With lots of you coming into the Cycle Hub and asking about getting away from the UK weather and enjoying a cycling holiday, our neighbours in the office next to the cafe, Saddle Skedaddle have written this article about what to pack when planning a cycling holiday!
Many holiday goers are now looking for something other than lying on a sun lounger for fourteen days, whilst they work their way through the ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ series on their Kindle – As the old saying goes – Variety is the Spice of Life!
Here at Skedaddle, as purveyors of fine road cycling and mountain bike holidays, we are unashamedly biased in saying that a cycling holiday will provide much more excitement than your average piña colada.
For one, cycling holidays offer the same warm weather that can be expected from a beach holiday; they also provide a wealth of spectacular unspoilt countryside and coastline views, which you wouldn’t have the opportunity to see from the shallow end of a pool. Being privy to these views means that your holiday photos will be infinitely more appealing than your friend’s Instagrammed pet pictures and blurry night out photos!
As an added bonus, we all know one of the best things about going on holiday is having the opportunity to sample the local cuisine; spending your holiday cycling on a mountain or road bike will mean that you can eat as much beef bourguignon or paella as you like, as a typical day of cycling can torch around 6,000 calories.
If we at Skedaddle have done enough to tempt you into booking a cycling holiday with us, you may already know that your traditional flip-flops and budgie smugglers probably aren’t appropriate cycling gear – so what should you bring with you on a cycling holiday?
Now, first thing’s first, one of the first things you should bring with you is either a mountain bike or road bike, depending on your preferred type of cycling holiday. For keen cyclists, you are more than welcome to bring your own bike along with you, but you are also capable of using one of our bikes.
The rules and regulations of bringing a bike with you on a flight varies between airlines, but one of the most pervasive rules is that your bike is adequately packed, i.e. boxed or bagged; there is generally also a surcharge for bringing your bike along with you on a flight.
In the spirit of preparedness, Skedaddle always advise that you check with each particular airline before you fly, so as to avoid any embarrassing mountain or road bike related episodes in the airport; the expert staff at Skedaddle will also do their utmost to advise you on relevant airline procedures.
Just like the desert needs the rain, your bike requires the use of a helmet. As is the case with bringing your own bike, you are more than welcome to bring your own helmet with you (especially if it’s a particularly snazzy one) or you can use one of ours too. You can also read our article on cycle friendly airlines for an in-depth, airline-by-airline analysis.
Given that you are going to be in the saddle for most of the day, it is highly advised that you bring with you a range of cycling-specific clothing, such as jerseys, jackets, shorts, shoes, socks, and sunglasses or goggles. Cycling-specific clothing is perfect for providing you with total freedom of movement, maximum protection, and reduced friction and can provide optimum comfort whilst on the bike.
Here at Skedaddle, we try to incorporate the use of a support vehicle on the majority of our guided cycling holidays, which is used to carry all of your cycling kit, so that you can travel as lightly as possible; the support vehicle is also used to transport an array of bike spares, repair kits, first aid kits, snacks and lunch.
However, if you are particularly accustomed to using a certain product such as sports gels, bars and drinks, you are more than welcome to bring these along with you too.
As previously mentioned, you are going to be seeing some awe-inspiring vistas and breath-taking landscapes whilst on your cycling holiday; therefore it would be foolish not to document these memories. The best way of doing this would be by using a camera, unless you have an eidetic memory (sorry, poor science joke)!
You may be wondering where on earth you are going to be able to find time to locate all of this cycling equipment and cycling accessories before you embark on your cycling holiday adventure! Thankfully, our friends at Leisure Lakes Bikes have a comprehensive range of mountain bikes, road bikes, cycle clothing and cycle accessories all under one roof.
Just because there is a general consensus that flip-flops and budgie smugglers aren’t appropriate cycling footwear, it doesn’t mean that you can’t bring them with you! You are bound to be tempted to take a refreshing dip in the ocean as a way of cooling-off from your cycling efforts, and a pair of trunks or board shorts are bound to be much more favourable to swimming than full cycling regalia.
Therefore, by all means bring your budgie smugglers for when you need to go for a swim; just make sure they are out of shot when you pose for group photos!