One of the key aspects of Macs Adventure cycling and walking holidays is that they are self-guided. For some people, this can provide a bit of a quandary. Of course, with comprehensive route notes and maps provided to show you the way, it’s good to know that you have a written and detailed point by point description of your planned day to keep you right en-route. They should of course represent the ideal back-up to your day out and mean you can venture off worry free to appreciate the sights and sounds as they are meant to be enjoyed.
However, what they don’t provide are the comfort of a group situation, the camaraderie of being with fellow walkers to share the daily experiences, even just the knowledge of, well, if anything goes wrong, at least I am not on my own! In a previous life in travel, I was lucky enough to work overseas and, mainly while working as a ski holiday ‘rep’, I had the pleasure of taking groups of fellow skiers out to enjoy the slopes, 2 or 3 times every single week over several winters. It was undoubtedly one of the main highlights of both my working and personal life, as I would lead a bunch of enthusiastic skiers generally in the holiday spirit all day around various Italian mountains. On almost every occasion that I took a ski group it was a pleasure, where we enjoyed the fun of skiing together, stopping for long and lazy lunches, with a terrific sense of achievement at eating up the pistes too and returning back to the resort and hotels exhausted, but happy after a great day.
It’s fair to say therefore that I love and miss my skiing. One or two weeks holiday a year is great, that is if one is lucky enough to stretch to that, but I’m fortunate to have had that experience and feel like I’ve really moved on to another huge passion – cycling – and being in the lucky position to be able to talk about and work with cycling every day, is really great. In fact, cycling has actually overtaken skiing as my no.1 fun pursuit! Anyway, I’m digressing a little, but there is a really important point to all this in terms of being the guider or the guidee, as it were! When I am a cycling ‘customer’ and so on the other side of this fence, there is no doubt which is the better option, in my opinion, and that, is definitely being self-guided. Ultimately, having the freedom and flexibility to cycle at your own pace, in your own time, stopping when you want to stop, etc, is much more enjoyable. And I would hate to be the cyclist holding everybody up or constantly waiting on others, dependent on mine or the group cycle's general abilities.
And at the end of the day, with local colleagues on your hand you are fully supported in the event of emergency and / or mechanical issues (admittedly I hate the psssst noise of a puncture and while I don't like fixing them, even I can just about manage it), there really is no need to worry about being on your own either. Alright, you won't be able to impress your fellow enthusiasts with the break-neck speed you just flew down that mountain, but as long as you don't mind just giving yourself a congratulatory pat on the back, then being on a self-guided holiday really is the way forward (but it's always worth checking your map and route notes to make sure that is correct........)
***Don't just take my word for it, for lots of other information on the terrific benefits of all Macs Adventure self-guided holidays, please see https://www.macsadventure.com/about-us/about-our-holidays/why-self-guided/, or use our Holiday Finder to search for your perfect independent adventure.