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Duration
8 days
Activities
  • self guided cycle
Accommodation
  • hotel
Meals
  • 7 Breakfasts

Price

$1599USD

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Overview

Trip Code: CRA

Trip highlights


  • Exploring Lake Shkodra, the largest lake of the Balkans and Shkoder town in Albania
  • Cycling the downhill 'ladder of Kotor' connecting the National park Lovcen to the old town of Kotor
  • Discovering the UNESCO sites: Kotor Bay, Marubi Museum located in the northern city of Shkoder dedicated to Albanian photography and photographers, and optionally Dubrovnik (Croatia)
  • Experiencing the local cuisine

Cycle the glittering coastline of the Adriatic Sea on this wonderful gem-filled journey in the Balkans. Start in Croatia's famous walled city of Dubrovnik, where you feel the Middle Ages at every turn of the stone fortress. Pass through the golden Konavle Valley before crossing the border into Montenegro, a nation defined by its rugged mountains and dazzling beaches. Follow a disused railway line towards the Bay of Kotor and explore many highlights along the way including picturesque Perast, the pearl of the bay and the ancient settlement of Risan. Take the back roads through Montenegro's ancient olive groves before entering Albania and discovering another Balkan lifestyle. Enjoy Albanian hospitality as you dine on local foods and work it off by pedalling along the mighty Drin River. Return to Montenegro and soak up the splendid panoramas over Skadar Lake, complete with the Accursed Mountain Range in the background. Become immersed in Balkan culture in the small villages of Ostros with their humble monasteries and vineyards. Enjoy the spectacular descent from Lovcen National Park to the Bay of Kotor and embrace the lively Mediterranean atmosphere in the Old Town.

Trip Grading

moderate

More info about grading system

Arrival and welcome at Dubrovnik Airport. A short transfer (approx. 20 minutes) takes you to your hotel in the small coastal town of Cavtat, located close to the airport. At the hotel you will have a short briefing session about the programme and bike fitting. If you like you can visit Dubrovnik in the late afternoon / evening when the city is quieter - the hotel can assist with directions or book a taxi (not included). There is also a taxi boat operating between Cavtat and Dubrovnik. Overnight in Cavtat.

Meals:  Nil

The cycle begins from your hotel, taking you on a route past small villages in the Konvale valley to the coast. After 35km you cross the border into Montenegro. The last stage follows an old railway track, once connecting Herceg Novi, the first town you reach in Montenegro, with Dubrovnik. It is located at the entrance to the Bay of Kotor and at the foot of Mount Orjen, and with its seaside promenade is a great place to swim at the beach and dine on excellent seafood. (+/-680m/2231ft)

Meals:  B

Today is a real treat as you make your way around the magnificent Bay of Kotor, taking in its many highlights. Continue following the old railway line from the previous day until you reach Zelenika. Along the shoreline you reach Risan and Perast, the pearl of the bay. Take your time to explore the picturesque historical town and its beautiful church islands (reached by shuttle boat). Later a transfer (1.5hrs) takes you from Kotor (you return here on day 7) along the beautiful Adriatic coastline via Budva and Sveti Stefan. Your overnight accommodation is near Stari Bar. Set precariously at the foot of Mt Rumija, this now abandoned town has impressive views and exploring the ruins covered in vines and letting your imagination run wild about the past inhabitants of this fortified town, is definitely part of the experience. (+/-220m/722ft)

Meals:  B

The cycle this morning begins directly from your accommodation. Along the road you can visit an olive tree that is more than 2000 years old. On a secondary road above the Adriatic you ride through the olive groves around Bar, the "oil capital" of Montenegro. Enjoy beautiful views as you continue through a vast valley until you meet the Ulcinj – Shkodra road, which you follow to the Albanian border. Continuing into Albania you soon reach the city of Shkoder (Skadar), one of the oldest in Europe with its ancient Rozafa Fortress and pretty Old Town with pastel painted buildings. The city is set on Lake Shkodra, which is shared by Montenegro and Albania. (+300m/984ft, -410m/1345ft)

Meals:  B

Whichever option you choose today you will be rewarded with an insight into Albanian cuisine and countryside and there will also be time to explore the historical centre of Shkoder. a) Cycle to the Drin river and enjoy lunch at one of the best restaurant experiences Albania has to offer, the slow-food restaurant “Mrizi I Zanave” (“Garden of the Fairy”). En route you'll pass the mighty dam of the river Drin and witness Albanian village life. You can either return the same way or we can organize a return transfer for you (supplement applies). (one way: 32km/20mi, +150m/492ft or return: 64km/40mi, +300m/984ft) b) Cycle the shores of Lake Shkodra. This is an easy cycle where you can have lunch at one of the many fish restaurants at the lake. (22km/13.5mi, +50m/164ft)

Meals:  B

Today you will cycle in the hills, immersed in impressive views of coast and mountains. After breakfast, transfer (1h) to Montenegro where your cycling begins with the first major ascent. Wonderful and panoramic but challenging, two further major ascents await you today. You follow a narrow road above Lake Shkodra, passing vineyards, villages and, again and again, wonderful views of the lake and the dramatic Albanian Alps in the background. Around the village of Ostros you ride through centuries-old majestic chestnut groves. Near the village of Murici you can see the small monastery islands and in front of the village of Godinje there is Montenegrin Alcatraz, a former prison from the time of King Nikola. In Godinje, a traditional wine region, you can regain your strength before the last ascent on your way to Virpazar. Here you will be picked up and transferred to Cetinje (1hr). On arrival there is time to visit the historical centre of Cetinje before transferring to your hotel in Lovcen National Park. (+600m/1968ft, -1100m/3608ft)

Meals:  B

Today's cycle takes you directly from the mountains to the sea along the famous Austro-Hungarian serpentine road, with the most beautiful panoramic views of the Bay of Kotor. You start from your hotel in the National Park. Optionally, if you are really fit, you can climb the last 200m to the mausoleum of the most important historical Montenegrin, Petar Petrovic Njegoš, a Prince-Bishop, poet and philosopher, before the descent. From the observation platform there is a breathtaking 360 degree view of "almost" all of Montenegro. As soon as you have conquered the initial ascent, you roll downhill for more than 30 km. Along the road there will be several great spots for photo stops. Finish your cycle in front of the Old Town of Kotor, where your hotel is located. Enjoy the Mediterranean atmosphere in the Old Town, exploring its medieval centre, cathedral and maritime museum or simply relaxing by the port.

Meals:  B

Your trip concludes after breakfast. On request, we can arrange a transfer back to Dubrovnik. Alternatively, you can add an extra day and return via another route by bike to Cavtat, or extend two more days and return via Bosnia/Hercegovnia to Cavtat. Enquire with UTracks for details.

Meals:  B


Inclusions

  • 7 breakfasts
  • 7 nights in 3 star hotels on a twin share basis with ensuite facilities
  • Luggage transfer between hotels
  • Arrival transfer from Dubrovnik to Cavtat and transfers as per itinerary
  • Roadbook and maps (GPS Tracks available on request)
  • Emergency assistance
  • Bike rental with helmet, waterbottle holder and pannier (e-bikes and premium bike available - supplement applies)

  • Travel to Dubrovnik and from Kotor (optional transfer back to Dubrovnik on day 8 available, supplement applies)
  • Lunch, dinner and drinks daily
  • Items of a personal nature including beverages, laundry, phone calls etc
  • Travel insurance - mandatory
  • Entrance fees to monuments/sites
  • Transfers not noted as included in the itinerary
  • Tour guide – this is a self guided cycling trip

Grading

moderate  

Daily cycles are between 22 and 64km/13.5 and 40mi, but usually around 44km/27mi on average. on undulating to mountainous terrain. The cycling is on a combination of low traffic side roads with some crossings and short stints on higher traffic roads required. There are some days with some challenging ascents, always rewarded with impressive views. If you are concerned about your fitness, we recommend you book an e-bike. The accent is on keeping a relaxed pace to take in all of the attractions, with time to stop, have a swim and take photos. You will need a good level of fitness to participate fully in this adventure.


Departure dates

daily from 1 Apr to 31 Oct

Notes

H
High Season
DN1
high season is from 24 Jun to 31 Aug - supplement applies. A discount applies to departures from 1-24 April

Want to organise a private group?

Fundraising events, sporting groups, family treats; learn how you can organise a Private Group from just 6 travellers.

Total Priceper person from

$1599USD

Options & Supplements*
  • roadbike supplementUSD$90
  • e-bike supplementUSD$110
  • 1 day extension to Dubrovnik - Cavtat (twinshare - standard bike)USD$200
  • 1 day extension to Dubrovnik - Cavtat (twinshare - e-bike)USD$210
  • single supplementUSD$230
  • 2 day extension via Bosnia Herzegovina (twinshare - standard bike)USD$400
  • single traveller surchargeUSD$410
  • 2 day extension via Bosnia Herzegovina (twinshare - e-bike)USD$420
*Prices listed are per person

Trip reviews


Why travel with us

Making Europe Affordable

We offer different levels of accommodation and comfort so that even the most budget conscious can treat themselves to active holidays on Europe's most celebrated tracks and trails. Our trips are great value for money because you only pay for what you want.  

Self-Guided Specialists

Our wide range of self-guided itineraries embody the UTracks philosophy of exploring Europe your way. We handle the logistics so all that's left for you to do is enjoy exploring Europe at your own pace. Most depart daily with a minimum of two people, meaning maximum flexibility.

Our Wide Range

With close to 400 trips in almost 50 countries, including the largest range of bike & boat holidays in Europe, we're confident that we can organise an Alps walk, Camino de Santiago or Via Francigena experience, Food Lovers' trip or a tour in a lesser-known pocket of Europe that you will love. 

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