While many of the books we pull from the extensive shelves of the Pezcyclingnews library, or the videos we review, are about pro riders, great races and bicycle technology, we have gone further afield and included epic distance bikepacking rides, the history of mountain biking and even a look at philosophical elements of riding. But we recently received a book that reminded us of one of the great joys of riding: the simple pleasures of bike touring as a way to experience different landscapes, cultures, history and, of course, food. There are, of course, many companies that will provide one with a complete package for touring in Europe at a wide range of cost but organizing your own tour is not really that difficult and besides saving some money (well, a lot, actually) it gives you a real sense of accomplishment and discovery.
“Cycling Along Europe’s Rivers” by Michael Lyon is subtitled “Bicycle Touring Made Easy and Affordable” and pretty much delivers on this promise. The author has nearly three decades of experience cycling in Europe annually and the book is now in its third edition. This would have been an invaluable book when I began to plan my first European bike tour a (cough cough) long time ago: pre-Internet, pre-GPS, pre-useful cycling maps.
The book is aimed primarily at a North American audience but everyone will find something of value. For someone wishing to do a bike tour, the first half of the book covers all the practical elements, […]