Jumping on your bike and going for an after-dinner ride with the family at home is one thing, but setting out on two wheels while on vacation is something entirely different. To ensure a successful bike outing while on vacation, follow these six top tips:
Tip #1: Rent Bikes
The first thing you need to do when planning a bike outing on vacation is to get the bikes. Going on a bike ride without them is tough. If you’re an avid biker you probably have your own bike and equipment, but do you really want to lug it (along with all of the other bikes in the family) along with you on vacation? Sounds like an added inconvenience, and vacations are all about being easy. When you rent a bike, you can schedule what types of bikes and how many bikes will be waiting for you at your vacation rental. You don’t have to worry about transporting them to your home or making an extra stop on your way into town to pick them up. At the end of your vacation, the bikes are picked up at a time that is convenient for you so that you can soak in the last few moments of vacation. Don’t forget helmets too, safety first!
Tip #2: Make A Plan
Before you set out on your ride, especially if you’ve got kids in tow, it’s important to check out a map of the area and decide on where you’re going to go. Having an idea of the general area will prevent you from getting lost and make the ride more enjoyable. If everyone on the trip is a novice/beginner rider, checking out trails in the area might be a great place to start. Maybe you want to take a short stroll from your home to the beach, grab some ice cream and head home. Or perhaps you want to sneak out while your sweetheart and the kids sleep and get in an adrenaline-pumping workout as the sun rises. Whatever your goal is for the ride, a plan and a pre-decided route will allow you to enjoy your surroundings without going off track.
Tip #3: Book A Tour
While some families are content with a leisurely stroll through the neighborhood and down the beach, avid cyclists may want something a little more exciting. Almost every beach town offers bike tours that give you a unique way to explore your vacation destination. You can choose from half day tours with flat terrain for a smooth ride, or you can sign up for longer, more challenging rides. Either way, exploring your vacation spot on two wheels with someone who knows the area well is a fun way to level up your beach experience.
Tip #4: Dress Appropriately
When it comes to packing for a beach vacation, you can basically throw a few tank tops, a bathing suit, your favorite flip flops and a pair of loud Hawaiian print shorts in your suitcase and be covered. And while this attire is perfectly suitable for hanging out poolside, it doesn’t make the most comfortable biking gear. If you plan to rent bikes on vacation, make sure you pack bike-friendly clothes. Tennis shoes, comfortable clothing and plenty of sunscreen will make for a comfortable (and safe) ride.
Tip #5: Pick A Fun Destination
Some days you may just want to ride around with no set agenda, but it’s also fun to pick unique local spots as your end spot after a long bike ride. A unique ice cream shop, a fun restaurant, or a picnic at a local park is a great way to end a long journey, and gives you a chance to see some of the less touristy locations in the area.
Tip #6: Know The Rules
The most important thing about planning a bike outing on vacation is knowing the rules and laws for bikers that are in place to keep you safe. Do a quick refresher on common courtesy for bikers, and how to ride in a way that will keep you safe and not make any other drivers mad. To keep you and your family safe while on your bikes, follow these bike safety guidelines:
- Be conspicuous- dress in bright colors so cars can see you coming and going
- Be predictable- Ride in a straight line, follow the flow of traffic, and don’t do any crazy swerving moves that could startle a driver
- Think ahead- think like a car while you’re riding your bike. Anticipate what other drivers will do when it comes to turning and stopping.
- Check your bike- make sure your tires are fully inflated, and the chain runs smoothly. And always always wear a helmet
Renting bikes while on vacation is one way to upgrade your beach experience. There are so many benefits to riding bikes while on vacation, and it allows you to experience the community in a way that you just can’t while sitting behind the wheel of a car. Being safe and prepared are the best ways to ensure an enjoyable bike ride. And even if you do get lost, there are much worse places to get lost on two wheels than a gorgeous beach town!