Piedmont Bike Tour
Bordered on three sides by the snow-capped Alps, Piedmont is one of the most dramatic regions in Italy. The royal House of Savoy ruled over the territory for almost a thousand years, and gave birth to the independence movement that led to the creation of the Italian state in 1859. The capital, Turin, is one of the most sophisticated and beautiful cities in Europe, and the royal residences of the Savoy are now part of the UNESCO World Heritage list.
Piedmont is also renowned for its fabulous wines, the most famous being Barolo and Barbaresco. The cuisine compliments these robust wines, drawing inspiration from both French, Austrian, and Italian traditions. Try a filling, meaty bollito or a creamy-cheesy fonduta, made with the precious white truffle, one of the most prized and expensive ingredients in the world. This Piedmont Bike tour is for wine lovers. Come bike through vineyards and rolling hills to beautiful villages and hilltop castles, then relax at night with a delicious meal and a glass of intoxicating wine. Our Piedmont bike trip combines the freedom and thrill of biking with the culture and cuisine you expect from Italy.
Piedmont Bike Tour itinerary
Arrive indepedently in Novi Ligure, which is less than an hour by train from Genoa and just over an hour from Turin (Torino in Italian). Overnight Novi Ligure. Dine independently tonight. Hotel included.
Meet your guide(s) after breakfast this morning at 9:00 a.m. for a safety talk and bike fitting. Our first ride takes you through the green pastures surrounding our beautiful four-star hotel in a renovated manor-house. We go to the wine hamlet of Gavi, and stop to visit the Romanesque church of San Giacomo and the remarkable16th century Genoese Fort. Overnight Novi Ligure. Hotel, breakfast and dinner included.
Today we ride past vineyards, elegant Italian gardens, and historical Savoy villages to the 15th century Spinola Castle. We’ll visit a small family-run winery and then return home through a rolling, serpentine valley. Overnight Novi Ligure. Hotel, breakfast and dinner included.
We begins with a 45-minute shuttle that takes us into the spa area of Acqui. Ride through the rolling hills of the southern Monferrato to Acqui Terme, a spa town noted for its curative waters. Roll along the Tanaro River and explore Le Langhe as we descend to medieval Alba, famous for its vineyards and intoxicating white truffles, sold at over $1,000 a pound. Overnight Alba. Hotel, breakfast and dinner included.
This morning we have a loop ride to La Morra, offering views of the snow-capped Alps. We stop at Ristorante Belvedere for some polenta and wild greens before visiting the Renato Ratti Vineyards to learn the history of the region’s winemaking (See VIDEO) . You’ll have ample time to explore the ancient streets of Alba and indulge in one of the village’s most famous products, homemade peach gelato. Tonight is a “free night” for dinner, so you can go light or else indulge in one of the city’s fine restaurants. Overnight Alba. Hotel, breakfast included. Dinner not included.
A spectacular ridge-top ride awaits you today, through hazelnut orchards to Grinzane Cavour, the birthplace and restored castle of Camillo Cavour, the founding father of the Italian nation. Lunch at the world-renowned Da Cesare. Overnight Alba. Hotel, breakfast and dinner included.
Today’s route winds to Canale, famous for succulent peaches and delicate Arneis white wine. Climb a panoramic ridge to Castello di Govone. Built of red brick and golden tufa rock, it is the ideal romantic setting for a garden picnic. We then head to Asti, famous not only for its wine but also for the quality of the wild mushrooms and truffles found in the surrounding countryside. After your ride, take some time to explore the town’s tranquil medieval streets. We stay nearby in a restored 15th century Benedictine abbey perched above rolling farmland. The owner, Signora Firato and her family, prepare a wonderful meal of local specialties for you tonight. Overnight near Asti. Hotel, breakfast and dinner included.
Ride north to peaceful Monferrato today, situated high on a ridge. Follow the spectacular crest to Vignale Monferrato, the wine capital of the region, with immense communal wine cellars and a colorful dance festival. Overnight at Firato Abbey near Asti. Hotel, breakfast and dinner included.
Morning goodbyes and shuttle to Asti train station, about an hour by train from Turin (Torino) and Genoa. Breakfast included.
The biking in Piedmont is rolling and sometimes hilly. We normally ride between 40 – 65 km a day, with optional extensions as well as van support, which allows you to relax off the bike for a while. We have designed the trip so that there is always some free time in the late afternoon so you can relax, read, or explore the towns where we stay. Breakfast is included every day, and dinners reflect the excellent traditional food of the region.
Wines from Piedmont: general information on some great wines
Truffles: informative wikipedia article on this amazing (and expensive) fungus!
The House of Savoy: history of this royal dynasty (still poised to come back to Italy if the Monarchists had their way!)
Torino tourism: helpful site on the city and its surroundings
Piedmont Tourism Information: general information on the region
UNESCO World Heritage Sites: Italy has more sites on the list than any other country!
Qualifications: Activity Level 3 out of 5. A mix of flat and gently rolling terrain with the occasional sustained climb of up to 4 kms. short, steep ups and downs. Daily activity is 4 to 5 hours Max distance up to 60 kms This tour is suitable for anyone who is physically fit and regularly cycles. Because of vehicle support, cyclists of all ability levels may join.
Trip Cost Includes: 8 nights accommodations in superior three star hotels; 8 breakfasts and 6 dinners; bilingual guide(s); support vehicle; all visits as noted in the itinerary; all luggage and van transfer starting with pick-up from Novi Ligure and ending with transfer to Asti train station; hybrid bike rental. All departures are accompanied by two guides.
Booking: e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org to receive a booking contract (or use the 'Contact Us' link at the top of this page), or click on the 'Book Now' button to the right.
Insurance: We highly recommend the purchase of Trip Insurance. We recommend “Travel Guard” to our North American clients, just click on the logo below. Australian, New Zealander, and British travelers, please consult your insurance brokers.
Getting There: the trip begins in Novi Ligure, which is easily reached by train from Genoa, Torino, and then Milan.
Air: Both the Genoa and Torino airports are serviced by a number of airlines, including Alitalia, Air France, British Airways, plus low-cost companies like AirOne and EasyJet. Both airports have shuttles to the main train station in town for further connections. The Milan “Malpensa” airport is the easiest if you are flying in directly from the U.S. or a complete list of French airports and a selection of low-cost airlines, see our "Transport Info" page.
Rail: trains from Genoa take about 45 minutes (departures every hour), from Torino about 1.5 hours (departures every hour), and from Milan about 1 hour 45 minutes (with one change). See the Trenitalia website (in English) at this link. For alternative high-speed rail travel, see the Italo website. For complete information on using the Italian train system, see our blog post.
Getting Away at the End of the Trip: the trip ends on Sunday in Asti, with a morning transfer to the train station. There are trains to Genoa, Turin, and Milan around 9:45. See our link to Italian train schedules below.
If you book a trip with us you will receive detailed information about how to get to the start of your trip, or feel free to e-mail us with any specific questions.
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