Cycling Italy's Alpine Valleys Plus! Venice

Cycling Italy's Alpine Valleys Plus! Venice

Pedal along bike paths in two of Italy's finest bike-friendly regions! Begin your ride cycling through the lush meadows of the Venosta Valley with views of Alpine peaks and glaciers in the distance. Explore the historical relics in Italian cities and towns of Merano, Bolzano and Trento before moving into a smaller bicycle-friendly valley to Bassano del Grappa. In the last part of the trip we leave the mountains to pedal the best of the Po Valley and along the Brenta river to famed art cities of Vicenza, Padova and incomparable Venice.  Explore some of the most famous Venetian Villas in Italy and end with a ride into Venice. This extended tour shows off northern Italy's natural and architectural splendor in a way that can only be experienced by bicycle.

***If this sounds great but you don't have time for the full 12 days, check out our Cycling Italy’s Alpine Valleys, which features the first 7 nights of this itinerary.***

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Tour Style: Classic Hold-A-Space/Questions Request Custom Date Download Itinerary Tour Map
  • Trip At-A-Glance
  • Tour Summary
  • Daily Itinerary
  • Travel Information
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Trip At-A-Glance

Trip At-A-Glance

  • Length / 12 Days
  • Total Distance / 410 km (253 miles)
  • Avg. Distance / 45 km (28 miles) per riding day
  • Tour Level & Tour Style / 1.0 Classic
  • Countries / Italy
  • Begin/End / Glorenza/Venice
  • Price / From USD$5295
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Tour Summary

Tour Summary

  • Highlights
    3 - two night stays, Small medieval walled town of Glorenza, Adige River riding, Merano and its chic thermal spa town center, Gondola ride and dinner in a traditional “maso” in a mountain valley, Dedicated scenic bike paths, Views to the Dolomites and the Alps, Guided visit of Trento and Vicenza, Land art installation visit of Arte Sella, Palladian Villas on the Brenta Riviera, Padova and Venice.
  • Includes
    12 days, 11 nights' accommodation; 11 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 8 dinners with wine; activities as listed in the itinerary including guided walks in Trento, Vicenza, and Venice; and the usual (see below).

    Learn more about what is included and what to expect on your Classic tour at the Classic Tour Style page.
  • Arrive / Depart
    Innsbruck (INN) /Venice (VCE)
  • Overall Tour Level
    1.0 difficulty level 1.0
  • Daily Ride Summary

    Day

    Distance/Gain
    mi/ftkm/m

    Terrain

    Day Level

    Notes

    1
    Test ride
    2
    31km / 234m
    Mostly flat
    difficulty level 1.0
    3
    18km / 61m
    Mostly flat
    difficulty level 0.5
    4
    40km / 235m
    Mostly flat
    difficulty level 1.0
    5
    Rest day
    6
    68km / 234m
    Mostly flat
    difficulty level 1.0
    7
    56km / 240m
    Mostly flat
    difficulty level 1.5
    8
    45km / 163m
    Mostly flat
    difficulty level 0.5
    9
    42km / 134m
    Mostly flat
    difficulty level 1.0
    10
    55km
    11
    55km / 100m
    Mostly flat
    difficulty level 1.0
    12
    Last day

Terrain Legend

Gentle Gentle

Rolling hills Rolling hills

Hilly Hilly

Very hilly Very hilly

Mountainous Mountainous

Daily Itinerary
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DAY 1: Meet in Bolzano (Bozen) shuttle to Glorenza

Highlights: Medieval Glorenza, visit of Castel Coira, bike fitting, welcome dinner

Meet at 10 a.m. in Bolzano (Bozen in German) for our transfer to Glorenza where the cycling portion of our journey will begin. We highly recommend arriving a few days early in Bolzano to visit the archaeological museum and see its most famous resident, Otzi, a man from the Copper Age who was perfectly preserved in ice until his discovery in the early 90’s. In a few days we’ll pedal under the peaks where he was found, so take time to visit him and learn more about the area. This afternoon, we’ll visit one of the best preserved castles in the entire region, fit our bikes and enjoy a welcome dinner in a local restaurant.

  • Meals: Lunch, Dinner
  • Lodging:

DAY 2: Resia Lake loop

Highlights: Lake and glacier views, bell tower in the lake, Burgusio castle, guided walk of Glorenza

This morning we’ll shuttle to the picturesque Alpine Lake Resia. We’ll bicycle around the gorgeous lake that hides the village of Curon beneath its waters. The only remnant of the village is its bell tower which rises from the midst of the lake. It's an exciting descent from here and you’ll have a chance to visit the Burgusio Castle before returning to Glorenza for a guided walk and a visit to its historic mill before a light dinner together. Anybody with free time or an interest in whisky can visit Italy’s only distillery located just outside Glorenza's city walls!

  • Distance: 31km (19mi)
  • Gain: 234m (768ft)
  • Terrain: Mostly flat
  • Day Level: difficulty level 1.0
  • Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
  • Lodging:

DAY 3: Ride Glorenza to Lasa and the chic town of Merano

Highlights: Bike paths along the Adige river, Lasa marble, the gardens of Traumannsdorf Castle, home of Forst beer

We’ll enjoy a quiet ride through apple orchards on the bike path to the small town of Lasa. Despite its small size, Lasa’s marble craftsmanship can be found worldwide. Interestingly enough Lasa’s first large order was 86,000 crosses and Star of David in the 1950's for U.S. military cemeteries around the world. After our visit of this impressive artisan industry, we’ll catch a train to Merano where you can explore its trendy streets and cafes, take one of the two well-signed walks around town, or enjoy Italy’s most famous gardens at Trautmannsdorf Castle. Rivaling Cortina d’Ampezzo as a destination for jet-setting European visitors to the Italian Alps, Merano has long been a mountain resort for heads of the Austrian Empire, European princes and princesses and modern day celebrities.

  • Distance: 18km (11mi)
  • Gain: 61m (200ft)
  • Terrain: Mostly flat
  • Day Level: difficulty level 0.5
  • Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
  • Lodging:

DAY 4: Ride Merano to Bolzano along the Adige river

Highlights: Langrein vineyards, apple orchards, old city of Bolzano/Bozen, special dinner

We’ll leave the Venosta Valley today and head back to the large town of Bolzano - or Bozen in German. Pedal through vineyards and apple orchards as the valley widens and then narrows as you approach the city under the shadow of the Firmiano Castle. The castle is now a museum founded by one of the world’s most famous mountaineers from this region, Reinhold Messner. Enter the city along tranquil bike paths and enjoy our centrally located hotel. This evening, a special gondola ride above town brings us to a local farm where we’ll enjoy views on the Dolomite mountains and hearty homemade dishes.

  • Distance: 40km (25mi)
  • Gain: 235m (771ft)
  • Terrain: Mostly flat
  • Day Level: difficulty level 1.0
  • Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
  • Lodging:

DAY 5: Borgo Valsugana

Highlights: Guided walk of Trento, train ride, Borgo Valsugana

This morning we’ll leave Bolzano by train and head to Trento, capital of the Italy's autonomous region of Trentino Alto Adige/ Südtirol. This compact colorful city center was the seat of the Council of Trent in the 16th century, where the Catholic Church held one of its most important councils for over 20 years to determine how to handle the Protestant Reformation. Enjoy a special visit of the city and castle before we take a short train ride to our next valley and the small town of Borgo Valsugana, a quaint village nestled between the striking cliffs of the Alps' foothills.

DAY 6: Borgo Valsugana

Highlights: Spa hotel, scarecrow museum, Arte Sella

Relax and enjoy the hotel spa, or take a leisurely spin upstream along the bike path. The path meanders through orchards, and skirts small villages - one of which hosts an interesting Scarecrow Museum featuring a few ‘retired’ scarecrows. A highlight along the way is Lake Caldonazzo where you can enjoy a refreshing dip. A special evening event in the mountains awaits!

  • Distance: 68km (42mi)
  • Gain: 234m (768ft)
  • Terrain: Mostly flat
  • Day Level: difficulty level 1.0
  • Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
  • Lodging:

DAY 7: Valsugana to Bassano del Grappa

Highlights: WWI fort, wooden bridge of Bassano, grappa

Continue your journey along the Valsugana bike path enjoying stunning views, and WWI forts that overlook the valley. The route follows "Via Claudia Augusta," an ancient Roman road which ran 550 km and crossed the Alps to link the Po valley (which is just south of us) and Germany (to the north of us). You'll slowly emerge from the narrow valley to reach the town of Bassano, with its iconic wooden bridge across the river. Bassano is a key producer of grappa and there are several distilleries in town.

  • Distance: 56km (35mi)
  • Gain: 240m (787ft)
  • Terrain: Mostly flat
  • Day Level: difficulty level 1.5
  • Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
  • Lodging:

DAY 8: Pedal to Vicenza

Highlights: Marostica, "city of thousand towers", Palladio’s Vicenza and guided city walk

We leave the mountains to head south to the home of Andrea Palladio (1508–80), who is widely considered to be the most influential individual in the history of Western architecture. Vincenza prospered under Venetian rule from the early 15th to the end of the 18th century and his architectural designs, based on a detailed study of classical Roman architecture, gives the city its unique appearance. We’ll enjoy a guided city walk to see his work and learn how his influence spread throughout Europe and even to North America.

DAY 9: Padova

Highlights: Palladian Villa La Rotonda, Padua or Padova

From Vicenza you will continue riding along the foothills of Monti Berici. Along the way, you can stop to visit the famous Palladian Villa la Rotonda's gardens. One of many Palladian villas of the Veneto, though this is the best-known and most influential. The palace was built for Paolo Almerico on his retirement from the Vatican. Our ride takes us to one of the oldest cities in Italy, Padova, or Padua, perhaps better known as the City of St. Anthony. Padova was the setting for most of the action in Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew. This city is also home to Italy’s second oldest university, the University of Padua, which fosters a colorful culture in this city of stunning architecture.

DAY 10: Euganean Hills, loop ride

Highlights: Padova or loop ride in the Euganean Hills

Today's loop ride takes us into the volcanic Euganean Hills, that rise 300-600 meters from the Padovan-Venetian plain. These rolling hills are a picturesque as a backdrop on our pedal to Arqua Petaraca, a town that was home to Perarca, one of the 14th century's most famous poets and authors. If you prefer to explore Padova, today is a great day to take a break from the bike.

DAY 11: Venice

Highlights: Quiet roads and stunning architecture, Venice.

We continue our cycling journey towards the Venetian lagoon today, following the famed Brenta River which is dotted with small towns and stunning Venetian villas built between the 15th and 18th centuries. As you pedal along the “Riviera del Brenta” imagine what it was like to be a Venetian aristocrat traveling by boat between Padova and Venice at the height of the Venetian empire. We’ll reach the Venetian lagoon this afternoon and bid farewell to our bikes before spending our last evening together in the heart of Venice. We’ll celebrate the end of our ride tonight in style in Venice.

DAY 12: Tour ends in Venice

Highlights: Guided walk of Venice

Our trip ends after a guided walk of Venice. We'll be back at the hotel around around 12 p.m. Venice requires several days of exploration and with its many tiny streets and canals it's easy to get off the beaten path.

  • Meals: Breakfast
Travel Information

Travel Information

Day 1: Arrival Information

Meet in Bolzano (Bozen) shuttle to Glorenza

Meet the complimentary ExperiencePlus! shuttle on Day 1 at at 10:00 a.m. at the Meeting Hotel, the Hotel Greif in Bolzano (Bozen). Your spot on the shuttle is already reserved.

Note: As you are planning, remember that the hotels listed in our itineraries are our primary hotels and are - in rare cases - subject to change. Before you make arrangements, check with us if your tour departure is guaranteed. If your tour departure is out further than 6 months, please also check with us as there might be slight changes to the itinerary.

The below information will help you plan your arrival. For more tips or other routes, you might like Rome2Rio. The fare and timing information listed below is approximate.

We recommend flying into the Innsbruck Airport (INN).

How to get to the Meeting Hotel

  1. Taxi from Innsbruck Airport to Innsbruck Hauptbahnhof (central station) (20 min/EUR 20-25)
  2. Train from Innsbruck Hbf to Bolzano Bozen (several direct departures a day) (2 hours/fares vary)
  3. Taxi from the Bolzano (Bozen) station to the DAy 1 Hotel (5 min/EUR 10)

Look up Austrian train schedules at Oebb.at or Trainline.eu. Questions? See our information on taking trains in Europe here or ask us.

Day 12: Departure Information

Tour ends in Venice

Your trip ends on the final day after our guided walk of Venice back at the hotel at 12 noon.

The below information will help you plan your departure. For more tips or other routes, you might like Rome2Rio

We recommend flying out of Venice (VCE)

Getting to the Venice Airport

  1. Walk 10 min to the water shuttle stop San Zaccaria
  2. Water shuttle Alilaguna (blue line) to Marco Polo Airport (50 min/EUR 10) or private water taxi from Calle Ruga Giuffa, about 4 min walk away (40 min/EUR 110)

Pre-Trip Planning Checklist

To Do Today!

3–6 Months Prior to Departure

  • Reserve your flights after you know you have a confirmed tour departure. Please check with our office if you do not know if your trip is confirmed. As you make your plans refer to the Getting To and Away sent to you in your booking confirmation email it provides meeting times and the starting and ending hotels and shuttle information when applicable.
  • Book your pre and post-tour hotel nights. Please refer to the Getting To and Away sheet you received in your Reservation Confirmation Email.
  • 12 weeks before your tour begin your training program www.experienceplus.com/training.
  • Final payment is due 90 days prior to the tour start. Please refer to your Deposit Payment Invoice and the Final Payment Reminder e-mail you have received for detailed instructions.

6 Weeks–2 Weeks Prior to Departure

Day of Your Flight

Get as much sleep on the plane as you can. Pack your Getting To and Away information and one day of cycling gear in your carry-on. See you soon!

What to Expect on Tour

Classic Tour Style

Learn more about what is included and what to expect on your Classic tour at the Classic page.

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