By Aaron King
Italy is a beautiful country, full of striking scenery, historic sights, and famously passionate locals. Cycling is a great way to see Italy for tourists and locals alike. Whether you’re visiting the Italian Alps or Dolomites, or taking a trip to the famous Italian lakes, cycling offers a unique and fun way to see your chosen destination.
Make sure you’re well prepared
Whether you’re taking your own bike or planning to hire from the many bike rental services available all over Italy, make sure the bike has been properly serviced beforehand and is in good condition. If you are bringing your own bike, consider bringing spare parts and tyres in case of an emergency. It can often be tough to source spares when you’re in the thick of your exploration in Italy. Travel insurance is also a wise idea for those wanting to cycle abroad, giving you peace of mind on your journey.
Another important preparation to consider is food. Italy is full of delicious and varied restaurants and cafes, however, there’s a possibility that there may not be many places to eat along your chosen cycling routes. For this reason, it is a great idea to head to a local supermarket near where you are staying and stock up on non-perishable snacks and drinks that you can easily take on your ride in a small backpack. You won’t regret it when you’re halfway up that steep hill and need a few extra calories to boost your strength.
Plan the perfect cycling routes for you
For the most relaxing and enjoyable holiday possible, try and get most of your planning done before you begin your travels. There are many Italian cycling route guides to research all over the internet, with many especially geared towards tourists who want to explore more of the rich and picturesque country. No matter your skill level or interests, there’ll be a cycling route that you will find enriching and immersive. Try to map out your route ahead of time, including stops at great photo locations, famous attractions and pit stops to eat and drink. Make sure you and your fellow riders are informed about what to expect before they set off, including how long the route will take, how many stops there will be, and any difficult patches to be aware of.
Be prepared for the weather
Take a look at the average weather for your destination and the time of year that you’re travelling. This will give you a broad idea of what type of clothes to pack – however, cyclists should always pack for all weather just in case. Invest in a lightweight fold-up jacket that will fit effortlessly into your backpack, this will come in handy if there is an unexpected rain shower. If the weather forecast looks poor, take plenty of warm layers, gloves and shoes to avoid feeling cold and getting a chill.
Italy can have an exceptionally hot and sunny climate in summer months, so it is recommended that cyclists take plenty of sun cream and drinking water. If you take a refillable bottle, there are generally many water fountains available for public use around busy areas. Protect yourself from the sun and avoid heatstroke to keep you and your family happy on your adventure.