The Slovene world of cycling needs no introduction. Besides hiking and skiing, all forms of cycling rank high on the scale of national pastimes. This unique self-guided holiday experience gives you more than a taste of this tradition by taking you south to the sunlit Adriatic coast. It’s where you’ll be able to enjoy exciting cycling routes of three neighbouring countries: Italy, Slovenia and Croatia. Due to the prevailing Mediterranean climate, this wonderful tour is available from early spring to late autumn. Summer of course offers that particularly pleasant option of cooling off in the sea, but every season has its own perks and comes highly recommended to all who enjoy this fun sport.
Starting off in Italy, the route will then take you along the Slovenian coast through its picturesque towns, before entering Croatian Istria where the combination of tranquil rustic countryside interwinds with its buzzing touristy coastline, which will certainly give you plenty to write home about. You will be cycling down well-maintained roads with light traffic, often switching to macadam trails and bicycle lanes. The first three days are spent traversing down the famous Parenzana cycling path, which leads along the trail of a former railway from Trieste to Poreč. Although the elevation varies slightly, the overall route promises easy-peasy cycling that everyone can enjoy. You’ll be zipping through tunnels and over bridges, dashing past scenic landscapes, stopping off at amazing panoramic spots, and visiting lovely places where the food is tasty, people friendly and options for sightseeing detours available.
The fact that your holiday is self-guided brings nothing but fantastic perks to the table. Our carefully assembled itinerary allows for enough time to hit the road at your own pace. Don’t worry about missing out on anything. The route is a dream to navigate and your comfy accommodation easy to find. Our team will supply you with every piece of information you need to make your adventure hassle-free. In the event that you will ever need some additional help, we are at constant standby to assist in any way we can. The trip may be self-guided, but backup is self-explanatory.
Each day of this magnificent cycling holiday brings you to another incredible destination. With the fresh, seaside air in your face, the sun pampering you from above, and your soul enriched with the natural and cultural heritage you encounter along the way. To find out more about what exactly lies in store, check out the itinerary of your next cycling adventure. Hint: it’s awesome!
On arrival, you’ll get a chance to settle in and enjoy a quick and dirty tour of the pretty city of Trieste. On request, we can also arrange transport from one of the nearby airports or a convenient location of your choice. Then it’s time to get some rest and prepare for your long cycling trip ahead.
The Slovenian border is a few pedal pushes away. On the second day you will pass through the amazing coastal towns of Koper and Izola before arriving in Strunjan, near the famous town of Piran. The latter is a Venetian-style gem with charming seaside alleys and fantastic views from a church overlooking the town. Your accommodations will be either in the vibrant town of Portorož or Piran, both excellent, both places 15 minutes apart. By bike, of course.
From Portorož it’s onward along the coast to the Sečovlje Salt Pans. This fascinating place has been producing salt in the traditional way for centuries. A quick stop is obligatory. Not far from Sečovlje is the Croatian border. Indeed, the Slovenian coast is a day’s worth of cycling. Short and sweet with emphasis on sweet. The route continues up a slight hill, guaranteeing super views of the salt pans. Heading a little further inland, slaloming among authentic Istrian villages and the Mediterranean countryside will supply the energy you need to reach Buje and Grožnjan, which boast a beautiful view of the valley and Motovun, an ancient settlement dating back to Celtic times, on the opposite bank of the Mirna River.
Day four is a bit more dynamic. The path of the former railway criss-crosses between the winding valleys with varied terrain, but not to worry, an occasional tunnel or a viaduct tends to pop up and ease out journey. You will pass incredible scenic areas, typical for this part of Croatia. The exceptionally authentic rustic vibe of the Istrian region is complemented with a sense of solitary tranquillity in all its natural splendour. A real contrast to the tourist coast of Poreč where you’ll be arriving that same evening.
Poreč is where Parenzana ends, but your journey does not. You continue south towards Vrsar. Soon after passing this coastal town, the route is blocked by a natural obstacle, the Lim Channel, a gorgeous Istrian fjord. A detour is in order. It comes in the form of about 10 km of panoramic cycling into inland Istria with views of shellfish farms in the channel or climbers scaling the canyon walls. The natural beauty of the place will make time pass very quickly and the other side of Istria appears with your next destination – Rovinj.
Rovinj is among the prettiest towns in Istria, with its ancient cobblestone streets, a lovely marina, churches and lively restaurant. Definitely a sightseeing must. Its surroundings are also breath-taking, especially riding along its protected magical Golden Cape. Following the coastline south, you will eventually reach Pula. This town has a colourful history stretching back to the Roman times, with its renowned Amphitheatre and temples protruding from the town’s classical architecture. Pula is a very lively popular tourist destination, famous for its cultural events and a great starting point for exploring the wider area.
The final day of your cycling adventure has arrived. It’s time to take it nice and easy and head out of Pula for a ride to the nearby natural reserve of Kamenjak. This wild cape is home to beautiful beaches and is criss-crossed with gravel paths, perfect for exploring by bike. Alternatively, you can stroll around Pula, go for a refreshing dip in the sea, or discover numerous lively locations near Premantura and Medulin. In the evening, it’s time to return the bikes, reflect on your holiday and spend your last night in Pula.
Your holiday draws to a close, as you depart from a nearby airport. We can also arrange transportation if need be.
Why not spend a few more days in Slovenia? Extend your holidays with a pre- or post-holiday extension. Accommodation, sightseeing and activities can be arranged. Add as many extra days to your holiday as you wish.
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