An Absolute Beginner, no practice, no experience, not even a regular cyclist! I must be crazy :)
Stephen Peel

Stephen Peel

Cycling Around the World

How Long to Cycle Around the World

We will look at a cycle around the world as a circumnavigation, as cycling around the world can mean different things to to different people

Later this year, Mark Beaumont, a really great cyclist, is hoping to cycle around the world in just 80 days!! That’s an average of 225 miles per day, every day.


There are rules, if you want to follow rules, or you can look at the rules as a guideline or you can say sod it, I’m doing my own thing my own way, in any direction I want.


In order to qualify as a true circumnavigation, you are required to cycle at least 18000 miles in pretty much one direction, East to West, West to East, and you are required to pass over 2 antipodal points on the Earth, which are 2 points that are exactly opposite each other if you were to tunnel through. There are a few other little conditions too. This is really only for those wanting to feel they have actually completed a true circumnavigation, and those wanting to beat a world record.


For everyone else, its a free-for-all. For the benefit of the question posed, we will look at a circumnavigation, or thereabouts.


So I started with Mark’s 80 day attempt. This of course is a super human professional effort, and with a rather large support crew and network able to feed and water Mark on the way. 


Then, far away at the very distant other end of the scale, is me. I have estimated that if I don’t spend weeks in one place and all goes well, it will take me between 2 and 3 years to complete, and maybe even longer.


I’m in no rush at all, and want to enjoy everything and every place I cycle through. When working out the mileage and how many miles per day I can do, I took the required 18000 miles of cycling, and divided it by 3 years, allowing for 2 days off each week to chill and enjoy the place I'm in. 


If your in a rush, it is possible to do the 18,000 miles in under 2 years. If your in a real hurry and have a great support network, it could be achieved within a year. 


But to be able to really enjoy your cycle around the world, having a couple of days off each week or so to enjoy the sights and regroup, and to not kill yourself, it's going to take at least 2 years and likely a few more.