Fifteen important things you need to consider when booking your ideal cycle holiday.

Our site is also a great search tool to compare the prices for Cycle Hotels in over 50 destinations. But what makes the ideal cycling holiday? At Bikecation we think we have devised a system for you to build the best cycle holiday for you. With our holidays, there are no fixed dates and no fixed itineraries. We don’t force you to go to a certain location or stay in a particular hotel. You choose what you want to do and when you want to do it. We give you the freedom to choose; which is key to you getting what you want, and this allows you to package your holiday up to make your dream cycle holiday. However, there are 15 important things you need to consider when booking your ideal cycle holiday.

  1. Who will you go with?

This is probably the most important decision to make!

Do you want to take the Family? Are you planning an annual cycling holiday with friends? Or are you hoping to sneak out on the bike between a holiday with non-riding friends or family.

All this affects where you will want to go, but all are possible to book via our website, just some destinations are more suitable for some types of holiday than others.

And remember you can still have a normal holiday at any of our hotels, with the added bonus of being able to get up early, escape on the bike, and be back in time to hang out with the kids round the pool!


  1. When will you go for the best riding and best pricing?

Make sure you read our destinations pages or browse our climb pages and find a challenge or destination that takes your fancy. Choose a destination where the cycling and most importantly, the weather and climate, will be good for your chosen dates. Don’t be tempted to go to the Stelvio in April (unless you pack your snow tyres and crampons). But also don’t head to Tenerife in August. Cycling in the 40 degree heat won’t be much fun! Our website gives you the ability to book your chosen destination on your chosen dates, just make sure that you’ve chosen some weather compatible dates, and if in doubt about a destination, contact us.

Our top tip: Avoiding school holidays and the peak holiday dates will also likely get you the best prices for both hotels and flights!


  1. When will you go for the best home/work life?

You can go on a cycle holiday any month of the year (subject to your chosen destination). As a cycle holiday is often a selfish second holiday, have a think about what dates will work best for your home and work life. It may be much easier to get a few days away in April than July for example. Or use those cheeky leu days to get away.


  1. How long will you go for?

How long you go for is a difficult one to answer. Assuming you are a relatively fit cyclist, that does a couple of good rides a week and maybe some other bits and bobs of exercise, you are likely to be able to ride 3-4 days straight. After this you will find that your body is likely to be very fatigued and really struggling, and therefore needs a rest day. We would therefore recommend the ideal length of trip to be 3-4 days or take a week, but pencil in some non-ride days to recover and let your body get used to riding a bike rather than sitting in an office chair!


  1. Where will you go?

The most exciting decision to make is where to go. With over 50 destinations on our site we have made this a potentially difficult decision! Where you go is obviously influenced by the time of year you are going. But also think about the type of terrain you want to ride, and if you are fit enough to climb big mountains. We have a huge range of destinations from a terrain point of view and if you are struggling to decide where to go, contact us, we’re always happy to talk cycling!

Our top tips for choosing your ideal destination are below:

  1. Choose your country. Seems silly, but choose a country you like! Base this upon a previous holiday, friends’ advice, your language skills or what you've read. A country's weather, culture, language and food, all have a huge influence upon your enjoyment.
  2. Decide how hard you want to cycle. Don't book a trip to the Alps if you want flat rides!
  3. Go at the right time of year. Make sure you go when the roads are open, the resorts aren't at their busiest, and the weather is best for cycling. Remember, being too hot can ruin a holiday as much as being too wet and cold!
  4. What do you want to do? Make sure if you want to climb a bucket list climb, you are nearby. Or make sure, if you want some bike free days, that there are things to do.
  5. Choose the correct accommodation. If you like a beer or two after your ride, make sure you are somewhere that allows this. On the other hand, if you prefer tranquillity and peace, make sure you are not in a busy resort.


  1. How much are you willing to spend?

Work out how much money you want to spend and search for a destination that matches your budget. Some destinations are more naturally expensive than others. (Nice in France for example). But other, especially out of season can be very cheap. We find regular results for the Costa Dorada from £150/person for 4 days, including flight and hotel. Less if there are three of you and you’re willing to share a triple room. Check out our handy guides to the best budget and luxury destinations.

And remember to budget for food and beer money too, if you don’t book a full board hotel!


  1. Where will you stay?

An almost equally as important choice as where to go and with 200+ hotels on the site you have a difficult choice. Where you stay can make or break your holiday. However, you can rest assured that all the hotels on our site are Cycle Hotels or Cycle Friendly Hotels (see here for the difference if you are unsure) located in the best cycling locations. This just leaves you with the usual hotel choices to make. What type of room you want, half board or B+B, and what star hotel you want to stay in. All our hotels also have a tab detailing the hotel facilities and the bike facilities if you are looking for something specific. You can check out our own Hotel reviews here, and you can always contact us if you have any questions or queries or just want to know the inside line about an area. Between us, the four of us in the office have been to every location on the site.


  1. What bike will you ride?

Are you going to hire a bike or take your own? This decision comes down to three factors.

  1. Cost. Is it cheaper to hire a bike or to pay the additional luggage fee for your bike. It’s always worth doing the maths.
  2. How long you are going for? If you’re just going for the weekend, you probably don’t want the hassle of packing and re-packing your bike into its bike box.
  3.  Convenience and Pickiness – Hiring a bike is much more convenient and we can set up the bike so the fit matches your bike at home exactly. Our hire bikes can often also be of a higher quality than your own bike!  However, we understand there is nothing like your own bike and if you the type of rider who notices their Garmin computer mount is not quite square, you will always want to take your own bike!

If you are after a particular type of bike of have any special requests, please don't hesitate to contact us


  1. Where will you eat and drink?

Where you eat and drink is very personal. However, in your destination guide you get upon booking we recommend what we consider to be the best restaurants from the point of view of a cyclist. Usually this means quick service, good food, large portions and meals that involve lots of carbs and proteins, ideally locally sourced and cooked in the local manner. The hotels you book via the site are also a wealth of knowledge and can point you in the right direction if, for example, you’re in Mallorca and craving a Chinese, or you have any special dietary requirements that you need fulfilling.

As for drinking, we always recommend following your nose if you like a beer or two, or ask in the local bike shop!


  1. What else can you do?

Some of the destinations on our site are unashamedly cycling only destinations. You have to be serious about your cycling to go stay in Valloire for example as other than cycle, there is not a lot to do. However, most of our destinations have a good range of things to do off the bike and some destinations such as Port de Pollenca are geared up for a cycle holiday with non-cycling family members or friends.


  1. How will you get there?

How you travel to your destination is a personal choice. We always recommend flying as most of destinations are 1-2 days drive or train from the UK. Flying is quick, easy and good value for money. We offer both hire cars and ground transfers when you get to the airport. One top tip is that a hire car can sometimes open up further riding opportunities, especially in the mountains.


  1. What level of support will you have on the ground?

The simple joy of our booking platform is you can choose the level of support you have. As a starting point you get GPX routes for self-guidance from us and a 24- hour emergency telephone number, and on the ground support and advice from your cycle friendly hotel. In addition to hire bikes, and private transfers, for additional costs, you can add in, local bike guides, support vehicles, massages and build in exactly the level of support that you want. If what you want isn’t shown on the website, please contact us, we would be very happy to arrange it for you.


  1. Do you want to do a cycle festival, sportive or VIP package?

Remember if you want to go to a bike festival or do a Sportive, such as La Marmotte or L’Etape or go and watch your hero’s race as part of a spectating package, you can still book your hotel through us, although we highly recommend booking well in advance as accommodation for these events tends to sell out quickly!


  1. Where will you ride your bike?

The point of your cycle holiday is for you to spend some time turning your pedals and riding your bike. On booking you receive 6 GPX routes and the corresponding Strava links for the area you are staying in. Two easy, 2 medium and 2 hard. If you require further routes or have a particular route or climb in mind, then don’t hesitate to contact us.


  1. What happens if something goes wrong?

If something goes wrong we have a 24-hour emergency helpline available and we have on the ground contacts in all locations. You are also protected by our ATOL and TTA membership, giving you complete piece of mind.


If all this seems a bit over whelming, drop us an e-mail, chat to us, or pick up the old school telephone. We are always happy to talk cycling and holidays. No matter how weird or wonderful you think your request might be, we are happy and sure we can help. Put us, as the bike experts, to the test.



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By Chris Smith, Wednesday 4th July 2018

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