No doubt you'll arrive with certain expectations. After all, artists and writers have sung the praises of Tuscany and Umbria for centuries. But somehow it's still a surprise, the sensory feast that surrounds you. You're still floored by the beauty of silvery olive groves and endless acres of vineyards. By the slow pace of life. By the symphony of flavors in traditional dishes passed down through generations. By the chefs and vintners who are proud to share their talents. And the sheer passione of the locals. Expectations exceeded? Just another day in the heart of Italy.
Days 1-2 Medieval flavor and ancient traditions await in charming hilltop towns The only hill town on the valley floor, Montefalco is a great spot for soaking up views of Assisi to the north and Spoleto in the south Coast downhill to a bountiful picnic lunch in the heart of the Sagrantino wine (Umbria's "big red") production zone Dine and wander in timeless Bevagna, perhaps pausing to browse for ceramics and silver Taste splendid wines, like Sagrantino, Montefalco Rosso and Vino Nobile di Montepulciano Beauty abounds in Assisi, from the stunning Basilica of Saint Francis to the verdant valley below.
Day 3 Welcome to Tuscany! Imagine you're in a postcard as you pedal along a winding road flanked by bright red poppies, cypress trees and undulating hills Spin through the Orcia Valley, where fortified towns and distant Mount Amiata provide a dramatic backdrop Explore Pienza, the Renaissance utopia of Pope Pius II - and birthplace of heavenly pecorino cheese Join our friend Vittorio in his cozy cantina for a private degustazione We're welcomed like family at La Chiusa - you'll understand why we've been coming here for years!
Days 4-6 Cruise past olive groves and sunflower fields to La Braccesca wine estate for an exclusive cooking demo and lunch Pedal through the Chiana Valley, where white Chianina cows graze Bike to historic hilltop Cortona, surrounded by 3,000-year-old Etruscan walls, and the setting for Under the Tuscan Sun Giovanni, our longtime local guide, leads us through this celebrated town Savor a classic Tuscan tableau during an easy ride past ancient farmhouses, vast wheat fields and cypress-lined roads.
- Soak up the medieval flavor and ancient traditions of charming hilltop towns
- Enjoy gracious hotels with distinct local flavor
- Taste splendid wines like Sagrantino, Montefalco Rosso and Vino Nobile di Montepulciano
- Delight in the area's specialties: hearty ribollita, panzanella, fresh pastas and delicious pastries
- Get to know our favorite friends and colorful local people
Relais Villa Zuccari (2 nights): In the Zuccari family since the 1500s, this gorgeous villa is surrounded by expansive rose-filled gardens and the vineyards of Montefalco. (pool)
Relais La Chiusa (1 night): Enjoy inspiring views of medieval Montepulciano at this family-run country inn, whose restaurant is renowned throughout the region for its unique and delectable cuisine.
La Corte dei Papi (2 nights): A superbly appointed 18th-century country house, rated one of the top hotels in Italy. (pool)
Every Backroads trip is designed to appeal to a wide variety of
interests and fitness levels. We know your pace may vary from one
day to the next-and your traveling companion's may differ somewhat
from yours. So we present a range of mileage options, and each
day you decide exactly what and how much you want to do.
Routes For All Abilities
|Daily Route Options|
|Level 1||Level 2||Level 3||Level 4||Level 5|
|miles||feet gain||miles||feet gain||miles||feet gain||miles||feet gain||miles||feet gain|
|Cortona Guided Walk (1.5 Hours)|
* Includes a shuttle
2015 Dates & Pricing*
*Prices may change. Once you book your trip, your price is guaranteed.
Private Trips Options & Pricing
Pricing for Private Trips (prices may vary based on departure date)
|2 - 3 guests from $6,298 pp dbl. occ.||8 - 9 guests from $4,998 pp dbl. occ.|
|4 - 5 guests from $5,698 pp dbl. occ.||10 - 11 guests from $4,498 pp dbl. occ.|
|6 - 7 guests from $5,298 pp dbl. occ.||12 or more guests from $4,198 pp dbl. occ.|
Guest Trip Reviews
This trip introduces you to two fantastic regions: Umbria and Tuscany. While dramatically less traveled than Tuscany, Umbria offers many if not all of Tuscany's famed physical and cultural qualities. In both areas, you'll experience charming hill towns that have maintained their medieval flavor and ancient customs. You'll witness classic tableaus of rolling fields, vineyards, olive groves, old farmhouses, cypress-lined roads and nonne (grandmothers) strolling arm-in-arm. And you'll enjoy some of the most pleasant biking in the Backroads lineup of worldwide trips, with shuttles to help you up the bigger hills.- Regional Coordinator, Italy