If you're here it's probably safe to say you enjoy cycle touring, or are at least curious, and what better than to combine it with some spectacular oceanscapes!
Cycle touring alongside amazing views is an all-around win, inspiring your thirst for adventure while benefitting your health and mind all at once. Add to that the likelihood of extra-fresh seafood and the potential for a refreshing dip and you have the ingredients for a fantastic vacation!
In Asia there are some prime destinations perfectly suited to this sort of escape, each with its own unique charm. Check out our round-up below of the top 5 bike & beach touring destinations in Asia.
Bike touring along quiet beaches on Thailand's south coast
Thailand is a popular choice for tropical beach enthusiasts. Beautiful coastlines, impressive temples, and lush tropical scenery line Thailand’s peaceful secondary roads, which are perfect for bike touring. The southern coastline, especially, offers achievable rides by pristine, and often empty beaches. Small coastal villages, like the charming Pranburi, dot the way, and resorts can be found in secluded locations with beaches to enjoy all to yourself.
Phraya Nakhon Cave
South of Hua Hin you'll find Sam Roi Yot National Park, Thailand’s first marine national park. Lined with stark limestone peaks the park is packed with diversity in wetlands, mangroves, beaches, and trails, and it's home to the stunning Phraya Nakhon Cave (pictured above). Smaller islands, accessible from a ferry in Chumphon, offer the chance for an even more secluded seaside escape. One is Ko Tai, known for its colorful coral reefs, whale sharks (the friendly kind), rays, and green sea turtles.
We cycle the back roads along this coastline, on our tours in Southern Thailand, which include the popular Bangkok to Phuket tour and Thailand Self-guided Cycle Tour. The rides are on predominantly flat roads through places like Sam Roi Yot National Park, and sometimes right alongside the scenic palm-lined beaches. There’s also plenty of time on hand to slow down, connect with locals, and enjoy world-renowned Thai cuisine in paradise!
For a trip with a wide variety of scenery, sights, and a healthy dose of beach time, make sure to check out the Thailand Bike, Boat & Beach tour, which combines river cruising, cycle touring, and a tropical island escape. Plus there's a program for non-riding partners or friends.
Cua Dai Beach, Hoi An
Another notable mention - The long and gorgeous Vietnam coastline is a picturesque mix of sandy beaches, clear waters, and a bustling fishing culture that entertains the eyes with bright splashes of color across boats and floating villages. The roads are paved and relatively smooth, allowing for comfortable riding through towns and villages, where you can observe everyday life which is often unchanged for generations.
A scenic bike tour up the coast of Vietnam offers ample opportunities to experience the country's unique culture and delicious cuisine. While on the bike, enjoy ocean views from the saddle, or head slightly inland to cycle through peaceful rice paddies and countryside. Vietnam also has a rich history that has shaped historical coastal cities like the UNESCO listed Hoi An, these cities make for perfect stops to rest and explore along your journey.
Colorful fishing boats pack that harbors along Vietnam's coast
Notable beaches line the length of the coast. Da Nang’s My Khe Beach is not far from city center and a popular spot for surfing, snorkeling, and jet skiing. There are many hidden beaches dotted throughout the islands of Ha Long Bay outside of Hanoi, taking a charter boat over a few days is a great way to explore these. On the outskirts of Hoi An you'll find Cua Dai Beach, which is a great place to unwind after exploring the historic city.
With such a long coastline there are far too many popular and lesser-known beach locations to try and list them all here. You can explore a few of them yourself on a cycle tour along the coast! The Vietnam E-bike tour stops in several beach towns on its way up the ocean road and is a great option for riders of all abilities. For those who like a more independent two-wheeled adventure the Vietnam Self-Guided Ocean Road bike tour takes in a beautiful stretch of Central Vietnam's coast over 7 glorious days. For a short beach escape, the Vietnam Essentials tour concludes in Hoi An which has a popular beach just to the north of town.
Pristine empty beaches on the coast of Taiwan
Taiwan is probably not the first place that comes to mind when you think of relaxing on sandy beaches, but this small island nation punches above its weight and is a highly regarded bike touring destination. Tawian's cycle-friendly culture has resulted in well-tended routes that take you along rugged coastlines punctuated with hidden beaches and small coastal towns.
When not exploring the coast you can head inland to cycle through fertile valleys, past Buddhist monasteries, and flowing gorges, rounding out your day with a soak in the numerous local hot springs. Some of the most popular routes wind along the Pacific coast, taking you by breathtaking views in every direction. It's such a nice stretch of riding that most of our Bike Tours in Taiwan feature sections along the eastern coast with the occasional foray inland.
Lunch overlooking the beach in Taiwan
You may also be surprised to know that Taiwan has a tropical beach hub of its own on the southern coast. Kenting is Taiwan’s not-so-secret sandy retreat for beach revelers from around the country. Relax on the sand, take a dip in the water, or try your hand at a surf lesson or the many other watersports.
Nearby you can enjoy the crystal clear water and golden sand of Baisha Beach, made famous by its appearance in the movie Life of Pi. Head further north along the coast and you'll find the spectacular National Aquarium of Tawian, which is a fascinating place to see and discover more about the rich and colorful local marine life. Kenting's surrounding national park is one of only 10 tropical botanical gardens worldwide and is also worth a visit when you feel like a break from the beach.
You can enjoy the beauty of the Pacific Coast on most of our bike tours in Taiwan. If you are eager to explore highlights of Kenting and the southern tip then the Bike Tawian tour makes its way there, and our Bike South Taiwan for Families tour takes in the best of the region on an itinerary the whole family will enjoy.
Snorkeling near Tulamben, Bali
Indonesia's most famous island, Bali, is well known for its stunning beaches which offer everything from world-class surfing, to snorkeling oral reefs, sunbathing, and of course relaxation. The island is a modest 153km (95mi) wide and 112km (70mi) north to south, so you are quite literally surrounded by beaches and spoilt for choice.
This compact size also makes Bali great for cycle touring, you can take loop rides returning to your home base each day, or opt to hop from point to point. Take note however that you should review elevations when considering your routes, as Bali is a volcanic island and the topography can be quite dramatic and challenging in places.
Seminyak Beach Resort, Bali
Aware of these challenges our team has carefully crafted a Bali cycle tour that is accessible to riders of all abilities, featuring gentle gradients and vehicle transfers through difficult conditions. Days in undulating terrain begin at elevation so you can benefit from downhill momentum and still enjoy the descents. For riders who want an extra boost, there is the option to use a pedal-assist e-bike which can level the field in any terrain.
The Best of Bali Bike tour also makes the most of a little beach time, snorkeling reefs and a WWII shipwreck just off the coast of Tulamben in the island's northeast. Extend your stay in comfort at Seminyak Beach (pictured above), which is known for its luxurious resorts and beach clubs. Other beautiful beaches worth visiting include Jimbaran Beach, Sanur Beach, and Uluwatu Beach, each of which has their own unique charm and attractions.
We recommend exploring the spectacular central highlands first (pictured), then making your way to the coast
Another island nation, can you spot the trend? Sri Lanka boasts plenty of coastline with many beautiful beaches to match, ranging from laid-back bays to world-class surfing spots. The riding in Sri Lanka is also fantastic so it's the ideal place to enjoy a bike & beach vacation.
We'd recommend heading to the central highlands first, it's far from the beach but here you will find some of the best ridings in Sri lanka through a spectacular backdrop of tea plantations and highland forests. Continuing south you will descend down into a more tropical environment and then eventually the dry lowlands, where you can experience a safari at some of the country's top national parks. Then it's time to make your way to the south coast where some of Sri Lanka's best beaches await!
Wijaya beach, yet another beautiful stop in south Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka is home to some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, with pristine white sand, crystal clear waters and a range of water activities. Some of the most popular beaches on the island include Unawatuna Beach, which is famous for its coral reefs and exotic marine life; Mirissa Beach, which is ideal for surfing and whale watching; and Bentota Beach, which is perfect for those looking for a peaceful getaway. Negombo Beach is also a practical option, located close to Colombo's international airport it can make for a beachside pitstop on your way in or out of the country.
Enjoy our popular bike tours in Sri Lanka and follow it up with some well-earned beach time!
We hope you found some inspiring options in our top 5 Bike & Beach Touring Destinations in Asia. If you'd like some help planning your adventure please reach out to our team of expeditions experts we love to talk travel!
Combine your trip with one of our unbelievable Beach Break Offers available in Bali, Vietnam, Thailand, and Cambodia for a limited time only!