June 25, 2024

Pedaling Through Europe: Lauren Hefferon on the Joys of Biking Tours and Cultural Immersion [EP 449]

Show Notes

Rick Saez
Pedaling Through Europe: Lauren Hefferon on the Joys of Biking Tours and Cultural Immersion [EP 449]

Welcome to episode 449 of the Outdoor Biz Podcast. This week, I’m talking with Lauren Hefferon. Lauren has been a devoted cyclist for over 40 years. While in high school in Southern NH, Lauren discovered her passion for pedaling after a serious ski injury prevented her from downhill ski racing and playing many team sports. Upon graduating with a degree in Graphic Design in Mass Art, Laure decided to follow her entrepreneurial cravings and launched Ciclismo Classico. Their mission is to inspire active travelers to embrace cycling as a soulful form of travel that connects us with the world and to the passionate, curious, and creative human spirit.


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Show Notes

00:00 Rick Saez shares outdoor industry insights, interviews, and product innovation on the Outdoor Biz Podcast.

03:30 Lauren grew up without a bicycle in the 1960s until she got her purple Schwinn.

06:34 Art and curiosity drive Lauren’s varied interest in anthropology.

11:21 After Cornell, Lauren toured Europe and worked as a tour guide in Italy.

13:30 Created educational bike tours focused on teaching, not luxury. Started with the Pisa to Florence itinerary.

17:21 Some of the early challenges were in bike quality and hotel operations.

20:59 Lauren believes in learning through bicycle tours.

24:25 Promotion of lesser-known trips in Italy creates a succession of tours.

27:57 The goal is to create memorable and safe experiences on bicycle trips, including organizing a surprise performance by the Cortina Choir in the Dolomites.

31:20 Switching from driving tours to biking trips, aiming for full human-powered travel, with exceptions for uninteresting or traffic-heavy stretches.

32:53 Gravel riding in Tuscany and other regions is popular.

35:25 Prefer phone calls for personal connection in planning bicycle trips. Focus on understanding and personalizing experience.

40:44 I love Mary Oliver’s nature poems. They remind me to be grateful.

42:01 Cycling should be enjoyed at your own pace, not about speed or sleekness, akin to a ski vacation.

45:37 E-bikes are extending cycling age range and accessibility.

49:32 Lauren turned cyclist after a knee injury, emphasizing the importance of low-impact exercise.

51:13 Thanks for tuning in to the Outdoor Biz Podcast. Visit our website for show notes and subscribe to never miss an episode. Spread the word and leave a rating on Apple Podcasts.

Learn More

You can follow up with Lauren on Facebook and Instagram by email: and call her directly at 617-640-4837. That’s my cell phone. And then our 800 number is 1-800-866-7314. And our company is www.cyclismoclassico.com

Next Steps

If you enjoy interviews devoted to the outdoor industry, find us online at ricksaez.com/listen. We love likes and comments, and if you know someone who is also an outdoor enthusiast, go ahead and share our site with them, too. And be sure to Subscribe to our newsletter


#Ciclismo Classico, #bike touring, #educational tours, #Italy, #guided tours, #safety clinics, #immersive experience, #cultural interaction, #ebikes, #adventure travel, #personalized experiences, #electric bikes, #environmental benefits, #eco-friendly practices, #gravel riding, #Piedmont, #Tuscany, #Sicily.

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