There’s no better way to see the world than on two wheels.


You don’t have to be a Tour de France rider to enjoy a long, scenic cycle. Everywhere in the world — from the United States to France to Japan — you’ll find excellent bike tours that cater to beginners.


Cycling has been a favorite pastime for people around the globe since the 19th century. The bicycle was invented by Karl Freiherr von Drais in Germany and it was a rather cumbersome “running machine” that didn’t involve pedals, steering, or brakes. When the “modern” safety bicycle was invented by John Kemp Starley in England, it allowed for a free, stable ride — and just like that, cycling started to become a well-liked hobby.


Today, along with hiking, mountain climbing, and camping, cycling is one of the most popular outdoor activities. And of course, this means there are tons of excellent biking destinations that are perfect for cyclists young and old, experienced and inexperienced.


You can take a ride through the mountains in Switzerland or breeze through vineyards in France, Italy, or Chile. You can even hop from island to island in the Philippines, Japan, or Croatia with your bike in tow. And it doesn’t matter what continent you’re on, because you can find a trail in North America, South America, Europe, Asia, and Oceania.


Take a look at some of these beautiful biking destinations that are sure to please cyclists at any level.



Puglia, Italy

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In Puglia there are a great number of bike tours and cycling vacations where you can set your own activity level based on your experience and trip type. There’s truly something for everyone — from beginners to advanced cyclists. Give yourself about 10 days to cycle as much of the heel of Italy’s boot as possible, patching together an epic route out of country roads and uncongested coastal trails. Along the way, you’ll pass through villages, along olive orchards, and by UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Many cyclists start among the historic surrounds of Sassi di Matera and pedal towards the coast.



Burgundy and Champagne, France

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Sign us up for a trip that involves some easy-going cycling that’s rewarded with delicious wine. This region of France is famous for its grapes and cuisine, but it’s also a wonderful place to take in the fresh air and pedal your way through the countryside. Paved and dirt cycle paths cut through sprawling vineyards from Reims, aka “the gateway to Champagne,” through Épernay, and to the start of the Canal entre Champagne et Bourgogne, which will lead you into the heart of Burgundy. Go ahead and stop at a few vineyards to sample wines along the way; it’s highly encouraged.



Connemara, Ireland

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You can see the best of the Emerald Isle by taking one of the many guided or self-guided bike tours in this western region of Ireland. The Connemara Lazy Days tour is particularly popular for beginner cyclists who want a good ride without too much effort. The route loops around part of the Renvyle peninsula, the scenic moorlands and heather-cloaked hills of the Inagh Valley, and fishing villages, typically starting and ending in Clifden, a market town on the coast. The tour entails traveling short distances by bike while enjoying the region’s culture and attractions.



Land’s End, United Kingdom

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Cycling from Land’s End in Cornwall, England, to John o’ Groats in Scotland is a classic ride that’s probably for a slightly more experienced rider but makes for an excellent trip nonetheless. This scenic, 1,000-mile trip typically takes between two and three weeks and you’ll see some of the very best United Kingdom vistas along the way. Highlights of the journey include cycling through the beautiful Cheddar Gorge (birthplace of the cheese), numerous castles and abbeys, and city stops in Bristol, Manchester, and Edinburgh.



Lake Constance, Austria

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You can actually start a bicycle tour around Lake Constance from either Austria, Germany, or Switzerland, depending on your preference. This massive lake isn’t just beautiful, it also makes for a highly customizable ride. You can break up the trip into challenging long rides or several short days with stops in the many beautiful lakeside towns. This route, comprised of both paved cycle paths and quiet roads, is easy and flat. You’ll get epic mountain views, though, thanks to its proximity to the Alps.



Dalmatian Coast, Croatia

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If you’re not into going long distances, try an island-hopping cycling tour where you pedal across the land, then take a boat to the next isle to do it all again. Start in Split or Dubrovnik and pedal your way through the old cities, then hop over to Hvar, Brač, or Korčula. Croatia also has the 100-mile Ćiro trail that connects the country and nearby Bosnia and Herzegovina, if you’re looking for more of a challenge.



Amsterdam

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If you’re looking for a cyclist’s paradise, look no further than Amsterdam. The bike-friendly city has always been welcoming to car-free living, so even the most inexperienced of cyclists can get around easily on two wheels. Of course, since many locals commute by bike, be sure to stay out of the way if you’re in the mood for a slow, scenic ride. Or, better yet, take a guided tour with a local who will take you for a drink at the pub and show you museums along the way.



Colchagua Valley, Chile

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Cycling and wine tasting isn’t just for the French. This beautiful region of Chile is also famous for its wines and is an excellent spot for cyclists to take a leisurely, scenic ride with stops for vino along the way. Depending on the kind of vacation you want, you can opt for a more active bike ride or plan for a few short stints that allow for extra wine tasting. There are a few different routes you can take out into the grapevine-covered countryside, mostly following roads, but Santa Cruz is a good place to start no matter which way you go.



Palisade, Colorado

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If you haven’t been to the Fruit and Wine Byway, now’s your chance to start planning a trip. The beautiful, 25-mile East Orchard Mesa Loop, one of three included routes, through Colorado’s little-known wine country and peach groves might be the best late-summer excursion any cyclist could plan. Travel through the fragrant orchards and lavender fields and breeze along the legendary Colorado River, stopping frequently at tasting rooms on the route.



Travelers Rest, South Carolina

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Travelers Rest is becoming a go-to place for cycling enthusiasts to visit (and to live). The Blue Ridge Mountains offer the perfect challenge for advanced bike lovers, but there are also some short and relatively flat trails that are simple enough for even the novice rider to enjoy. There are dozens of routes to pick from, from multi-use greenways to bike-friendly roads that will put you in the vicinity of vineyards, boutique hotels, quaint towns, and lots of cultural points of interest.



Onomichi, Japan

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Starting in Onomichi in Hiroshima Prefecture, you can take the path of the Shimanami Kaidō (also known as the Nishiseto Expressway), which connects the city with Imabari in Ehime Prefecture. This 40-mile road traverses ocean straits on colossal bridges connecting some of the Geiyo Islands and was built with cyclists in mind. It has segregated cycling and pedestrian lanes, so anyone can enjoy this gorgeous and relatively short route.



Visayas Islands, The Philippines

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The islands of Cebu, Bohol, Negros, Guimaras, and Panay are all easy places to use two-wheeled transportation to see some incredible sights. Bike tours along the coastlines are some of the area’s most popular excursions, especially since the roads are paved and fairly flat, making them enjoyable for cyclists of every level. For the full tour, island hop by ferry with your bike in tow.



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