Riding-together Tour d'Afrique

The world’s greatest bike adventures

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Have you got a bucket list of bike adventures? Simon Vincett compiled this haphazard collection of rides that have wheedled their way into his daydreams. 

Like the best daydreams, these ride suggestions are not constrained by issues of access, logistics. legendInstead they are put forward for their promise of grand scenery, high adventure and fascinating encounters.

It’s a mixed bag of more than 50 relatively short and epic distances, in developed-world and remote locations, on events, tours and self-guided affairs, and in no particular order. They are split into regions and levels of fun, challenge and epic.

I haven’t done most of these – though I’m sure they’d be great adventures. What are your suggestions?

Africa

20130310_nickmuzik_cycletour_09127Fun

Road Bike Symbol

Day Trip SymbolCape Argus Cycle TourCoastal Symbol, South Africa

109km one-day road cycling event

Challenge

Mountains SymbolCycling Morocco

Seaside, desert and mountains to explore in this land of mystery, history and culture

Epic

Tour D’AfriqueTour Bike SymbolTouring Symbol, Cairo to Cape Town

Supported, four-month, 11,500km tour from top to bottom. The epic of all epics?

Americas

Funcape-breton Claire Heintzman

Road Bike SymbolAlpine SymbolDay Trip SymbolGoing to the Sun Road, Montana, USA

Approximately 80km across Glacier National Park

Kids SymbolTouring SymbolConfederation TrailRural Symbol, PEI Canada

A 435km rail trail from tip to tip of picturesque Prince Edward Island

Alpine SymbolRoad Bike SymbolIcefields Parkway, Canada

A 232km sealed highway from Banff to Jasper through the heart of the Canadian Rockies

Tour Bike SymbolHavana to Vinhales, Cuba

Eight days off the beaten track in the real Cuba

Challenge

Touring SymbolTour Bike SymbolOttawa to Cape Breton Island, Canada

2,000km through the best eastern Canada

Tour Bike SymbolTouring SymbolLa Route Vert, Canada

5,300km of mapped cycle touring routes throughout Quebec

Epic

MTB SymbolTour Bike SymbolTouring SymbolIditarod, Alaska

1,600km self-supported fat bike (or dog-sled) race across the Alaskan snowplain

Touring SymbolTour Bike SymbolPatagonia, Chile and Argentina

Three months along South America’s southern Andean spine

Asia

DSC_0208Fun

Road Bike SymbolCoastal SymbolKids SymbolShimanami Kaido, Japan

Island hopping on the bridges across the Seto Inland Sea (add the O-Shikoku for a longer trip)

Challenge

Road Bike SymbolAlpine SymbolTaroko Gorge, Taiwan

Spectacular scenery and smooth roads – ride it as the King of the Mountain ride during the Taiwan Cycling Festival.

Mountains SymbolMTB SymbolTour De Timor, Timor L’Este

A gruelling mountain-bike stage race through spectacular scenery with an incredible cultural experience

Tour Bike SymbolNational Highway 1, Vietnam

15 days guided the length of Vietnam from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City

Tour Bike SymbolCycle Cambodia

11 days of guided touring from Phnom Penh to Agnkor Wat

Touring SymbolTour Bike SymbolRajastan, New Dehli and Agra, India

Trade camels for bikes to explore fairytale corner of India

Touring SymbolTour Bike SymbolCycle Sri Lanka

Ride among elephants in a tropical paradise

Touring SymbolTour Bike SymbolTehran to Shiraz, Iran

913km across ancient lands on a 15-day supported tour

Epic

Alpine SymbolTour Bike SymbolTouring SymbolPamir Highway, Tajikistan

Is this the world’s most spectacular mountain highway?

Mountains SymbolTour Bike SymbolTouring SymbolAnatolia, Turkey

A timeless landscape of rich diversity

MTB SymbolMountains SymbolTour Bike SymbolTouring SymbolAcross Mongolia

Vast plains and scant traffic make a dream cycle touring landscape

Alpine SymbolTour Bike SymbolTouring SymbolFriendship Highway, Tibet to Nepal

830km across the roof of the world

Australia and New Zealand

Georgie-Fyfe-Jamieson-SouthFun

Coastal SymbolRoad Bike SymbolGreat Ocean Road, Victoria

Australia’s most famously scenic road (Do it in 2016 on the Great Vic)

Rural SymbolRoad Bike SymbolTour de SA Vineyards, South Australia

Six days largely on rail trails through the Barossa, Clare Valley & McLaren Vale wine regions

Day Trip SymbolCoastal SymbolRoad Bike SymbolKids SymbolAround the Bay, Victoria

Nine different challenge distances beside Port Phillip Bay

Tour Bike SymbolOtago Central Rail trail, New Zealand

The longest rail trail in New Zealand at 150km

Destination SymbolMTB SymbolRotorua, New Zealand

Mountain biking paradise

Day Trip SymbolDestination SymbolRoad Bike SymbolLake Taupo Cycle Challenge, New Zealand

NZ’s favourite challenge ride in an adventure sport hotspot

Challenge

Mountains SymbolTour Bike SymbolTasman Great Taste Trail, New Zealand

The newest long-distance trail in NZ, with a gourmet focus

Day Trip SymbolMt Buller EPIC trail, Victoria

The southern hemisphere’s only EPIC mountain bike trail

Flat SymbolTour Bike SymbolTouring SymbolAcross the Nullabor Plain, South Australia, Western Australia

1,200km arid kilometres skirting the great Australian Bight

Tour Bike SymbolTouring SymbolCairns to Cape York, Queensland

The journey to the northern tip of Australia

MTB SymbolOutback Odyssey, South Australia

A 16-day supported ride into the heart of the South Australian outback

MTB SymbolTouring SymbolMunda Biddi Trail, Western Australia

At 1,000km, this is the longest unified mountain bike trail in the world

Mountains SymbolTour Bike SymbolTouring SymbolTasmania Trail

A wild 480km traverse of Australia’s southern state

Coastal SymbolTour Bike SymbolTouring SymbolLaunceston to Hobart including the Bay of Fires, Tasmania

Taking in all of the renowned east-coast scenery and more

Road Bike SymbolAlpine SymbolPeaks Challenge Series, Victoria, Tasmania, Queensland

Australia’s ultimate road cycling series

Tour Bike SymbolTouring SymbolAlpine SymbolSouth Island New Zealand

Arguably the finest bike touring in Australasia

Epic

MTB SymbolSimpson Desert Challenge, South Australia

Fat bikes versus sand dunes in a central Australian race

MTB SymbolTour Bike SymbolTouring SymbolGibb River Road, Western Australia

Probably the most remote cycle tour possible in Australia

Europe

Fun

Tour Bike SymbolTouring SymbolLoire Valley, France

Signposted cycle sightseeing in glorious rural France

Tour Bike SymbolTouring SymbolKids SymbolDanube Trail, Germany, Austria, Hungary

The epitome of European riverside cycle touring

Day Trip SymbolMountains SymbolRoad Bike SymbolL’Eroica, Italy

An amateur race in vintage costume on Tuscany’s strade bianche

Challenge

Tour Bike SymbolTouring SymbolRoute 1, Iceland

The 1,300km ring road around this amazingly varied country

Mountains SymbolTour Bike SymbolTouring SymbolCamino de Santiago, Spain

Cycling the famous pilgrimage route

Tour Bike SymbolTouring SymbolLand’s End to John O’Groats, UK

From tip to tip of the British mainland

Day Trip SymbolRoad Bike SymbolRing of Kerry, Rep of Ireland

A 169km loop through rugged coastal scenery and historic towns

Coastal SymbolTour Bike SymbolTouring SymbolHebridean Way, Scotland UK

Traversing 10 Hebridean islands of western Scotland over 297km

Destination SymbolCoastal SymbolKids SymbolLofoten Islands, Norway

An arctic cycling idyll strictly for summer

Road Bike SymbolAlpine SymbolTouring SymbolRoute des Grandes Alps, France

Over the great passes of the French Alps from Lake Geneva to the Mediterranean

Epic

Coastal SymbolTour Bike SymbolTouring SymbolNorth Sea Cycle Route, UK, Belgium, Nederlands, Germany Denmark, Sweden, Norway

A 6,200km sign-posted route skirting the North Sea from the Shetland Islands to Bergen

MTB SymbolTour Bike SymbolTouring SymbolThe Road of Bones, Russia

Further east than Siberia, where the wilderness still prevails

More

antarctic2Search for local rides by area with Bicycle Network’s Finda.

Browse 200 suggested rides in Lonely Planet’s Epic bike rides of the world.

Be inspired by this great collection of epic rides in Australia.

Want more epic international rides and a community of epic riders for inspiration? Check out the 7 Epics.

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