The Art of Slow Travel & The Benefits of a Slow Travel Bike Holiday

luxury glamping at Kissing gate accommodation

As cycle tour operators, we experience seeing the joy of expectation when our customers are embarking on a cycle tour. A combination of setting out on a cycling adventure ( knowing that all of the logistics have been taken care of), being on holiday away from work and maybe being on holiday with friends who they don’t often get to spend time with. We also can’t help noticing some things that are becoming more common. Firstly, quite often people are on holiday with their work ( laptop bags as part of their luggage and the necessity to have accommodation with good Wi-Fi coverage, so work can be done online). The second and most obvious change is the number of people who opt to do a bike tour on an E-Bike. The benefits of such a tour are well documented, however the one significant downside to an E-Bike tour is less so. It is very noticeable that people setting out on an e-bike have more to ‘worry’ about than when using a regular bike and their sense of freedom is noticeably reduced. Their main concern is one of range anxiety, which is a perceived problem, rather than an actual one. Our E-bikes have lots more range than any segment of a tour would ever require, but they still feel they have to watch their battery usage. As the famous Stoic philosopher, Seneca said “ We suffer more often in imagination than in reality”. The alternative to this perceived/imagined problem, that is a drain on pure enjoyment, is very obvious and one that is displayed by those customers who opt for regular bikes. The difference between the two groups is very pronounced. The regular bike users, set off without concerns based on the ‘what ifs’ from the E-Bike users (not all, but many). They simply set off, once familiar with gears and brakes, safe in the knowledge, that all they have to do is pedal.
The other noticeable difference between regular bike users and some E-Bike cyclists is that, the regular bike cyclists never want to get to their destination as quickly as possible. In the season that has just finished, we have had a few groups on multi-day tours, who want e-bikes to get the ‘cycling part’ of the day over with, so that après cycling can be enjoyed as soon as possible. I am not saying there is a wrong and right way to approach a cycle tour, but it seems a bit of a waste if you don’t want to take time to enjoy the process of cycling and take in what the route has to offer along the way.
Given our observations we have developed a cycle tour for those who really want to ‘Unplug to Recharge’, enjoying simple happiness on a bike with the Slow Travel approach to a few days ( or more ) of care-free cycle touring and relaxation.
In a world that often races against time, the concept of slow travel has emerged as a refreshing alternative. Imagine swapping the hustle and bustle of modern life for the rhythmic cadence of pedalling through picturesque landscapes on a slow travel bike holiday. This immersive experience not only provides a unique way to explore destinations but also offers a myriad of physical, mental, and environmental benefits. Here are some of the advantages of embracing the unhurried pace of a slow travel bike holiday.

Mindful Exploration:
One of the most compelling aspects of a slow travel bike holiday is the opportunity to engage in mindful exploration. Unlike fast-paced travel, where destinations become mere checkpoints, slow travel encourages us to savour the journey itself. Cyclists can connect with their surroundings on a deeper level. This mindful engagement fosters a profound appreciation for the beauty and culture of the places visited.
Health and Wellness:
The health benefits of a slow travel bike holiday are many. Cycling is a low-impact exercise that provides a full-body workout, enhancing cardiovascular fitness, muscle strength, and joint flexibility. If that sounds too much like hard work ,remember it can also be a gentle form of exercise, going at a leisurely pace, where you can daydream and feel that you have truly escaped the day-to-day routines and demands The rhythmic motion of pedalling has therapeutic effects, reducing stress and promoting mental well-being.
Environmental Sustainability:
As the world grapples with environmental challenges, adopting sustainable travel practices has become a priority for many. Slow travel by bike is inherently eco-friendly, emitting zero carbon emissions and minimizing the ecological footprint. By opting for pedal power over motorized transport, cyclists contribute to the conservation of natural resources and help preserve the pristine beauty of the destinations they explore.
Cultural Connection:
A slow travel bike holiday is a gateway to authentic cultural connection. By moving at a pace that allows for interaction with locals, cyclists gain insights into the traditions, customs, and daily lives of the communities they encounter. The ability to stop spontaneously, engage in conversations, and participate in local activities fosters a genuine connection with the people and cultures along the route. This cultural exchange adds depth and richness to the travel experience, transcending the superficiality of traditional tourism.
Connection with Nature:
The simple act of cycling through diverse landscapes brings travellers closer to nature. Breathing in fresh air, listening to the rustle of leaves, and witnessing the changing scenery create a profound connection with the environment, fostering a sense of tranquillity and appreciation for the planet’s beauty.
Stress Reduction and Mental Well-being and Creativity:
In the relentless pace of contemporary life, stress has become an unwelcome companion. A slow travel bike holiday offers a respite from the demands of daily life, allowing cyclists to unwind and recharge. The absence of tight schedules and the freedom to explore at your own pace contribute to a sense of liberation and peace of mind. Many individuals find that the open road stimulates creativity, providing a fertile ground for new ideas and inspiration. Whether through journaling, photography, or simply absorbing the surroundings, slow travel fosters a conducive environment for personal growth and creative expression.
So Why Not Give a Pedal Slow holiday a try?
If you think you can’t afford the time for Slow Travel…..then you need to think, can you afford not to make time to slow down. In a world fixated on speed and instant gratification, the allure of a slow travel bike holiday lies in its ability to offer a different, more enriching way of experiencing the world. Beyond the physical and mental benefits, this mode of travel encourages a mindful and sustainable approach to exploring our planet. As you pedal through tranquil countryside, you not only embark on a journey of self-discovery but also contribute to the preservation of the Earth’s beauty for generations to come. So, the next time you plan a getaway, consider the transformative power of a slow travel bike holiday – a journey that is not just about the destination, but about embracing the beauty of the path less travelled.

Click here to share

Are you thinking of a cycle tour?

Do you want to know how to choose the right one for you?

Let us guide you in the right direction

Thanks, but I don’t need this information

Great, just enter your details so we can send you the Ebook