Editor’s note: This article was published before the coronavirus pandemic, and may not reflect the current situation on the ground.

Cycling 3,200 kilometers of the Scandinavian Peninsula as part of a new TV series, now on Amazon Prime, was the ultimate slow travel adventure for travel writer Simon Parker. He shares why he loves to explore the world at a more relaxed pace.

Invasive crabs in the Arctic Ocean, beer made from algae, endangered Nordic brown bees … These were just a few of the encounters that filmmaker and travel writer Simon Parker had on his six-week, slow bike ride through Scandinavia, from the Arctic to the bottom of Sweden, where he camped in the wild, met local people, witnessed animal migrations, tracked moose and beavers, and fuelled up on seasonal food.

This epic trip was filmed for the first series of a new TV show called Earth Cycle. “The premise is to promote ‘green’ principles and slow journalism,” says Parker, “while championing the joys of long-distance cycling adventures through the wilderness.”

In a world powered by 24-hour news, and ‘doing it for the ‘gram’, it feels like it’s never been more important to just slow down.