A popular easy self guided cycling tour from the picture postcard Lake Bled in the Julian Alps to the historical sea side resort of Grado with it’s sandy beaches on the Adriatic sea.
This self-guided cycling tour explores the very heart of Alpine Europe, beginning with Slovenia on the shores of charming Lake Bled, heading down south through Italian province Friuli and ending on the sandy shores of the Adriatic sea. This tour has a very distinct and multi-cultural feeling, evident in the local language, culture and cuisine. You see archaeological sites like Aquileia, with its remains of a Roman city, medieval Udine and the restored fortress town of Venzone. The area has outstanding natural beauty, with the limestone peaks of the Alps, lakes, forests, meadows, hamlets and vineyards. On the final stretch the Adriatic seascape opens before you.
A member of our staff will meet you at the airport and take you to your hotel in Lake Bled. Depending on your arrival time, our cycling expert will hold a briefing with you. He will explain in detail the daily stages of the cycle tour and kit you out with your bikes.
Your circular warm-up ride takes you along the shore of Lake Bled and then through a series of traditional Slovenian villages like Begunje, famous as the birthplace of Slavko Avsenik, the legend of Slovenian folk music. You have a possibility of extending the cycling tour to the picturesque ruins of Kamen castle and Završnica valley and then crossing Sava Dolinka river to cycle back to Bled. We strongly recommend the short uphill detour to Bled castle.
We take you (20 min transfer ) to Mojstrana, a gateway village to the Triglav National Park. Through the Upper Sava valley you cycle to Kranjska gora, a famous Slovenian ski resort. The cycle path then leads you across the SLO – Italian border to the small town Tarvisio in Italy. On route you have an oportunity to stop at Planica, the craddle of ski flying with the biggest ski jump in the world, or once in Italy, the breathtakingly beautiful twin glacial lakes of Fusine Laghi.
Today you can simply relax and take the cable-car ride up to Monte Lussari with its famous pilgrimage church. Alternatively, you can take a day trip and join the Alpe-Adria cycle path to the alpine town Arnoldstein. The highlight is a chairlift (extra cost) which whisks you to the top of the mountain tripoint, »Dreiländereck«, where Slovenia, Italy & Austria meet. What a fabulous and unforgettable experience of being in three countries in a matter of seconds. One of the best photo opportunities of the week.
A longer but totally undemanding cycling today, packed with interest, colour and natural beauty. The traffic-free cycle trail winds you through mountain communities, often crisscrossing the river below, en route to Venzone, a breathtaking medieval walled town, famous for its lavender.
Today you’ll be coasting effortlessly along tranquil lanes, passing fruit orchards, vineyards and remote churches on the foothills of Friuli. Lots of traditional villages – Tavagnacco, Treppo Piccolo and Osoppo – will tempt you for lunch before you continue on through meadows to the historic regional capital, Udine.
Udine is a charming town with Venetian squares and ancient buildings: from Piazza Libertà, defined as “the most beautiful Venetian square on the mainland”, to Piazza Matteotti (or Herbal) which, all surrounded by porticos, seem to be like an open-air lounge. On the hill of the town rises the castle, from its walls you can admire the entire city.
A perfect day of gentle pedalling from one pretty wine village to the next – with lots of traditional tasting trattorias. Enjoy lunch in medieval Pavia di Udine, then continue cycling through the cornfields and swaying vines to the star-fort citadel of Palmanova.
The highlight of today’s cycle is, without doubt, the UNESCO-listed, ancient Roman city of Aquileia, a self-standing masterpiece of sacred art and historical treasure. Discover its immense archaeological site, magnificent mosaics and dominant patriarchal basilica before heading down the spectacular Adriatic lagoon to the island town of Grado.
It’s easy to see why Grado is known as the ‘Sun Island’ , so spend the day relaxing on its sandy beaches. But do make time to stroll the »calli e campielli« (lanes and courtyards) of the well-kept historic town. Here you’ll find winding alleys, pretty little squares and traditional old fishermen’s houses. There is the option to cycle along the coast through the Cavanata nature reserve to the delta of the River Isonzo, too.