Geneva to Milan: with some mountains in between

With a heavy heart I bid more friends farewell and set out from Geneva for what I hoped would be a nice relaxing day. Indeed it started well as I rode around the south side of Lac Leman along gentle roads with little gradient. I stopped in at a couple of lovely spa towns: Thonon…

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Switzerland: Easy riding

I crossed into Switzerland north of Basel and it wasn’t long before I found a cycle route sign pointing where I wanted to go.  This has been a feature of riding in Switzerland to date: there is always a cycle path where you want to go. These paths are incredibly easy to follow and made…

Along the Saar and down to Strasbourg

After leaving Luxembourg I reached the river Saar and followed this through a progression of towns named such that you’d be sure which river they were on: Saarlouis, Saarbrucken and Saarguemines. Some parts of the river were pretty but a lot was industrial as the region is famed for its coal output. Riding through I…

Out of Luxembourg

For the past couple of days I’ve been in Luxembourg staying with my friends Dora and Pavel, who took hospitality to new levels; I was so well fed I was surprised my bike didn’t collapse under me when I mounted to leave! The ride out of Luxemburg was great, nice easy roads made for cycling…

Belgium

I arrived in Belgium on 16 August to some disappointment as they appeared to have forgotten to put a border in where I crossed at Watou.  I forgave the Belgians in light of the excellent cycle network they have in the west, France was good but this was amazing!  Towns linked by dedicated cycle lanes…

The Crossing and France

Crossing the channel turned out to be a lot easier than expected.  Just rode up to the ferry terminal and into the ticketing office: ‘Calais please with a bike’ ‘No, one way please’ And off I went following a red line painted on the road to the boat.  I did get pulled over for a rather…

Kent

I’m writing this on the ferry across to France, somewhat worried about my bike down in the car deck… Yesterday I rode across Kent which was absolutely beautiful, from Tunbridge Wells through.  Golden barley rippled in the sun as pretty little village gave way to pretty little village. I hadn’t realised Kent was so hilly,…

Day two

Well my second day in the saddle was much like first, just a bit grimmer weather wise.  Happily going a longer distance hasn’t crippled me either as I racked up 100 km today albeit slower than I’d like. I blame the town of Crawley for this…it was an absolute nightmare to navigate and took me…

Day one

Well I finally set off today and managed to complete the distance I’d set.  I did 90km; a lot shorter than the practice run and I feel a lot better for it. Everything went fairly smoothly, only getting lost once which I think I can put down to using pages ripped from a 2005 road…