Duration: 6 Days / 5 Nights
Terrain: Rolling / Hilly
The Italian Alps are renowned for their pristine rivers and streams, their exquisite cheeses and smoked hams but most of all for their most precious gem: the eastern most mountains called Dolomites, a paradise for any outdoor activity. Join us to pedal this region’s stunning valleys and passes, listed since 2009 as a UNESCO World Heritage site to recognize and preserve its “exceptional natural beauty”. Inhabited by ancient civilizations, traces of which got to us thanks to the finding of the mummy Otzi, these mountains also straddle a cultural boundary that gives us the best of Italian and Austrian-German cuisine, hospitality and blended history. Our tour gives you a chance to enjoy Dolomitic landscapes, learn about the peculiar local history as well as discover hidden corners where life still flows as if tourism never got there. Spend 8 days exploring breathtaking mountain roads, pedaling through ancient forests where Nature sets the rhythm of life. All the while enjoying traditional Tyrolean meals and top quality local wines.
Day 1 – Meet at Rome’s Fiumicino airport to shuttle to Maremma We will start the day with a shuttle from Rome’s Fiumicino airport to our country resort in the Tuscany region of Maremma. We will enjoy lunch together before our bike fitting and first loop ride. On the test ride we recommend you visit the Tarot Garden, an esoteric sculpture garden based on Tarot cards, designed by the French-American artist Niki de Saint Phalle. This garden is home to one of the most amazing outdoor sculpture gardens in the world. Opened in 1998, it is something between an Antonio Gaudí or Salvatore Dali exhibit and a Cristo installation. Once back at the hotel, you can lounge by the pool or ride a few extra miles to explore the small hilltop village of Capalbio. Enjoy getting lost in the intricate alley ways of this picture perfect village or visit the tiny castle with its magnificent view of the surrounding landscape. Though you won’t be lost for long, you will gain an understanding for the defensive strategy of building villages that are reminiscent of a maze. Meals included: Lunch & Dinner
Day 2 – Coastal loop ride (23 miles, 600 feet gain) We cycle towards the coast today, riding parallel to it as we reach Monte Argentario, a small mountain emerging from the sea and connected to the mainland by two sand bars which form a lagoon. Here you’ll find Orbetello – a once thriving fishing village, in the middle of the lagoon. Porto Ercole and Porto Santo Stefano are the two main villages of Monte Argentario and were once important open water ports, the huge defensive fortresses you see today were built by the Spanish. Cycle up to the main fort for a majestic view over Porto Ercole and the coast, take the opportunity to enjoy a snack or beverage as you overlook the bay. Return by shuttle or bicycle back to the hotel (an additional 46 km and 521 meters of climbing). Be sure to consider that there are a wide variety of optional afternoon activities including cooking demonstrations, winery or olive oil visits or just relaxing by the pool. Meals included: Breakfast & Dinner
Day 3 – Ride to Talamone (31 miles, 1,700 feet gain) We’ll pedal north toward Magliano this morning before turning towards the Tyrrenian coast to reach the small village of Talamone. Perched high on a rocky promontory overlooking a picturesque gulf, this tiny village gets its name from Greek legends. Once upon a time this was an important Etruscan port, today it is a sleepy fishing village with an imposing fortress overseeing the village and its beaches. Enjoy some time here before shuttling or cycling back to the hotel (47 km and 390 meters of climbing) where you can enjoy an optional visit to an herbal liqueur maker in town or a yoga class at the hotel. Or, how about a horseback ride? You have a few options for dinner tonight – opt for the hotel restaurant or enjoy a unique barbecue dinner on the grounds. Meals Included: Breakfast
Day 4 – Capalbio to Sovana (36 miles, 3,200 feet gain) Today’s ride is rewarding and a little more challenging as you make your way to Sovana. This beautifully situated Etruscan town is literally carved into the local tufa (volcanic stone). Along the way, take the opportunity to stop and visit a local dairy and discover the secrets of Tuscan Pecorino cheese from the cheese maker himself. This afternoon, take part in an optional guided visit of the monumental Etruscan Hildebrand tomb, one of the most famous and well-preserved tombs of the area where you’ll wander through canyon-like alleyways sculpted from stone! Settle into the hotel for the evening or head to the center of town to sit and enjoy a drink, surrounded by remarkable tufa stone buildings. Meals included: Breakfast
Day 5 – Loop ride to Sorano and Pitigliano (20 miles, 1,800 feet gain) Today’s loop ride takes us to the striking towns of Sorano and Pitigliano, both of which are perched high on cliffs of tufa stone. Similar to Sovana, these towns have Etruscan origins and impressive archaeological remnants. Built between the 10th and 15th centuries, they were held by important Roman families, the Aldobrandeschi (Sorano) and the Orsini (Pitigliano) until their fall to the Medici, the Grand Duchy of Tuscany. Their elaborate palaces still stand in the center of both towns. For those who can’t stand the idea of ending their ride in Tuscany there is the option to add another 26 km and 571 meters. Once back at the hotel, enjoy a swim in the pool, a pasta making demonstration, or further exploration of the surrounding archaeological sites. Tonight we’ll toast our adventure and savor a celebratory dinner together. Meals included: Breakfast & Dinner
Day 6 – Shuttle to Orvieto train station Say goodbye after breakfast. We’ll shuttle you to the Orvieto train station where you can catch trains north to Florence or south to Rome. If you have the time, we highly recommend you spend a few days in Orvieto to enjoy this spectacular town. Meals included: Breakfast
PRICING & INCLUSIONS
- Superb tour leaders who are fun, bilingual and avid cyclists.
- Help with flights, trains and pre/post tour hotels.
- Comfortable lodging in 3-4 star hotels.
- All breakfasts and at least half of your dinners.
- Use of a high quality 27-30 speed bike.
- Full van support to carry luggage – and tired cyclists, too!
- Special events like wine tastings, cultural visits and chocolatiers.
- All tips and gratuities at tour hotels and group meals.
- Unique routes.
- Daily mileage options.
- Detailed route map and free use of our traveling resource library.
TRIP PRICE EXCLUDES:
- Transportation to and from the bicycling tour including airfare, or train travel
- Helmets – we ask that you bring your own to ensure the best fit
- Meals not listed in the itinerary
- Tour Leader gratuity
PUBLIC DATES AND AVAILABILITY
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