[Note my later updates below]
I retired early at the end of 2021 so that I can cycle across Europe. I will be leaving on March 1st, roughly following the route below, which uses several Eurovelo routes, at least as far as Croatia.
Why Croatia? I have already written about how Brexit has made longer travel much more difficult for UK citizens. I will have a maximum of 90 days to ride through the Schengen Zone (the passport-free area which covers most of Europe). Then I will have to spend at least 90 days in non-Schengen countries before continuing to Greece, where the clock will start ticking again for another 90 days to return home. All of that means that I won’t be getting back until late autumn.
I had originally planned to ride all the way home, but the prospect of riding through France and Southern England in November is not very enticing, so I plan to spend more time around the Mediterranean and take a train home from Southern France.
I decided to stop flying in 2005 and I haven’t been outside Western Europe since then. I have been thinking for many years: when I retire, I will go further. I won’t be riding very far or very fast each day – I will be carrying too much weight for that. “Credit card touring” may be fine for a few days, but not for 9 months. My wife is planning to join me for a while in Croatia, travelling by train and ferry.
I will be making occasional posts on Facebook. I intend to make my Facebook account private, because I might use some of this material in articles, or even a book, and I don’t want to make it public in the meantime. So if you are interested in following my progress – and I know who you are – then please send me a friend request.