Tag Archives: guides

Guide Profile: Tiago Afonso

Let us introduce you to Tiago Afonso!

Tiago is part of our team in Portugal and is a true cycling enthusiast. He has guided lots of our cycling holidays in Portugal over the past year and was always keen to share his experience with everyone via his Instagram! We were curious to find out a little more about Tiago too and managed to prise him away from his favourite Portuguese trails to ask him a couple of ‘cycling-related’ questions…

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Full Name: Tiago Miguel Vaz Afonso

  1. What do you like most about Saddle Skedaddle?
    What I like most about Skedaddle is the spirit and the good vibes in the tours. It’s fantastic how we can combine professionalism with fun.
  1. Give your best piece pre-trip of advice for customers
    The best advice I can give customers is that they research a little about the country they are going to visit, always check the condition of the bike in a way that avoids problems.
    Simplifying luggage is very helpful, avoiding unnecessary cargo. Because in Tours we always have everything that customers need (parts, tools, etc.).
  1. Which trip are you most excited about in our holiday range?
    The tour that fascinates me most is Portugal – Mountains of the Douro – Guided Road Cycling Holiday. This is an amazing tour! The landscapes are fantastic, the roads are calm and without traffic, and for those who appreciate wines, it is the best part of Portugal to drink a good wine!
  1. What would your chosen superpower be?
    The north of Portugal.
  1. What’s your favourite power snack and why?
    My favourite power snacks are the “berta bars”, Berta’s homemade energy bars (the person responsible for catering in Tours in Portugal), are delicious and contain everything we need with natural ingredients and without sugar. 🙂

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Tiago is a winner of our October guide competition. He shared some great photos via Instagram while guiding our road cycling holiday, Portugal Atlantic Escape and also our our mountain biking trip Portugal Atlantic Trails. Take a look at his Instagram feed here to get some more Portuguese cycling inspiration!

Guide Profile: Tom Owen

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New guide-on-the-block Tom Owen has been wowing us with his fantastic Instagram skills this summer with a travel list to rival the best. Having helped guide some of THE biggest journeys in our range, from St Malo to Nice in France to cycling the mighty Dolomites, we thought we’d catch up with Tom and find out a little bit more about him and his passion for cycling…

Full name: Tom Owen

  1. You might be a newer face to Skedaddle but you’ve been guiding for a few years now, can you tell us a bit more about your cycling background?

    I’ve been guiding on and off since 2009 but started with Skedaddle in 2015 when I decided to see if I could make it work full time. Trips in my first year included the Lakes, Wales and Italy, with some Way of the Roses and Hadrian’s Cycleway thrown in for good measure. This year i’ve been putting my French to good use in Corsica and the St Malo – Nice trip and have another Land¹s End – John o Groats lined up.

  2. So, what do you like most about Saddle Skedaddle?
    Simply put…working along side great people to share amazing places to ride my bike!

  3. What’s you best piece of pre-departure advice?

    Ride your bike! (that works as general life advice tooŠ) Arriving on the first day of the trip with a few miles in the legs helps you get the most out of the holiday.

  4. Which trip are you most excited by in our holiday range?
    Having just finished the St Malo – Nice trip, that’s got to be one of the best rides I’ve ever done. Corsica Southern Secrets was also a really beautiful route.

  5. What would your chosen superpower be?
    The power to prepare the ultimate picnic.. I’m working towards this already, always getting new inspiration.

  6. What’s your favourite power snack and why?
    Espresso and an ice cream (when it’s hot enough!) Surely no explanation needed?

  7. And, finally, is there a travel item you can’t be without?

    My phone for taking photos at a moment’s notice. That and a good book for après-bike.

    Going for gold…
    Having been a regular trip blogger last year and with an Instagram account inspired by his fantastic travels accross the globe in 2016, we were more than happy to announce Tom as our June Guides competition winner.

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    Click here to see more of his winning entries.

Guide Profile: Lieven

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For our latest guide insight we ask you to cast your minds to the warmer, sun-kissed shores of Sardinia in Italy, home to our younger brother company Skedaddle Italia as well as guide Lieven. A wizard with his camera, Lieven’s been sending us awesome photos and videos for several years now, and we wanted to go behind the lens and find out a little bit more about our witty guide from the Med:

Full Name: Lieven Loots

  1. How did you first start guiding for Skedaddle?

I started guiding with Skedaddle Italia 4 years ago because they had a group of Austrians on a MTB holiday in Sardinia and I was the only cycling guide with German language skills on the whole island. I splashed many clients with muddy water along the way and I  think that earned me a certain standing! Having proved my worth I moved on to leading trips all over Italy including: Tuscany, Campania, the Alps and Dolomites and Austria – wait, that’s not Italy…

2. You’ve been with us a few years now, what would you say is your favourite thing about the company? 

Skedaddle is not like your average, corporate company, it has a unique and personal  way of thinking and doing things, which helps make the cycling tours so special. 

 3. You’ve obviously got a lot of experience under your wheels, what’s your best piece of pre-departure advice for customers? 

Open your minds to new experiences when heading out the door. And bring ear plugs 😉

4. What’s sort of trip excites you most in our range?

 Any point-to-point trip with a bit of adventurous exploring outside the known territory. That’s not just adventure trips, but something like a Sardinia Coast to Coast mountain biking holiday, which allows one to really sample unknown parts of the island, or the Italy Grand Traverse taking people from the well known north of Italy, through even better known Tuscany into the often raw, but always amazing reality of southern Italy.

5. What keeps you fuelled in the saddle?
I eat a lot of muesli bars when on trips which seem to keep the sugar levels high. But Italian coffee tastes a lot better…

6. And finally, any packing tips?
My packing essential has to be…Earplugs again. A bicycle is nice when on a cycling holiday. Cream for the behind works wonders. My little camera to wave around. As a guide then I have a backpack loaded up with stuff you wouldn’t believe. But mainly earplugs.

Going for gold…
Lieven is the winner of our April guide competition. His winning entry can be seen below: