Cycling is seeing a resurgence here in the US, with increasing numbers of Americans taking it up as a hobby or choosing to ride a bike to work. Cycling has a number of proven health benefits and as well as being a practical, low-cost and eco-friendly way to travel, biking is also a fun activity that can be enjoyed at any age or fitness level, alone or with friends.
If you’re looking for inspiration for your next cycling tour, in this article, we’ll take a look at some great cycling books that will inspire you to pump up your bicycle tyres and set off on an adventure.
Full Tilt: Ireland to India With a Bicycle by Dervla Murphy
Murphy’s famous account of her 1963 bicycle ride from Ireland to India is a must-read for any cyclist. In the book, she recounts her solo journey as a 31-year-old woman from Ireland, through Europe, and Asia into India. Murphy used the diaries she kept during her travels to write the book after her return and the vivid details she includes will soon have you wanting to plan your own biking adventure.
Where There’s a Will by Emily Chappell
Emily Chappel’s memoir, What Goes Around details her time as a London cycle courier but in her second book, ‘Where There’s a Will’ she chronicles a very different experience. In 2015, she embarked on The Transcontinental bike race, riding 4,000km across Europe. On her first try, she only made it halfway, however, a year later she entered again and won. This book takes readers along with Emily on an intense and inspiring journey.
Me My Bike and a Street Dog Called Lucy by Ishbel Holmes
Ishbel Holmes, also known as World Bike Girl, set out alone to bicycle across the world. While cycling across Turkey, she came across a street dog named Lucy, changing her path, her plans and ultimately, her life. Ishbel and Lucy’s adventures took them over 1,000 miles to the Syrian border and captured the attention and hearts of people worldwide. Me, My Bike and a Street Dog Called Lucy is a tale of love, healing and adventure.
Lanterne Rouge by Max Leonard
A fascinating and lively read, Lanterne Rouge tells the tale of the riders who have placed last in the Tour de France. Much has been written about race winners but the author Max Leonard became interested in examining the other end of the race after failing to finish the 2011 Étape du Tour. This book tells the stories of the cyclists who have finished the race in last place over the years and examines what it means to win or lose.
Signs of Life: To the Ends of the Earth With a Doctor by Stephen Fabes
In 2010, qualified medical doctor Stephen Fabes set out on a six-year adventure, cycling his way across six continents, 75 countries and 53,000 miles. Written on his return home in 2016, this memoir is sure to ignite your own wanderlust. It not only documents Stephen’s travels but also examines how different societies treat their most vulnerable and explores the similarities – and differences – in health and disease across the world.