The Turkish capital of Istanbul has been the goal of many a long distance bicycle tour. This major hub sits on the edge of the subcontinent and has a huge amount to offer tourists in it’s own right. A number of recent efforts have aimed to reinforce its accessibility to cyclists. Here is a small catch up on what has been going on in the Queen of Cities.
At the start of 2014, references to EuroVelo and cycling were formally included in the TEN-T guidelines for the first time and when the first Calls were published in the autumn they featured prominently in the text.
The final section of Drake’s Trail, a section of EuroVelo 1 – Atlantic Coast Route has been completed. This 21 mile (34km) cycling and walking route linking Tavistock with Plymouth is now boasts a cycle-friendly climb and a well surfaced path.
As reported back in July, an ongoing EU-funded project focusing on EuroVelo 8 – Mediterranean Route aims to bring together public and private partners, establish packages that feature the route and also create some dedicated marketing and promotional tools. In October, the project partners met in Cyprus to catch up with the progress being made in each country, compare notes and plan for the rest of the project.
EuroVelo is about more than just cycling tourism. Getting more people to cycle to work, to school or to the shops is one of the key objectives of the European cycle route network. In this series we will share some good examples of this objective in action. We also encourage you to send us your stories of commuting using EuroVelo routes! You can contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
On the 13th and 14th of November, members of the EuroVelo 13 – Iron Curtain Trail (North) Project met in Mikulov, a Czech town near the Austrian border to discuss the progress of the project. Project partners from the eight countries in the northern part of the Iron Curtain Trail were present and the participants were welcomed by the South Moravia Tourist Authority who were in charge of organising the event.
Jens Erik Larsen represents Foreningen Frie Fugle, which is one of the project partners in ongoing EuroVelo 8 project. In October he was in Shkodra, Albania, to present the project at a workshop organised by the newly formed GO2. Along the way he made an impromtu stop at the Ministry of Sustainable Development and Tourism of Montenegro. Here’s how he got on.
The European Cyclists´Federation will organize next Thursday 4th December the roundtable ´Cycling for Growth´, the first event in the framework of the recently launched ´Cycling Forum Europe´, in which we will publish three new economic studies about funding opportunities, fiscal incentives and job creation.
EuroVelo’s national coordinator for Germany, the Allgemeine Deutsche Fahrrad-Club (ADFC) has teamed up with the largest coach travel company in the country to provide free bicycle transport to its members. From March to November, all MeinFernbus coaches will be equipped with a bike rack that can hold up to 5 bicycles. The service, which normally costs 9 euro per trip, will be free of charge for the 145,000 ADFC members. Read more…
The 7th Czech – German conference on Marketing of the Elbe trail (EuroVelo 7), with the latest developments on the most popular German long-distance route.
During the course of the Iron Curtain Trail project funded by the EU through its South East Europe Programme, the project meetings have taken the partners to some of the less well-known sections of the 10,000 km long route, including Lendava (in Slovenia), Szombathely (in Hungary) and Eisenstadt (in Austria). Last month, the partners came together for the penultimate time (for the current project at least) in the Hungarian town of Harkány, which is located in a wine-growing region on the border with Croatia.
As we reported earlier this year, there is currently an ongoing EU co-financed project aiming to develop cycle tourism connected to EuroVelo 8 – Mediterranean Route. The Slovenian partner in the project – RRC-KP – recently asked one of the other project partners, Foreningen Frie Fugle, to participate in a workshop, as their role is to provide advice and support on establishing successful bookable offers linked to the route. Here, Jens Erik Larsen From Foreningen Frie Fugle reports back on his experiences.
The Demarrage Project has sought to develop the Rhine Cycle Route as a transnational touristic product and over the course of the past three years, it has delivered on all of the partner’s original aims, including adding the route to the EuroVelo network (as EuroVelo 15)! A final conference for people involved in cycle tourism across Europe was held in Basel, Switzerland to share the lessons that have been learned along the way.
Representatives of over 30 organisations from over twenty different countries attended this year’s Annual National EuroVelo Coordination Centres and Coordinators (NECC/Cs) Meeting held on the banks of the River Rhine in Weil am Rhein, Germany. The event coincided with the final conference of the Demarrage (EuroVelo 15 – Rhine Route) Project, which was held in Basil the following day.
A three-day cycle tour starting on Sunday 21st September marked the grand opening of a new section of EuroVelo 13 – Iron Curtain Trail along the border of Austria and the Czech Republic. When the tour reached Slavonice, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed between the European Cyclists’ Federation (ECF) and the European GreenBelt Initiative.
Our French National Coordinator, DRC (Départéments et Régions cyclables) has just released a simple and informative video to explain the functioning of the ON3V, France’s National Observatory for Cycle Routes in just 3 minutes 30 seconds.
Twenty five years ago the Pan-European Picnic was held to mark one of the first holes being cut in the Iron Curtain on the border between Hungary and Austria. To mark this occasion, the Hungarian Cycling Alliance and Regional Management Burgenland agreed upon an itinerary for EuroVelo 13 – Iron Curtain Trail and the route has been signed with official EuroVelo signposting in time for the anniversary on 19th August 2014
The latest figures released from the UK are proof of the demand for safe, comfortable and attractive cycle routes. Sustrans, our national EuroVelo coordination centre in the UK, has released a report which shows usage steadily on the rise on the National Cycle Network. This is despite the numbers of cyclists and walkers being in decline on the country’s road network in general.
EuroVelo has recently published a Press Kit & FAQ for EuroVelo in several languages:
If you are writing in print or online press about the European cycle route network, please refer to this document for the most up-to-date facts and fiqures, Frequently asked questions, and an overview of the network’s history.
Preparations are in full swing for the upcoming EuroVelo/Greenways international cycling tourism conference in Basel which will bring together leading figures from European politics, cycling tourism professionals, and key businesses in the cycling tourism market. The theme of the conference, at the meeting point of Switzerland, Germany and France; is Cycling without borders.
In a series of articles introducing you to the conference speakers, today we will meet Patrick Jansen, Martyn Brunt and Daniel Mourek.
Last month, Jens Erik Larsen, a member of the EuroVelo Council, was invited to southern Poland to speak about cycle routes in Denmark and the EuroVelo project. Since it is a busy time of the year, Jens Erik felt that there was limited time to go but then the Danish Ambassador to Poland himself called him in order to coordinate their presentations…so he decided he had better go!
Between the 9th and 13th September, a bike ride will celebrate the newly-inaugurated signing along EuroVelo 5 in a very attractive stretch of the recently revised Via Romea Francigena. Registration has just opened to both to national and international participants.
A brand new EuroVelo route plus three extensions to existing routes move a step closer to joining the network
The proposed EuroVelo 17 – Rhone Cycle Route and extensions to EuroVelo 1 – Atlantic Coast Route in Iceland and Portugal and EuroVelo 8 – Mediterranean Route in Corsica have all become official ‘Candidate Routes’ following the decision of the EuroVelo Council at the end of June. The applicants will now have until the end of 2015 to implement the four routes before a final decision is taken on whether they can formally become part of the network.
As some of you will know, on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean there is a sister cycle route network to EuroVelo called the Adventure Cycling Route Network. Organised by the Adventure Cycling Association, the network is currently over 67,000 km long and visits most parts of North America. In addition to their own mapped route network, Adventure Cycling also coordinates the adoption of these routes and others into a nationally designated and signed network, called the U.S. Bicycle Route System.
The EuroVelo network currently extends to Turkey only for a short section of EuroVelo 13 – Iron Curtain Trail, around the city of Edirne on the Turkish/Bulgarian/Greek border. However efforts are in full swing to prepare routes in the Aegean region for a bid to join the EuroVelo 8 – Mediterranean route when the application process opens in December 2016. Read more…
On the 24th June 2014, a coordination meeting on marketing activities for EuroVelo 9 – Baltic – Adriatic was held in Mönichkirchen (Austria). The meeting was organised by Austrian Tourism stakeholders together with representatives of Maribor (Slovenia), Christian Weinberger (the representative of the Austrian National EuroVelo Coordinator (NEC) and Adam Bodor, the Director of the EuroVelo at the ECF.
The 20th Adras Youth Festival, which will take place in Orestiada on the Greek side of the Turkish-Greek border between the 22nd and the 27th of July, will be an ideal opportunity to promote EuroVelo 13 – Iron Curtain Trail in this cross-border region. Young people attending the event from Bulgaria, Turkey and Greece will be invited to cycle along the route that follows the borders which used to separate them during the Cold War.
Every week the ECF Office receives lots of inquiries from cycle tourists wanting to cycle part or all of EuroVelo 8 – Mediterranean Route. It is by far our most popular route. It was therefore very pleasing to hear earlier this year that a project related to EuroVelo 8 was awarded an EU Grant from DG ENTR. At the end of May, the project partners gathered in Nice for the kick off meeting.
The Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport in the Republic of Ireland administers a multi annual National Cycle Network Funding Programme. This year, more than €16 million was allocated under this Programme to the development of greenways in Ireland over the period to 2016. This funding will support the development of a number of new greenways some of which will be part of the EuroVelo route network in Ireland.