Pedaling Lake Garda and the Veneto
Guided group tour - Mantua, Garda, the Veneto and Venice
Pedal with us across the Veneto - through picturesque villages and historic art cities, along cycle paths and down rural country lanes - to discover this corner of Northern Italy nestled against the Italian Alps. We’ll visit the majestic and beautiful Lake Garda, as well as Verona, Mantova, Vicenza, Padova and Venice - all unique cities that blend history, charm and modernity. In Vicenza, discover the architectural wonders of Andrea Palladio from the 16th century, considered to be the most influential individual in the history of Western architecture. This is also wine country, home to some of the more important Italian wines, where you can sample Valpolicella and Soave wines from the protected vineyards along the Alps’ foothills, as we make our way east toward La Serenissima - the majestic city of Venice.
Meet in Verona
Highlights: Test ride and welcome dinner
Meet the group and tour leader at the Verona train station in the mid-afternoon, from where we will transfer to our lodging for the next two nights. Our quaint inn is located in the small town of Valeggio Sul Mincio, near Mantova (Mantua). We’ll fit bicycles and enjoy a test ride on the nearby cycle path to Borghetto sul Mincio, a picturesque village located on the river connecting Lake Garda with the lakes around Mantova to the south. Return to our inn for our welcome dinner together.
Daily distance: 4 km (2 miles)
Elevation gain: + 62 m (203 ft)
Accomodation: Al Cacciatore Hotel and Restaurant, or similar.
Mantova loop ride
Highlights: Palazzo Ducale and Palazzo Te
Pedal south along the bike path to reach the impressive city of Mantova, with its pretty lakes built around it as fortifications and now a great green area surrounding the city. Mantova was home to the princely Gonzaga family, who ruled for several centuries between the 1400-1800's and who made Mantova an artistic, musical and architectural centre. Visit the Palazzo Ducale and Palazzo Te, as well as the Piazza Virgiliana, Castello San Giorgio and Piazza delle Erbe before returning to our small town later this afternoon.
Daily distance: 69 km (43 miles)
Elevation gain: + 279 m (920 ft)
Accommodation: or similar. Al Cacciatore Hotel and Restaurant , or similar.
Lake Garda and Valpolicella
Highlights: Peschiera del Garda; Sant Ambrioggio; Hilltop lodging
Head north today along our delightful bicycle path to reach the shores of Lake Garda, one of Italy’s most famous lakes nestled south of the Italian Alps. Visit the historic and colorful town of Peschiera del Garda, on the waterfront, before continuing along the eastern shore to climb a bit onto a ridge leading into the vineyards of the Valpolicella wine area. This area grows the grapes that make Amarone wine, one of Italy’s strongest red wines, which we will enjoy in a wine tasting hosted by the owners of tonight’s lodging, set on a lovely terrace overlooking the vineyards. A historic home turned into a boutique lodge, Villa San Giorgio is surrounded by vineyards, with a truly amazing view of the hills and Lake Garda in the distance.
Daily distance: 42 km (26 miles)
Elevation gain: + 532 m (1745 ft)
Accommodation: Villa San Giorgio, or similar.
Pedal through wine country to Verona and Soave
Highlights: Valpolicella wine country; Verona; Soave castle and historic center
We continue along rolling foothills today to leave the Valpolicella area and enter Verona, famous for its arena which is still today used for outdoor theatre. Have lunch in the center of town, visit Juliet and Romeo’s balcony and then continue out of town to arrive in Soave, another small wine village. The medieval castle and its fortifications that dominate the town stand in stark contrast to the softer vineyards that line the hills. Enjoy the local wine or a stroll through the small town, near our centrally-located hotel.
Daily distance: 67 km (41 miles)
Elevation gain: + 258 m (846 ft)
Accomodation: Locanda ai Capitelli, or similar.
Vicenza and Palladio’s architecture
Highlights: Home of Andrea Palladio
We head to Vicenza, another famous art city which prospered under Venetian rule from the early 15th to the end of the 18th century. Its most famous son is surely Andrea Palladio whose work has been declared the biggest influence in Western architecture since his time. His architectural designs, based on a detailed study of classical Roman architecture, gives the city its unique appearance and you can see many of his villas and buildings still standing.
Daily distance: 37 km (23 miles)
Elevation gain: + 420 m (1378 ft)
Accomodation: Key Hotel, or similar.
Cycle to Padova among the Palladian villas
Highlights: Palladian Villa la Rotonda's gardens
Leave Vicenza along the foothills of Monti Berici. We’ll enjoy an optional stop at the famous Palladian Villa la Rotonda's gardens, the best known and most influential of Andrea Palladio’s villas. Continue riding to reach one of the oldest cities in Italy, Padova (or Padua) also known as the City of St. Anthony. Padova’s claim to history is not only being home to Italy’s second oldest (and still vibrant) university, but it also acted as the setting for most of the action in Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew.
Daily distance: 43 km (26 miles)
Elevation gain: + 86 m (282 ft)
Accomodation: Hotel Al Fagiano, or similar.
Highlights: Discovering Venice by foot
We’ll take the train into Venice for the day, where we will explore less well-known areas of the “Serenissima”, as the majestic city is often called. From the train station, visit the Jewish Ghetto, the Cannaregio neighborhood and the Fondamente Nove before arriving near the Rialto bridge. From here, you’ll have free time to visit the highlights of Venice. Regroup later this afternoon to return to Padova together for our celebration dinner in a local restaurant. Raise a glass of white wine, the traditional Venetian aperitif, or a classic spritz to our journey together across the Veneto region.
Daily distance: no biking today
Accommodation: Hotel Al Fagiano, or similar.
Tour ends in Padova
For those wishing to continue their time in Veneto or Northern Italy, Padova is a great starting point. Venice is short distance away – a bucket list destination for ending your dream Italian holiday. The Lakes and Dolomites regions of Northern Italy are also nearby. If there is further travel in your plans, please let us know and we’ll be happy to provide suggestions. If your travels end today, we will provide tips for arriving to nearby Venice, Milan, Treviso or Verona airports.
Breakfast included at hotel this morning
|Includes||High quality hybrid touring bike, 7 nights lodging in 2 and 3 star hotels with breakfast, 1 dinner with local wine, 1 guided wine tasting, shuttle from Verona train station to starting hotel, Train tickets to Venice on Day 7, GPS navigation tracks provided via Ride With GPS (which you can upload to your personal navigation device); Bilingual English-Italian cycling guide, support vehicle and driver most days, pre-tour travel and sales assistance (our pre-travel documentation will help you properly prepare your arrival and departure logistics, as well as for your participation in the tour)|
|Begin/End||Verona / Padova|
|Arrive/Depart||How to get there and away:
We recommend flying into and out of Venice Marco Polo Airport or Verona’s airport
Starting point: Meet in front of Verona’s Porta Nuova Train Station, for a group transfer to the starting hotel (you will receive exact meeting point instructions prior to your departure.
- An airport shuttle runs between Venice airport and Mestre station. The ACTV bus # 15 also takes you from Venice’s Airport to Venezia Mestre train station (takes longer than the airport shuttle).
- From Mestre train station to Verona’s Porta Nuova train station, there are frequent departures.
- If you’re flying into Verona, Aerobus connects Verona airport to Verona’s Porta Nuova train station in 15 minutes (a ticket costs about 6€).
Ending point: Art Hotel Al Fagiano – Via Locatelli 45, Padova
- We recommend flying out of Venice’s Marco Polo Airport (VCE)
- To get to Padova train station with public transportation take the BusItaliaVeneto (tram n. SIR1 from Santo stop to Station stop). It takes about 10 minutes.
- Taxis from the hotel to the train station cost about 15-20€ and take about 6 minutes. You can book your taxi by calling +39 049 65 13 33 (or ask the hotel reception).
- From Padova train station, regional trains will take you to Venice in about 1 hour. Venice’s Venezia-Mestre station will connect you to the airport
- If you prefer to save time, it is also possible to take a taxi from Padova train station. It costs about 80€ and it takes about 45-50 minutes to get to Venice Airport. You can book your taxi by calling +39 049 65 13333 (or ask at hotel reception).
- From Padova train station a shuttle bus (BusItaliaVeneto) will take you to Venice Airport in about 1 hour and it costs 10€. It departs every 30 minutes from 6.25am to 9.25pm. Or, save some time taking a shuttle bus that goes direct to Venice Airport in about 1 hour and it costs 10€ ((BusItaliaVeneto).
Final exact arrival and departure instructions along with other detailed pre-travel documents, will be e-mailed prior to your tour, 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||254 km (159 miles)|
|Daily Distance||42 km (26 miles)|
|Notes||Great tour for novice cyclists with basic fitness and experience to manage the daily distance and terrain type. Bike handling skills are necessary to manage possible starting and stopping and negotiating bike paths when cycling in or near cities and towns. Also ideal for experienced cyclists who desire shorter days on the bike and plenty of time to enjoy daily destinations and activities. You will ride between 40 and 64 km (25-40 miles) per day, on mostly flat to rolling terrain, and few steep hills. The terrain consists primarily of paved backroads and bike paths with little vehicle traffic, although there are stretches where we share the roads with cars. Some of the bike paths may have stretches of hard-packed dirt or gravel, perfectly suitable for our bikes (although we recommend only experienced cyclists choose road bikes which have thinner tires). Advanced cyclists who want longer, optional rides at the end of the programmed ride will have these available most days (please ask ahead).
Please click on the rating link above for additional details on the difficulty level.
Tour code: itbg3853
|Terms||Terms & Conditions|
|Dates||2023 group departure dates coming soon!
This tour is also currently available for private groups and families.
Bike Upgrade Options:
For a detailed description and photos of our bicycle options, please click here
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.
Are you interested in a departure, or do you have questions? We are happy to help! Please inquire through our contact form, below.
|Prices||€1360 per person||Single Supplement||€180|
|Next Step||Request space on this Bicycle Tour »|
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