When I travel I usually try to pack as much activity and sightseeing into my day as possible. But inevitably, my feet get really sore, my body tired, and in general I'm downright exhausted by the end of my trip. But on my most recent vacation, I did something a little different: I took a guided bike tour in each city. It was the best decision!
Before I left for my European vacation I received many recommendations for great guided or self-guided walking tours. But the best suggestion was a guided bike tour. I went to three different cities and scheduled a bike tour for my first or second day in each location. It was a great way to learn a lot about the city and see things I would've never found traveling on my own, and it gave me ideas on where to devote the rest of my time in that city.
While each tour lasted 4-6 hours, by the end I was never exhausted, whereas if I would've walked for 4-6 hours, I would've been very tired and not seen nearly as much. In some cities, public transportation is an option, but you might spend more time underground than sightseeing.
Here are a couple of the companies I used while abroad:
- Fat Tire Bike Tours: Locations in Paris, Berlin, Barcelona, and London. A variety of tours and times available, bike rental also available. Their guides come from all over the world, speak English, and are incredibly knowledgeable and lots of fun. I even did an even E-Bike tour (an electric bike) during the evening, that also doubled as a guided food tour. Highly recommended!
- Mike's Bike Tours: Locations in Munich and Amsterdam. A variety of tours available from enthusiastic and informational English speaking guides from all over the world, bike rentals also available. Their Munich location even does a beer tour, and a castle tour at Neuschwanstein.
(Images: Fat Tire Bike Tours - Barcelona)