My Bicycle Touring Travel Plans For 2014

By Darren Alff

PLEASE NOTE: This article is no longer current. Please view this updated itinerary instead.

bicycle touring route around the baltic sea

PLEASE NOTE: This article is no longer current. Please view this updated travel itinerary instead.

2014 is going to be an incredible year for Bicycle Touring Pro! Not only will I be bicycle touring across 14+ countries on three different continents, but I am also going to be:

  1. Giving you the opportunity to go bicycle touring with me (Keep reading to find out more. The dates in red are the parts of my bicycle tour this year where I am looking for people like you to travel with me).
  2. Individually coaching 10+ individuals and working with them to plan, prepare for, and execute their very own self-supported bicycle touring adventures.
  3. Releasing a new and completely updated edition of my wildly popular book, The Bicycle Traveler’s Blueprint, which teaches you everything you need to know about conducting the bicycle tour of your dreams.

Like I said, 2014 is going to be an incredible year… and I hope that you will follow along as I post my best bicycle touring tips, resources, photos, videos and updates here on the website at www.bicycletouringpro.com… and on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram and Pinterest.

Now that that’s out of the way, let me tell you about my bicycle touring plans for 2014…

January – May: Exploring Southern California, USA

Ventura California beach

In order to travel for one full year, I’ve rented out my home in the mountains of Utah and have committed to twelve months of non-stop travel. I’ll be staying with my parents in Ventura County, California for the first few months of the year. During this time I will be conducting short daily rides throughout the county and participating in overnight bicycle tours with my friends on the weekends. After cycling each day, I’ll return home and spend the evenings working on the new and improved version of “The Bicycle Traveler’s Blueprint.” I’m working hard to turn this book into the biggest and best resource about bicycle touring that has ever been written, so it is a big project, but I hope to have it finished by April, 2014.

Dates Unknown: Coronado Island & San Diego, California

Hotel Del in Coronado, California

My aunt and uncle live on Coronado island, so at some point during the first few months of the year I plan to ride down to San Diego county and say with them for a little while. During this time I will again be working on the updates to “The Bicycle Traveler’s Blueprint” and I’ll be cycling around during the day, exploring San Diego county on my bicycle.

Dates Unknown: Bicycle Touring in Baja, Mexico

Baja Mexico sunset

Once again, I’m not sure on the dates for this, but I am hoping to ride my bike down into Mexico at some point during the month of February or March, 2014. I plan to cross into Mexico from the US border in Tijuanna and then cycle south down through Baja to Ensenada, La Paz and Cabo San Lucas. I might just fly back to San Diego or Los Angeles once I reach the southern tip of Baja, or I might catch the ferry from La Paz over to Topolobampo and then cycle north from there back to my parents’ house in Ventura County. The dates for this trip are not yet set (and the trip may not even happen at all) because I am still working on getting my visa for the European leg of my bike tour and if that visa takes a long time to get, it may prevent me from making the Mexico bike tour a reality. I’ll update this page once I have more information.

May 17 – May 25: Danube Waltz Bicycle Tour in Austria with Rad & Reisen

Danube Waltz bicycle tour boat and hotel

As soon as I land in Europe this May I will be traveling to Passau, Germany for the start of an 8-day self-guided bicycle tour along the Danube River with a company called Rad & Reisen. Click here for more details on this bicycle tour. This is a very unique bicycle tour because during the day we will be riding our bicycles along the shore of the Danube river… and at night we will be eating and sleeping on-board a large boat that follows us down the river throughout the tour.

This is one of many opportunities for you to ride with me this year. If you are interested in joining me on this 8-day self-guided bicycle touring adventure down the beautiful Danube River, please contact Rad & Reisen directly and tell them you want to participate in the Danube Waltz self-guided bicycle tour with Darren Alff from Bicycle Touring Pro. The tour takes place between May 17th and May 25th, 2014.

May 26 – June 9: Short Stay in Poznan, Poland

Poznan Poland City Center

I’ll then fly back to Poznan, Poland and will stay in the city there for approximately two weeks. This will be my third time in Poznan… and I love the place! During my time in Poznan I will be visiting with some friends, riding my bicycle, taking table-tennis lessons and writing about my recent bicycle tour in Austria with Rad & Reisen.

June 10 – June 30: A Slow & Steady Bike Tour across Poland and Lithuania

Landscape photo from a bicycle tourin Lithuania

On the 10th of June I will leave Poznan, Poland and cycle north-east toward the city of Gdansk and the Poland/Lithuania border. I’ll cross into Lithuania and then slowly begin making my way east toward Belarus. I don’t have a strict schedule for this leg of the journey and I’m not even sure exactly where I’ll be going in Poland and Lithuania. I think I kind of want this leg of the trip to be open and flexible so that I’m not tied down with commitments and I can pretty much go wherever I please. If you live in Poland or Lithuania and you would like to host me or come out and ride with me for a day or two, please get in touch!

July 1- July 13: Cycle from Riga, Latvia to Tallinn, Estonia with Citybike LTD

Estonia forest

If you’ve ever dreamed of cycling through the (sometimes under-appreciated) countries of Latvia and Estonia, where beautiful beaches, enchanted forests and lovely people await, then now is your chance! Join me on a 13-day self-guided bicycle tour with CityBike LTD. We’ll sleep in guesthouses and tourist farms each night, cycle between 40 and 80 kilometers each day, and be assisted the entire way with turn-by-turn directions, lunch and dinner recommendations and a whole lot more. If you are interested in joining me on this incredible self-guided bicycle tour through Latvia and Estonia, please contact CityBike LTD directly and tell them you want to participate in the Riga to Tallinn self-guided bicycle tour with Darren Alff from Bicycle Touring Pro – taking place between July 1st and July 13th, 2014.

July 14 – August 1: Bike from Tallin, Estonia to Lake Oulujarvi, Finland

Finland forest bike road

After arriving in Tallinn, Estonia, I’ll cross the water by boat to Helsinki, Finland. I plan to participate in a 1-day bicycle tour of Helsinki with Bike Tours Helsinki… and then I’ll continue cycling north toward Lake Oulujarvi, where my next self-guided bicycle tour will begin.

August 2 – August 9: Lake Oulujarvi Self-Guided Bike Tour with Upitrek

Lake Oulujarvi, Finland

Here is another opportunity for you to go bicycle touring with me! The Lake Oulujärvi Cycling Tour is an 8-day self-guided bicycle tour that leads you along peaceful, well-maintained roads to sandy beaches along the shores of Finland’s famous Lake Oulujärvi. The route we’ll be taking goes mostly along the Tar Trail, which is one of the nine official Finnish tourist routes. At the end of each day of cycling, we’ll be staying in small hotels and camping cabins, each of which provides a good night’s sleep and a delicious dining experience. If you are interested in participating in this bicycle tour with me, please contact Upitrek and tell them you want to participate in the Lake Oulujarvi Self-Guided Cycling Tour with Darren Alff from BicycleTouringPro.com. The tour takes place between August 2nd and August 9th, 2014.

August 10 – October 9: Bicycle Tour across Finland, Sweden and Norway

Norway famous mountain

When the bicycle tour with Upitrek is over, I plan to spend the next two months slowly cycling my way across Finland, Sweden and Norway. I don’t have too many plans for this leg of the trip, but that’s how I want it to be. I want to have the time and freedom to go where I please, spend an extra day or two in locations that I like along the way, and maybe even make a few friends during my travels.

I am, however, looking for people to ride with me during this leg of the trip. Even if you just want to meet up for a day or two and ride with me, that would be wonderful! Get in contact if you live in Finland, Sweden or Norway (or you will be traveling through the area) and are interested in riding with me, hosting me at your home, or letting me sleep in your yard. It would be great to meet you!

October 10 – October 14: Copenhagen, Denmark

Copenhagen Denmark parked bicycles

The 5-month Europe leg of my bicycle touring adventures will end in Copenhagen Denmark. I plan to get to the city a few days before my flight to Taiwan on the 14th of October (also my 31st birthday!) so I can see the city and prepare my bicycle for it’s flight.

If you live in Copenhagen and either you or someone you know would be willing to host me (let me sleep in your yard or on your couch), please get in touch. I need a place to stay and I am on a budget!

October 15 – November 15: One-Month Bike Tour In Taiwan

Taiwan Temple at night

Finally, I will end my bicycle tour this year in the island nation of Taiwan. I’ll be cycling around Taiwan for approximately one month with a friend of mine named Kevin, who I met and rode with during the Bike Switzerland Challenge Tour in the summer of 2012. We’ll be cycling around Taiwan for one month with little to no plans. Our only plan at this stage is to go slow and enjoy the experience!

At this point in the planning process, I don’t know what I’ll be doing or where I’ll be going after my bicycle tour in Taiwan comes to an end. Maybe I’ll continue cycling in Asia? Maybe I’ll fly back home to visit my friends and family in the United States? Or maybe I’ll catch a flight down to Australia or New Zealand and continue traveling there? We’ll have to wait and see!

Stay tuned to BicycleTouringPro.com for my updates from the road… and be sure to follow the adventure on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram and Pinterest. And if you are interested in either hosting me during my travels this year… or maybe even cycling with at some point, please get in touch.

Photos by: angeloangelo, Reg Natarajan, Dan DeChiaro, jurvetson, mbell1975Bolshakov, Liga_Eglite, jurvetson, Miguel Virkkunen Carvalho, L.C. Nottaasen, News Oresund, and Luke Ma.

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15 Comments

  1. Mikael Nilsson

    January 14, 2014 at 7:39 am

    When you are leaving Norway and going down to Göteborg, you find us close to Uddevalla. Happy to meet you. Post your details later.

    • Bicycle Touring Pro

      January 17, 2014 at 1:55 pm

      Thanks so much Mikael. I’ve put you on my map so that when I get close to that area I can get in touch with you.

  2. Peter de Visser

    January 14, 2014 at 8:23 am

    Too bad our dates don’t fit.
    We start in Prague, 18th of July.
    To Slovak Rep. – Ukraine – Poland – Litauen – Letland …??…back home still to think about.
    Maybe we take a ferry to Kiel, Germany, or end up in Petersburg, Russia and fly back to Holland.

  3. Johnny

    January 14, 2014 at 12:29 pm

    Hi Darren,

    I would love to ride with you during your stay in Southern California. I’ll be up in Buellton for an Adventure Cycling training trip at the last week of March / beginning of April. I’d love to pick your brain on your travels and maybe do an interview for my blog. Please let me know if this is possible to setup a meeting.

    You’ve been a valuable resource for my bicycle touring adventure.

    Thanks,
    Johnny @ Milestone Rides

    • Bicycle Touring Pro

      January 17, 2014 at 1:52 pm

      Johnny,

      That would be great if we could meet up. I am a little south of Buellton. What are the dates of the Adventure Cycling training camp? Maybe I could make my way up to that area? Or maybe you could come down here to Ventura county before or after the camp?

  4. Fiona G

    January 14, 2014 at 2:06 pm

    This sounds like a GREAT year of travel. I’m looking forward to seeing all the pictures and hearing all the stories. I’m based in LA and would love to go riding if you’re in town for the day. Or even grab coffee, or something.

  5. Colleen Welch

    January 14, 2014 at 2:15 pm

    Are you going to do the Rallervegen in Norway? I will be going through Copenhagen to Oslo, but in June. I’m hoping to get to do the Rallervegen from Oslo to Bergen, but it might not be cleared of snow when I get there. In which case, I will take the train to Bergen from Oslo. Too bad our timing is not the same (or the direction either).

    • Bicycle Touring Pro

      January 17, 2014 at 1:50 pm

      Yes, I hope to get to the Rallervegen when I cycle through Norway. I’m not 100% certain of my route or timing in Norway just yet, but that is one of the main areas I hope to visit. And yes, too bad our timing is not quite the same. That would have been fun to meet up with you in Norway.

  6. Johnny

    January 17, 2014 at 6:59 pm

    Hi Darren,

    I almost missed your response until I read your latest post. You should look into a way to be notified of updates to your comments. This way you can keep the conversations going with your readers on your blog.

    Anyway, the training will be the first week of April including March 31st. I’m not sure if our instructors are open to have guests visit us at the training facilities so I think it’s probably best that we meet the week afterwards if that works for you. We can even take an overnight trip up to Ojai if you’re up for it. My friends at The Path Less Pedaled recently went and they loved it (http://pathlesspedaled.com/2014/01/rode-trip-exploring-ojai-by-bike/).

    Feel free to email me directly if that works better.

    Johnny at http://milestonerides.com

    • Bicycle Touring Pro

      January 17, 2014 at 7:25 pm

      Where do you normally live Johnny? Somewhere in California? Yes, I would be open to a bike trip in the Ojai region… as long as it doesn’t overlap with my trip to Mexico (I’m still not sure of the dates for that yet). Let’s make it happen. Keep in touch!

  7. Nader

    January 17, 2014 at 9:42 pm

    Hello
    Exactly when will you Execute your plan?
    Truly yours
    Nader Beglary

    • Bicycle Touring Pro

      January 18, 2014 at 11:48 pm

      The dates for the bike tour are posted in the article Nader. That’s when I’ll execute.

  8. sean fenton

    January 19, 2014 at 2:43 am

    stoked for this. this blog got me so unbelievably inspired last summer. I travel frequently as well, but not like you do. Stoked for Taiwan.

  9. Caleb

    January 22, 2014 at 9:23 am

    Looks like you are going to some awesome places. A bicycle tour would be so much fun. Thanks for sharing.

  10. Barry

    July 23, 2014 at 6:39 pm

    Sounds like a wonderful year full of bicycle touring. I am extremely envious of you taking the Tar Trail tour then the tours of Finland, Norway, Sweden, and Denmark! I love Scandinavia and really want to do some touring there, especially Finland. If you do this next year, I will do everything I can to do the Tar Trail with you.

    Copenhagen is a wonderful city for cycling. I am sure you have been there before, but if not, you will be absolutely amazed at the number of cyclists there. It has to be the cycling capital of the world (or at least close to the top). Enjoy! Cannot wait to read about your travels.

    -Barry

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