Your tour starts in Trieste, the former Habsburg seaport at the foot of the Karst Mountains. During the Roman Empire, Trieste became a busy and prosperous port. Today, it is a bustling modern city that retains an abundance of old-world charm.
After a few kilometers of cycling, you will leave Italy and enter Istria, Slovenia, and then Croatia. This sunny peninsula on the Adriatic Sea features picturesque little fishing villages, small towns on the Karst hills, vineyards, and valleys. It’s also home to some of the tastiest cooking you’re ever likely to encounter!
Let yourself be surprised by the charms of a diverse terrain rich in contrasts and the bright color palette of Istria.
Continue reading for a detailed itinerary of this self-guided cycling holiday in Italy, Slovenia, and Croatia.
(Looking instead for a guided cycling adventure? Consider our Guided Bike Across Italy Tour.)
Individual arrival at the first hotel in Trieste.
Departure in Pula.
April through October
From $1695.00 per person double occupancy (3-star hotels)
Single Supplement $700.00
Your day begins with a briefing and bike fitting from a member of our staff. Today, you have two cycling options: a longer route over the hills or a shorter route with a ferry. Taking the half-hour ferry lets you avoid Trieste city traffic. The ferry stops in Muggia, where you begin riding on a cycle path once part of the Parenzana narrow gauge railroad. It is only a few miles of cycling before you cross into Slovenia. You will cycle through the resort towns of Koper and Piran before cycling into Croatia.
You will start your day cycling to one of the oldest lighthouses in the Adriatic. Built in 1818, by an Italian count as his love nest. From here, it is a short ride to Umag, founded as the summer home of a Roman nobleman. As you stroll around town, you will see examples of Venetian, Renaissance, and Baroque buildings. The area is rich with vineyards and olive groves. Umag is an excellent place to taste local wine before cycling back to Buje for the evening.
As you cycle through the vineyards and olive groves, you make think you are in Italy. Today is a day for cycling through history. The first stop is the town of Groznjan. Wander the streets of the medieval town and visit the shops and galleries of the many artists that make Groznjan their home. The next stop is Opratji, where you can see the church erected in 1526 as you explore the town. From here, you descend into the valley before climbing to the walled city of Motovun.
Today, you spend the day cycling along the coast. The area is known for the honey and brandy produced in the area. Today’s destination is Porec, which was originally a Roman settlement and is now one of the premier resort towns on the Croatian Coast due to its sand beaches. One of the highlights of Porec’s old town is the Euphrasian Basicalla, renowned for its mosaics.
Have a last view over the picturesque seaport on Istria’s west coast before you leave for Rovinj. The city is surrounded by the west and the southwest by the Adriatic Sea. Afar, the high bell tower of the Euphemia Church built on Rovinj’s highest spot, greats you if you want to cycle to Zlatni RT (also known as Golden Cape), a peninsula where you find a park and a nature reserve.
On your expedition in Istria, the last day leads you to Pula on Istria’s southwest point. Pula is the oldest town of Istria and its commercial and cultural center. Enjoy your last day of the tour amongst various antiquities and the mighty Roman amphitheater in the center of Pula.
Individual departure or possibility to extend your stay.