A lot of things to write, about this Europe trip which is already underway. I am lazing around at a campsite this Sunday afternoon. My tent is well shaded by surrounding trees so I can spend time in it without getting baked. 🙂
One of the common questions a lot of people have asked is Why Solo Cycling & Camping.
Here I would like to first touch upon – planning your first Europe trip. For most avid travelers including me, Europe is a dream destination. And it is not a easy one given the money, visa and work-leave requirements.
Everywhere, I am repeatedly highlighting, how important it is for a person to know themselves before doing something. Do what is right for You! This is what I did and it is what I would suggest to people when they are planning their first Europe trip.
What do you want from it? What do you enjoy when traveling? What will make it very memorable for you?
Because whatever your travel need and interests are, Schengen with 27 countries will offer it. And as per those interests you can plan your trip. Also remember, you can never do all of it! So don’t run around trying to do so many points… Just figure what you truly want from your trip and plan accordingly.
So I had only a few things in mind at first,
– no crowds
– cool temperature
– pushing my solo experience further, as this is an overall safer place for solo woman
While the first two are quite generic the third point was really challenging.
How should I push further my solo experience?
While researching I came across how big and popular the cycling culture was in Europe. It seemed really exciting and it also gave me a way to just be on the road on my own in a way that I might never do in India.
And there were many reasons why this solo cycling and camping trip idea worked for me.
– solitude : it would give me the solitude I was looking for. Away from crowds, close to nature and just on my own.
– slow travel : I am anyway a slow traveler. Spending many days in one location. This mode of transport also excited me as a slow travel opportunity through many quaint villages and towns.
– cycling : I grew up on a cycle. N after the days of childhood I never really cycled seriously but I think that something about cycling really appealed to me and felt right. I remember often as a kid I wanted to ride away on my yellow BMX. However, the traffic jammed roads and highways with trucks pounding down, quickly scared me out of this idea. I think deep down though, I always wanted to do this.
– route less : I always wanted to travel without a planned route in mind. Cycle traveling is ideal for it.
– other far off places : this way of traveling opens up possibilities of traveling the RIGHT way in many other places. Iceland comes to mind. How else would one travel in those places which are so remote and unhabitated?
– budget : and over time this might be a more budget way of traveling. I don’t know yet, only after I do my trip math will I know.
So all of these various culminated in me really wanting to do this.
I was still of course not sure because everything was new! I had absolutely no idea of long distance cycling nor camping.
But then I spoke to the only person who I knew at that time who had done such a trip. Kunal Mithrill. I had heard a barcamp talk by him earlier. So I connected with… “I want to do this kind of trip but I have many Qs. Starting from, where do I get a bike?”
From there on it was kind of easy because Kunal made it sound all damn easy. Hehe. Believe it isn’t really “easy”. But it all turned out to be quite manageable. And from there on, I just kept finishing off one thing and next, to get this trip to happen. 🙂
Another blog on stuff to do for such a trip later 🙂
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