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15 of the Most Scenic Bike Tours in the World


There’s nothing else quite like a cycling holiday. Moving faster than you would on foot, you’re able to experience some of the most spectacular sights that nature can throw at you while also getting some good quality exercise and adventure while you’re at it.

There are more incredible, visually stunning bike tracks in the world than you could count, but the very best and the most truly memorable experiences are the ones that you really want to experience. Here are some of iRacks’ favourite bike tracks from around the world.

1. Cape Breton Island, Canada

This is a cycling track that is suited to cyclists of all levels. From the gently rolling hills and fishing villages dotted around the rocky coast, through to the tough climbs of the more mountainous areas of the region, this island has a bit for everyone. The one thing that will be consistent throughout, however, is how beautiful and unspoiled it is at all times.

2. Kalamazoo, USA

One of the larger cities within the State of Michigan also has one of the finest bike track areas you’ll find in the US. Within striking distance of the city are lakes, rivers, farmlands, vineyards, and charming little villages and townships. The longest trail, the Kalamazoo River Valley Trail is being built out to become one of the longest bike trails in America, eventually crossing the entire state from Lake Michigan to Lake Huron.

3. West Coast Tasmania, Australia

Tasmania remains one of the most beautiful and pristine parts of Australia, and the western coast of the island state has long stretches of almost untouched wilderness. It’s not a bike ride for the untrained, with undulating terrain requiring experience to navigate through, but with sights such as Cradle Mountain, the delightful township of Strahan, the state’s longest waterfall (Montezuma Falls), and Lake St. Clair, it’s a tough ride that’s worth taking.

4. Luberon and Mount Ventoux, France

If you’re in the mood for a bit of history as part of your cycling trip, then this route in one of the most beautiful corners of France is essential. From ancient Roman ruins to medieval chateaux, the region has literally hundreds of years of history within it. And right at the end of the ride is some of France’s finest vineyards with local wines to enjoy and the finest of French produce available to celebrate a good day’s ride. Fans of the Tour de France will also recognise this region as the source of some of the most heated battles in the event’s history.

5. County Clare, Ireland

For some of the most striking scenery in all of Europe, County Clare in Ireland is the place to visit. From the verdant, lush greens of the quintessential Irish landscape through to the most dramatic cliffs down to the ocean, riding through this area can be a challenge. Only because you’ll be stopping to take so many photos that you may not make as much progress as you may have thought.

6. National Highway 1, Vietnam

This is one of the most popular tourist roads throughout Southeast Asia, and with good reason. National Highway 1 is a very long trip, but it takes you past some of the most spectacular scenes of the Vietnamese coastline before providing you with one of the most breathtaking descents you’ll ever experience on a bike – the Hai Van Pass. Not a good idea for a beginner, Hai Van Pass is, nonetheless, something so spectacularly green with such a glistening blue ocean below, that you’ll be left thinking you’ve accidentally ended up on a movie set.

7. The Friendship Highway, China

A road that takes you through some of the most remote parts of China, The Friendship Highway weaves past the most incredible waters of Yamdrok Yumtso lake, a sight that everyone should experience at some point of their life. Given that this road stretches between Lhasa and the border of Nepal, it goes without saying that it’s an elevated route that will test the most hardened rider, but it’s very much worth the effort.

8. North Sea Cycle Route, North Europe

This route will take you through some of the most beautiful parts of northern Europe. You’ll start in the northerly Shetland Islands and end up in the Norwegian town of Bergen. Along the way you’ll meander across a coastal route that weaves through eight European countries. Just don’t try this route during winter, it gets that cold up this far north.

9. Shimanami Kaido, Japan

This is a short riding track that can be finished in a single day. But for people looking to take in the most breathtaking natural scenery in Japan, Shimanami Kaido is impossible to ignore. It’s a gentle ride, more interested in providing tourists with spectacular photo opportunities than a stiff challenge. And of course, it’s located in one of the most historically interesting and culturally vibrant countries in the world – the land of the rising sun.

10. La Ruta de los Conquistadores, Costa Rica

This is another historical trek that will challenge experienced cyclists, but will excite both the mind and body. This Costa Rican track follows the path that famous Spanish conqueror, Juan de Cavaillon, followed through the 16th century. Beyond the history, Costa Rica is an impossibly beautiful country, and this is one of the best ways for it to be seen.

11. Munda Biddi Trail, Australia

Western Australia isn’t often recognised as an international tourist destination, being largely isolated from the rest of the country, but the Munda Biddi Trail is perhaps the most exciting adventure track that a cyclist could take on in this country. It starts in Perth, passing through some of the state’s most stunning scenery on the way to Albany in the far southwest. Be prepared for a rough ride, however, and don’t attempt this one in the heat of the Aussie summer. The entire liveable part of Western Australia sits right on the edge of one of the most hostile deserts in the world.

12. South Downs Way, England

England is a country of greenery and hills, and South Downs Way is the ultimate example of the English countryside. This is not a complex bike ride, and you can race through it in a (long) day’s ride. The real way to enjoy this track, though, is by taking your time and breathing in the fresh English country air.

13. Giba Blue Trail, South Africa

Africa is perhaps better known for its safaris than its cycle tracks, but deep in the south you’ll find a stunning track to experience. South Africa’s Giba Blue trail is one for the most experienced of mountain bike riders, but it includes switchbacks, bridges, rock, and drop offs, giving you a look at the whole of Giba along the way.

14. Al Qudra Cycle Path, UAE

For people who want to see the desert, the Al Qudra Cycle Path is the best way to do so. Naturally, it gets hot throughout the day, and if it’s windy it can be painful to try and cycle through the gustin sands. The real way to experience this path is to get up early and watch the sun rising as you pedal through. There are few natural sights more beautiful than what you’ll see if you do that.

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