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Bicycle Tours — Italy

Cycling the Majestic Dolomites - Cortina to Bolzano

Classic Self-Guided – Cortina to Bolzano – 8 days

The postcard valleys of the Dolomites are a paradise for any outdoor activity, and the gentle bike paths that criss-cross the region are perfect for bicycle travel. Tucked in to the eastern corner of the Italian Alps, the stunning Dolomites have been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site to recognize and preserve its “exceptional natural beauty”. Settled from pre-historic times (as evidenced by the now-famous Otzi mummy in Bolzano), this region is also the cradle of the South Tyrolean culture and people (and a politically autonomous region within Italy). Majestic landscapes and scenery, Italian and Austrian-German cuisine, a unique and incredibly preserved history and way of life, the Dolomites region provides all the elements of a great bicycle tour. On this flexible self-guided itinerary, you can choose to cycle on the rolling valley floors, or challenge yourself on epic mountain climbs.


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  • Day 1

    Tour begins in Cortina d'Ampezzo

    Highlights: Welcome to Cortina; Bike fitting

    Arrive in Cortina and pick up your bikes and equipment. An online pre-travel briefing and introduction, in English, can be scheduled - we'll introduce the tour in detail, show you how to use your gps and navigation tools, and answer all your questions, getting you ready for the adventure ahead. Among the renowned ski resorts in the Italian Alps, Cortina hosted the 1956 Winter Olympics and still draws big crowds in the winter seeking great snow. This beautiful town, with a stone church and pleasant piazzas is also an outdoor paradise in the summertime, surrounded by mountains, forests and Alpine greenery.

    Accommodation: Hotel Regina, or similar.

  • Day 2

    Cycling to Dobbiaco and San Candido in the Val Pusteria

    Highlights: Cycling through the Pusteria Valley

    Leave behind the “Queen of the Dolomites” today to climb a gently graded rails-to-trails bike path through lovely forests and along small mountain lakes, reaching the small pass of Cimabanche. From here, the same path takes you gently downhill to one of the quintessential views of the Dolomites, the Tre Cime di Lavaredo, before continuing to our destination in Dobbiaco or San Candido, in the Val Pusteria.

    Daily distance: 35 km (22 miles)
    Elevation gain: + 372 m (1220 ft)

    Accommodation: Hotel Garnì Letizia, or similar.

  • Day 3

    Loop ride along the Drau River

    Highlights: San Candido, the Drau River, bike path, Austria

    Spend a relaxing day bicycling toward (or into!) Austria, along the wonderful Drau River bike path. A tributary of the Danube several hundred kilometers downriver, the Drau is born here and is the setting for one of Italy’s most well-traveled bike paths. Pedal as far as you would like heading northeast before cycling back, or catch a train from one of the stations along the way to return to Dobbiaco/San Candido (local trains are designed for cyclists to very easily board and use the train with bikes).

    Today, you can choose between two different options for your ride:

    Short option: 87 km (54 miles), with + 830 m (2722 ft) elevation gain
    Long option: 145 km (90 miles), with + 2097 m (6879 ft) elevation gain

    Accommodation: Hotel Garnì Letizia, or similar.

  • Day 4

    Cycling the Val Pusteria to Brunico

    Highlights: Spectacular views of the Pusteria Valley; Brunico

    Pedal along one of the Dolomites’ most important valleys into the heart of Trentino Alto Adige, one of Italy’s few autonomous regions. A gentle bike path takes you to Brunico (Bruneck), a delightful city and worth the visit with its two castles, city gates and Alpine architecture.

    Daily distance: 50 km (31 miles)
    Elevation gain: + 575 m (1886 ft)

    Today we offer an extra ride to Campo Tures from Brunico: 30 km (18.5 miles), with + 168 m (551 ft) elevation gain.

    Accommodation: Hotel Corso, or similar.

  • Day 5

    Cycling Brunico to Bressanone

    Highlights: Brenner Pass bike path; Novacella abbey

    Continue west today to then veer due south along the Brenner Pass bike path (heading down valley!), once one of the most important passes crossing into southern Europe and a long-time trading route down the Eisack Valley. We highly recommend stopping to visit the 12th century Novacella Monastery, which was the largest monastery in all of Tyrol and is still in function today - you can even visit their vineyards and sample their wine. Enter the small and vibrant town of Bressanone (Brixen) - as the oldest town of the province there are plenty of interesting sights in this picturesque city.

    Daily distance: 46 km (29 miles) Elevation gain: +576 m (1220 ft)

    Accommodation: Hotel Traube, or similar.

  • Day 6

    Cycling Bressanone to Bolzano

    Highlights: The Eisack Valley; Bolzano

    Continue pedaling south along the Eisarck Valley, stopping for a break in the town centre of medieval Chiusa and enjoying the cycling through chestnut forests and the first vineyards which will accompany you today and tomorrow on your rides. Pause to admire Castel Forte (Trostburg Castle in German), one of the most striking castles of all of Sud Tyrol, as it dominates the valley from its rocky promontory. Once in Bolzano, the largest city of Sud Tyrol region and the capital of the namesake province, you can explore the lively centre and town market where Italian daily life naturally flows. We highly recommend visiting the archaeological museum with the famous Otzi the Iceman, a Neolithic mummy found in the nearby peaks and one of the most important archaeological finds to understand this region’s prehistory.

    Daily distance: 43 km (27 miles)
    Elevation gain: + 236 m (774 ft)

    Accommodation: Hotel Figl, or similar.

  • Day 7

    Cycling loop into the Caldaro wine region

    Highlights: Caldaro lake and wine region

    We recommend this lovely loop ride into the wine region of Caldaro, a great place to relax and enjoy the scenery (and perhaps a wine tasting in one of the many family-run wineries along the way!). If you prefer a day off the saddle today, enjoy Bolzano and the many sights and activities the city has to offer. Or, take the train into the Venosta Valley (just west) to see some of the towns and sights along that valley, or take a taxi into the nearby Caldaro wine region to enjoy wine tastings and lovely scenery (we are happy to provide recommendations).

    Daily distance: 38 km (24 miles)
    Elevation gain: +445 m (1460 ft)

    Accommodation: Hotel Figl, or similar.

  • Day 8

    Tour ends

    Highlights: Arrivederci!

    Tour ends after breakfast.

    PLEASE NOTE: The final itinerary, including hotels and/or activities described here, are subject to changes according to availability. City hotel taxes are not included.

Includes Includes
7 nights lodging in 3- and 4-star hotels
All breakfasts
Bike fitting and briefing in English by our professional staff at tour start
Access to smartphone app with tracks and digital roadbook
Extensive pre-tour travel documentation, including detailed arrival, departure, and tour planning information
Luggage transfers

Not included
Bicycle rental (see Prices tab)
Airfare or transportation to and from the tour start and end
Entrance to museums or other activities not indicated as included
Any meals or beverages not indicated as included
City hotel tax (2 to 5 euro per night per person, to be paid locally by traveler)
Any type of insurance (medical, trip cancellation and interruption, baggage, bike rental)

Solo Traveler and Private Group departures available: please inquire.

Lodging Upgrade: Room upgrades are possible in some hotels - please inquire for prices and availability

Extra nights: If you'd like to add nights along or before/after the tour, please inquire - we will be happy to provide a quote and add the nights to your tour package.


Navigation and roadbook:
On our self-guided tours, detailed tour information and route navigation tracks are provided through the free smartphone app Ride With GPS - our "digital roadbook" - which includes daily routes, maps, elevation profiles, and ride descriptions; schedules and hotel itinerary; cultural and sightseeing information, visit suggestions; emergency numbers and more, all stored in one organized, easy to use app. Downloading the app content also allows for offline mode navigation. Participants can also upload the routes to their own GPS device, and even print the detailed route notes before leaving home

On our self-guided tours, GPS device rental, as well as a printed roadbook, are available at an optional extra fee:
  • GPS device rental: €50
  • Printed roadbook: €45 (second copy of printed roadbook €15)

  • For more information on our navigation options, as well as the smartphone app, please read our blog: What's it like to navigate on our self-guided tours?.

    Luggage transfers
    Luggage transfers are included in your package. The luggage is normally collected from 09.30 at the reception of the hotel and is delivered at the following hotel by 15.00 hrs. Please use the luggage tags provided by Cycle Europe on all your luggage being transferred. Please have your luggage ready before the driver comes to collect it, otherwise you may have to pay a local taxi for the service.
    Please consider that the luggage is not insured during the transport. You need to have your own insurance. Do not leave valuables or fragile items in your luggage.
    Normally, the luggage transport service cannot be used by participants to skip the cycling stage. In case you need help to skip the cycling stage, please contact our emergency number and we will arrange it for you.

    PLEASE NOTE: the final itinerary, including hotels and/or activities described here, are subject to changes according to availability. City hotel taxes are not included.

    Tour code: itbs3930
    Countries Italy
    Begin/End Cortina d'Ampezzo / Bolzano
    Arrive/Depart Starting point: Hotel Regina - Via del Castello, 1, Cortina d'Ampezzo
  • If you are flying into Treviso Antonio Canova Airport (TSF)
  • - You can take a bus or a 10-minute taxi from Treviso Airport to the train station. Check the Treviso Airport website for more information
    - From Treviso station, take a train to Cortina d'Ampezzo. The train ride takes between 4h and 5h . The hotel is located about half a kilometer from the train station, you can walk 5 minutes or take a taxi
    - Alternatively, you can take a taxi from Treviso airport to your hotel in Cortina d'Ampezzo (about 2h drive)
  • If you are flying into Venice Airport ( VCE):
  • - You can take a direct shuttle bus that will take you to Cortina in just 2 hours. Please check the shuttle bus website
    - You can take a train but there will be at least wo connections

    Private transfers are also available - inquire for prices

    Ending point: Hotel Figl - Piazza del Grano, 9, Bolzano
    We recommend flying out of Venice Airport (VCE)

    - You can a take a direct 5-hour Flixbus from the Bolzano train station to the airport
    - You can take a train (that usually has one conection in Verona) of the duration of approx. 4 hours, to Mestre train station and then catch a bus to reach the airport. Check schedules on the Trenitalia website

    Final arrival and departure instructions along with other detailed pre-travel documents, will be e-mailed prior to your travel, with information specific to your departure (including the actual hotels used on your tour dates, which may vary from the hotels listed above.)

    * the hotels and prices listed above are for reference only and are subject to change (based on availability and seasonality)
    Total Distance approx. 298 km (186 miles)
    Daily Distance 35-87 km (22-54 miles)

    Rating 101 to 201
    About Tour Ratings »
    Notes Difficulty Description:

    This tour includes level 1 as well as level 2 rides, and is apt for beginner cyclists who are fit.

    Longer distance rides with higher difficulty levels are available on most days, making this tour a great option for intermediate to advanced cyclists.

    The itinerary includes short stretches of bike paths with hard packed dirt/gravel sections that could prove difficult for less experienced cyclists if using a road bike with thin tires; if you are not experienced on hard packed dirt/gravel, we recommend renting our aluminum hybrid bike or our e-bikes, with thicker tires that make the bike paths easier to manage. If you have any questions about this, please ask us, we'll be happy to answer in detail.

    Please click on the Rating link below for a detailed explanation of our difficult rating system.
    Terms Terms & Conditions
    Dates Prices Single Supplement
    Dates This tour is available between May 1 and September 30

    *2024 per person published price with 4 participants on the same booking, in shared double rooms.

    For bookings with 2 or 3 participants, the price per person is €1595.

    Starts every Saturday. Other start days available by request (extra fee of €250 per departure applies). Please note that starting on certain days of the week will make some visits (such as museums or tastings) impossible.

    Solo traveler departures (only one person on the departure) are available with a supplemental fee. This fee includes the cost of the single/double room supplement, as well as a GPS unit with the pre-loaded routes.

    Group Discounts for participants booking together on the same departure! Please inquire for details through our contact form below.

    For more ways to save, see our Discounts and Promotions page

    High-Season supplement (May, June, September and early October): a €100 per person surcharge is applied on high-season departures. If joining an existing, confirmed departure date, the fee may be waived - please inquire.

    2024 confirmed departure dates:

    May 25
    June 1, 8, 15, 29
    July 13, 27
    September 7, 14

    Bike Rental options:
    We offer quality bikes in different styles, all great options for this bike tour. Our bikes are maintained and delivered in optimal working condition.

    The prices below are per bike for the duration of the tour, including delivery to starting point in Cortina and collection from ending point in Bolzano.

    Bike rental rates
    Aluminum hybrid: €130
    Premium Titanium road or hybrid: €170
    E-bike (hybrid with straight handlebar): €255
    Tandem: €295 (priced per bike, for 2 cyclists)
    Tag-along or kid trailer: €80

    Bike rental insurance is available for purchase with all our rental bikes – see details in the Bike Rental Insurance section of our Terms and Conditions page.

    For detailed specs and photos of our bikes, see our website - Bike Rentals Italy.


    If you have more days available and are interested in a true Grand Tour of the Italians Alps and Dolomites you can join this tour back to back with our Alpine Valleys - Sud Tyrol, Lake Garda and Verona tour.


    Additional useful information:

    • Do you have any questions about how our bike tours work? Check out our FAQs page!

    • Curious about the difference between our Casual and Classic self-guided tours? Check out our introduction blog on Casual Self-Guided Tours.

    • We offer various tools for navigation - this page details what it's like to navigate on our self-guided tours.

    • If the self-guided formula isn't right for you, check out this blog introducing the differences between Guided and Self-Guided Tours.
    Prices €1355 per person * Single Supplement €240 fee (in single room or double room for single use)

    Next Step Request space on this Bicycle Tour »
    • A trip of a lifetime - riding through some of the most iconic landscapes in Northern Italy. Words cannot describe the intensity of this experience. Riding through such a beautiful country, hearing the birds, smelling the flowers and trees while having the opportunity to have as many espresso and Gelatos along the way....what more can one ask :) My favorite? Riding up from Cortina to Lake Misurina and then heading to Lake Dobbiaco will be one of my top lifetime experiences. I found the balance between mileage (not too much of it) and sightseeing (villages or lunch spots along the way) perfect. None of the days seemed long or monotonous - every day was intense and different with great variety of things/places to see.

      Babak S.

    • Well organized, excellent routes and hotels. The tour was well worth the price. I could never have come up with the routing on my own, as was proved by other places I picked to ride while in Italy outside of the tour.

      Charles K.

    • 10 out of 10: This trip was amazing! Every day was completely different and interesting: the landscapes were breathtaking, food was wonderful, people were friendly. I would recommend this tour to anyone who likes cycling.We loved this tour and I have already started looking into other cycling trips through Cycle Europe.

      Catherine S., Italy, 2022