This cycling tour has you border hopping through Austria, Slovenia and Italy. We'll experience the fascinating intersection of Slavic, German and Italian culture. Join us to relish alpine landscapes with a hint of the Mediterranean. We'll bicycle along idyllic alpine lakes in Austria's Carinthia region and northern Slovenia. Quiet roads and river paths lead us through picturesque villages, traditional farmhouses, imposing medieval castles and cozy hotels. We'll introduce you to several of Europe's most overlooked and pleasant cities, Klagenfurt, Villach and Slovenia's capital Ljubljana, a true gem.
***If this sounds great but you prefer a shorter tour - check out our Cycling the Lakes of Austria and Slovenia which features the first 8 days of this itinerary.***
Day 1: Arrive in Klagenfurt on the shores of Lake Woerther
Highlights: Gateway to Lake Woerther; beautiful city center; welcome dinnerMeet us today in Klagenfurt, hometown to Gustav Mahler and Robert Musil. Klagenfurt boasts one of Austria's prettiest old towns and was thrice awarded the prestigious Europa Nostra Diploma for its arcaded Renaissance courtyards which today accommodate modern boutiques, trendy bars, and rustic beer gardens. We'll enjoy dinner together tonight. Daily Mileage: Test ride only.
Day 2: Cycle to Lake Ossiach
Highlights: Lake Ossiach, Feldkirchen, idyllic countryside.Our ride today takes us through beautiful countryside to the cathedral town of imposing Maria Saal, built by Slovenes in the 15th Century and important pilgrimage site still today. Continue on then to Lake Ossiach, nestled between the Gerlitzen Mountain and the Ossiacher Tauern mountain range. It is the third largest lake in this region and unique in that the lake's water temperatures reach up to 28C (82F) in summer. A perfect place for a swim after a day on the bike! Daily Mileage: 56 km (35 miles).
Lodging: Lindenhof Hotel
Day 3: Villach and Bicycle Lake Faak
Highlights: Bike path from lake Ossiach to the center of Villach, Drava river bike path, Lake FaakWe have a shorter ride today. Catching up with the Drava river path, we'll head to the center of Villach, a modern and flourishing city with an ancient history as a crossroads between Austria, Slovenia and Italy. After lunch, the crystal-clear waters of Lake Faak await us for an afternoon of relaxation or water sports after we catch a ferry to our hotel. Daily Mileage: 34km (21 miles).
Lodging: Insel Hotel
Day 4: Faak Lake to Velden, on the Lake Woerter riviera
Highlights: Drava river bike path, Velden Castle, Lake Woerter rivieraToday you'll lake-hop from Lake Faak to Lake Woerter, where you can take your chance in Velden, also dubbed Austria's Monte Carlo, and gamble in the lakeside casino. Alpine meadows and rocky peak views will delight as you make your way to Velden. We'll head back to Lake Faak where we'll have dinner together on our last evening in Austria. Daily Mileage: 38 km (23 miles).
Lodging: Insel Hotel
Day 5: Bicycle across three borders in one day: Austria, Italy and Slovenia
Highlights: Forest roads, mountain surroundings, Tarvisio, forest of Tarvisio, PodkorenEnjoy the perfectly manicured landscape of southern Austria's Carinthia region before you cross the border into Italy, where a Rails to Trail bike path leads you to the border and market town of Tarvisio. We'll continue through the Tarvisio forest and cross the border into Slovenia on a dedicated bike path built on a former rail line. Your destinatin today is the peaceful alpine village of Podkoren, crowned by the Julian Alps, where mountain culture comes with a Slavic flavor. Daily Mileage: 54km (36 miles).
Lodging: Hotel Vitranc
Day 6: Relax in the Julian Alps
Highlights: Hiking paths, deep forests, stunning high mountain scenery, charming hamletsToday is a rest day. You can hike to the Koren Pass taking in the characteristic Slovenian hayracks, now preserved as part of the national heritage. Winter sports fanatics may want to see the biggest ski jump in the world near Planica, a few steps aways from the Italian border, where ski-flying world championships take place every year. Optional hike
Lodging: Hotel Vitranc
Day 7: Lake Bled
Highlights: Triglav mountain range, Tito's summer residence, Otok Island, Bled CastleAn easy ride takes us along the Sava Dolinka Valley to the old town of Radovljica, a peaceful, medieval haven. We'll continue to Lake Bled, Slovenia's leading mountain resort. Our hotel offers postcard views of the lake and handy access to the path around the lake. You can hike up to the castle, take a typical pletna boat to the island, or just go for a refreshing swim in the lake before dinner together. Daily Mileage: 57km (31 miles).
Day 8: Loop ride to Lake Bohinj
Highlights: Pristine alpine Lake Bohinj, vistas of Triglav mountain, Savica waterfallWe'll pedal along the Sava river valley to Bohinj lake, where you can connect with unspoiled nature in the heart of the Triglav National Park and enjoy Slovenia's largest glacial lake. A 20-minute walk through the Savica gorge, takes you to a stunning view over the Savica waterfall, a 78 meter fall. We'll be back at our hotel on Lake Bled this evening. Daily Mileage: 56-74 km (35-46 miles).
Day 9: Bicycle to Kranj
Highlights: Kranj old town, Kranj's underground tunnels, Kokra river canyonToday we ride to Kranj, a remarkable town filled with monuments, galleries and museums, including a network of tunnels built during WWII. A canyon runs through the center of town, through which the river Kokra flows. The canyon, which is almost 30 meters deep, used to be a source of water for the town. On our way we'll visit Kropa, a very important iron mining town, and a hub of worker immigration and trade through the ages. We'll also stop at Skofia Loka, Slovenian oldest town offers the opportunity to see Medieval Renaissance architecture in Slovenia. Daily Mileage: 64km (40 miles).
Lodging: Hotel Actum
Day 10: Ride to Ljubljana, Slovenia's capital
Highlights: Kamnik Village, Architectural gems, sidewalk cafés and boutiques along the riverWe leave Kranj to ride countryside roads till the ancient village of Kamnik. Enjoy Kamnik before our final ride takes us to Slovenia's dazzling capital, Ljubljana. Ljubljana is a charming city full of artists, museums, and galleries. With a population of 300,000, it is one of the smallest capital cities in Europe, making it easy to explore while strolling around its old town. Enjoy people watching from a riverside café and join us for our final dinner together. Daily Mileage: 69km (43 miles).
Day 11: Bicycle tour ends in Ljubljana
Highlights: LjubljanaOur tour ends this morning in Ljubljana. We highly recommend that you take a few days to enjoy all that the city has to offer. Whatever you decide have a wonderful journey.
HighlightsTarvisio, Lake Faak, Ljubljana, Kranj, Lake Ossiach, Drava river path , Klagenfurt, Villach, Lake Bled, Border hopping between Austria, Slovenia and Italy, Julian Alps, Triglav Mountain, Savica waterfall, Lake Worth
Includes"The Usual" plus... Use of a quality 27-30 speed bicycle; 11 days, 10 nights' accommodation; van support; bilingual tour leaders; 8 dinners with wine or beer, all breakfasts.
CountriesAustria, Italy, Slovenia
Begin/EndKlagenfurt, Austria / Ljubljana, Slovenia
Arrive/DepartKlagenfurt Airport (KLU), Vienna International Airport (VIE), Munich Airport (MUC), Ljubljana Jože Pučnik Airport (LJU/LJLJ)
Total Distance407 - 418km (253 - 260 miles)
Daily DistanceAverage daily mileage of 41 - 48 km (25 - 30 miles)
What to ExpectBeautiful small cities, bike paths, inviting bicycling routes in the countryside along alpine lakes.
Gentle cycling along bike paths, through mountain valleys and around lakes. You will encounter some short (a mile or less) steeper climbs.
|Sep 09 - 19, 2013||$4250||$600||Confirmed departure. Sold Out--wait list available||Book It|
|*We are happy to match solo travelers who would like to share a room with someone of the same gender. If no match exists, due to hotel pricing, we will charge 50% of the single supplement rate. This fee will be collected at the time of the final payment. If a roommate assignment is available this fee will be refunded at the conclusion of the tour.|
Click on the "pins" for details about each day's highlights.
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