A diverse region located along the shores of the Adriatic Sea and at the foot of the Dolomite mountains, the Veneto, once part the Venetian Republic is a remarkable reflection of Italian history and style: full of Renaissance art, fine food and wine. Our bike rides retrace old trade routes that were used to transfer goods brought in from the Far East to various trading posts, whom dispersed the goods throughout Europe. We wonder through the flat farmlands passing stately 16th & 17th century villas, trace along the volcanic hills and long dried up inland seas, then into the foothills of the Pre-alps. By day we follow classic local bike routes while learning about the history, culture, local food and wine products. In the evening we treat ourselves to the great foods and wines we have seen during our ride, savoring parts of the dolce vita with classic Veneto cuisine, all the while being hosted in opulent villa hotels.
We begin our adventure with a ride along the Brenta River with a special tour of Villa Pisani, that once hosted Napolean. Our next stop is Vicenza, the “City of Palladio” and the Tocai Rosso wine road. Then it is on to Asolo, considered by many to be the quintessential Italian town. It is a tiny hamlet with an abundance of quaint, winding streets and a graceful piazza overlooking the valley. On our way we stop we explore Palladio villas and fortified cities from the past. We visit Bassano Del Grappa, famous for its strong grappa made from a distillation of local grapes. We sample the grappa, which ranges in taste from a mild honey to a fiery, herb-infused concoction, then head into the foothills and vineyards of the Strada del Prosecco, to taste some of the sparkling wine which has made this area so famous. Passing the the walled city of Treviso there is the Pinerallo bicycle factory and the national park of so the Sile River. Closing out the week is a ride to Oderzo with it's Roman orgins, following the Pieva River where Ernst Hemmingway was wounded in the Great War to arrive just outside of Venice at Treporti.
Biking works up our appetites for some wonderful Northern Italian meals. The noble region of the Veneto is home to risotto and polenta as well as homemade pastas spiced with radicchio, rucola and endive. Seafood lovers will rejoice in the freshly caught frutti di mare prepared in the Venetian tradition.
This tour is for those who like a bit of bike with their food and wine, while staying in upper scale hotels.
Easy, self-guided or guided hotel tour. Routes are mainly flat up until day 5. Day 6 there are 3 to 4 easy hills and on the 7th day 2 small climbs and a moderate descent. Daily cycling ranges from 22 to 41 miles (35 to 65 km). Routes take place on mostly asphalted bike paths & country roads, avoiding traffic as much as possible.
Experienced travel guide
Entrance fees & guided tours according to program
Guided walks in Bassano del Grappa & Oderzo
City tours in Vicenza
Ferry, train, & bus transfers during tour