Camping Gear for Bicycle Touring

Flight booking


On this page, you’ll find the gear we take when bicycle touring. We originally started with a lot more stuff on our Cycling Tour Across Australia. On subsequent tours, we cut it down significantly. And on our latest tour along the Rhine route, we’ve decided we need a few more things to save us money overall. Below you’ll find descriptions and links to our:

    • Tent & Accessories
    • Cooking Gear
    • Sleeping and Sitting Gear
    • Bits and Pieces to make life easier.

Note: The links on this page all go to Amazon. If the product is unavailable in your region, Amazon will offer you similar items. If you access Amazon by clicking one of these links and then make ANY purchase (it doesn’t need to be the products on this page), we get a small commission. See our disclaimer at the bottom of this page and a more comprehensive explanation HERE

Tent & Accessories

Vango, Vango, Vango!!!

Honestly, we can’t talk highly enough about the two Vango tents we’ve had.

The first was a Vango Sabre 200 TBSII 2-person hiking Tent. It was still perfect when we gave it away last year and bought our new one. The only problem we had is we are getting too old and achy to get in and out the low door. Other than that, it was fabulous for over eight years. Light, watertight, no condensation, and spacious enough to hide all our panniers in camp. Unfortunately, they don’t make that model anymore, but you can find somewhat similar models like the Banshee on their page.

Our new one is the Vango Scarfell 300. It has soooo much space and is only slightly heavier. We LOVE IT!

Check out the Vango range of tents on Amazon HERE.

Cooking Gear

Rockies Road Trip

Optimus Crux Lite Camping/Hiking Stove

Our Optimus Crux lite has been on every tour (except Vietnam, where we didn’t take camping or cooking gear) since our first ride in 2013 across Australia, and it’s still going strong. At less than 200g, it packs enough punch to boil things quickly and enough adjustment so you can simmer things when cooking. It’s also far cheaper than many other lightweight camping stoves.

You can check out the specs and prices on Amazon HERE.

GSI Outdoors Bugaboo Base Camper – small 2-person cookset

I have to admit; the whole set is a bit much for bicycle touring. We ditched the frying pan pretty quickly. Having two saucepans was brilliant, but we recently ditched the larger one to save weight for an international flight. Honestly, that was a BIG MISTAKE. The saucepan we still have is great after 10+ years and six long tours. It’s reasonably priced, & good quality. Highly recommended. 

Check out the specs and prices on Amazon HERE.

Collapsible Bowl (s)

This 1200 ml collapsible bowl weighs just 210 g and collapses down for easy packing. It’s big enough for a small salad or pasta dish for the two of us.

We’ve also replaced our previous solid bowls/plates with two smaller collapsible containers with lids for both eating and storage.

Originally, we had a full set of Light My fire plates, cups, bowls, and MSR utensils, but we have ditched them all except for the cups over the years.

Links to specs & prices on Amazon in the text.

Collapsible Silicon Coffee Filter 

Finally, we got sick of instant coffee and teabags and have splashed out on a reusable filter. We’ve been spoilt with all the fantastic coffee while housesitting and at 91 grams, it’s totally worth the extra weight. I know we have to carry the filters and coffee, but we can minimize that weight easily. And to be honest, it won’t be much more than instant 3 in 1 coffee sachets (Yuck!)

You can check out the specifications and price on Amazon HERE.

Sleeping & Sitting

Thermarest NeoAir XLITE Ultralight Hiking Mattress

Thermarest NeoAir XLites aren’t cheap, but they are great value. We’ve had ours for over ten years and slept on them at least more than 500 times. They are still in excellent condition and comfortable to sleep on. They are thick enough to insulate from the cold ground and pack down to nothing. We have a women’s (Shazz) and a regular wide (Tim). Tim’s weighs ~640g, and mine less. 

You can check out the specs and prices on Amazon HERE.

Trekology High Back Ultralite Camping Chairs

We are getting too old and achy to be sitting on camp benches (if they are even available.) So, for our last tour in Europe, we splurged and bought ourselves a Trekology ultralight highback chair each.

Ours weigh 1.45 kg, but they have lighter versions if you don’t want the high back. Honestly, I’m not sure how we did without them on our long tours.

Check prices and specs on the Trekology page on Amazon HERE.

Bits & Pieces (to make life easier)

Scrubba Washing Bag.

One of the best ways to reduce the amount of weight you carry while bicycle touring is to reduce the amount of clothes you take. But since you get hot and sweaty every day, that means feeling grotty or washing your clothes a lot more often.

I HATE handwashing. Nothing ever feels really clean, and it actually hurts my (delicate) hands. Washing facilities in European campgrounds are pricey.

At just 136 g, the Scrubba is a game changer. It weighs less than a t-shirt, gives a machine-quality wash in just a few minutes, and we’ll make our money back in a couple of weeks.

You can check out the specs and prices on Amazon HERE.

Laundry Leaves

To go with the Scrubba washing bag, we have laundry leaves. They are way lighter and more environmentally friendly than lugging around powder or liquid.

You might not be able to buy this exact brand, but amazon will show you what’s available in your region HERE.

Check out the specs and prices on Amazon HERE.

Portable Washing Line

Staying on the theme of keeping clean, we’ve carried a portable washing line with us since day 1, over 13 years ago. Incredibly, it’s still doing the job.

I like that it has hooks at the end, so you have the choice of wrapping it around something or hooking it on.

This one is plenty long enough for our needs, but you can find all sorts of variations on Amazon HERE.

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