Cycle Touring and family holidays!!!!

Cycle-touring, Expeditions, Adventures, Major cycle routes NOT LeJoG (see other special board)
barn
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Cycle Touring and family holidays!!!!

Postby barn » 24 Mar 2009, 10:13pm

Hi there i have been cycle touring for 2 yrs now and have been on 2 tours lasting about 4 weeks at a time.This year i am getting a bit of pressure to do a family holiday which is only fair on my family,but i just carnt seem to get excited about it.When i am on tour i love the challenge of long days and not knowing what lies ahead,driving a car around is just not me.I feel i should do the family holiday and may just take my bike along and do morning rides which is something close to touring but still not the same.I heard all these stories about it becoming addictive now i think i have caught the bug,a holiday now for me needs to be on a bike!!!.Maybe i could comprimise and do a family holiday for 2 weeks then do a cycle tour for 2 weeks,do many of you people get caught in this situation?.Before anyone asks we have 2 young kids that are to young to tour and my wife is not interisted in cycle touring at all.

eileithyia
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Re: Cycle Touring and family holidays!!!!

Postby eileithyia » 24 Mar 2009, 10:51pm

Marriage tis all about compromise and sharing. You have had the luxury of 2 years of holiday of 4 weeks each going touring (not something most of get at the best of times), perhaps your family deserve some of your time and wife deserves a break from being left alone with the kids.
There are ways to compromise, as you say, take bike and do an early ride joining up with family later, or have a shorter touring holiday and a family holiday.
Ideally you should have married a cycle tourist :lol:
Even as a dedicated cycle tourist I have had to compromise some of my holiday ideas whilst my son has been growing up, at the moment he is totally absorbed in going on holiday to the New Forest week every year, now don't get me wrong I thoroughly enjoy the week, but it is not necessarily my first choice for my main holiday every year. My preference is for 2 weeks Sept/Oct somewhere warm enough to tour comfortably, but cannot take son out of school during this time. So have to compromise, look forward to him leaving school, earning money, discovering wine, women and package deals to the Costas so i can return to the touring holidays of my youth.

They grow up so very very quickly you really should spend good quality time with them, at the risk of being nosy/invasive/lecturing etc., why else did you have children if not to be with them and nurture them.

How young is too young? My son was 11 months old when he toured Iceland, however it does take a lot of commitment to go touring with a very young child and no doubt even harder with 2 due to the logistics of carrying them, but if you want them to grow up sharing some of your ideals it is worth it. Otherwise you could risk them growing up believing cycle touring is "daddy's thing" whilst the traditional beach holiday is the norm.

OK lecture over, and I hope you find some way of compromising, many of colleagues do such things as go for a ride in the morning. Another possibility could be to ride out to a local attraction meet family there, enjoy some time together drive back. There are so many ways around it but just needs some thought and planning.
I stand and rejoice everytime I see a woman ride by on a wheel the picture of free, untrammeled womanhood. HG Wells

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julk
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Re: Cycle Touring and family holidays!!!!

Postby julk » 25 Mar 2009, 8:18am

I have solved a similar dilemma by taking an early cycle camping holiday on the way to the family holiday. My wife then drives the remaining family to the main holiday location to meet up at the same time and place for the family holiday.

I have even managed to persuade one or two of the offspring to cycle camp with me!

The main drawback is that the family holiday needs to be within a cycling distance you can reach in say a week. Take a roof rack and fixtures on the car for bringing the bike(s) back.

If you still need more cycling, then cycle camp back home after the family holiday.

eileithyia
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Re: Cycle Touring and family holidays!!!!

Postby eileithyia » 25 Mar 2009, 8:31am

Julk, was going to add a similar suggestion this morning, myself. Barn, clearly you have the luxury of more than the standard 2 weeks hols, so riding to the holiday destination is an option.
A friend who is early retired, rides to Devon when he and wife visit family, he gets his touring time whilst wife finishes her week at work, then they all meet up at son's house for holiday time with grandchildren etc.

And please remember maybe your wife might want a break from the kids, getting 2 youngsters up, dressed, breakfasted and ready for the day is not always a bundle of fun, and a holiday without her partner is perhaps not what she thought she was signing up for when she got married. Does your wife have the luxury of time out for herself?

Ok I know I'm playing devil's advocate again, but perhaps things to consider when you bemoan your freedom to go touring for 4 weeks.
I stand and rejoice everytime I see a woman ride by on a wheel the picture of free, untrammeled womanhood. HG Wells

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patricktaylor
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Re: Cycle Touring and family holidays!!!!

Postby patricktaylor » 25 Mar 2009, 9:09am

barn wrote:... i am getting a bit of pressure to do a family holiday which is only fair on my family,but i just carnt seem to get excited about it ...

It's a shame. Family holidays should come naturally and be lots of fun. Perhaps you could negotiate a timeout from the family and do your own thing for a couple of weeks each year, instead of compromising what you really enjoy by mixing in your cycling trips as part other events. Then you might look forward to the family holiday as well as your personal gettaway tour. And as eileithyia suggested, maybe your wife would appreciate her own timeout as part of the bargain.

Big T
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Re: Cycle Touring and family holidays!!!!

Postby Big T » 25 Mar 2009, 2:05pm

We've always taken our bikes on holiday with us, so that I can get a few days or half days cycling in. My son is/was a committed cyclist, even from a young age, and my wife doesn't mind the occassional ride. Wife and daughter used to go horse riding whilst we went cycling and we'd all go together sometimes with kids on bike seats, trailerbikes or own bikes. You can also ride to the family holday and ride back if you have time and your wife doesn't mind the driving.

Also, me & son and wife & daughter went on separate holidays. That worked quite well.
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wilbo
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Re: Cycle Touring and family holidays!!!!

Postby wilbo » 25 Mar 2009, 2:30pm

barn wrote:driving a car around is just not me.


Why don't you go somewhere that doesn't require a car. IMO the best way to see a new place is to spend all day walking around, but I've only gone to European cities. I suppose if you were going to Florida or something then there's no choice but to rent a car.

hamster
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Re: Cycle Touring and family holidays!!!!

Postby hamster » 25 Mar 2009, 2:52pm

Firstly I think that you are amazingly lucky to have a family and manage to do two 4 week tours in the past two years. I don't get that sort of time off work per year, and frankly I wouldn't want to be away from my kids or leave my wife looking after them alone for that long.

You can have fun with your family. If not you have problems which are not cycling-related.

1 No child can do big miles. Get over it.
2 Set your sights low. Do you pull a child trailer / tagalong / tandem? 30 miles per day is tops. But Holland is a great place to visit, very child friendly and lots to do.
3 Consider a tour with luggage transport and plenty to do with the kids along the way.

barn
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Re: Cycle Touring and family holidays!!!!

Postby barn » 26 Mar 2009, 2:44am

Well everone thankyou for your help/advice,dont get me wrong i still love family holidays!!its just that i am going have to compromise!!!.I have been lucky that the last 2yrs(and i should have stated this)i have done a touring holiday and a family holiday(due to holidays previously worked up).Now i have my annual 4 weeks so looks like i will do a solo tour and a 2 week family holiday.Also i live in outback Australia so riding to a destination is not on its 1000kls to the nearist city!!!.My son has just started riding so the idea running through my head is i can do moring rides on my own and do the family thing then do some riding with my son in the afternoon(its to hot to ride here in the middle of the day).My wife is very understanding i do admit and she does have time away also its not all one way traffic,i am a non smoker/drinker and all my spare time is with wife/kids(apart from am rides).As i say i am only new to touring i got into it as a way of keeping fit and i love travelling,as you say its all about compromise!!!.

eileithyia
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Re: Cycle Touring and family holidays!!!!

Postby eileithyia » 26 Mar 2009, 7:40am

Always good to have a bit more info.
I have family and work shifts and want to go cycling, it takes a lot of determination to figure out how to fit it in, but there are always ways around it if you look outside the box.
You live In Oz, wow that is a country so geared up for sport, fitness etc. I should think it would not be dificult to get your children interested in the great out doors, cycling, camping etc. and other family sporting activities can always be substituted for the times you are missing cycling when you are with the family.
I stand and rejoice everytime I see a woman ride by on a wheel the picture of free, untrammeled womanhood. HG Wells

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Cyclefrance
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Re: Cycle Touring and family holidays!!!!

Postby Cyclefrance » 27 Mar 2009, 4:30pm

Have a look at some of the holidays I have done - a good one for the children might be to take in the V1 and V2 rocket sites near St Omer. Then there's sand yachting aling the coast near Etaples (see 2004 trip for the area but without the yachting - we did do that pre 2003 though - as we did do the V1 and V2 sites as well - all pre digital photography and website building on my part).

If you like the idea of northern France and using the Eurotunnel Cycle Service, but want something different from what's on my sites, then by all means send me an email for other suggestions.

http://www.geocities.com/cyclefranceuk