5 Best Cycling Destinations in 2024

Will 2024 be the year of your first cycling holiday? If the answer is yes (or even maybe), read on to find out about the 5 best cycling destinations in 2024, with lots of itineraries for your next cycling adventure!

If you know us personally, or follow us on Instagram or Strava, you’ll be aware that we are both crazy about cycling. What started out as a way to keep fit and escape lockdown has turned into a real passion – and now, four years and 20,000 km on two wheels later, our love for cycling is more alive than ever. 

A cycling adventure is ideal for sustainable-minded travellers. Moving around by bicycle, your carbon emissions are greatly reduced. You also get the opportunity to explore lesser-visited destinations, travelling slowly and stopping in small towns and villages that most tourists tend to overlook.

Cycling holidays are usually planned away from the tourist peak season. In Europe, the high season coincides with summer, too hot and busy to cycle around. Months like April/May and September/October are ideal to cycle pretty much all over Europe, and in some destinations, winter is also a great time to travel around by bike.

If you are in Italy and want to learn more about the best cycling destinations to plan your next adventure, we highly recommend visiting the next Fiera del Cicloturismo, taking place in Bologna from April 5th to 7th. Besides a vast expo area with cycling destinations from all over the world, you can also see the newest bikes and cycling apparel, and attend talks and workshops on active tourism.

Let’s move on to looking at the 5 best cycling destinations in 2024, why they’re ideal for cycling, and some itinerary suggestions!

Where to Go Cycling in 2024

1) Sicily

best cycling destinations sicily
Admiring the beauty of Sicilian towns

There are so many reasons to love Sicily – from its scenic coasts to its undiscovered mountains, captivating history and multifaceted culture, landscape diversity and delicious cuisine… trust me, I could keep going forever!

We recently visited the island on a two-week itinerary that included the 9 best villages in Sicily, all rarely visited destinations located in the interior of the island. Driving around, we kept saying we should return to explore by bike, and I guess maybe it’s about time we start planning!

Why it’s a great cycling destination – Sicily has a warm climate year-round, and with the exceptions of mountainous areas winters are quite mild. Most cycling itineraries include the interior, sparsely inhabited and rarely visited, where traffic is not usually a concern. To know more about cycling in Sicily (and Italy in general), here are 5 reasons to choose Italy for your next bike holiday!

Sicily Cycling Itineraries

  • Via dei Tramonti – 150 km from Trapani to Selinunte between scenic coastal roads, salt pans, archaeological sites and historic villages.
  • Sicily Divide – 450 km to discover the island’s interior.
  • Ciclovia dei Parchi – a challenging itinerary focusing on nature, from Etna to the Madonie and Peloritani mountain ranges.

2) Turkey

Did anyone say turquoise?

There’s a lot more to Turkey besides the busy (yet amazing) streets of Istanbul and the lunar landscape of Cappadocia. Visit Mardin, one of the most ancient cities in the world, and be amazed by the giant stone heads of Nemrut Dagi – getting there by bike is even more fun!

Why it’s a great cycling destination – Turkey is very vast and has an excellent network of roads, offering countless cycling itineraries. The country is also known for the friendliness and hospitality of locals – we can guarantee that in the remotest areas of the country you’ll receive lots of dinner invitations!

Turkey Cycling Itineraries

  • Eurovelo 8 – a 500 km itinerary connecting Pergamon to Ephesus, two of the most important archaeological sites in Turkey, via beaches, country villages and more ancient sites.
  • Thracian Way – a tour to discover Thrace, the Turkish region connected to Europe. From the city of Edirne, cycle through forests to Kırklareli, and then onwards to Istanbul.
  • Via del Mediterraneo – 500 km from Antalya to Mersin, follow a mix of secondary roads and cycle trails with the turquoise waters of the Mediterranean by your side.

3) Jordan

Cycling in the Jordanian desert

Jordan has a very special place in our hearts. It was the first blog trip we ever took in 2013, one amazing week between Aqaba, Petra and the desert of Wadi Rum. A few years later we found out about the Jordan Trail, a hiking trail crossing the country from north to south, and always meant to visit. Guess what? There’s also a cycling version of the Jordan Trail now!

Why it’s a great cycling destination – the Jordan Bike Trail is an established itinerary with 12 stages, and on the website you can find GPX maps and info about distance, elevation, where to eat and stay, and what to see along the way. Winters are mild and locals are incredibly helpful and hospitable.

Jordan Cycling Itineraries

  • Jordan Bike Trail – 730 km and 20,000 meters of elevation gain, from Um Qais in the north to the port of Aqaba on the Red Sea. The itinerary starts with the hills and olive groves in the north of the country, before reaching the dramatic canyons and otherworldly landscapes of the Dead Sea, then Petra and the red desert of Wadi Rum, and finally Aqaba.

4) Spain

best cycling destinations spain
Cycling in Catalunya

Spain has been chosen as a place of residence by many pro cyclists – the mild climate and vicinity of mountains to the coast make it the perfect winter training ground. We visited Spain countless times over the years, hiking the Camino de Santiago as well as the GR1 in the Pyrenees and many trails in the Ripolles and Alt Empordà regions of Catalunya, regions that are also great to explore by bike!

Why it’s a great cycling destination – let’s focus on two regions, Catalunya and the Canary Islands. The former offers a great mix of coastal cycle paths and mountain itineraries through the Pyrenees, all within a short distance to one another. It’s also one of the best food destinations in Europe, with excellent restaurants like the one we visited in Cadaques!

The Canary Islands are the easiest place for winter sun in Europe, popular with cyclists and triathletes during the winter months. For this reason, the roads are in good conditions and locals are very respectful of cyclists.

Spain Cycling Itineraries

  • Camino de Santiago in Catalunya – the Catalan branch of the famous pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela is also ideal for cyclists. It covers a distance of 350 km across the region, connecting sacred sites like the Montserrat Monastery and San Juan de la Peña, where the Holy Grail was believed to be kept.
  • Camino de Santiago in Gran Canaria – the only branch of the Camino outside continental Spain, from the Maspalomas lighthouse in the south of Gran Canaria, to the centre of the island via Tunte e Tejeda, until the northern coast in Galdar, where the itinerary ends at the Church of Santiago de Los Caballeros.

5) Croatia

best cycling destinations croatia
What a view!

Croatia is another popular place for winter cycling, and a true up-and-coming destination in the world of European cycling with stage races like the CRO Race, and gravel adventures open to everyone, such as Istria 300 – yes, a 300 km race across Istria.

We had the privilege of visiting Croatia several times over the years – our most recent trip was to Rijeka, the 2020 European Culture Capital.

Why it’s a great cycling destination – Croatia has 145 dedicated cycle paths, covering a total distance of 4500 km. There are options for everyone, from easy family-friendly coastal paths to more challenging itineraries measuring 100 km or longer. Dalmatia is especially popular as a winter cycling destination, because of its scenic beauty and mild climate.

Croatia Cycling Itineraries

  • Game of Thrones – a 55 km itinerary around Split covering several Game of Thrones filming locations, such as Diocletian’s cellars, Antoničin cave and mill and Klis fortress. The route also includes the estuary of the Žrnovnica river, ancient Salona, and the Vranjic e Marjan forest parks.
  • Panoramic Dalmatia – ideal for a day out on two wheels from Split, this itinerary connects the village of Stara Sela to Gornja Podstrana, Gornja Duća and Omiš, a loop with spectacular views over Split and the Dalmatian Coast.