Updated: May 4, 2020
This summer I travelled with my family to France for a summer holiday/ skate road trip! We had a great time looking for skate spots and meeting new people to skate with.
Prior to this trip I’ve travelled around the U.K. to skate as well as trips to Australia, The U.S and Europe. Here are some tips based on my experiences which you will hopefully find useful. Let us know your own tips for travelling with skates too!
The call of the concrete!
Looking for the perfect place to skate means something different to everyone as we all have our own personal preferences.
This bowl in Chateau d’olonne was a dream come true!
Travelling with skates. I usually try and take a set of soft wheels - 78a for outdoor skating and rougher ground and if I have room for more I’ll take my Moxi trick wheels 97a just in case we find that sweet smooth concrete!
If you only have room for one set a middle ground or hybrid wheel is a good option and at the moment I love the luminous wheels which are 85a and are perfect for skating smoother ground outdoors along with concrete bowls - and as a bonus they light up!
If I’m skating unfamiliar ramps outside I'll wear my helmet and knee pads for safety at a minimum.
Scouting for skate spots can be really fun and sometimes disappointing but often really thrilling!
This is one of the oldest skate parks in France and was really gnarly rough concrete but so much fun to explore!
I will now attempt to answer some of your questions we received via Instagram!
@brutey750 The best hidden spots, @spoiled_rotten_sweets Best skate parks in each state, country etc, @trashpizzasam How to find the best skate spots.
Ask local skaters using Instagram and Facebook groups such as Chicks in Bowls for that area if they can recommend places to skate.
I also use websites such as Concrete Disciples and Skatepark Hunter to google local parks before I go on a trip where you can see photos and read reviews before you go.
Also when you arrive chat to skaters you meet - the local skaters can tell you where some great spots are!
If you must choose because both won't fit in the bag: wheels for street or ramp? @doyouevenpug What wheels are best for what surfaces?
I would always choose softer wheels if I can only pack one! Or go for something mid level hardness like an 85a.
If you're going on holiday with non-skate friends, what to do when all you want to do is skate all the time but they don't?
Find a balance - usually it’s hot and tiring skating so with my family we would compromise and travel to a place to skate early then spend the afternoon doing non-skate activities and then maybe squeeze in a little skate on the way home!
That way we saw a lot of different places and found loads of interesting skate spots.
I am trying to backpack with my skates but they take up so much room and make my pack so heavy. Sad times!
Have you thought about switching up your set-up to suit? Lighter plates and smaller wheels can make a big difference to weight and it doesn’t need to cost a fortune!
How do you protect your skate when on the road?
I tend to spray them first with a suede protection spray and then pack carefully. Protective toe caps etc. can help keep big scuffs at bay. I always pack my skates amongst my clothes to stop them getting smashed around in the hold too much when flying long distance.
Then use a suede brush to brush off any dry dirt when you can.
How you find skateparks and if they're safe/suitable
This summer I asked local skaters and the guides online to find skateparks - they usually have a great description of the type of ramps and surface of the park so you can tell if it's the kind of place you'd like to skate. I enjoy trying new things though and sometimes its surprising that a rough surfaced park might turn out to have the most fun ramps and interesting surroundings.
Have fun exploring and please tag us in your future skate adventures - we hope to skate with you somewhere soon!