Travelling is out of the question for me for a long while yet, but a girl can dream. I’ve been missing cycle touring. I’m not sure how much more of that I can do, but I’d still like to try. We learned quite a number of lessons when we went on our family cycle tour in 2016. One of them is that the setup we had for our bikes wasn’t the best for our situation. If we take the road on by bike again, I’d like to try something different. Do you also dream of family cycle touring? If so, check out the ideas below for some awesome touring bike setups that are designed with families in mind.
Cycle Touring with Kids is a blast. It’s fun, it’s challenging, and it changes your perspective on family travel.
If you’ve been following this blog a while, you know we’ve recently come back from a 9-month RV adventure with our three kids, now ages 9, 7, and 5. But this wasn’t our first family adventure. When the kids were 6, 4, and 2, we took off for a 567-kilometer cycle adventure from Kingston, Ontario, to London, Ontario, where my parents and brother & family live.
Family cycle touring is awesome!
And while you can just use regular bikes to go touring with your family, family touring bikes make life easier and more exciting on the road. We don’t have too many fancy bikes (though we do have lots of different types of bicycles), but if you can fit one of these awesome family touring bikes in your budget, we definitely recommend it 🙂
So eons ago, I had promised I’d write a post about what we carried with us on our cycle tour. I did talk about our gear, as well as the camping stuff we brought along, but I never did write that post about what exactly was in those saddle bags. Well, better late than never, I say!
After a restful sleep on a real bed in Woodstock, we headed out to our final destination. We hit a bit of rain, but it was light enough not to be bothersome.
We noticed that we passed the part of Woodstock that had some restaurants, but it wasn’t even 11:00 a.m. yet, so we decided to keep pedalling. We were out of food at this point, so that may have been an unwise decision. At the same time, it opened the door for one of the amazing experiences of this trip.
We enjoyed our ride from Brantford to Woodstock.
On the way, we stopped at a farm and asked the young guy who was working on the yard if we could stop and eat lunch on his front lawn. He said yes, and we were able to enjoy a nice meal under a gorgeous weeping willow—that’s my favourite tree, so this was really nice. We were able to use the facilities as well, which was great.
After our lovely time in Hamilton, we headed out to Brantford via the Hamilton-Brantford Rail-Trail.
It was a gorgeous trail, and we got to see some horses during a portion of it. The kids also made friends with a little caterpillar that hung out on daddy’s vest for a while, then on K-girl’s arm.
In Hamilton, we stayed with a lovely family who has lots of experience cycle touring. They are the Pedal Powered Family, and they’re always ready to receive visitors. It was so wonderful to experience such amazing generosity, and I learned a wonderful lesson during my time with this family.
They have two children, and our kids were ecstatic to have playmates again. They also had a pretty cool tree-house bed that the kids got to sleep in.
After a relaxing time of recovery in Toronto, we headed out to Mississauga. We got to see some nice things in Toronto, including the wavy boardwalk I mentioned in another blog post, as well as this cool bridge. I love bridges, and methinks perhaps one day I’ll do a bridge-themed trip, where I get to go see all the cool bridges all over the world…. Mmm another item for my bucket list.
After a relaxing time at Uncle Neil and Aunt Cindy’s house, we headed out to Toronto. Because we had decided to sleep in downtown Toronto, it wasn’t possible to get a host there—at least not one capable of accommodating a family of 5 cycle tourists carrying a bunch of gear. So I bid on a hotel in downtown Toronto, as I usually do when I need to stay at hotels. I usually use Priceline for this. We got a pretty nice hotel with a pool and a little kitchenette, which was awesome. I unwittingly booked it in pride village, so Katia was pretty happy, since she was really into rainbows this summer.