Hobby cyclists who happen to go on a vacation to Scotland always find time to go on a cycling tour in the Highlands. With so many magnificent sceneries to see along its roads and coastlines, nobody would ever want to skip the chance to embark on a cycling tour.
There are a couple of bicycles for hire in Inverness so you don’t need to worry about bringing yours on your trip. These rental companies would even suggest to you the best cycling routes where the Loch Ness 360 is among the most visited one.
The next thing you might worry about, though, are your valuables. When you take a cycling tour in the Highlands, the trip wouldn’t last for just a few hours. Not unless you are joining a competition and you’re planning to round the circle within the day. But for tourists, the views are irresistible that it’s almost impossible to stop and enjoy the view. And as you go around the route, you will pass through different towns with their own unique beauty so it would be nice to complete your Scotland cycling experience by stopping at these towns.
Going back to your things, it will surely be difficult to carry a full luggage on your bike. It’s heavy and it’s a distraction. It can even become the cause of your accident. Now, this is where luggage transport companies become useful.
Before going on a cycling tour, you can just call a transport service provider like the Inverness Baggage to handle your bags from your first hotel to your next hotels. But there are things you need to bring with you as you cycle too. Things like money, towels, extra clothes, and refreshments. Others can already be carried by your Inverness Baggage service.
General Packing Tips for Your Cycling Tour in Inverness
Packing well will make your holiday more comfortable and ultimately more enjoyable, however knowing exactly what to pack for a cycling tour can sometimes be tricky. To help you, we’ve used our years of experience of packing for cycling tours to put together a guide for what to include. This isn’t a complete list but is designed to make it easier for you to know what to pack and what to leave behind for your holiday.
When deciding what clothes to pack for a cycling tour, you should always consider where and when we’ll be cycling. Are you cycling on summer or winter? Autumn or fall? The clothes you should pack when cycling in Inverness on winter should be thicker and warmer than your usual cycling outfit. But be sure to find one that isn’t too bulky and heavy. This will make it extra difficult for you to cycle through the snow and against the wind when you are in heavy clothes.
As a general rule for clothing, we always recommend taking layers that can be easily removed/added if the weather changes during a ride.
Here are other clothes you should consider packing:
- Padded cycling shorts – To wear under your cycling clothes so you won’t feel strained after hours of cycling. Definitely worth investing in a pair if you haven’t got some already!
- Shorts – To go on top of your padded shorts. These should be comfortable to wear and you may wish to take a few pairs. For cooler climates or early/late in the season, you may want to consider packing three-quarter length shorts or tights/leggings.
- Lightweight fleece – A must-have layer to keep you warm on cooler rides. We’d always recommend having one in your pannier, especially for Hotel & Bike tours where you may beat your luggage transfer to your hotel – pop on your fleece or sweater and go and explore or have a beer.
- Breathable top – We would recommend packing a sensible number of breathable tops for the duration of your tour. We always pack comfortable tops that don’t flap around as you ride.
- Waterproof jacket – A lightweight, foldable waterproof is always important to have to hand. If you can get a jacket that is also windproof, this may come in handy too.
- Comfortable shoes – Packing a light, durable pair of trainers/sneakers is a must! We’d recommend something that will be comfortable as you ride and can be used for sightseeing or walking around local towns. There is no need to pack SPD’s as the bikes that are available to hire have standard pedals.
- Non-cycling clothes – The great thing about cycling tours in Inverness is that they’re not all about the cycling! After a refreshing shower at your hotel or on your boat, you will have time to explore local towns, stop for a drink or enjoy a meal. These non-cycling tours can be handled for you by your Inverness Baggage luggage transport service.
- Cycling Accessories
Most cycling equipment that you will need for your ride will be provided to you when you rent a bike, but just in case, we recommend bringing the following with you:
- A helmet – We strongly recommend wearing a suitable cycling helmet on your tour. We recommend bringing your own helmet with you for comfort and safety, although helmets may be available to hire on some tours.
- Fingerless biking gloves – Gripping handlebars can lead to calluses or blisters on your hands, but a comfy pair of bike gloves should help to stop these forming.
- Sunglasses – Riding into sunlight can impair your vision, we would recommend bringing a pair of sunglasses that will fit comfortably and not fall off as you ride.
- Basic first-aid kit – It’s useful to have a basic first-aid kit in your pannier as you cycle. Cuts or scrapes can occasionally happen so make sure it includes a set of plasters, together with painkillers, bandages and any essential medication you may need.
- Small waterproof bag – Alongside the pannier provided, you may wish to bring a small waterproof bag to store essential items as you ride.
- Sunscreen & lip-balm – Staying safe in the sunshine is essential. Regardless of where you are cycling, we always recommend bringing a practical amount of sunscreen with you to protect your skin.
Other Items to Consider
When putting together a packing list, you may also wish to consider the following:
- Appropriate luggage – When deciding which luggage to bring your belongings in, we recommend always considering the accommodation that you will be staying in. If you are staying aboard a boat, we advise bringing a flexible bag that can fit into the compact storage spaces in your cabin. If your tour is the typical cycling tour, your luggage will be transported between hotels for you by luggage transport services like Inverness Baggage. We always recommend labeling your luggage. Plus for tours where you are staying in multiple hotels, it is essential you fill in the labels supplied on arrival correctly and attach them safely for efficient luggage transfers.
- Travel insurance documents – It’s wise to have a suitable travel insurance when you go on vacation abroad, no matter what you plan to do and where you wish to go. Please ensure that any insurance you book covers you for cycle touring. Print a copy of your travel insurance documents and keep them with you as you travel.
- Swimming gear – Many of cycling tours include rides near to lakes or the ocean, and a selection of our superior and deluxe class boats have hot tubs; if this is the case with your tour then you may wish to bring swimming gear with you to enjoy a relaxing dip!
- Camera – Taking a camera is a good idea for capturing memories of your trip. A large DSLR or similar may impede your cycling and most smartphones have cameras which create very good photos, so this may be all you need.
- Portable charger – If you are taking lots of photos on your mobile phone, you may wish to bring a small portable charger to ensure your phone’s battery doesn’t run flat.
- Plug adaptor – It’s always a good idea to check which plugs work in the country you are travelling to and pack adaptors where necessary.
- Snacks – On many of cycling tours, you can stock up on local snacks to keep you sustained during rides, but in some locations, this may not always be possible so packing a small selection of snacks can help to keep you riding. We like to take snacks that are pre-wrapped and won’t melt!
- A good book – This one is up to you, but we always like to bring an entertaining read with us!
- Bike locks – If you are hiring a bike, be sure that locks for your bike will be provided.
- Spares and tools – A small repair kit for punctures will be provided if you hire a bike. We recommend that if you experience any other issues with your bike that you call the local number provided in your travel documents.
- Route notes and a map – Route notes and a map are provided on self-guided tours. Although you have your Google maps, it’s still wise to have a printed copy since there are places where data is weak.
- Local contact number – During your trip help is on hand from our local operator, should you need it. You will be provided with the contact details for the local operator in your holiday documents which will be sent to you in the period before you travel.
Going on a cycling tour in the Highlands is always fascinating. It will be a waste to go on a vacation to Scotland without experiencing it. And to make the most of the trip, let a reputable luggage transport company like Inverness Baggage take care of your bag so you don’t have a heavy load with you that you should worry about.