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Cycling the Slovenian Wine Country

Cycling the Slovenian Wine Country

Tour details

Rating
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Country
Italy, Slovenia
Activity type
Self Guided Cycling
Duration
8 days & 7 nights
Difficulty
Easy to Moderate
Accomodation
Comfortable
Availability
March - October

Itinerary

Day 1: Bled
Day 2: Bohinjska Bistrica
Day 3: Bohinj – Tolmin
Day 4: Šmartno/Dobrovo
Day 5: Kodreti/Štanjel
Day 6: Divača
Day 7: Trieste/Muggia
Day 8: Departure

 

Overview for Cycling the Slovenian Wine Country

This tour will show you the entire variety of landscapes Slovenia has to offer, from its alpine valleys and lakes through quaint vineyards to the sun-drenched coast, packed with stunning mountain views and amazing seascapes.

Starting at the fairytale world of Lake Bled, a glacial lake famed for its beautiful island church and clifftop castle, this itinerary will first take you through amazing alpine sceneries, over a high pass, along thundering rivers and out into a valley, covered with vineyards. During your tour, you will be surrounded by castles and hilltop churches, and have the opportunity to taste the great local wines and food in the Karst region (a beautiful limestone plateau). Finally, the sunny coast awaits you with lazy promenades and elegant Venetian architecture.

This is the perfect cycling holiday for lovers of diverse landscapes, good food and great local wines, who would like nothing more than to soak their feet in the warm sea after a long journey by bike.

Highlights:

  • Visit a stunning alpine national park
  • Swim in fresh, cool alpine lakes
  • Follow the emerald-coloured Soča river
  • Sip typical Teran wine in a world of limestone
  • Sample great local food in Karst villages

Itinerary for Cycling the Slovenian Wine Country

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Day 1: Arrival at Lake Bled

Lake Bled is famous for its distinctive island church and the clifftop castle all backed by the beautiful Karavanke Mountains. Bled is one of Slovenia’s most popular tourist attractions. You can take a stroll around the western side of the lake for some of the best views and photographs, and then have lunch and taste the famous local cream cake (Kremšnita) on the eastern lakeside while watching the sunset over the mountains.

Accommodation: Hotel Triglav 4* or similar

Day 2: Bled – Bohinjska Bistrica

A short car transfer leaves you on the high plateau at Pokljuka. From here you’ll cycle through alpine villages to Lake Bohinj, the jewel of, the Triglav National Park. Encircled by tall mountain peaks, Bohinj is the largest and deepest lake in the national park. Savica Waterfall is the source of the lake and the Sava Bohinjka R,iver. A cable car runs up to Vogel Mountain, where you can get a spectacular view into the Bohinj Valley and of Mount Triglav, the highest peak in the Julian Alps.

Accommodation: Eco Hotel Bohinj 4* or similar
Cycling: 27 km, ↑280 m ↓973 m (extension possible with a side trip)

Day 3: Bohinj – Tolmin

In the morning you’ll have two options. Your route will take you via the Sorica Pass over the Julian Alps, but if you want to save some climbing you can take a short train ride through the Bohinj tunnel to Podbrdo. Then you pedal off through a narrow valley, and follow the beautiful emerald-green Soča River as it rushes out of the mountains and into the western side of the Julian Alps. Just before reaching your destination you’ll have a chance to dive into its supernatural waters, or visit the only monument in the world dedicated to military cooks.

Accommodation for the day: Hotel Dvorec 3* or similar
Cycling for the day: 56km, ↑1236 ↓1566 (or 35km if taking the train to Podbrdo)

Day 4: Tolmin – Šmartno / Dobrovo

You will be car-transferred to Kolovrat Saddle – a viewpoint situated high above the Soča alley. Once a site of heavy fighting during WW1, it’s now a very interesting open-air museum. Reaching the first village, Mrs. Josephine, who lives all alone in an intact old-fashioned pub, will be overjoyed to welcome you in her shady garden. Cycling the ridges above two valleys, you’ll reach your day’s destination – Šmartno v Goriških Brdih, amid an abundance of lush vineyards. A recent and beautifully restored medieval village of narrow streets with Mediterranean houses, you can stretch your legs here, sip cool white wine and chat with locals in an authentic village pub.

Accommodation: Hotel San Martin or similar
Cycling: 34 km, ↑586 m  ↓1362 m (46 km without transfer)

Day 5: Šmartno / Dobrovo – Kodreti / Štanjel

After leaving the Brda wine region, you’ll reach Gorizia. The Iron Curtain once split the town of Gorizia between Italy and Yugoslavia. At the railway station that stands right on the border, one can visit the Iron Curtain museum. Cycling further along the border you’ll come to the smallest military museum in the world – a historic Yugoslav border outpost. Overlooking the border is the ancient Kostanjevica Monastery, where the last French King
is buried. Turning inland, you’ll soon reach the vineyards of the Vipava region.

Accommodation: Hisa Posebne Sorte or similar
Cycling : 53 km, ↑609 m ↓701 m

Day 6: Kodreti / Štanjel – Divača

Today you’ll cycle to the stud farm of Lipica, where you can see beautiful Lipizzaner horses, whose gentle, graceful dancing have wowed many visitors. Take a tour in a traditional carriage, and visit them close up in their stables. You can also visit the War Museum set inside a lovely Venetian tower – see what a collector’s passion can mean. The small town hotel belongs to a butcher’s family, but the young master is a wine expert too and he’ll present you the best red wines of the karst region.

Accommodation: Hotel Malovec Divaca or similar
Cycling: 48 km, ↑697 m ↓426 m

Day 7: Divača – Trieste / Muggia

In the morning you can visit the fascinating UNESCO Škocjan Caves from where you take on one last descent with magnificent views of the Adriatic Sea before reaching the southern outskirts of Trieste – the old seaside village of Muggia, where your cycling day and tour end. Park your bikes and take the city shuttle boat to the worldly port city of Trieste and visit Miramare Castle, the cathedral or Piazza Unita central square where you can relax with a cappuccino or a gelato with Trieste Bay in full view.

Accommodation: Hotel San Rocco or similar
Cycling: 46 km, ↑335 m ↓758 m

Day 8: Departure From Trieste / Muggia

After breakfast your tour ends. Or, you can extend your holiday and continue cycling by booking our Croatia Istrian Coastal Tour down to Pula.

Hotels for Cycling the Slovenian Wine Country

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Accommodation is as listed in the itinerary, in 3 or 4-star hotels and welcoming guesthouses with en-suite facilities. We have carefully hand-picked all places and regularly monitor their quality. We have tried to choose accommodations that offer friendly service, clean and comfortable rooms and local flavour.

Sample hotels*: Hotel Triglav Bled 4*, Eco Hotel Bohinj 4*, Hotel Dvorec 3*, Hotel San Martin, Hisa Posebne Sorte, Hotel Malovec Divaca, Hotel San Rocco

*Hotels are subject to availability. In case a particular hotel is fully booked for your desired dates we will replace it with a hotel of equal value and quality level. We will provide to you exact accommodation details upon booking confirmation.

Meals

Breakfast is included. In towns each hotel has its own restaurant where you can taste international or Slovenian meals or you can also try Slovenian cuisine in other local restaurants of which there are plenty on the route. When no restaurant location is available on route, lunches and snacks should either be bought from local shops, or packed lunch can be pre-ordered from your hotel the night before.

Travel for Cycling the Slovenian Wine Country

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Recommended arrival and departure airport: Ljubljana.

Flight information can change rapidly and not all flights run daily. Please do check directly with the airlines’ websites or Skyscanner before finalising any booking with us. Please do not book your flights before we have confirmed your booking.

Transfers to/from Airports

Transfers from  Ljubljana to Bled and from Trieste to Ljubljana are possible by public transport:

Private Transfers

Private airport transfers can be arranged upon request.

Baggage Transfers

Baggage transfer is included as per itinerary and will be arranged by your current hotel to your next hotel. After check out, you will leave baggage at the hotel reception and you can start biking. When you arrive at your next hotel, your baggage will be at the hotel reception.

Travel Insurance

A comprehensive and reputable travel insurance policy is essential to your enjoyment and peace of mind while on an active holiday. It is highly recommended when booking with us that all group members have valid travel insurance which includes cover for all activities included in your trip. We have teamed up with World Nomads Logo to offer you adequate cover at a great value from a reputable insurer, and it takes only a few minutes to buy online.

Buy travel insurance online

Country Info

For up to date travel advice and country info, please check here.

Trip Info for Cycling the Slovenian Wine Country

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Difficulty Grade: Easy to Moderate

Average cycling distance per day is 40 km, mostly undulating. The routes are not technically difficult, however you should  be in a good physical shape in order to fully enjoy the cycling. You can also rent an E-bike with us, which makes the trip accessible to everyone.

Route Navigation

Upon arrival you will be provided with detailed road notes and maps and you can call our 24/7 local assistance phone number anytime. Full info on route navigation will be included in your holiday information pack.

When to Go

This trip is available between mid-March and early October. The flexibility of self-guided holidays means that there are no fixed dates and you can start your holiday on any date in the season – so please indicate desired starting date when booking.

Weather

The climate is continental with cold winters and warm summers, but at the coastal areas there is pleasant Mediterranean climate. The average temperatures are -2°C in January and 21°C in July.

Included for Cycling the Slovenian Wine Country

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  • Accommodation in 3*/4* hotels and guesthouses as listed in the itinerary
  • 7 breakfasts
  • Luggage transfers
  • Information package including textual road notes and corresponding maps, one per booking
  • GPS tracks
  • Local tourist and other taxes
  • Personal welcome meeting and bike handover upon arrival
  • 24/7 phone assistance by our local office/representative

Options and Extras

  • Where individual members of a group require a single room, a single room supplement is applicable.
  • This holiday is available for solo travellers. As costs are not shared, a supplement is payable on the standard trip cost.
  • Extra night in Bled
  • Extra night in Trieste
  • Arrival/departure transfer from/to Ljubljana/Trieste city or airport
  • Helmet rental
  • Bike rental
  • E-bike rental

Please click the CHECK AVAILABILITY button above to see the price of the holiday and the different options, extras and supplements for your desired dates.

Excluded

  • Flights and connecting land transfers
  • Lunches, dinners, drinks & snacks
  • Travel insurance
  • Personal expenses such as phone calls, extra transfers, tips, etc.
  • Any items not specifically mentioned as ‘included’ in the programme

Gallery for Cycling the Slovenian Wine Country

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