and any time constraints may also be an issue. Travelling alone is one thing, but if you have your entire family with you, there are even more things to consider. Ages and interests will come in to your decisions, together with your grasp of the local language to ensure you can all navigate when you get there.
It may be you are travelling in Europe to attend one particular venue or concert. If this is the case, you may also want to make the most of your time there. Try to find out more about the city you are visiting before you leave. Try to make some time to see three or four things that go toward defining the city, the country and the people who live there. Some holidays are very short, and others can carry on for a several weeks. If you want to fill your time with sightseeing, it is always best to make a solid plan, and organise any guided tours in advance.
Sightseeing is a wonderful thing to do while you are on holiday. Every country in Europe is unique, and every region is unique within that country too. If you can spare the time, and you can bear the potential saddle sores, cycling through a region within one of Europe’s countries can be a great way to see what it has to offer in depth. Cycling is a slower pace and requires a reasonable amount of stamina and fitness, but you get to truly see a place. You can take many stops on the way, to make the most of your time in that country.
The best thing about cycling is that you are keeping active throughout your holiday. While most of us put on a few pounds for each week we are away, cycling up to one hundred miles a day will definitely help you lose some. Rather than spotting miles and miles of motorway, you can navigate through some of the most exquisite cycle routes. Some track along canal paths and country lanes to see what life is like through every town and village along the way.
It’s always nice to stop and chat with the locals, and to sample so many more local delicacies and dishes than you would get to do on a package holiday in a hotel. With cycling, you also have access to far more variety of accommodation on your travels too. Everything from pitching a tent to a five-star hotel. You can choose villas, bed and breakfast, campsites or even hostels if you like. This makes for a fascinating holiday and can definitely be done on a tight budget.
Of course, you can do as much or as little as you like. You can choose to take on just a half day cycling from one town to the next along a scenic canal path. Or you may choose to spend the whole week travelling five hundred miles clear across an entire country. The vast majority of Europe has clearly mapped cycle routes to take in the most interesting parts of the countries you visit. It is possible to zig zag across just one region to take in as much as you can. While some of the routes are along busier roads utilised by cars, many take on old tow paths, bridges and dedicated cycle tracks.
There are some wonderful coastal tracks that make good use of sea views. Some areas of Europe are particularly mountainous and would require far more strength and stamina to tackle. You can choose a route to suit your ability, or you can choose a route to challenge you to improve your fitness. How hard you work is up to you. It is possible for people to take on a very easy route at a nice, light speed and still take on good ground.
There are websites that help you plan cycling holidays through Europe, like hookedoncycling.co.uk holidays. You can use them as little or as much as you need. It is possible to find an agent to help you with transfers and luggage. They can even arrange all your accommodation along a route they can find for you. All you would need to do is turn up on the day, ready and willing. Of course, part of the fun may be for you to take a map and pick where you are heading as you go. This kind of adventure can be great fun for those with enough daring to give it a go.
However much you choose to plan, there are some essentials you must take with you. Your smartphone can be a real lifeline if you get stuck, but keeping it charged as you go can be a nightmare. There are spare battery packs for mobiles, so make the most of them, and ensure you stay somewhere that you can charge them all daily. If you are map reading, you will need a good waterproof set that you can also make marks on. Always carry plenty of water and high energy snack bars. If you are camping, you may want to consider a trailer for your bike to carry everything you need. This keeps the weight and the sweat off your back. Always check in with someone to let them know you are ok, and take a padded saddle!