Backroads

Backroads

This company is arguably the largest with over 300 biking, hiking, multisport and cultural immersion trips available in 44 countries. But that doesn't mean that service is compromised. In fact, Backroads guides are trained to be extremely accommodating. And Backroads can be a good value: the trips are about 25% less than B & R, and if you choose the Premiere Inns option, you will often stay in the same accommodations. A nice feature is that because you choose from multiple levels of accommodation options, you get a selection of prices to choose from. The "Casual Inns" tours stay at 3-4 star inns, with "Premiere Inns" jumping to 4-5 stars.

There are also a wide variety of family-oriented and singles trips. Backroads clients are slightly younger, and more likely to have some experience with adventure travel. The typical client is a 45-year-old executive at a Fortune 500. There are always some strong riders on a Backroads trip, so you'll have company if you are planning on doing the supplemental longer routes. Going single is encouraged, and you don’t have to pay extra if you are willing to share a room. Backroads attracts guests who enjoy camaraderie so night time socializing is pretty good with this group.

  • Operator Type:
    Full-Service Operator
  • Website:
    https://www.backroads.com/?p=D610
  • Price Tier:
    $$$
  • Avg Price Per Day:
    $500
  • Services:
    Bike Provided, SAG Van, Tour Guide
  • Country:
    Asia, Canada, Croatia, Czech Republic, England, France, Ireland, Italy, New Zealand, Portugal, South America, Spain, United States, Vietnam

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22 Reviews

  1. John and Judy Sears, Lafayette, CA-Reply
    October 31, 2016 at 7:15 pm

    We have been on perhaps a dozen or so Backroads trips over the past 30 years – US, Europe and China. It is a wonderful company and they have great trips. It has settled into the 6 day 5 night trips.

  2. J. Bankroft, Albany, CA-Reply
    October 31, 2016 at 7:15 pm

    We used your site to find Backroads. Thank you!!! Traveling with Backroads to Costa Rica was a truly first class experience. The hotels, the meals and the leaders were all first class! Thanks again.

  3. Richard Seltzer, Wynnewood PA-Reply
    October 31, 2016 at 7:14 pm

    I’ve taken over 70 bike trips all over the world with most of the companies, and Backroads is my favorite — clearly top of the class. The most important factor is consistent quality — in the guides especially, but also in hotels, food, rental bikes, van support, local guide briefings, route notes, pleasant surprises. They offer luxury and casual trips; I’ve taken both and they’re the same except that lesser rated but perfectly acceptable hotels are used on the casual trips. The office staff are top notch and have always responded honestly to questions about degree of difficulty. Guests are diverse but always convivial companions — you could bike with a guy who drives commuter trains (I did) or with a top railroad executive (ditto). Wide range of ages. Always great fun. Plenty of options for the more energetic or van pickups for those who’ve had enough. Timely baggage pick-up/delivery by contractor so your bags are always in your room when you arrive. Backroads hasn’t forgotten anything. A perfect active vacation.

  4. Dawn D., New York, NY-Reply
    October 31, 2016 at 7:14 pm

    My Backroads vacation riding through Tuscany was the best vacation of my life. I have talked to people that say that the lodging choices are sometimes uneven, but my experience was great. Our tour leaders were really nice and accommodating, too.

  5. Cornelia Hall, Lincoln, RI-Reply
    October 31, 2016 at 7:14 pm

    This was our first bike trip so I don’t have anything to compare it too, but it was just awesome! They took care of everything, so it was stress free. There was a good balance of riding, socializing, being on your own, challenges, & discovering local culture. The food was tremendous, the leaders were friendly, knowledgeable, supportive & organized. Our group “clicked” so the social was an added bonus – not to mention all the great wine that was consumed!

  6. Jennifer B, Carmel, CA-Reply
    October 31, 2016 at 7:13 pm

    Backroads has given great value on the five trips we’ve taken with them — no more so than last week when they ran our trip … and we were the only family on it. Having had tours canceled by other operators before, my heart sank when I got the call … only to be reassured that, yes, we were going. Of course. It was an extraordinary trip — we did everything on the itinerary and had two knowledgeable, cheerful guides at our beck and call. We’ve gone on over a dozen cycle trips with different companies — Backroads is great value, great people — and great customer commitment.

  7. Paul R, Greenbrae, CA-Reply
    October 31, 2016 at 7:13 pm

    The variety of trips and accommodations are fantastic. Guides are very knowledgeable and all very good bikers, some even ex bike racers. We are planning a seventh trip and have taken our 16-year old on all of them. Level of riding is tops with three or more options each day as to length and difficulty. Places to stay are absolutely fabulous, four star Castle’s and Chateaux.

  8. Joan, Cupertino, CA-Reply
    October 31, 2016 at 7:12 pm

    I have gone on many trips with Backroads and they have all been great. I like that they have different pricing options (classic or deluxe). Go now while the tourism business is hurting … the groups will be smaller and more intimate. I’ve been on trips with 16-20 people, and that is just too many.

  9. Alison Hoversten, Denver, CO-Reply
    October 31, 2016 at 7:12 pm

    I have used many companies specializing in bike/multi sport trips and find Backroads to be far superior to any others. Everyone at their headquarters is extremely knowledgeable and friendly to work with and the follow through is quite impressive. Their guides are top notch and are chosen according to their area of expertise which is not always the case. The side trips are chosen to provide the guest with a sense of the local culture, be it a cooking class or another type of experience but this is totally optional. The two categories of trips (Premier or Casual Inns allows the traveler to make a conscious decision about the type of lodging desired and the amount of money involved. One has the option to ride as little of as much as possible and, in the case of the latter, the guides will do their best to make sure that a guide is available to provide support. I have done at least 15 trips with the company and have no inclination to every use another company.

  10. Matt B., Nashville, TN-Reply
    October 31, 2016 at 7:12 pm

    I am considering conversion to Buddhism so I can be reincarnated as a Backroads leader. These are some really special people…. All three leaders were competent bike mechanics. They were doing everything from fixing my youngest daughter`s helmet straps to using the barrel adjuster to tweak the cable tension. An absolutely fabulous experience.

  11. Nancy and Ken Newton, McKinney, TX-Reply
    October 31, 2016 at 7:11 pm

    My husband and I chose the North Carolina Backroads Bike Tour to celebrate our 30th Wedding Anniversary. We Loved It!!!! The ride was well organized with detailed maps that were spot on. The staff was fun, friendly and always willing to go the extra mile to make sure every guSilk Hope, NCests needs were met, even making sure we had our favorite drinks and snacks available for us after a long ride. We will absolutely sign on for another trip with Backroads. It was the best vacation we have ever been on.

  12. L. Sheiner, Montreal, Quebec-Reply
    October 31, 2016 at 7:11 pm

    I`ve been active travelling for 20+ years. Never have I experienced such a level of professionalism and execution of detail all focused around providing the greatest overall experience. Bravo Backroads.

  13. Lindsay, Washington DC-Reply
    October 31, 2016 at 7:10 pm

    My husband and I went on the multisport trip to Morocco with Backroads. It was perfect in every way!

  14. A. Brost, Calgary, Canada-Reply
    October 31, 2016 at 7:10 pm

    Backroads made our first biking experience very memorable. My husband and I had not been on an outside bike in over 3 years, yet we never felt pressured to keep up with the group. We were told repeatedly that this was our vacation. Every detail was looked after, from the suitcases to detailed maps of our daily ride. The food and accommodations were great, but the best part was the leaders. They were awesome!

  15. Mel Boynton, Claremont, CA-Reply
    October 31, 2016 at 7:09 pm

    My wife and I enjoyed a six day, five night biking tour of Brittany and Normandy in mid-September 2015. “Excellent trip leaders and support throughout. I enjoyed the depth of the D Day components – which were the heart of why I chose this trip.

  16. Cathy P., Franklin, TN-Reply
    October 31, 2016 at 7:09 pm

    Canadian Gulf Islands Multisport was our 4th trip with Backroads. The guides are wonderful, bikes are comfortable, accommodations & food very good. We haven’t had bad experience yet. Gulf Islands bike rides are quite the workout with LOTS of hills but beautiful views.

  17. Amy Spiegel, New York, NY-Reply
    October 31, 2016 at 7:08 pm

    I had a very good time despite the fact that it was an emotional time for me. The trip allowed me the beauty and space to focus on the important things in life, allowed me to get reacquainted with myself and allowed me to cry the tears I had not shed for my deceased husband. Miriam (Mimi), Jackie and Guillermo were fun, knowledgeable and encouraging. There was quite a bit of laughter accompanying the cycling and it was always a pleasure seeing Guillermo on the stops. I learned to appreciate breaks because of his charm.

  18. Susan Eppley, OH-Reply
    October 31, 2016 at 7:08 pm

    Just home from my tenth Backroads trip, this one an epic trip to South Africa and Botswana. They have all been wonderful. This is why I keep going back to Backroads. I can trust them to do a safe, fun, educational trip.

  19. Peter Z., Toronto, Canada-Reply
    October 28, 2016 at 8:52 pm

    California Wine Country Trip – September 2015. This was our first Backroads trip, but we had very high expectations based on recommendations from our friends. We would give it an `11` if we could. Words cannot do justice to describe how awesome our experience was on this trip. My wife and I can’t wait for our next Backroads experience!

  20. F. Jornlin, Hockessin, DE-Reply
    October 28, 2016 at 8:47 pm

    We do at least one 7 day bike trip a year and used other companies. This was our first Backroads trip and there will be more. We felt so pampered on this Nova Scotia trip! All 3 guides were fabulous and also a very nice bunch of guests. Thank you!

  21. Scott A., Arlington, VA-Reply
    October 28, 2016 at 8:41 pm

    I took Backroads’ Bryce, Zion, and Grand Canyon Multi-sport Adventure (Casual Inns) in September 2015. Great scenery, excellent guides and guests, and spectacular bike rides and hikes. An amazing trip all around. I appreciate Backroads` attention to detail and ensuring the customer has the best experience possible.

  22. Sissy Elliot, Cool, CA-Reply
    October 28, 2016 at 8:34 pm

    I’ve gone on trips with several bike touring companies; we chose this one because we heard it was first class. It’s true. From start to finish you were on an adventure of a lifetime and always felt you could ride at your own level, no pressure. The bikes could handle every pot hole, the trip leaders were knowledgeable and the cue sheets were perfect (no small accomplishment). Great tour of the big island, Hawaii, so if you haven’t been, pump up your “tires” and go!