Day 1: Light climbs around lake Garda
We will meet at our four star boutique hotel with it’s wonderful view over Lake Garda to settle in for a few days. Build the bikes in our well equipped bike room and purchase any last-minute items from the local bike shop. Take an easy spin through the wineries and orchards or one of the more challenging routes prepared for the day. After the ride take a refreshing dip in the pool, grab a beer in the bar, enjoy a sauna, or treat yourself to a massage. Tonight we will enjoy a great dinner prepared by our hotel’s chef, talk about the tour, and pass out maps and Jerseys.
Day 2: Valpolicella wine route – Pre Alps / Wine tasting in Bardolino
Today will be a moderate intensity ride with a longer climb through the mountainous vineyards of the Valpolicella wine region. This afternoon we will enjoy wine tasting and appetizers in the lush green vineyards of Tre Colline. We will tour their wine production facilities and have a short lessen in the making of wine and olive oil. Tonight we have a special dinner planned at a reservation only agriturismo, “La Zerla.” This restaurant offers a variety of local culinary delights and a good selection of wines including their own wine produced in the vineyard that surrounds the restaurant.
Day 3: Climb the 48 Switchbacks of the Passo dello Stelvio
After breakfast we drive up the valley to test your courage and stamina against today’s highest Alpine pass. Today will be an epic ride conquering the famous Stelvio Pass first introduced into the Giro d’Italia in 1953 and made famous after Fausto Coppi’s victory. At the top we will enjoy the view of the Italian and Swiss Alps while sipping on cappuccinos and watching tourists from all over the world mill about in this exciting atmosphere. A German sausage sandwich from the cart vendor is always a favorite on this route. After the short break we roll over the top and down to Bormio were we stay the next 3 nights.
Day 4: Gavia pass
Bormio is a resort town nestled in a valley surrounded by the majestic Italian Alps. This town boasts a series of natural hot springs and as a result it is home to five hot spring resorts and wellness centers. Today’s climb will include the beautiful Gavia Pass. Ride through the Santa Caterina Valley to the the base of the Gavia pass which has been touted to be the most beautiful pass of the Alps. At the top of the pass send a post card to a friend at the outpost and have a snack.
Day 5: Mortirolo Pass
Next we head south down the valley to the notorious Mortirolo Pass. Climbing an astonishing 4,000 ft in 7 miles!, see why when Lance rode this pass in 2005 he said it was the most difficult one he had ever done. Just below the top we find the new memorial commemorating Marco Pantani.
Day 6: Adige valley ride (pre Alps)
After, we’ll travel back to the lake area and finish with a spectacular loop through the Adige valley to conclude our vacation.
Day 7: Departure
Additional rides based on departure time