Italy by bike
A biking holiday is not what it used to be. It's better.
Over the years there has been enormous upgrading in bicycles that are used in European vacations, from the use of increasingly lighter (and more pricy) touring bikes and gears moving from 10 to 27, high-tech brakes and now, battery-powered bikes.
Even the type of accommodations has changed – moving from the youth hostels of decades ago to multiple-star hotels, country inns, converted monasteries and luxurious chateaux.
Where to go, what to see
If you have the stamina for a bike trip, check out award-winning tour operator Austin-Lehman Adventures (austinlehman.com). This company organizes biking adventure tours in Yellowstone National Park, Europe and Africa. This year, Italy is a highlight as it is celebrating its 150th anniversary of being a unified country, and so there are two new Italy cycling explorations.
Novice bikers are welcome. Even the Tuscan hills become quite doable for the new cyclist. And you'll enjoy the leisurely pace, which gives you time to get immersed in the landscape, the towns, the villages and theculture. No other mode of transportation can give you this much variety and depth.
When you cycle through Italy you have the right to expect delicious food and wine and incredibly beautiful countryside. Italy never disappoints.
Explore Tuscany and Veneto like a local. Stroll through the foothills of the Dolomites, enjoy private tours of historic churches and duomos, soak in natural thermal spas, hike into a nearby forest where Napoleon once trekked and bike through scenic villages and gently rolling hills.
A rich experience
On an Italy bike tour, you'll learn how olive oil is made from a local producer and indulge in the best gelato you've ever tasted, while pedalling beside vineyards, olive groves and seaside resorts. Discover Conegliano, Asolo, Lucca, and many more charming Italian towns and say hello to friendly local people. In the evenings, relax at small luxury hotels, perfectly situated in Italy's favorite towns.
What you need to know
- Climate: south of Florence the summer is typically dry and sunny. The north tends to be more humid and cloudy.
- Currency is the euro.
- Italy is six hours ahead of Canadian Standard Time.
- There are seasonal nonstop flights via Alitalia, Air Canada or Air Transat flights to Rome from Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal, and from Toronto and Montreal, to Venezia and Lamezia.
- A passport for at least three months beyond length of stay is required. A return trip ticket and visa is not required from Canadians.