You rise early, eat a hearty breakfast and hop on your bike. During the next few hours you and a few trip-mates pedal along a quiet lane past a field of lavender, inhaling rural France, or pause by a rice paddy in Vietnam to snap a photo of a water buffalo pulling a plow. At the end of a satisfying day, you tuck into an excellent meal at a comfortable inn, then fall into a deep sleep, ready for more two-wheeled adventures tomorrow.
Bike tours are one of the most pleasurable ways to see the world. Their pace allows encounters with locals and a deeper appreciation of the landscape.
See Also: As You Bike It
And you don't have to be Lance Armstrong to take a bike tour. Adventure travel companies offer a wide range of biking trips, many designed for beginning and intermediate bikers. Beginner trips generally travel about 30 miles a day on mostly flat terrain, and intermediate trips cover 35 miles with some hills. If you get tired, there's always a support van to pick you up.
In other words, there's a trip to fit just about every level of biking ambition and experience. Here are three typical tours that illustrate the range, in budget and location, of two-wheeled tours. Saddle up!