Cycling in Umbria Bolzano to Venice cycle, Italy  |  <i>Sue Badyari</i> Enjoying the scenery en-route to Asolo |  <i>Rob Mills</i> Cycling between Brunico and Dobbiaco |  <i>Rob Mills</i>
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10 of the Best Self Guided Cycling Tours in Italy

Explore Italy on an affordable cycling holiday

For a cyclist, Italy is a treasure chest of interesting trails and paths to pedal. We've chosen 10 of the best self guided cycling tours in Italy that will help you choose the best bike holiday for you.

There is an amazing choice of distinct regions to explore on a self guided bike tour. From the peaks of the Dolomites, islands of Sardinia and Sicily, the fascinating history of the Venetian Empire, the other-worldliness of Puglia, and the green heart of Italy in Umbria and Tuscany; not to mention the allure of the Via Francigena pilgrimage.

Here we list the 10 best self guided cycling tours in Italy.

 

  1. Venice to Florence Cycle

  2. Looking over Florence

     

    Explore two of Italy's most magnificent cities on the Venice to Florence Cycle tour. Take in the fascinating region of Emilia-Romagna where you will admire the vineyards, sunflower fields, canals and charming villages. Experience the artistic culture with the locally produced mosaics, ceramics and cuisine.

    Cycling highlights include following the ever changing river landscape, greeting friendly fishermen as you pass, and absorbing the legacy of the former Venetian empire on this 8 day, self guided, moderate bike holiday.

  3. Cycle the Dolomites to the Adriatic Sea

  4. A picturesque stop on the way from Brunico to Dobbiaco |  <i>Rob Mills</i>

    Start this unforgettable bike tour at the base of the stunning Dolomites mountain range in Bolzano, and follow the winding roads all the way to Venice on the Adriatic Sea. Our Cycle the Dolomites to the Adriatic Sea tour is a highly rated self guided bike trip for travellers of a moderate ability.

    Highlights include breathtaking views of the jagged Dolomite peaks, discovering the ancient city of Belluno, sampling the famous sparkling Prosecco in the town of Valdobbiadene, and finishing in the floating city of Venice is the fairy tale ending all cycling trips need.

  5. Cycle Puglia

  6. Cyclist viewing the historic cave dwellings in the Sassi di Matera |  <i>Kate Baker</i>

     

    If you are yet to visit the region of Puglia, on the 'heel' of Italy, a cycling trip is the perfect way to explore this intriguing destination. On the Cycle Puglia bike tour you can discover the unspoiled natural beauty of the olive groves, farmers markets, vineyards and orchards. The architecture of Puglia is also incredible: whitewashed villages, medieval houses, sandstone castles, tiny churches - all of these appear around every twist of the road.

    One traveller favourite of a trip to Puglia is sleeping in the traditional trulli hotel, a quirky cone-roofed house, which is a special accommodation experience like no other!

  7. Cycle the Via Francigena

  8. Cycling the Via Francigena near San Gimignano

    The Via Francigena is Italy's answer to Spain's Camino de Santiago. The Via Francigena is a famous pilgrimage route that you can walk or cycle. Cycling the full route, from Aosta to Rome, takes 24 days and offers pilgrims an overwhelming sense of achievement upon completion.

    The most popular section to cycle is the final stretch from Siena to the Eternal City of Rome. It's a 9 day self guided cycle that takes in the Tuscan landscape, the hilltop villages of Umbria, all the way into the heart of Rome until you reach St Peters Square. There are also sections from Aosta to Parma, and from Parma to Siena.

  9. Cycle Pisa to Florence

  10. Pisa and the famous leaning tower

    Witness bucket list icons such as the Leaning Tower of Pisa and the Duomo of Florence on the excellent Cycle Pisa to Florence bike tour. Aside from those highlights, you'll also get to discover the magic of the Tuscan countryside and see what influenced the brilliant artists, sculptors and painters of the Renaissance era.

    This great bike holiday winds its way through postcard perfect towns of Lucca, Pescia and Pistoia, and you'll encounter the villas of the powerful Medici family.

  11. Cycle Sicily

  12. Authentic restaurants are featured as you cycle the quiet roads of Sicily

    The Italian island of Sicily is the largest island in the Mediterranean and has a fantastic cycling route along its east coast. On the self guided Cycle Sicily tour, you will visit ancient Baroque towns such as Noto and Marzamemi, explore the important historical city of Syracuse, the former Greek capital and a melting pot of cultures (Greek, Roman, Arab, Norman, Spanish and more!), plus indulge in some of the freshest seafood in Italy.

  13. Cycling in Sardinia

  14. Cycling along the quiet roads of Sardinia

    Journey to the wild, yet romantic, beauty that is Sardinia on the exceptional Cycling in Sardinia bike tour. Think of empty white sand beaches, rugged seaside cliffs and grass covered dunes, all framing brilliant coastal views. Then there's the locals: vast colonies of pink flamingos call Sardinia home and you'll see them as you pedal past the Sinis wetlands. 

    The diverse terrain of Sardinia will continue to please as you discover the abandoned mines of Ingurtosu and Planusartu, the golden beaches of Portixeddu and the Phoenician ruins of Tharros. This is one self guided cycling holiday that will linger in your memory.

  15. Cycle Florence to Siena

  16. Siena at sunset

    This is one of the shorter of the self guided cycling tours in Italy. At just four days, the Cycle Florence to Siena trip allows travellers to get a delicious taste of the Tuscan countryside if you're lacking a lot of time. 

    Highlights include visiting the Renaissance capital city of Florence, sampling the many divine wines in Chianti region, and exploring the twisting cobble stoned streets of Siena, considered one of the medieval jewels of Italy.

  17. Backroads to Venice

  18. Cyclists on the backroads to Venice |  <i>Sue Badyari</i>

    At UTracks, we love getting off the beaten track and exploring the hidden gems a country has to offer. That's why we adore the Backroads to Venice cycling tour, and so do our travellers. Read this glowing review from E.Nikol in Sydney.

    "The Backroads to Venice is self guided and I travelled on my own, but because it has set departures it meant that I had others travelling on the same date who I bumped into during the daily cycles. I first arrived into Bolzano by train (own expense) and WOW - not only the approach but the first view of this town at the base of the Dolomites is impressive! 

    I loved this itinerary cycling from the north of Italy down to & across Lake Garda then east into Mestre (Venice) for a spectacular finish. The paths are very well marked, so together with the provided roadbook I never got lost - and always had something of interest to see or learn thanks to the handy info booklet provided. 

    A very well organised tour with smooth daily luggage transfers, good quality bikes & helmets, and friendly hotel staff who all spoke good English. The 2 & 3 star hotels I stayed in were all good, the one in Bolzano was a highlight for its beautiful architecture and easy walk to the main square. Some hotels were a little walk out of town centres, which suited me for the quiet locations. I liked that only breakfasts are included which left me free to sample the many lunch and dinner options available locally, including the gelato J. 

    I wasn't too challenged by the mostly flat terrain mixed with some easy hills, there was really only one strenuous part in the Berici Hills. I was mostly following paved cycle paths or low traffic roads, there were some lovely stretches alongside rivers. Most days also had the option to shorten or skip by train, which I tested when I caught a cold! I was also lucky to visit local markets in Bolzano, Desenzano and Vicenza. A jam-packed itinerary that left me wanting more - thanks UTracks!"

  19. Ancient Venetian Empire by Bike

  20. Cycling through Palmanova |  <i>Richard Tulloch</i>

    Explore the history of the former mighty Venetian empire on two wheels. At one point, the Venetian empire stretched from Venice to Croatia, and on this tour you'll witness its legacy as you cycle from Italy, to Slovenia, to Croatia.

    The Ancient Venetian Empire by Bike tour sees you travel through three countries in one week. It starts in Venice, the magical floating city, then continues towards Slovenia's Julian Alps before heading towards the Gulf of Trieste and crossing the border into Croatia, finishing in the beautiful town of Porec.

 

>> Browse our full range of cycling tours in Italy.  

>> View all of UTracks' cycling tours in Europe.

>> Join UTracks' Active Travel Community.

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