(Just As Well) It’s Not About the Bike by Chris Atkin

I love to travel and the last year has been a challenge staying at home.  So to counteract that I have sought out a few travelogues.  Ones, like this one, that mixes in historical information and personal experiences allow me to totally escape.  Right up front I have to say you will never see me biking through a country.  The hubby has done it in his younger days and my father in law did many biking trips even into his 60’s.  But, that being said, the idea of traveling at a slower pace and being able to enjoy the environment does have a lot of appeal.

Taking the reader on a step by step tour of the coast of Spain was a delightful way to travel/read.  The side comments about the author’s various encounters with hostels and Airbnb hosts added to the humor as well as atmosphere.  The author also shows the reader, warts and all, the positive and negative parts of bike travel.  For instance, apparently, some physical preparation might be a consideration!

With Spain being on my list of ‘want to visit’ countries and after reading this book, I am more determined to practice my Spanish and start planning – but there will be no bike involved. 

For more about the author, CLICK HERE.

SUMMARY

Discovering the untold stories of one of the world’s most popular coastlines.

Part sporting travelogue, part political history, the book follows Chris’ 1,300km route from Valencia to Gibraltar. En route, he travels through Spain’s most picturesque towns. And Benidorm.

Along the way Chris learns about the region’s history, from the time four hydrogen bombs fell over Spain, to the politician who shot General Franco’s daughter in the bottom yet rose to become one of the country’s most powerful men. While cycling across Spain, Chris also meets an array of eccentric characters such as the man who lives in a cave and the Airbnb host who admitted strangling her previous guest.

People told him he was crazy to leave his job and his girlfriend behind to jump on the cheapest bike he could find. After a series of mishaps including one that almost sparked a mountain rescue mission, it would appear they were right.

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