Motorcyclists Lean Into Eureka Springs
Traveling the Arkansas Ozarks on two wheels is an adventure thanks to so many curvy roads... all of which can be accessed with Eureka Springs (AR) as the hub for daily excursions.
EUREKA SPRINGS, ARKANSAS -- San Francisco (CA) may have Lombard Street but it has been said by visitors who travel to Eureka Springs (AR) on motorcycles that the streets here are “Lombard Street” street after street after street. These curvy streets inside this Arkansas village of 2,000 and the winding Ozark highways that lead into this community offer the appeal that make motorcyclists want to literally “lean into” Eureka Springs.
The spiderweb of highways that blanket this pristine part of the United States’ Midwest region seems to have been made specifically for motorcycle travel, especially with a destination like Eureka Springs, one of America’s Dozen Distinctive Destinations according to the National Trust for Historic Preservation, at its center. Supporting this is a factoid mentioned in a recent article by Ron Keys in Motorcycle Mojo magazine, “Eureka Springs is our springboard for riding the curvy, exciting byways of the Ozarks.”
Motorcyclists, whether they are on two wheels or three, will use this Swiss-like village as their hub for discovering and riding such provocatively named routes as The Pig Trail, Ozark Highlands and the equally as challenging connecting routes to stretches of roads as Arkansas Scenic 7 Byway with its awesome panoramas. Along these routes are such notable mini-destinations as Buffalo River National Park, Branson (MO) and Bentonville (AR) with its newly opened, world-renowned Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art. All are within a day’s round-trip ride from Eureka Springs.
Jack Moyer, general manager of two of Eureka Springs’ historic hotels, the 1886 Crescent Hotel & Spa and the 1905 Basin Park Hotel, explains, “It seems as though the riders of today like to have a nice ‘home-away-from-home’ to enjoy each evening of their motorcycling vacation. They seem to want lodging in a comfortable, full-service hotel from which they can travel out, like spokes on a wheel, each morning to see new places, experience new adventures and all the while enjoying the curves of The Ozark. They enjoy returning each evening to a cold beverage, a nice restaurant, some evening attractions and a comfortable bed all in a destination community and all at an affordable price.”
“And those curves I mentioned are best described in that same recent Motorcycle Mojo article, ‘With more corners, closer together, than anywhere I’ve been, these are some of the greatest motorcycling roads on the continent.’ This is a pretty good endorsement and invitation to motorcycle enthusiasts to come and ‘lean into’ the extraordinary destination known as Eureka Springs, Arkansas,” added Moyer.
Eureka Springs has grown to embrace motorcycling visitors. Restaurants themed for “bikers”, retail shops carrying a full line of motorcycling accoutrements, hotels and motels with special features just for motorcyclists, and so on are now common place.
“At the Crescent for example, we have formulated special parking areas exclusively for motorcycles,” said Moyer. “To accommodate motorcycles and their owners even further, we have added to our websites pages speaking directly to the motorcycling travelers, designated a special on-property bike wash area including wipe-down towels, and have put in place increased security for our guests’ two-wheeled investments. And these type of accommodations are being or have already been added at many of Eureka Springs’ other hotels and motels.”
For more information on what Eureka Springs has to offer motorcyclists, one should go to eurekaspringsmotorcycleroutes.com . Lodging information and special motorcycle packages can be found at eurekaspringsonline.com .
ExperiencePlus! Bicycle Tours
Explores Star-Studded Region Historically Dubbed Carinthia,
A Time-Warp Known Today as Slovenia with a Dollop of Austria
Book a 2013 Departure by Nov. 15 and Save $200 per Person
ExperiencePlus! Bicycle Tours, that in 1972 became the first North American tour company to offer bike tours in Europe (http://www.experienceplus.com/), for the first time brings guests into a little-known mountainous but star-studded region named Carinthia in history but today known as Slovenia (with a slice of Austria).
Cycling the Lakes of Austria and Slovenia Plus! Ljubljana is an 11-day/10-night cycling tour through a region with rarified air that has inspired such luminaries born here as Gustav Mahler, composer; Peter Handke, playwright; Wolfgang Puck, chef; and Franz Klammer, alpine skier, to name a few.
The per person double rate is $4,250 ($600 single supplement) inclusive of accommodations at local inns near town centers, eight dinners with wine or beer, all breakfasts, bicycles, van support and two to three bilingual tour leaders. Guests booking by Nov. 15, 2012, for June 16-23 and Sept. 9-16, 2013, departures save $200 per person. A shorter 8-day version is $3,250 per person double ($500 single supplement) before the early booking discount.
See: http://www.experienceplus.com/tours/tours.html?tid=2950 – 11 Day Tour
See: http://www.experienceplus.com/tours/tours.html?tid= – 8 Day Tour
New for 2013, the trip dips into Austria and Italy before crisscrossing Slovenia’s Goldenhorn route that takes its name from a mythic white buck with golden horns that was said to have lived in the region. Slovenia is an area about 29 a relatively undiscovered territory for cyclists who experience easy to moderate rides of, on average, 41 miles a day on bike paths and intimate roads. The itinerary follows river valleys through the Alps into Slovenia’s Lake District, including famous Lake Bled.
Slovenia’s glacial streams, lakes and towns mingle gothic with baroque and medieval to make a pristine pastiche, likened to yesteryear’s Italy. ExperiencePlus! is the only operator that devotes well over a week to exploring this small-but-mighty crossroads of Slavic, Austrian/German and Italian culture by bicycle by starting in Austria and traveling south into Slovenia. Cyclists are introduced to quiet back roads, traditional ways of life, and some of Europe’s most overlooked cosmopolitan cities—Klagenfurt, Villach, and the elegant capital of Slovenia, Ljubljana—as well as world-famous natural wonders including Lake Bled, Lake Bohinj Savica waterfall, and the Kokra River preserve near historic Kranj. Guests also spend time visiting a cheese making farm. The benefit of bicycle travel allows guests to stop, visit and chat with craftspeople and learn about day-to-day life and how traditional iconic hay huts are constructed.
“This is considered one of our easier bike tours even though you ride through stunning alpine valleys,” explains the company’s co-director, Maria Elena Price. “We’ve carefully designed our route and itinerary to appeal to both the avid and occasional active cyclist creating easy access to this extraordinary mountainous region of Europe regardless of prior experience or ability.”
About ExperiencePlus! Bicycle Tours
No North American company has been running European cycling tours longer than ExperiencePlus! Bicycle Tours (http://www.experienceplus.com/). Launched in Italy in 1972 the Colorado-based company now offers global cycling tours immersed in local character to 31 countries on five continents. Throughout the years as the business and industry have evolved, ExperiencePlus!’ roots as a family business have remained strong. Authentic, experienced, self-paced and engaging were the ethos of parents Rick and Paola Malpezzi Price which have now been passed down to their daughters and current directors Monica Price and Maria Elena Price.
ExperiencePlus! cultural cycling programs engage tour leaders who are expert cyclists and trained cultural interpreters, guiding guests on innovative routes and immersing them in off-the-beaten-path experiences. Tours in 2013 go to Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Chile, Croatia, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, India, Italy, New Zealand, Poland, Slovakia, Spain, Turkey, United Kingdom, USA and Vietnam among others.
ExperiencePlus! is a 2011 and a 2010 recipient of National Geographic Traveler magazine’s 50 Tours of a Lifetime. The 2011 issue also featured Maria Elena Price and Monica Price, co-owners, among its World’s Top 10 Tour Guides.
For more information visit: http://www.experienceplus.com/ or call 1.800.685.4565.