Old West Bikeway Oregon

discover another side of Oregon old west scenic bikeway Great getaway The Old West Scenic Bikeway offers a tantalizing variety of terrain and scenery.  You’ll pedal past everything  from rushing rivers  and dramatic rock formations to steamy hot springs and

Bicycle Touring Norway

Before visiting, I knew 5 things about Norway:The roads are really, really steep.Everything is crazy expensive.Vicious mosquitoes and midges attack any unprotected flesh.The weather is stormy and unsettled all year long.The wild camping is wonderful.

Road Connections

The best part of bicycle touring. The thrill of physical challenges and stunning landscapes are fleeting. It's the connections that matter most. That's the real reason we love bicycle touring so much. Connecting. Sometimes it's just an exchange of smiles

Complications at the Border

Stranded We were stuck on the border between Mexico and the United States.  Officials on the American side didn’t see reason to let my French husband back in the country. No, Eric hadn’t done anything wrong.  He’s got a B-2

Female Cyclists Info

Discover women adventurers on epic round-the-world bicycle tours on the new Women Cycle the World website. More and more women are exploring the world by bicycle. They're riding up remote mountain passes, crossing continents on two wheels, and camping wild in the middle of

Malaria: our experiences

Malaria is a serious issue for anyone traveling in sub-Saharan Africa, even more so for cyclists who will spend considerable time in villages far away from major medical centers. Your best defense is a good mosquito net, liberal use of

Staying Safe in Africa

  Dangerous dudes? Not in our experience.You want adventure and know Africa’s the place to find it.  But when you switch on the news, the stuff coming out of Africa is hardly reassuring —coups, famine, civil wars, violent street protests.  You’re thinking,

Idaho Hot Springs Route

In 2014, Adventure Cycling unveiled what promised to be one of America’s most beautiful and challenging bicycles touring routes: the Idaho Hot Springs Mountain Biking Route. The Idaho Hot Springs Mountain Bike Route guides riders over and through the breathtaking

7 Myths about Cycling Iran

Iran is one of the most misunderstood countries on the planet.  Almost everyone who has the opportunity to visit Iran,  falls in love with its warm and generous people.  The country certainly has its challenges, but there are many misconceptions

Sikkim Surprises.

A blogging break Our last update was from Bangladesh.  That was almost 12 months back. Since then, we let the blog slide.  Of course we could trot out numerous excuses for the lapse in online communication.  Limited internet access.  A

FREE e-book: Burma by Bike

Download our latest e-book (it’s free! Burma by Bike WorldBiking ebook contains 54 pages of photos and how-to information on bicycle touring in Myanmar. Topics include: How to get visas and special permits for Myanmar The best season to visit

Not the India you Know

India.  Chaos and confusion, filth and frustration diluted by a dash of unbelievable beauty.  There exists no country on earth so thoroughly maddening, yet so undeniably captivating. All told, we’ve travelled to India on six separate occasions. As wide-eyed backpackers

Cycling Myanmar

Approaching voices in the distance sent a shudder up my spine.  Eric and I fell into an immediate silence.  It was our first night in Myanmar.  We were wild camping. And suddenly we weren’t alone. Finding a suitable spot to

China Loop: the grand finale

The blog’s been quiet for the past few months.  Many of you have wondered what’s up.   Well, we haven’t tossed in the towel, if that’s what you’re thinking.  And no, we haven’t been lounging on some Thai beach attempting to

The Yi and the Yangtze

After the austere beauty of the Tibetan Plateau, we thought the rest of China might turn into a big disappointment.   Not in the least. How to enjoy cycling ANYWHERE! Alright, the first few days out of Chengdu were a blur

Tibet for Foreigners: Part 4

A spectacular place to celebrate! I don’t suppose many people get the chance to celebrate a birthday at 4,487 meters.  That’s how Eric began his 47th year, on the top of Balang Shan Pass in China’s Sichuan Province. We hadn’t

Tibet for Foreigners: Part 3

All was well.  We’d solved the headset crisis.  Some big mountains and amazing landscapes lay ahead.  Rains had plagued us since we hit China, but as we rolled out of Litang, the day shone bright and clear.  Life was perfect.

Tibet for Foreigners: Part 1

Independent Tibet travel for foreigners has been officially off-limits for years.  The occasional intrepid cyclist does manage to sneak in, but most who try it get booted out by the ever-vigilant officers of the PSB (Public Security Bureau). Unwilling to

Struggling through Sumatra

A little to the left, a slight move to the right, a minor change of saddle angle…nothing stopped the bolts of pain in my underside as we bumped along Sumatra’s backroads. Turns out we still have a few things to

Venturing past Volcanoes

As we crested the summit, a gust of wind brushed away a thick tangle of clouds and our eyes fell upon a spectacular sight:  Mount Merapi, Indonesia’s most active volcano. Rising almost 3,000 meters (10,000 feet), “Fire Mountain” has been

We made It (but just barely)!

We made it (to our own great amazement)! A whopping 3,563 kilometers around just one of Indonesia’s 18,307 islands. In comparison, London to Istanbul measures 2,994 kilometers.  Maine to Florida just 2,560 kilometers. So we’ve covered a lot of kilometers

Long Live Tarmac

The Indonesians, with a little monetary support from their Aussie neighbors, have embarked on a road building bonanza.  Silky smooth tarmac roads soon will link most of the coastal settlements. This is a good thing.  We love riding rough (maybe

Slow Boat to Sulawesi

Complete chaos.  That’s the best way to describe boarding procedures on the slow boat to Sulawesi. Passengers debarking in Nunukan stumbled down a steep, metal plank while porters loaded down with goods simultaneously attempted to squeeze  and shove their way

The Joy of Suffering

Eric shot me a look of quiet desperation, “Why are we putting ourselves through this?” It was a fair question. The roads crisscrossing the Cordillera, as the Philippines’ Central Highlands are known, are notoriously steep.  And rough. 20% grades are

Life Goes On

A housewife haggles over the price of tomatoes in a busy market, a devout old woman crosses herself as she scurries past an imposing Catholic church, a group of boys shoots hoops on a neighborhood court, young men nap in

Bye-Bye Bike Path

It was time to venture off the bike paths.  If we stuck to the official trails, we’d exit the country believing all Koreans ride fancy bikes and look good in spandex. After several car-free weeks, we thought it best to

Four Rivers Ride

4 Rivers Bicycle Trail from Seoul to Busan I followed the link and discovered a bike trail linking Busan (where we’d arrived on the ferry from Japan) to Seoul (where we needed to get to in order to sort out

Let your GPS be your Guide!

“Are you sure we’re headed the right direction?  Looks like this road is meant to be closed.” “According to the GPS we just head straight up this road and we’ll hit the lake in 10 kilometers.  It’s a shortcut. Trust

Happy in Hokkaido!

Sunshine.  A few rays of warm sunshine, that’s all it took to transform our Hokkaido cycle tour from one of futile misery to fun.  Our sincerest apologies, beautiful Hokkaido!  Your reputation as a world class cycling destination is well deserved.

Hokkaido Hoax

I’d spun Hokkaido into some kind of cycling nirvana.  A Shangri-La of sorts where a smooth ribbon of road cut through the countryside.  A bike tourist’s Eden of tailwinds and temperate weather.  A utopia of sane drivers, safe roads and

Riding the Spine

Japan is a surprisingly mountainous country.  With all the major population centers shoved together along the coastal lowlands, the interior is blissfully empty.  After all the hassles and headaches of navigating between Osaka and Tokyo (with a population of around

Mapless in Japan

A country covered in road signs you can’t read, inhabited by people speaking a language you don’t understand may not seem like the ideal spot to wing it on a bike tour. No, Japan is ordinarily a place cyclists travel

Dangerous Expectations

It was mid-morning by the time the bikes were reassembled, the panniers re-packed  and we were ready to ride out into the Osaka traffic. The night had been restless.  Kansai International Airport is undeserving of its spot in Asia’s Top

The Big Blur

Guyra, Glen Innes, Deepwater, Glencoe, Sandy Flat, Boonah…names of small Australian towns we’d rolled through in the last week.  I couldn’t conjure up an image of a single one.  Just like a bedraggled package touriston 10 day/ 14 country European

Tackling the Tablelands

“Is this the way to Hanging Rock?” “Are you going to attempt to cycle all the way up there?” “No, not attempt.  I AM going to cycle up to Hanging Rock!” I was fed up with people doubting my abilities. 

Frequently Asked Questions

 Common Questions about Bicycle Touring Around the World'When will you finish your round the world bicycle tour?Our aim is to cycle every country on the planet. So far, we have biked through 102 countries on all six permanently inhabited continents.

Back to Oz

“Please step aside.  We need more information about your visit.” The request was pleasant enough, but I was still worried.  Nobody likes to be stopped at immigration. “Have you been to Australia before?” “Yes, for three months back in 2012,”

Ride Guide New Zealand

New Zealand offers up an enticing mix of quiet roads, spectacular scenery, and old-fashioned hospitality.   Although it’s a small country, the bicycle touring route options are almost endless.There are so many choices that it’s sometimes hard to know where to

Farewell New Zealand

“How far to the Summit?” “You’re almost there–it’s just on the other side of the tunnel—you’ll need a torch, it’s pretty dark inside.” I was relieved.  We’d just dragged our bikes through the washout at Siberia Gully.  I was hungry.

Into the Heartland

The Maori people paddled  their canoes to New Zealand’s shores some 700 years ago.   Descendants of these early settlers still populate the East Cape. The East Cape sometimes gets a bad rap.  Concerned New Zealanders from other parts of the

People of the World

One of the things I enjoy most about bicycle touring is the chance to capture images of all the interesting people of the world. Here are some of those individuals:   For more images from around the world check out

Taking to the Trails!

Mountain biking trails on a fully loaded bicycle?  Yes, it’s possible. I know.  From experience. No entirely positive experience.  But one I ultimately don’t regret. Now, I’d come to New Zealand expecting some fairly laidback cycling.  I got about 100

A Forgotten World

One reason bicycle touring is so beloved is that it drags us away from all the distractions of daily life. While out riding, we stop obsessing over Twitter followers, Facebook likes and the latest i-phone apps.   Being out on the

Surviving New Zealand

Sometimes paradise sours.  A dose of extreme weather does the trick on the South Island.  We were warned.  That I’ll admit. Pack your rain gear and lots of layers we were told.  Snow’s possible any time of year. And it

Looking Back on 2012

2012 has been a good year for us.  It is, quite possibly, the only year I haven’t seriously contemplated giving up this bicycle touring gig. The year began on the hazardous Chinese highways (with a missing passport no less!) and

Pedaling through Paradise

We’d been hearing about New Zealand’s charms for years.  One of the best cycling destinations in the world we were told.  Rugged mountain passes, spectacular coastal roads, stunningly beautiful countryside and  miles and miles of unpaved backroads where the sheep

Headwinds, Flies and Forest Fires

Rugged coastline, pristine beaches, sleepy fishing villages, rolling farmland, world-class diving and spectacular seafood. The Eyre Peninsula has it all according to the Australia Tourism Board. Given our shoestring budget, I knew the last two were out.  But those first

Stranded in the Southwest

You must visit Southwest Australia. We’d been hearing that mantra since we touched down in tropical Darwin almost two months back.  And how could we resist?   Locals promised us some of the best scenery in Australia- fields of colorful wildflowers,

End of the Outback

Six weeks and nearly 4,000 kilometers and we finally reach our first real Australia city: Perth!  To say that distances in the outback are vast is to state the obvious.   Never before have we biked a region so remote. After

Between Dawn and Dusk

My wristwatch alarm begins buzzing at 3:45 AM.  Its high pitched insistence startles me from a deep sleep.  My muscles ache with exhaustion.  3:45 , I’m sure you will agree, is an ungodly hour to rise. The Australian bush, where

The Final Continent

As we touched down in Australia I’d expected a surge of emotion. This was, after all, our final continent (unless we manage to bike Antarctica one day). Back in 2006, the plan was a simple cycle tour to Cape Town.

Tour de Timor

Despite dire warnings (You’ll sink!  You’ll be crushed by the crowds!  You’ll catch a nasty disease!), we’d survived half a dozen Indonesian ferries. The trip to Timor was to be our last.   The journey was slated for a mere 18

Coffee and Craters

Visa extensions in hand, we slipped out of Surabaya.  Kalimantan–with its heat, humidity and hills– had left us exhausted. Downtime imposed by the dawdling  Indonesian immigration officials had done us good.  We’d satiated our appetite for internet and were eager to start cranking the pedals

The Streets of Surabaya

One of the best parts of an extended bike tour is the luxury of time.  Time to take it slow, drink in the landscape and stop for a chat. But sometimes bureaucracy forces you to slow down. That’s our current

Thoughts on Sticking it Out

I hate the feeling of giving up.  You probably do, too. Yet we all have those throw-in-the-towel days. During our two and a half months biking around Borneo I’ve had plenty of them. But I stuck it out.   And I’m

Stumbling on Adventure

“Let us know if you make it.” I shot Chad, our latest couchsurfing host, a confused look. “What do you mean, IF we make it?” Turns out Eric had been conspiring to bring a little excitement to our Borneo tour. 

Oh, the People You’ll Meet!

Most cycle tourists rank “Easy Interaction with Locals” as one of their top reasons for travelling by bicycle.  Whether it’s exuberant kids in Burundi cheering you up the mountainside, taciturn Mayans of the Guatemalan Highlands welcoming you into their humble

Slow Boat to Borneo

For a cyclist, Indonesia–a country comprised of some 18,000 islands–poses more than a few logistical challenges.  If you stick to the main islands—Java, Sumatra, maybe Bali and Lombok—getting  around’s not too tough.  It’s when you venture farther afield, say to

Tourism and Terrorism

“Aren’t you afraid of the bombs?” Cycling through Thailand’s deep south, this troubling enquiry was tossed out multiple times each day. Sure we were scared! Who wouldn’t be if they had bothered to read this warning from the US State

Are you still having Fun?

Southeast Asia is a mecca for cycle tourists. That means we cross paths with bicycle travelers almost every day. You may just be wondering the same thing When our new cycling friends find out how long we’ve been on the

Hanoi to the Highlands

Hanoi held us for almost a week.  A combination of comfortable lodging, crunchy baguettes and travel fatigue conspired to keep us pushing back our departure “just one more day” again and again and again. While much time was spent holed

Then and Now: Vietnam Revisited

Your very first visit to a Third World country leaves a big impression.  It’s inevitable.  A few strong images stick in your mind long after you’ve settled back into your comfortable First World existence.. Maybe it’s the “dirt poor locals”

Unchanged China

I had plenty of ideas about China before actually visiting. These days, it’s hard not to pick up a newspaper or tune into a podcast without being treated to some pundit’s views on China’s rising power, influence and prosperity. Like

Mayhem on the Mainland

Getting  from Hong Kong- a tiny territory crammed full of 7 million people- to Shenzhen- a sprawling mega-city populated by 14 million individuals—was going to be a challenge. Just 50 kilometers, mind you, but the memory of our ride from

Changing Continents

All my life I have lived and behaved very much like the sandpiper – just running down the edges of different countries and continents, ‘looking for something’. Elizabeth Bishop 15 hours in a cramped Boeing 737 and we arrive bleary

Touring Talk: Biking Boomers

  Touring Talk episode 8: biking boomers by worldbiking   Name: Chris and Heather Hartridge Country: Canada Touring Experience: Long trips in Canada and the USA with plans for an extended multi-year tour in the future. Comfort touring or Camping?

When things go Wrong

If there’s one thing that’s a certainty about bicycle touring, it’s that Things Will Go Wrong! Equipment will fail, uncooperative weather will foil carefully laid plans, the cycling companion with whom you thought you’d be a perfect match will turn

Touring Talk: cycle touring on a shoestring budget

Touring Talk episode 5: shoestring cycle touring by worldbiking Names: Ben (20) and Leann (22) Home: Minnesota,USA Route: Minnesota to Alaska Pre-tour  gear investment: $400 all inclusive Longest period of time without showering: 14 days through northern British Columbia and

Cycling to the Top of the World

Some roads are legendary amongst long-distance cyclists:  Asia’s Pamir Highway, the Carreterra Austral in South America, Sani Pass in Southern Africa and–straddling the border between Alaska and the Canadian Yukon–The Top of the World Highway. Sure, we were excited to

Touring Talk: Cycling the Americas with Tyson Schimschal

Touring Talk episode 4: Cycling the Americas with Tyson Schimschal by worldbiking   Name: Tyson Schimschal Country: Canadian, but currently living in Seattle Route: Ushuaia to Alaska beginning in December 2009, finishing in September 2011 Bike Touring  Philosophy: “If you’re

Touring Talk: Two on Tour since 2004

Robi and Moni, two bicycle crazy Swiss cyclists on the road since 2004. Touring Talk episode 3: The Velocos, on the road since 2004 by worldbiking Names: Monika Estermann and Robert Spengeler Country: Switzerland Age: Monica: 39 / Robi: 47

A Fresh Start

Finally we’d managed to stuff, squeeze and squash all our bulky, Alaska-proof, cold-weather gear into four panniers and a dry sack each.  Our bikes were heavier than ever.  40+ kilos of gear weighing down each bicycle, we reckoned. One last

Northward Bound: Ready, Set, Go!

Monday July 11th, 8AM from Missoula’s own Adventure Cycling, we set off for Alaska. Yippee! Since the big Bolivia theft, it’s been a long hard struggle to get back on the road. After taking the painful decision to leave South

7 Tips for a Successful Bicycle Tour

The idea of “succeeding” at bicycle touring probably sounds strange to you.  After all, a bicycle tour is supposed to be fun.  It’s not a job to be judged and evaluated. Let’s just say success is doing what you set

The Hard Way Round

“She doesn’t look good.” “I’ve never seen her like that.  Just collapsed on the side of the road and refused to move.  I had to drag her back on to her bike.  Force her to pedal.  I told her she’d

18 Creative Places to Sleep

When the only hotel in town doubles as a brothel and wild camping options are unappealing, what’s a tired cyclist to do?  Ask for help.  At least that’s what we do.  It’s not mooching, rather what Willie Weir refers to

Photo Essay: Northern Argentina

Stunning.  Jaw-dropping beautiful. Amazing.  Awe-inspiring. There’s something quite spectacular about the varied landscapes of Northern Argentina that words can’t quite capture. Arid and peaceful at times, brooding and pensive when a storm rolls across the Andes.  These is a world

In Awe of Mother Nature

If January is anything to go by, our 2011 promises to be full of adventure, amazing beauty and struggles against nature. The New Year began with a stand-off against the dreaded RUTA 40.  This desolate stretch of road is nothing

The serendipity of cycling

Wonderful things happen when we open ourselves up to serendipity and chance.  Embracing the out-of-the-ordinary often lands us is the most amazing of situations. And so it was last Friday evening on Argentina’s Ruta 3.  The windiest road on the

Pedaling to the end of the world

Patagonia at last!  Gone are the rolling hills and pine trees, the small towns with their delicious factura-filled bakeries and quiet parks.   Patagonia is a windswept land of wide-open spaces, hardy sheep and long, lonely roads.   The glaciers and lakes

A Change of Mood

Despondency is dead.  At least for the moment.  Bicycle touring has its ups and downs and that feeling of ‘I love life on the road,’ has returned.  Not sure how we lost it in the first place, but now that

Bicycle Touring by Numbers

Total Kilometers Cycled: 84,944 Current Location: Paysandu, Uruguay On the Road: 4 years, 4 months, 17 days A look back at what we’ve been up to since the last update way back in September. 4 Number of border crossings.  Paraguay