Sunday, January 25, 2015


Here is a travel log from our bike trip in Southern Italy. We voyaged for two and a half weeks, entirely on bikes (well, plus a few trains), surviving mainly on pizza and gelato, but more details on that later.  First, let's introduce the family (with some photos from our layover in Heathrow):


  • Profile: eight-year-old boy, highly energetic (until he's not), super eager, skilled at arguing over absolutely nothing for hours, consistently underdressed.
  • Favorite gear: kindle, deck of cards, hiking boots, z-bars.
  • Keys to success: keep him warm, well-fed, and in a good mood on biking days, so we can knock out the 20 plus milers. 


  • Profile: cute, athletic, moody when hungry, a total earth muffin who hopes this trip has a low carbon footprint (hence the bikes), secretly desires Italian boots.
  • Favorite Gear: camera (with twenty-two lenses), running shoes, Peruvian sweatshirt.
  • Keys to Success: consistent meals, appropriate time to set up her tripod, no lolly-gagging.


  • Profile: head in the clouds, safety nut, the only one on this trip with any knowledge on how to fix bikes (limited), lolly-gagger
  • Favorite Gear: yellow jacket, allen wrench, supplemental reading material (Innocents Abroad)
  • Keys to Success: time to figure out the GPS, stop riding before sundown, warm socks

Our flight to Naples was pretty uneventful.  Leaf watched three movies on the eight-hour flight to London  (X-men, How to Tame your Dragon 2, and Epic). Mark watched one movie (X-men).  Monet slept, but she paid for it in Heathrow by getting searched.  From what we could tell, all people traveling with kids, got searched.  Why?  Everyone knows the Brits hate children.  Haven't you read Dickens?

We spent Christmas night in Kensington and ate dinner (lunch for us?) at a Persian restaurant. Not knowing what to order, we waited to see what our neighbors got.

Travel tip from Monet:

A green low weight bag for me since we will travel with only carryon due to our very tight connection in Stuttgart Germany and their very miserly weight allowance (15kg). Wheels are heavy and I was forced to wear this through 4 airports and 3 foreign cities. London was by far the most challenging since we arrived on Christmas and the entire transportation system was CLOSED. My shoulders hurt.  These organization bags were AWESOME.  They made living out of bike panniers for 3 weeks a breeze.

Mileage count:

  • Driving- Flagstaff to PHX 157 miles
  • PHX to London Heathrow 5257 miles
  • LHR to Stuggart Germany Airport 573 miles
  • Stuggart Germany Airport to Napoli Airport 593 miles

Next: Question: What do you get when you strand three neophytes with bikes at the Naples airport with a funky Italian GPS?  Answer: lost.

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