For many wanderlust-affected travellers out there, there’s no better way to discover some of the most beautiful corners of the world than on two wheels. The active nature of cycling holidays makes them perfect for boosting mind, body and soul. But they also provide the opportunity to discover new, diverse and often breathtakingly stunning lands at your own pace – as well as allowing you to unearth the true culture of your destination found hidden in between the more famed landmarks.
With VistaJet, nowhere in the world is out of reach, making us the perfect partner for discovering the best cycling destinations the world has to offer. With that in mind, we’ve put together a list of some of the top cycling locations on the planet, with a few of the best winter cycle touring destinations thrown in for seasonal good measure.
If it’s good enough for the pros, then it’s good enough for anyone. Based 60 miles north east of Barcelona, Girona offers a perfect balance of a good year-round climate, mixed terrains and quality roads which has made it the base of choice for many of Europe’s top cyclists.
As far as cycling goes, road racers will want to start with the lauded climb of the nearby Rocacorba mountain nearby, while the picture-perfect Costa Brava sits only 30km away as one of many stand-out cycling routes to take on in the area. Off the bike, you’ll find an idyllic medieval walled city with a rich history to its name and plenty of culture to sample.
Plus, hang around long enough and you might end up rubbing shoulders with some of the sport’s greatest athletes.
To say a certain location offers the best scenery in Europe is quite the claim, but among esteemed company such as the Alps and Pyrenees, many regard the landscape of the Dolomites mountain range in north-eastern Italy as the best of the best. Of course, where there are beautiful mountains, there are outstanding cycling opportunities, and the Dolomites offer plenty across a 300km span.
Declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in August 2009, the Dolomites provide cycling routes that are nothing short of a rollercoaster, with the jagged mountain routes producing demanding climbs alongside long gliding slopes again and again. With such a large area to explore, you may find yourself visiting the region more than once to see the full Dolomiti landscape in all its splendour.
Just as Girona is home to the pros of Europe, Boulder, Colorado is headquarters to the North American cycling elite. A place that could fairly be described as cycling town, USA, the area hosts top-class professionals year-round, boasting over 300 days of sunshine a year to go alongside its selection of 9,000ft+ climbs sat on the doorstep of the town.
A booming cycling industry also exists in the area, making it the true American mecca for two-wheel fanatics. Furthermore, you’ll find the luxury municipality of Aspen not too far away – a great cycling location itself but better known for its world-class skiing and snowboarding.
While Corsica as an island is no stranger to swathes of tourists gracing its shores, many visitors don’t go much further inland from the coastline. Corsica’s interior is largely unpopulated, and while that makes it relatively uninteresting to the average holidaymaker, it gives extra appeal to its cycling credentials.
Cycling Corsica is the choice for those looking to get away from the madness, but don’t be fooled by the relaxed sell – the routes themselves are plenty challenging.
While Girona and Boulder work as two of the best winter cycle touring destinations thanks to their year-round fine weather, you can always head to the Southern Hemisphere to flip the seasons around. Over in New Zealand, you’ll find Rotorua – an area which hosted the 2006 Mountain Bike World Championships and offers over 100km of trails to get adventurous with.
On a tangent from the picturesque road settings of the other locations mentioned, Rotorua offers a rugged and potentially muddy alternative for those looking for a different kind of exhilaration.
So, there you have it – five of the best cycling destinations you can find across the world. Now it’s just a matter of getting there, and what better way to start a demanding holiday with a completely undemanding flight.
At VistaJet, we offer true global reach, making us the perfect travel partner for any adventure away, whether that’s to the wet and wild of Rotorua or the stunning views of the Dolomites. If you want to find out more about how we can help start your adventure off on the perfect footing, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.