I’m the artist that wrote to you about taking our 4 yr old on the EV5 next summer. First of all…I want to read your book, but Amazon says it’s not available to yankees! Good news: it is! You need to go to the Amazon site in the US. Click here and you should get there. Also, I’ve got some route planning questions. We bought our tickets this week! Can you believe it was cheaper to take a 16-day transatlantic cruise home from Rome than to fly! Give me a 16-day cruise over an 8-hour flight anyday! Anyway, we’ve planned 3 months to make it from Strasbourg to Rome with some long stops working on organic farms in Tuscany with WWOOF. I saw the set of Michelin maps you suggested, but I am curious if they show bike paths. I want to be so safe with my son in the Burley and would prefer the least trafficked way to get across. The 1:200,000 Michelin maps don’t show bike paths but as you are travelling from Strasbourg, until you get to the Italian border, things should be fairly straightforward. From Strasbourg, follow the Rhine Cycle Route and when in Switzerland either continue to follow the Rhine Cycle Route which will take you to the east of Switzerland or follow Swiss Route 3 (what I did) which is a more direct route. Both the Rhine Cycle Route and Swiss Route 3 pass through Andermatt at which point you will head over the Gotthard Pass. Once you arrive in Italy, you’ll have to make things up as you go. As you will read in the book, I cycled through the middle of Milan but I did have Simone as my guide and I didn’t have a child in a trailer behind me! You may want to follow the River Ticino all the way to Pavia which will help you avoid the centre of Milan. I think there is a route by the river. From Pavia, the roads are relatively quiet. Using the Michelin maps, I tried to stick to the yellow ones; these are the secondary routes. Again, if you read the book, you’ll find out much more about how I got on. Traffic volumes only really picked up when I neared Rome.
Good luck with your trip!