Welcome to Our Cycle Tour Blog!

About Us

In July 2015 we decided to take a couple of days holiday to cycle to Oxford from London. Some friends had given us the idea of trying the trip on a tandem, and so we found this lovely couple in East London who, at the time, had about 5 in their garage which they would sporadically rent out. A year on and it looks like their business has really taken off – great to see!

Anyway, needless to say we had a great time on our hired tandem… even if we did look a bit ridiculous…


This two day trip sowed a seed in both of us and here we are 16 months later, about to embark on a 12-18 month cycling trip. Before this, neither of us were very big cyclists and we had never really heard of ‘cycle touring’ before; but a quick search on the net suddenly opened up a whole new world to us!

Lots of cyclists set out from home but we decided to fly to Vietnam and cycle back. The plan is to round off the trip by touring our home countries (U.K. and Rupublic of Ireland) over the summer months of 2017.

Like most other cycle tourers, the idea of our trip developed very gradually as lots of contributing factors slowly came together. We were both settled in our flat in London but both had a yearn to travel before we got too comfortable. It was a reasonably good time for us to take a career break and for the first time we both found ourselves saving. We worked out that if we could keep to a combined budget of £25 a day we had the potential to travel for up to 18 months.

A year after hiring that first tandem, we started trawling the internet to find a suitable touring tandem bike. Annie started cycling her bike in London a lot more at around the same time (Paddy was already cycling to work) and in July we found a second hand tandem which looked to be the perfect size and spec being advertised by the JD Tandems website.

JD Tandems is the place to go if you want to buy a tandem in the UK. The business is run by Ruth and John who are really experienced tourers themselves. One Saturday we set off in a hired van and drove all the way to Ilkley in Yorkshire to test drive our possible purchase.


Despite denting the frame after 15 minutes (lesson learnt – always lock your tandem to a post in windy conditions!) we knew we’d found the bike for us. Since then we have tested the bike (and ourselves) on small weekend and day trips in the UK.

Near Oxford, UK
Wild camping in a nature reserve near Tewkesbury, UK

Planning for our trip has been a long process and we didn’t really decide to take the plunge and hand in our notices until September 2015. There has been a lot to consider – when and where to go, to camp or not, what to take, how do the visas/border crossings work, what to do when the bike breaks, how to stay safe, and most importantly:

Can we really do this???

This remains to be seen but it’ll be fun to try.

36 thoughts on “Welcome to Our Cycle Tour Blog!

  1. I blog quite often and I really appreciate your content.
    This article has truly peaked my interest. I’m going to take a
    note of your blog and keep checking for new information about
    once per week. I subscribed to your RSS feed as well.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Howdy I am so delighted I found your webpage, I really found you by accident, while I was
    searching on Digg for something else, Anyways
    I am here now and would just like to say many thanks for a fantastic post and a all round enjoyable blog
    (I also love the theme/design), I don’t have time to
    read through it all at the moment but I have saved it and also added in your RSS feeds, so when I have time I
    will be back to read a great deal more, Please do keep up the
    great job.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Hi Annie & Paddy, I found your Blog while trying to plan a cycle trip to Iran. Read it all – and am inspired. Would it be possible to send me the email on how you went about getting a visa as I really don’t want to be tied to travel agency!

        Thanks a lot Justin


      2. Hi not sure if my email came through so will send it again! Any info you have about getting an Iranian visa without joining a tour would be really useful. I’m hoping to fly to eastern Turkey and go into Iran from there if I can. Many thanks Justin


      3. Hi you two, sorry to bother you again but I didn’t get a link or email through on the Iranian visa info. Anything you can send or advise would be brilliant. Am hoping to cycle from Van in Turkey but really wanting go solo with no travel agents or tours! Here’s my email again if you can send anything through. Thanks again, loved your blog, so inspirational. Cheers Justin


      4. Hi Justin. We have decided to stop giving out the details we had as we can only assume from people’s lack of info back that it is no longer relevant. It’s also pretty time consuming as we have request every day… we wouldn’t mind if some people had got back to us letting us know how they got on but no one has….


    1. Hi mum, glad you’re enjoying the blog! We camped last night and just arrived at Ha Tien, where we will get a ferry tomorrow morning to a beautiful island. We’ll post another blog soon, P


  3. Hey Annie and Paddy! I’m George, one of the two guys that crossed your path up at Song Kol, Kyrgyzstan. It’s great to see you’re still out there cycling around, hope you’re having fun sailing around Greece! Take care and best regards from Malaysia, George Eisenzimmer

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Hey guys, looks like an amazing adventure!

    I’m British and was reading about your time in Iran. I hoped you’d be able to let me know how you managed to travel independently in the country. I’m super keen to go but concerned it’s not doable other than on a tour with a UK passport. Would you be able to offer me some helpful advice??

    Many thanks, Andy


  5. Hello there,
    What an amazing adventure you had! Great blog.
    My boyfriend and me are currently in Antalya and I read that you helped and stayed there in a horse stable. We are exactly searching for such kind of opportunity at the moment. I found now also a website on which Orhan and Susan posted that they need voluntary help but I couldn’t find any contact infos. Do you have any adress or name of the horse farm or any contact infos which you could share with us?
    We would be so grateful!
    Thank you and good travels
    Miriam & Murat


Leave a Reply to Andy Everett Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s