The plan was to cycle from the northernmost point of Europe, Nordkapp in Norway, to the southernmost point, Tarifa in Spain, then have a brief break before pedalling along the Mediterranean coast and down to Istanbul. It’s was a glorious adventure!
I knew where I was starting from, and the key places I’d like to visit along the way, however I tend to make things up a bit as I go along in case I suddenly decide to spend a few days somewhere, or change route to take in somewhere interesting.
I prefer to make final route decisions as I go, so I’m not constrained by having to be somewhere by such and such a time. One of the wonderful things about cycle touring is you have everything you need, including your mode of transport, on your bike, especially if you’re happy to camp, so you’re pretty self sufficient and massively flexible, as long as you have the time spare.
My route started in Nordkapp, Norway, then I pedalled South nipping through a corner of Finland down into Sweden. A long ride down the coast of Sweden took me Denmark, then Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, France, and Spain. I finished the first part of this tour when I reached Tarifa, the southernmost point of Europe.
I considered a brief sojourn over to Morocco, but decided to leave that for another visit when I could do it justice; it looked so close, with lights twinkling just over the straits. Back to Spain and pedalling along the Mediterranean coast through France, northern Italy, Slovenia, Croatia, Albania, Greece and on to Turkey and Istanbul. Then it was back to the UK along a bit of the Danube.
Total countries ended up at around 22, with plenty I’d love to go back to.
Future adventures currently in planning stages.