Essential Gear for the Best Bike Tours

Pearl Izumi Elite Gel Vent Gloves
PEARL IZUMI ELITE GEL VENT GLOVES: You need to invest in a good pair of gloves, and it doesn’t get much better than these classics, with fit and padding scientifically designed to relieve pressure on your median and ulnar nerves, combined with plenty of ventilation to keep your hands cool.
$40, pearlizumi.com
Gore Bike Wear Gore-Tex Power Active Jacket
GORE BIKE WEAR GORE-TEX POWER ACTIVE JACKET: Into every life some rain must fall — sometimes even in the vineyards — but you’ll stay dry in any weather with this bike-specific jacket from the brand synonymous with waterproof/windproof breathability for action sports. It comes in three color options, plus a women-specific model, and features include a smartphone pocket, an extra-long back, a zippered rear pocket, and snug cuffs.
$229, goreapparel.com
Capo Pursuit Wind Vest
CAPO PURSUIT WIND VEST: Sometimes all you need for cooler weather is a vest to cut the wind, and this high-end U.S./Italian cycling clothier makes one so light and paper-thin you can ball it up in your jersey pocket when not in use, yet it works great.
$80, capocycling.com
Capo Modena Donna Women's Collection
CAPO MODENA DONNA WOMEN'S COLLECTION: Capo is one of the few companies that make a full line of truly women-specific high-performance riding gear, and the Modena Donna line includes short- and long-sleeve jerseys ($90-$120), matching shorts ($120), and knickers ($130), all with muscle compression, breathability, moisture management, and quality chamois. capocycling.com
Shimano Click'r Shoe/Pedal Combos
SHIMANO CLICK'R SHOE/PEDAL COMBOS: It’s a Catch-22: No bike upgrade increases pedaling efficiency and performance like clip-in pedals, but no upgrade scares first-time users as much. Shimano’s answer is a super-easy-to-use wide platform, traditional pedal with built-in cleat and matching line of hybrid shoes that are perfectly comfortable off the bike for strolling cobblestone streets in medieval hill towns. From $70, bike.shimano.com
Pearl Izumi P.R.O. Series Shorts and Bibs
PEARL IZUMI P.R.O. SERIES SHORTS AND BIBS: No piece of riding gear is as important as shorts, especially on these multiday, higher-mileage tours. Pearl Izumi is the best-known quality apparel manufacturer in cycling, but few recreational riders know how comfortable its top-of-the-line P.R.O. series is, with the best padding, finest construction, and every cutting-edge feature from moisture management to cooling fibers.
$110 to $200, pearlizumi.com