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Europe (all)

This page lists all reports that for Europe including those that involve other countries too.
Click here for a list of reports that involve only Europe.
All descriptions are in English, unless otherwise noted.

Tours (continued)

Around Switzerland by bike
by Norman D. Ford, tour started 2003
Europe: Switzerland

Cycling Switzerland's National Bike Routes, from the high Alps to mountain lakes, rivers and medieval towns with painted houses.

It was months since my knee surgery but when I mentioned bike touring in Switzerland to my orthopedist, he immediately said, ``No pedaling up long hills.''
Switzerland Without Hills? It scarcely seemed possible to bike through this mountainous land without long uphill climbs. Yet Switzerland offers several unique strategies that help to make it possible.
To begin with, I simply cycled around Switzerland on four connecting long-distance bike paths that were largely flat and level. Mostly car-free and 80 percent paved, these were four of Switzerlands nine National Bike Routes.
For example, I rode half way around the country on Route 9, the Lakes Route, which runs beside a series of lakes and rivers on a mostly level route through spectacular mountain ranges. Then I switched to Route 5, the Mittelland Bike Path, that bordered more lakes and the beautiful Aare River. In between, short stints on Routes 2 and 8 were also flat and easy.
True, there was an occasional long climb. But I never had to pedal far uphill. Nearly every long upgrade can be by-passed by putting your bike on a train or Post bus and letting it take you up hill.

See all 13 reports by Norman D. Ford

Looking down bike route towards Grindelwald from cafe atop Grosse Scheidegg Pass
Mountainbike in Tenerife
by Håkan Åkesson, tour started 2003
Europe: Spain

Suddenly I was in Tenerife. From one cold day in the Swedish forest to a warm beach close to Africa. I love airplanes. [...] It was very thrilling to go downhill when the bed was sharp lava stones and gravel. No soft moss to land in after an eventual unintentional air trip. I got a way with some small wounds and bruises after loosing the grip with the front wheel once. I was on my own on the mountain, so I better be careful and ride safe. [Warning, popups.]

Alla scoperta della Norvegia - Tre itinerari in un lontano paese del nord
by Dario Pedrotti, Antonella Valer, tour started 2003
Europe: Norway
language: it

La tappa prevista [Lillehammer - Gjovik] è talmente breve che ce la prendiamo con comodo e tentiamo di visitare Lillehammer, che però non offre un granchè. Così partiamo lungo il percorso che ci indica la nostra cartina, prima lungo la principale e poi lungo stradine secondarie che saliscendono nel bosco, dove ci fermiamo a raccogliere mirtilli. I miei loschi intenti di papparceli a pranzo affogati nel gelato sono bloccati dall'Anto che propone di portarli alla famiglia Servas che ci ospiterà alla sera. A malincuore accetto. Dopo pranzo ci permettiamo addirittura un pisolino a Moelv, dove un ponte ci conduce sull'altra sponda (est) del lago, che seguiamo docilmente fino a Gjovik. Qui la nostra ospitante si rivela una simpaticissima persona, con cui si instaura immediatamente un gran feeling, che rischia di sfociare in amore aperto quando concludiamo la cena con i nostri mirtilli più le sue fragole e una vascona di gelato alla vaniglia. Dopo cena, benchè quasi tramortito dalle tre o quattro porzioni di gelato, riesco a seguire l'Anto, la signora e la figlia in un giro turistico della cittadina, che le nostre due amiche coronano con un bagno in piena digestione in un laghetto artificiale freddino nell'aria fresca della sera. Ma sopravvivono, anzi, sono proprio contente.

Antonella and Dario
Mon carnet de route Norvège, été 2003
by Cédric Favre, tour started 2003
Europe: Norway
language: fr

Réveil paisible avec le chant des oiseaux, avant d´aborder 2 cols successifs. Pas le temps de chauffer la ``bête'', ca monte dès le premier virage. Après 2 km, je rejoins les italiens qui ont campé dans le jardin d´une maison du village précédent. Au sommet du col (275m), je décide de continuer à mon rythme qui est légèrement plus rapide que le leur.

Passé Hauge, je poursuis par la route de Rekefjord. Elle est splendide mais très sinueuse, le dernier troncon avant de rejoindre la route 44 n´est même pas asphalté. Je reprends des forces sur la place centrale d´Egersund en terminant mon saucisson emmené de Suisse. Egersund est une ville principalement active autour de son port.

Après cette partie montagneuse, je pensais pouvoir continuer tranquillement en longeant la mer du Nord. C´est un peu plus plat, mais un vent violent de face me rend la progression difficile... je ne vois pas le bout de ces longues lignes droites qui n´en finissent plus. Enfin la voilà cette AJ de Vigrestad, que j´ai cherchée durant une demi heure, qui se trouve en fait dans le hameau voisin de Härr. Seule une famille danoise y loge avant d´aller reprendre le ferry à Kristiansand. Je m´y cuisine un excellent riz casimir au Gruyère pour me remettre d´aplomb.

Je suis fatigué après cette journée résumant bien le monde de la petite reine en Norvège : ca monte et ca descend tout le temps et quand c´est plat y a du vent latéral ou de face.

Endroit paisible
Bicycling in Slovenia: Suggestions, ideas, experiences
by Györgyi Gábor, tour started 2003
Europe: Slovenia

Between 1997 and 2003 I was four times in Slovenia by bike, from these three times I crossed this small, but beautiful country. On these tours I gathered 261 + 654 + 252 + 217 = 1384 kms in the slovenian land. From these experiences I compiled the following tips.

See all 26 reports by Györgyi Gábor

Bled and Lake Bohinj
Austria Photos
by Ken Brown, tour started October 2002
Europe: Austria

A really beautiful collection of photographs from his October 2002 tour along the Tauern Radweg from Krimml to Salzburg to Passau, and then the Danube from Passau to Vienna. Includes a written account of the trip.

See all 2 reports by Ken Brown

The view was worth the climb
Allein durch Rumänien
by Hans Jürgen Stang, tour started September 2002
Europe: Romania
language: de

Was - nach Rumänien willst Du? Mit dem Fahrrad? Und allein? Bist Du verrückt? Diese oder ähnliche Äußerungen meiner Bekannten, Freunde und Arbeitskollegen begleiten mich, als ich nach 24-stündiger Busfahrt von Mannheim aus in Sibiu (Hermannstadt) ankomme. Auch im Bus hat man mich vor Diebstählen, Zigeunern und sonstigen Gefahren gewarnt. Es mag gewiss einfachere und touristisch erschlossenere Reiseländer geben, aber der Reiz des Unbekannten und nicht Alltäglichen ist für mich ein Hauptbestandteil des Reisens, daher war ich gespannt, was vor mir lag.

See all 5 reports by Hans Jürgen Stang

Grabstein auf dem lustigen Friedhof
Rimini -Cortona
by Stefano Corsi, tour started August 2002
Europe: Italy
language: it

Senza la bici del Signore, il farmacista e il professore, non più ventenni né allenatissimi, patiscono l'ascesa a San Leo (del resto paradigmatica per Dante, con Noli e Bismantova, nel quarto canto del Purgatorio). Dove la strada prende a inerpicarsi, si riforniscono d'acqua a una fontana. Vicino, un piccolo bar in legno, qualche albero, le poche case di una frazione. Mentre stanno bevendo, arriva un uomo corpulento che sconcerta i presenti gesticolando e gridando ``via, tutti via di qua, non si può stare qui, andate via, capito? Via!''. Poi se ne va lui, improvvisamente acquietato. Quante volte al giorno reciterà quelle povere, scalmanate sortite contro fantasmi? Sembra uscito da un racconto di Tonino Guerra o da un film di Fellini. Dietro le imposte di una delle finestre intorno, forse, la pena di sua madre.

Nel pomeriggio viene il Trasimeno, improvviso dopo una curva sopra Magione e poi elegante fra gli ulivi della sua riva orientale. Belle ville, un'auto d'epoca. Tramonto limpido sopra il verde e l'azzurro. Poi Cortona in alto, raccolta intorno al suo Beato Angelico, per il quale arriviamo comunque troppo tardi. [...] Lunghi giorni ci ha [...] dato la bicicletta, buoni silenzi, ampi pensieri. Gli occhi si sono riempiti di luoghi e di immagini. Sappiamo che in città, dopo le ferie, sarà altra bici e altro viaggio. Non ci chiederà di meno. Dobbiamo credere che ci darà di più.

Il Palazzo Ducale a Urbino
Da Trento alle Cinque Terre
by Dario Pedrotti, tour started July 2002
Europe: Italy
language: it

Perfettamente sostenibile, in cambio di un po' di fatica, un paio di scottature sul collo e qualche sana sudata, la vacanza in bicicletta regala una sensazione di libertà assoluta che nessunaltro mezzo di trasporto sa dare, e una visuale del mondo inedita. Con un buon mezzo ed un minimo di allenamento, la velocità di crocieradel cicloturista permette di cambiare spesso panorama ma anche di avere il tempo di gustarselo in pieno, cogliendo scorci e particolari che nessun automobilista o motociclista riuscirà mai ad apprezzare.

See all 3 reports by Dario Pedrotti

http://www.velofahren.de/e_Norwegen-Schweden-2002.html
by Karl Brodowsky, tour started July 2002
Europe: Norway, Sweden
language: en, de

It has become some kind of a family tradition to go on a big bicycle tour every summer. But this time we did add some enhancements to our usual plans. Bernhard had already been cycling on our previous tour, when we toured Gotland in the year 2001. But this was in a way the first time with slightly longer daily distances and in areas that could not be called totally flat. Our popular starting point of earlier years in Gothenburg was replaced by Oslo for this tour. This was worth a try, because it brought us closer to the areas we intended to visit and it gave us the opportunity to see different places as soon as the tour started. The clear disadvantage of Oslo is that it is kind of tough to find a legal and good way out of the city, especially when traveling to the east, as we did. And it adds a slightly longer and more expensive ferry trip from Kiel to Oslo. But on the other hand, after having done the ugly traffic of the Oslo area on the first day, things should get nicer at least from the second day onwards and we could see more of Norway.

See all 16 reports by Karl Brodowsky

North Iceland cycle tour
by Henrik Sunden, tour started June 2002
Europe: Iceland

This is a diary style description of a Swedish cyclist's tour on north Iceland, essentially from Seydisfjördur to Ísafjördur. The aim was to go to several places along the north coast. Therefore smaller roads with little traffic were used to a large extent. The big and busy road no 1 (Hringvegurinn) was used more as a quick transport section between northeast and northwest Iceland.

[I] cycled to Hverarönd sulphuric mud pools (solfataras). The ground is unstable there and you cannot walk everywhere. Blue-gray mud is boiling and produces small or big (depending on water content) bubbles that burst. The ground is yellow and reddish and the noise from an abandoned hot water well is penetrating. The smell of sulphuric dioxide is everywhere.

See all 4 reports by Henrik Sunden

The author at Hverar
Bicycle Tour: Poland, Lithuania, Latvia
by Thomas Driemeyer, tour started June 2002

Poland and the Baltic states have not yet been discovered as a tourism destination, so we decided to discover the place for ourselves before the inevitable hordes of German package tourists do. We read up a lot on it, primarily from the Lonely Planet guides (not very helpful except for Gdansk and Riga) and the web. We also brought ``Polen per Rad'', volume 1, ISBN 3-932546-11-3, a German-language bicycle guide for Poland that proved essential to find all the sleepy and very scenic and quiet side roads in Poland. Recommended if you understand German - or even if you don't, just for the route maps!

See all 20 reports by Thomas Driemeyer

Riga
A Tandem in Provence 2002 - Meandering through French countryside by tandem
by David Welch, tour started May 2002
Europe: France

We are David and Suzette Welch, a nurse and librarian living in Chico California. Even though we are longtime cyclists and tandemists, and took a two week tour for our honeymoon thirty years ago, neither of us had been to Europe before and our total touring experience over the years has been pretty modest. But with age advancing upon us (total team age at the time of this trip was 111 years) we decided it was time to start doing some of those trips we had dreamed of for years.

With an eye to this trip, we had acquired a coupled tandem, which makes the non-cycling parts of the travel ever so much easier. Determined not to be more gauche than necessary, we put a certain amount of time into the study of French. Suzette, with more background and more free time did rather better at that than David. We did lots of pre-trip research online. Particularly helpful were the trip reports posted on the Trento Bike Pages and the generous and expert advice of many of the folks on the Tandem@Hobbes listserve. We dedicate this journal to all those people whose advice helped us, in the hope that this information may help someone else and encourage others to make similar trips.

See all 2 reports by David Welch

Ukraine 2002 - Riding in Crimea and along the Dniepr
by Peter Wulff, tour started May 2002
Europe: Ukraine

Having in 2001 experienced how nice a country Ukraine in many ways is, I returned for more riding in 2002. During about two months I rode 3927 km in Crimea and along the Dniepr river. I arrived in Ukraine by boat from Istanbul in Turkey and left the same way. Since last time I was in Ukraine things have improved; better food (now one can have Ukrainian made cornflakes and musli), the cities also look better. Surely Kuchma is doing something right. One thing hadn't improved though - the horrible mentality in most state-owned hotels. Luckily there are several types of alternative accommodation. Ukraine is cheap and during two months I spent less than 1000 USD. On the whole I enjoyed the riding as much as the previous year, not that Ukraine is always pleasant, but it is rarely boring. There is something special about riding in Ukraine, the contrasts, it's socialist history, the absence of western tourists, the light, the Ukrainians, well, I can't exactly put my finger on it but nice it is.

The itinerary/places where I slept was as follows; Feodosia - Ribatche - Jalta - Feodosia - (Kerch) - Feodosia - Strelkovoe - Dzankoj - Feodosia - Otradnoe - Feodosia - Kurortnoe - Sudak - Jalta - Lyubimovka - Pribreshnoe - Mirnyj - Meshvodnoe - Khorli - Lazurnoe - Golaja Pristan - Kahovka - Kamjanka Dnieprovka - Nikopol - Dniepro Dzerzhinsk - Komsomolsk - Chigirin - Cherkasy - Prokhorovka - Kedina Gora - Khorol - Komsomolsk - Dniepro Dzerzhinsk - Novomoskovsk - Vasilivka - Strelkovoe - Feodosia - Belogorsk - Bakshisaray - Inkerman.

See all 4 reports by Peter Wulff

Cow herd at Kurortnoe
Da Treviso al Paradiso - Dolomites and Alps by Bike
by Allan Nelson, Konrad Orlowski, and Francesco Bille, tour started May 2002
Europe: Italy, Austria

An account of a two week cycle tour in May 2002 from Treviso (Italy) to Salzburg (Austria), via the Dolomites and the Austrian Alps.

This has to go down as one of those 'truly memorable' tours. The scenery was awesome, the company, perfect, the roads, quiet, the saunas, hot, the weather (yes, some of that was memorable!). It must have been good, I took over 250 photo's!

We were looking for a catchy name for the site, and 'Through Mel to Hell' was suggested, but that implies it was awful. It wasn't in any way (though the wet slog up the Fedaia Pass was, how can we put this, character forming). If anything, some of the weather, especially on the Grossglockner, made the trip even more memorable. I think 'Da Treviso al Paradiso' sums it up quite nicely, even if we did go through a little 'hell' to get there. At times, I think we really did feel like 'I Tre Moschettieri!'. All for one and one for all.

See all 2 reports by Allan Nelson, Konrad Orlowski, and Francesco Bille

On the cycling path from San Candido/Innichen to Lienz
Riding in Turkey
by Peter Wulff, tour started April 2002
Europe, Asia: Turkey

From April 19th to May 22nd I rode 2523 km in Turkey. I stayed in Marmaris the first week as the ticket I had bought in Copenhagen included hotel there for one week. I rode 268 km there to acclimatize, get tanned, and work out where to ride next in Turkey. After this week I first rode 745 km eastwards along the Mediterranean from Marmaris in the SW-corner of Turkey along the coast to Tarsus, then 919 km across the country to Havsa at the Black Sea, and then 593 km westwards along that coast. It was mostly quite easy being tourist in Turkey - no problem finding accommodation, mostly food is inexpensive, no shit-bureacracy or taxes at the borders, i.e. the basics work well. Turkey is also a very beautiful country, and extraordinary things happen, as I experienced on May 11th. What is then bad in Turkey? Millions of honking truck drivers, and lack of adequate maps. Some basic info is included at the end.

Trip 2 started August 2nd and ended September 5th. I started riding in Igdir in E-Turkey, from there I rode straight westwards. The itinerary (or places I slept) was as follows: Igdir (Ararat) - Kagizman - Horasan - Erzurum - Erzincan - Imranli - Sivas - Akdagmadeni - Yozgat - Kirikkale - Ankara - Sivrihisar - Bozhuyuk - Eskisehir - Bursa - Bandirma - Gelibolu - Uzunkopru - Edirne. That was 2078 km and took 20 days in the saddle - 104 km a day on average. There was less climbing than on trip 1, only few days involved more than 1000 m climbing.

See all 4 reports by Peter Wulff

Cappadokia between Urgup and Avanos
Trans-Mediterranean 2002: Spain to Turkey
by Wayne Joerding, tour started March 2002

The route follows the northern rim of the Mediterranean Sea, along the coast of Spain, France, across north Italy, the coast of Croatia, Greece, and Turkey. Powered by pastry, we pedaled and pushed our bikes from the sandy beaches of Spain to the sandy beaches of southern Turkey, over hills, over mountains, and across rivers of all sizes. Along the way, we found helpful people, stunning scenery, and great food.

See all 7 reports by Wayne Joerding

Turkey
Bicycling in Tenerife
by Peter Wulff, tour started January 2002
Europe: Spain

Riding in Tenerife is fine, and on bicycle unspoilt sites with few or no tourists are within reach. The reasons for going to Tenerife are manifold: 20 C in both air and sea during winter, natural beauty, challenging riding and trekking, it's easy getting there and equally easy staying there, it's affordable, it's cycle-friendly etc. etc. [This] is a diary from 14 days, 9 of which I cycled.

See all 4 reports by Peter Wulff

A trip through Northern France, Belgium, Luxembourg and Germany
by Ted C. Herman, tour started 2002

I am a child of 67 summers who enjoys cycle touring. My ride is a 1999 Litespeed Blue Ridge fitted with 46-36-24 chainrings and 12-25 cluster. I have largely abandoned camping, and use small hotels and restaurants. I carry a [credit] card, a set of bike clothes (shorts, jersey, shoes with Frog cleats, helmet, tights, a capilene long sleeve shirt and Gore-Tex jacket) and a set of dinner clothes (running shoes, nylon long pants and shirt and a polypro sweater). A small bottle of CampSuds for the evening clothes wash keeps me social. Rear panniers (now with rain covers) carry the clothes and a handlebar bag carries maps and camera. All together bike plus gear comes to about 35 lbs.

Sant Quirze del Vallès (Spain) to Kirkenes (Norway)
by The Cusidó Kristensen Family: Andreu, Siw Annie & Xavier, tour started 2002

Total Kilometers/Miles Cycling: 3849/2392 - Total Kilometers/Miles by Train: 435/270.5 - Total kilometers/Miles by car (rushing to Kirkenes to catch the plane to Chicago: 519/322.5 - Average distance per day 167/104.

Trier (Germany)
Central Europe by bike 2002 - a travelogue
by Karl Andersson, tour started 2002

A journey through Sweden, Germany, Czech Republic, Austria and Poland, by Karl Andersson. I am Karl Andersson from Sweden. This website is about the 2700 kilometers (1688 miles) that I biked from Stockholm to Kraków in the summer of 2002. You won't find the usual gear and packlist pages on this site. Instead, I've decided to share with you the diary I wrote every evening, slightly edited. A travelogue from the road. It's all there: The hellish days in former East Germany, the rain and wind that threatened to make me quit. Why would anyone do such a biketour, and that alone? My answer to this very frequent question among my couchpotato friends is: Why not? But OK, there's more to it...

Fernsehturm and Palast der Republik in Berlin
From Tyrol to Alsace 2002 via Italy and Switzerland
by Carsten Gregersen, tour started 2002

From Carsten's Cycling Web. While it's still high summer I begin three weeks of mountain bike holidays together with a couple of friends. Ten days later we ride through a snow-covered scenery on our way across Bielerhöhe. Forced by the cold weather we change our plans to avoid the highest summits. Even the cattle have had enough and return from the green summer pastures to the warm cow houses. Nevertheless, we have some nice days off-road. One of the attractions is Val d'Uina with a just 1.5 m wide hiking track blasted into the rock wall over a of 600 m distance. As a prelude to the tour we participate in Ötztaler Radmarathon.

See all 11 reports by Carsten Gregersen

Vanoise National Park
Through the Habsburg Empire: Cycle tour Prague-Vienna-Prague
by Terje Melheim, tour started 2002

Information about the Greenway between Prague and Vienna. We decided upon this route for our cycle tour of 2002. We took the plane to Prague. It turned out that the Greenway did not start in the city of Prague itself. We had to take the metro to the starting point of the route, outside the town. At the terminus of the metro it was not too easy to find our way, because we avoided the large roads and took roads with little traffic. Such roads are hardly marked on the maps. We ended up on a track through a forest, and we had no idea where we were. We saw quite many other cyclists doing excursions in the rural area near the town and I had to ask one for the road. I was quite relieved when I could understand the instructions which I received from the friendly cyclist. Cyclists understand each other in spite of different languages. Then, in Újezd we saw the first sign of our way towards Vienna - 425 km. Throughout the Czech Republic minor roads, which are good to cycle on and which lead to interesting sites, have been designated as cycle routes. Small, yellow signs have been put up, so if your map is not good enough, you will always be on the right way by following the signs. Various local cycle routes have been combined to form the Prague-Vienna Greenway.

When we had crossed the border to Austria, sign posts of another design pointed out the route towards Vienna. On our way back to Prague we followed the famous and highly frequented cycle way along the river Danube. From Linz on the Danube we headed north towards Prague and the airport, with stops at famous sites like Ceský Krumlov and Ceske Budejuvice.

See all 10 reports by Terje Melheim

Impressions from Slavonice with its graffiti decorations
Tyrol and the Dolomites
by Carsten Gregersen, tour started 2002
Europe: Austria, Italy

The mountain bike is ready and the trailer has been packed with tent, sleeping bag and cooking gear. New cycling adventures are in the offing. The Dachstein area with the many surrounding lakes is one of the most beautiful in Austria. Into the bargain there should be very good opportunities for riding off-road. Tempting are also the large plains in the Dolomites further south. Unfortunately the weather puts a damper on the enthusiasm. It turns into the rainiest summer within living memory.

See all 11 reports by Carsten Gregersen

Platzwiesen/Prato Piazza
Germany and Austria
by Norman D. Ford, tour started 2002
Europe: Austria, Germany

Through the Heart of Europe on Germany's Romantic Road and Altmuhl River Bike Paths, and on Down the Danube almost to Vienna.

I've just spent 16 memorable days cycling beside the rivers of Bavaria and Austria on a network of mostly paved and car-free bike paths. Day-by-day, I pedalled through a series of almost perfectly preserved towns and villages straight out of the Middle Ages. Many were enclosed by still-intact city walls. Entering the walls through a gate in a massive watchtower, I would pedal through a maze of crooked, cobblestoned streets lined by half-timbered medieval houses to picturesque squares with centuries-old churches and soaring Gothic towers.

Out in the country, I cycled on level bike paths beside scenic rivers. The bike paths themselves may have been flat and easy to pedal. But they were full of hidden delights and surprises. Flat sections led through farmlands dotted with scarlet poppies and a patchwork quilt of blazing yellow rapeseed fields. Elsewhere, rivers like the Danube wound between steep, forested mountains where hilltop castles, monasteries and abbeys loomed over the landscape.

Altogether, I cycled along three of Europe's most famous and popular Radwegs (bike paths): the Romantische Strasse and Altmuhltal Radwegs of Germany, and the Donau Radweg (Danube Bike Path) which runs through both Bavaria and Austria. The entire region is rich in history, and towns and villages along the way were on every tour bus itinerary. But the tourist buses miss the many unspoiled and half- forgetton villages, and the spectacular river panoramas, that only bicyclists get to see. Bicycling is undoubtedly the one best way to explore this wonderful region--better, in my opinion, than seeing it from one of the many deluxe cruise boats that ply the Danube.

See all 13 reports by Norman D. Ford

Traditional Half-timbered Houses in Dinkelsbuhl
Da Treviso al Paradiso - Dolomites and Alps by Bike
by Allan Nelson, Konrad Orlowski, and Francesco Bille, tour started 2002
Europe: Italy, Austria

An account of a two week cycle tour in May 2002 from Treviso (Italy) to Salzburg (Austria), via the Dolomites and the Austrian Alps.

This has to go down as one of those 'truly memorable' tours. The scenery was awesome, the company, perfect, the roads, quiet, the saunas, hot, the weather (yes, some of that was memorable!). It must have been good, I took over 250 photo's!

We were looking for a catchy name for the site, and 'Through Mel to Hell' was suggested, but that implies it was awful. It wasn't in any way (though the wet slog up the Fedaia Pass was, how can we put this, character forming). If anything, some of the weather, especially on the Grossglockner, made the trip even more memorable. I think 'Da Treviso al Paradiso' sums it up quite nicely, even if we did go through a little 'hell' to get there. At times, I think we really did feel like 'I Tre Moschettieri!'. All for one and one for all.

See all 2 reports by Allan Nelson, Konrad Orlowski, and Francesco Bille

On the cycling path from San Candido/Innichen to Lienz
A 3 day tour of the Faroe Islands
by Henrik Sunden, tour started 2002
Europe: FaroeIslands

The bike tour on the Faroe Islands was a logistical consequence of the means of transport (ferry) between Iceland and Norway on the way home from a three weeks tour on north Iceland. The ferry makes a tour to Denmark and returns to Tórshavn on the Faroe Islands before departing to Bergen, Norway.

See all 4 reports by Henrik Sunden

View South from Borgin
Biking in France
by Bob Lucky, tour started 2002
Europe: France

This is a trip I took in 2002, starting in Dinan in Brittany and biking northeast along the coast through Mont-St-Michel, across the Cotentin penninsula and the D-Day invasion beaches in Normandy, ending in Honfleur. There are nine pages here, each with about a dozen pictures and detailed description.

See all 5 reports by Bob Lucky

The beach at Arromanches
Europe 2002
by Nick and Nicole Coyne, tour started 2002
Europe: France

Welcome to the diary and pics from our July 2002 trip to Amsterdam, Brussels, and mostly France. Amsterdam and Brussels were explorered on foot, but for France we took our bikes with all the way from South Africa. For friends, enjoy the pics and diary. For others, we hope that our experiences and info we've given here help to make planning your trip a little easier.

We were originally planning a conventional holiday overseas, until I had the good fortune to spot the Lonely Planet Cycling France book in a bookshop, which really got the planning juices going. We had bikes, a reasonable level of fitness, France sounded great for riding, we could get to see some of the Tour de France, ... it sounded like the perfect holiday!

A sunny day in Chinon, and our campsite on the Loire, with the Chateau up on the hill in the background
Sherwood Cycling Club
by Nigel White, tour started 2002
Europe: France

After watching Lance and the Tour de France peleton zoom through the Alps in the 2002 Tour, me and my clubmates Neil and Chris started to plan a quick four day dash to the Alps to sample the famous climbs, and get a late season fitness boost. Chris was the organizer and did a superb job of finding accomodation and booking flights. We flew to Grenoble [and stayed] in Venosc.

Venosc is a charming, quiet mountain village with narrow, cobbled alleys, craft shops, bars and restaurants. I recommend ``Le Petit Pub'' just below the church, and the Pizzeria just round the corner where they make your pizzas right in front of you on a wood fired oven.

The only snag about staying there is that every day begins with a cold descent back to the N91 in the Romanche Valley, and ends with a tough climb back to Venosc. The redeeming features of the return climb are the fact that it isn't very long, and that you can also visit the Dutch cycling pub on the way back. This is marked by a red bicycle at the side of the road and is worth a visit for the friendly, English-speaking service, and good Pelforth beer served. They do afternoon pasta too!

On the first day we decided to warm up on the Col de Sarenne approach to the village of Alped'Huez. We climbed towards the Lautaret on the N91 to Freney d'Oisans, crossed the dam, and turned left on the D25 towards Mizoen. Follow the left fork above the village through Clavans le Bas and Clavans le Haut. The road above the villages is a tremendous, quiet climb in an open valley with great views. The surface is very poor, but it's not too much of a problem when climbing. [In the picture at right you see] Chris climbing towards the col. The small village at the right of the picture is Clavans le Haut, only about half way up the climb.

Climbing the Col de Sarenne
Iceland
by Andrew Clark, tour started 2002
Europe: Iceland

After several tours of varying lengths in the UK and France I wanted to do something harder and further afield. A long time ago I read a book entitled ``Running Blind'' by Desmond Bagley which was set in Iceland and impressed me with it's description of the wild and dramatic landscape. Shortly after starting cycle touring I read ``The Wind in my Wheels'' by Josie Dew in which she spent several weeks in Iceland as part of a longer Scandinavian tour. [...] I chose to go in July as by then most of the interior tracks are open and it is supposed to have the most reliable weather.

See all 2 reports by Andrew Clark

Da Trento all'isola di Krk
by Dario Pedrotti, tour started 2002
language: it

13 tappe e 880 km lungo i fiumi di Austria Slovenia e Croazia.

Il giro è molto bello e non eccessivamente faticoso. Si trovano delle ottime cartine fino a Maribor (Da Dobbiaco è tutta ciclabile, la Drauweg), un po' meno in Slovenia e Croazia, dove ciclabili praticamente non ce ne sono, ma ci sono parecchie strade secondarie senza traffico. In Slovenia agli uffici turistici si possono trovare cartine della zona decenti (noi ci siamo accontentati di quelle, ma consigliamo caldamente di procurarvi una carta almeno al 200.000, possibilmente con le curve di livello?) e un paio di pubblicazioni interessanti, anche in Italiano, su ``Slovenia in bicicletta'' e ``Le strade secondarie sono più accattivanti di quelle principali''. Aiutano molto. Non fate troppo affidamento sui cartelli segnaletici delle presunte piste ciclabili (``kolesarska pot'', in sloveno) che a volte mancano. Sulla strada che abbiamo scelto noi abbiamo incontrato traffico solo in alcuni punti che non avevano alternative, andando a ficcarci in strade impossibili solo un paio di volte, evitabili.

See all 3 reports by Dario Pedrotti

Cycling around Bratislava
by Branislav Stofko, tour started 2002
Europe: Slovakia
language: en, de, sk, cz
North Sea Cycle Route
by Martin Wittram, tour started 2002
language: de, en

Herausforderungen liegen manchmal vor der Haustür. Obwohl das nicht so ganz stimmt, denn wir leben ja nicht gleich hinter dem Deich. Aber nur gut zwei Bahnstunden davon entfernt. Es handelt sich um die bislang längste ausgeschilderte Radroute der Welt, insgesamt 6000 km lang: die Umrundung der Nordsee. Das ist die erste ``von 12 geplanten transeuropäischen Radfernwegen'' (EuroVelo) (aus bikeline). Die Route ist erst vor gut einem Jahr eröffnet worden, da gehört man ja glatt noch zu den ersten, wenn man diese Herausforderung annimmt. Bevor die Leute dort Schlange stehen. Wenn es denn dazu kommt...

Als es los gehen soll, steht keiner Schlange, denn wir haben einen Dauerregen. Wie nachher zu lesen ist, die größte Regenmenge in unserer Gegend seit 1881. Zum Glück verzichte ich auf einen Blick in den Keller, morgens um vier Uhr. Nur mit dem Rad zum Bahnhof zu fahren, das geht nicht, da wäre man ja gleich durch bis auf die Haut? Man kann improvisieren, alles rein ins Auto und dann bin ich weg, mit ein paar geschmierten Broten und einigen Tafeln Schokolade. Der Parkplatz hinter dem Bahnhof ist wegen Überflutung gesperrt. Man kann trotzdem um die Absperrung herum fahren und irgendwo eine Insel suchen, die Packtaschen aufladen und Wasser Marsch zum Bahnhof. Das Auto wird Annika dann später abholen, wenn der Seegang auf dem Parkplatz des Braunschweiger Hauptbahnhofs sich beruhigt hat.

See all 27 reports by Martin Wittram

Hervikbakken bicycle sign
Tour of the Alps 2002
by Jobst Brandt, tour started 2002

I rode along the Vermenagna River below the Tenda rail line, famous for being either in a tunnel or on a bridge most of the 80km from Borgo San Dalmazzo to Ventimiglia and Nice. The river and its tributaries had ripped out bridges and carried away parts of the road in recent floods. While the railway gained altitude in looping tunnels and bridges and vanished in the mountain for long stretches, I cruised up the 4% grade to Limone (990m), where the climb to the highway tunnel begins and the 8090m-long Tenda Railway Tunnel, completed in 1913, bores through the mountain to Vievola. [...]

See all 20 reports by Jobst Brandt

The unpaved Tenda road in 1989
Jerry's Tour des Alpes
by Jerry Nilson, tour started 2002
Europe: Italy, France, Monaco

With many nice pictures, and a detailed list of all the passes.

I travelled for 14 days and climbed 53173 m (which is 3798 m on average per day). It was 2277,75 km (which is 162,7 km on average per day). It was between 4 and 38 Celsius. The maximum speed was (probably) down the Nufenen Pass at 79 km/h. The maximum inclination up a pass road was probably at around 19% (Col du St. Bernard). I had rain on several days, I had a wheel damaged, and a rib fractured. I visited around 75 passes.

I took a photo at Croce de la Roley [...] and I thought it looked rather steep down there - I had to go down this steep part on a zig-zagging steep path. It did not seeem very difficult apart from that I now had to lift the bicycle for most of the time. I suddenly lost my balance and fell together with my bicycle without control down the steepest part of the mountainside! I happily stopped at the next lace in the path, which was lucky as I felt like I was gaining speed down there...

See all 13 reports by Jerry Nilson

The serpentines here are among the most impressive I have seen!
A Cycle Tour in Southwest France
by Spiros Analytis and Maria Abagis, tour started 2002
Europe: France

This site is about our cycling adventure to the southwest of France in the fall of 2002. We loved our trip so much, we decided to put up this site to share our photos, share our stories and hopefully inspire fellow cyclists to visit this stunning part of France. Enchanting medieval towns, quiet back roads, breathtaking landscapes, friendly people, and of course, great food and wine await you in this beautiful country. We have traveled in many areas of France by bike: Normandy, Brittany, Loire Valley, Alsace, Provence, The Alps, Corsica and Paris. In our humble opinion, there is no better way to see France then on the seat of your bike, with a baguette and fine bottle of wine strapped to your panniers.

Our trip was an 18-day tour of the Southwest, encompassing the regions of Perigord and Quercy. We cycled along the beautiful Dordogne, Vézère, Lot and Célé rivers. The months of September and October are an excellent time to bike tour in this region. The fall colors, grape harvests and cooler temperatures made the cycling very enjoyable and we avoided the hordes of tourists who flock here during the summer months. With the exception of the huge thunderstorm we experienced in Bordeaux the first day, the rest of the trip broughtnothing but sunny, clear skies. We cycled 11 out of the 18 days covering 660km, staying at campgrounds and budget hotels along the way. It was a fantastic tour and we highly recommend it to anyone.

The slow pace of cycle touring allows you to truly see andappreciate a country. You have the opportunity to see small villages and meet local people that you would otherwise not experience. Imagine riding along the banks of a gentle flowing river, with fairy tail castles in the distance, visiting medieval towns and lunching on fresh bread, great cheese and some of the best wine in the world. Most tours can be tailored to fit all levels of fitness; you don't have to be an athlete to enjoy riding your bike along the French countryside. By touring on a bike, your vacation becomes an adventure; you experience the real country, not just the tourist sites. Fresh air, exercise, beautiful scenery and let's not forget guilt-free indulging. Bike touring is the way to go.

See all 2 reports by Spiros Analytis and Maria Abagis

Grapes from the Bordeaux region
Training Camp in the Greek spring
by Györgyi Gábor, tour started 2002
Europe: Greece

As the winner of an article-writing competition in the Hungarian Bringa magazine, I could spend 11 days together with the Hungarian MTB squad in a training camp 80 kms from Athens, between 12 and 26 march 2002. We were in the friendly Hotel Bakos, in Loutraki, situated 3kms from the Korinthos channel and the Peloponnesus peninsula and at the foot of a 1300m high mountain. Although on ascents I prefer cycling looking around, taking pictures and making videofilms than cycling in a hurried style. So I was the odd one out from 24-26 head team. My goal was not to spend a good 11 days training, but to make nice cycle tours, enjoy the nature of Greece and to discover the north-east Peloponnesos.

See all 26 reports by Györgyi Gábor

Lake Voullaaagmeni
Madrid - Lisbon
by Louis Tousignant, tour started October 2001
Europe: Spain, Portugal

My name is Louis Tousignant, a Canadian in his mid-fifties, living in Nova Scotia, on the Atlantic shore. I am always on the look out for riding partners, as I plan one major trip every year, up till now in Europe, but New Zealand and South East Asia are in the wings. All my recent trips have included the following parameters: 100 km/day (give or take 20%) on average; hotels, B&B's or pensions, no camping; most meals in restaurants; start in one country, exit in another, to maximize coverage; 5 to 6 week duration (participation in one leg of the trip is of course possible for those who can't spare the time). [...]

This was a solo trip, from September 4 to October 7 2001, with 23 days cycling and the remainder traveling and visiting cities along the way. I covered 1742km, for an average of 75.5 km/ cycling day.

See all 4 reports by Louis Tousignant

Nederland Azie op die fiets
by Jurgen en Saskia, tour started September 2001
language: nl

Ja, hebben jullie het al gezien, we zijn meer dan 4 jaar onderweg. Wat een tijd en toch.... we genieten er nog elke dag van. Nu zijn we in Jujuy, noord Argentinië. Via Chili gaan we binnenkort naar Bolivia, waar we een tijdlang niet zullen kunnen internetten. We zullen op grote hoogte gaan fietsen, hoogtes waar we nog niet eerder waren. Of dat prettig is.. jullie zullen het later lezen.

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