Cycle Touring With Your Own Bike Transport

Do you have lots of time, but on a budget? Cycle touring with bike transport is a fantastic way to see the countryside while getting from A to B. Combine this with backpacking or camping and it can cost almost nothing. Cycle touring can be hard work, but it is well worth the effort.

What Is Cycle Touring?

The freedom to go anywhere, the ability to get off the beaten track as well as visit major attractions. Its the possibility of enjoying local cultures without the normal tourist hype. You can have experiences that no other forms of travel can bring. 

Using bike transport for cycle touring is more about your 'mental strength' than your age, physical strength or cycling ability. You must be able to rise above being alone and sometimes lonely. Your bike and equipment also play a vital role on how much enjoyment you will have.

What Type Of Bike Do I Need?

Choosing the right bike for you and your destination and the correct equipment will make or break your journey. You must really plan your journey and choose your bike based on: 

  • The length of your journey
  • Which countries you are planning on riding through
  • The expected road surface - off-road, on-road, asphalt and quality of road
  • The expected weather of your destination
  • Distance between stops
  • How much luggage you want to and can carry

Your final choice of bike transport will be based on all of the above criteria. It may be a modified road bike, a hybrid or even a mountain bike. You should get your bike fitted to your dimensions and flexibility by a bike specialist. They will help you choose the right seat, handle bars and gearing for your bike. 


If your 'position' on your bike is not correct, you will become fatigued easily, become sore quickly and will most likely end up with an injury, which could ruin your holiday.

What Equipment Do I Need?

Basically you want your equipment to be light-weight, if not ultra-light-weight, and as small as possible. Your equipment will be based on how independent you want to travel. Are you camping as well? 

All the equipment you need for camping while cycle touring:

A traditional packing checklist for your bike will include: 

  • Spare tyres (preferably folding tyres), spare tubes and a puncture kit
  • Panniers - front, back and for your handlebars
  • Lights - front and rear
  • A durable bike lock with combination locks for your panniers

What clothing do you need?

  • Comfortable cycle clothing - make sure pants (nicks) have a comfortable chamois
  • Bright cycling jerseys may look silly to some people, but they make you visible to traffic and pedestrians, and they have pockets on your back for extra storage
  • Lightweight rain jacket
  • Lightweight clothing - remember the more you take, the more weight you are riding with

Bike Transport - Where Can I Actually Go?

You can ride your bike almost anywhere. Once you have some cycle touring experience and some physical fitness, any country or destination is a possibility! 

When we were backpacking through China, we decided to cycle tour for a couple of days through the Yangshuo Valley. We left most of our travel gear at a hostel, we rented our bikes and with a road map, just traveled through the country side staying at small guesthouses. 

For more information on bike transport and cycling touring check out It has great bike tour reviews and bicycle adventures with additional information about countries, mechanics, do's and don'ts and much more. Read stories about cycling in China, Malaysia, Laos, Thailand, India, Pakistan, Turkey and many more.

Bike Transport - Essentials

Before you leave home there a few things you must do:

  • Learn how to change a tyre! Our local bike shop provides demonstrations when you purchase a bike from them.
  • Build up your cycling tolerance, especially your endurance sitting on a bike seat and riding with all that extra weight.
  • Make sure all your paper work is in order - passportsvisas and your travel insurance.
  • Plan your journey and keep your family and friends updated on your progress.

If you have found our tips and advice on bike transport helpful or would like to leave some advice for other travelers, please leave comments below. 

Our travel packing lists and packing checklists will make sure you do not forget anything essential.  When you are travelling, packing your belongings is half the battle. Read all our tips and advice on packing here

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