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For a completely carefree cycling experience, choose a self-guided electric bike holiday, following carefully compiled route notes from village to village while your luggage is transported. With no group, you can cycle at your own pace, using the electric motor to help out when you need it.
If you’ve never dared try a cycling holiday – or daren’t pick a more demanding one than you’re used to – because of a niggling doubt that you might not be physically up to it, then electric bicycles (e-bikes) may be the answer.
You follow exactly the same routes as you would were you cycling on traditional bikes, and, as always, we provide easy-to-read directions, maps and luggage transfers.
It’s up to you whether you use your electric bike’s motor all the time or just turn it on when you feel you need it, to take the strain out of hills, longer days and headwinds.
“What a difference the electric bikes made, no concerns about the distance we would cover or the steepness of any hills. It was particularly good not to arrive at the next hotel looking red faced and exhausted!” Anna, Cheshire
Read our electric bikes FAQs at the bottom of the page to find out more.
To give you a good idea of how we can tailor our trips to your individual requirements, take a look at the section of the website specifically devoted to travellers from outside the UK.
Alternatively, if you’d prefer to get the low-down on Inntravel holidays from someone who has first-hand experience, you can email Phil Wise. Based in California, Phil has taken many trips with us over the years, and will be happy to give you general information about travelling to Europe and the overall Inntravel holiday experience from an American perspective.
How our electric bike holidays are graded
With a motor to help out when needed, choosing the right grade is less of an issue on an electric bike holiday. (In fact, our grading system assumes you are using a ‘regular’ bike, so bear in mind that the cycling will be considerably easier if you choose an e-bike.) Nevertheless, our grades are still a useful indication of how flat – or otherwise! – the terrain is.
Easy cycling for all with shorter days mainly on the flat, but some gentle ascents.
Easy-to-moderate cycling featuring undulating routes with more frequent short ascents, and a mix of shorter and longer days.
Moderate cycling with some longer, steady uphill sections, and longer days.
Fairly strenuous cycling featuring longer days with some sustained climbs. (We don't currently have any holidays at this level.)
Carefree electric bike holidays, Inntravel style
There are three cornerstones to our electric bike holidays (and Inntravel holidays in general): gorgeous scenery; friendly, carefully selected accommodation of character; and delicious regional cuisine.
Trustworthy route notes
The route guides we provide are lovingly compiled by a dedicated team and continuously updated so that you can rely on them completely. Their purpose is not just to guide you from village to village at your own pace, but also to enhance your holiday experience by informing you about the cultural heritage and local ways of life.
Freedom to choose
Holidaying independently, not in a group, means you can stay in intimate hotels, and decide which places to visit each day. What’s more, there’s no set start date, no set duration (feel free to add extra nights), no set travel arrangements – we’ll happily book a bespoke travel package for you, either by air, by rail or by ferry.
We’ve been offering holidays since 1984 and have built up a wealth of experience. Whenever you contact us, you’ll deal with friendly experts who share a passion for travel and who have stayed in our featured hotels and cycled our routes. They’ll be delighted to answer your queries and help you plan your perfect holiday.
An e-bike (short for electric bicycle) is like a normal bicycle but with a small integrated engine to help you along. Below are the answers to the most commonly asked questions.
How do e-bikes work?
There are two types: the more powerful throttle-assisted bikes, and pedal-assisted bikes. The latter type works in one of two ways. In the first, a sensor detects when you are pedalling forwards and turns on the motor (at full power or whatever level you have chosen) whenever you are cycling. In the second, a more sophisticated sensor monitors how hard you are cycling and adjusts the amount of power accordingly, so that you get more help when pedalling hard.
The e-bikes that we book for our customers are pedal-assisted, usually with the simpler type of sensor that detects when you are pedalling forwards.
Your bicycle rental company can offer assistance in the unlikely event that you have a problem with your e-bike, and we also operate a 24-hour emergency helpline for added peace of mind.
Does the engine have to be on all the time?
It’s up to you how much you use the engine. You can cycle normally and just make use of the motor on hills and in headwinds, or use the motor all the time to make cycling easier in general – on many e-bikes you can set the engine to assist when you dip below a certain speed. Braking switches off the engine.
When and how do I recharge the battery?
Standard batteries typically take 3-5 hours to fully recharge after use, a process that costs just a few pence (much like a standard mobile phone). You can recharge bike batteries in your hotel room or even in a café if you are stopping for lunch (but please ask the owner’s permission first!). Some regions in the Alps have charging stations along popular routes where you can swap your flat battery for a charged one.
What range does the battery have?
On the flat, with gentle pedalling, most e-bikes claim to be able to cover 30-48km (20-30 miles). Naturally, this is an average and will vary according to your weight, the number and steepness of hills, the strength of any headwind and, of course, whether you use the motor all the time or just when you really need it.
Do e-bikes weigh more than normal bikes?
Yes, about 10kg more. However, the assistance offered by the engine offsets the additional weight.
Do e-bikes have any impact on the environment?
E-bikes are completely emission free.
How fast can an e-bike go?
Under European law, an e-bike must stop assisting you when you reach 25km/h (15.5 mph), but this limit does not apply when you are pedalling or freewheeling without the motor.
Are e-bikes available as an option on all Inntravel's cycling holidays?
E-bikes are available (at a supplement) on almost all cycling holidays, but are subject to availability – the cycle hire shops only have a small number of e-bikes. We will contact the cycle supplier to check that e-bikes are available for your chosen dates.
Is there a minimum age?
Yes, cyclists have to be 14 or over to ride an e-bike.
How do e-bikes fit with Inntravel’s Slow holidays?
By ‘Slow holidays’ we mean holidays on which you take the time to appreciate the little things such as wayside chapels, the colours in the landscape, artisan workshops. Speed doesn’t come into it – you won’t be riding so fast on your e-bike that you don’t notice such things, and you can pause to admire your surroundings as often as you like. We’re certainly not cycling ‘snobs’. If having an e-bike gives you the confidence to book a cycling holiday when previously you’ve ruled it out because you were worried that you might find it too demanding, we’re all for it.