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Classic Climbs: The Slovenian & Italian Alps Bike Tour

From Slovenia's Julian Alps to Italy's Monte Zoncolan

Cycling in Slovenia’s mountains may seem like venturing into the great unknown. It doesn’t receive the same attention of the neighboring Alps in Italy, France, or Switzerland, but here you will find some of the most challenging and spectacular climbing around. Begin your adventure on the Kravavec climb, a Tour of Slovenia favorite, before dropping into Austria for a quick visit. Bike through the unforgettable Julian Alps on the highest mountain pass, Vršič, with its signed and numbered switchbacks reminiscent of Alpe d’Huez. You’ll descend along the clear turquoise waters of the Soča River before continuing up to the formidable Mangart Saddle, a road that culminates in a breathtaking view of Italy. You’ll top it off by tackling the legendary Zoncolan, a Giro d’Italia staple and one of the most demanding climbs found in Europe. Our trip to this small, green country provides a whole world of mountains with stunning valleys, endless forests, and picturesque villages paired with deliciously diverse cuisine and exceptional accommodations. As they say — once you know, you know. You’ll discover an extraordinary week of great cycling in one of Europe’s best kept secrets, and we can’t wait for you to join us. Book your trip with confidence »
Classic Climbs: The Slovenian & Italian Alps Bike Tour
From:
$3999 Per Person
Duration:
6 Days & 5 Nights
Rider Level: ?
4 - Avid
Trip Style: ?
Signature
Hotel Level: ?
Explorer
Reviews:
From $3999 per person View All Details
Trip Wows
Discover the magnificent and challenging climbs of the Slovenian Alps
Tackle the giant of the Giro d’Italia, Monte Zoncolan, renowned as one of the most demanding climbs in all of Europe
Test your legs on the iconic Vršič Pass, famous for its 50 hairpin switchbacks, with exposed cobbles and stunning views on every turn
Take on the highest paved road in Slovenia to conquer the towering Mangart Saddle before descending into Italy
Ride in Slovenia, Italy, and Austria and experience the hearty local cuisine, blending the delicious traditions of each country
Classic Climbs: The Slovenian & Italian Alps Bike Tour
I could not be more excited about this trip because cycling in Slovenia is absolutely paradise. There is breathtaking scenery in every corner, while the pristine asphalt roads are well marked and with very little traffic. The north-western corner of this charming green country is very welcoming and our ride through Jezersko to Austria is one of the most beautiful days on the bike I’ve ever had. Until the next day, because every day on this tour is my favorite. And I can’t imagine a better finale than climbing up the highest road and descending into Italy to conquer the famous beast, Monte Zoncolan. I believe that this week is every cyclist’s dream and I can’t wait for you to experience it.
- Ilona Kohlerova, Trip Designer

Dates & Prices

The Earlier You Book, The Greater The Rewards

We reward our guests with lower pricing and more dates to choose from the earlier you book. Rest assured, once you book, your price and date are guaranteed.
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Call us at (866) 464-8735 for custom date availability
Looking for a one of a kind, once in a lifetime experience?
Look no further. Choose your trip date, get your group together and we will do the rest. Private trip pricing is as follows:

  • 10+ Guests Price as advertised*
  • 8-9 Guests +$750 per person to trip price*
  • 6-7 Guests +$1,500 per person to trip price*
  • 4-5 Guests +$2,000 per person to trip price*
  • 2-3 Guests +$3,000 per person to trip price*
  • 1 Guest        Call us for pricing*


Traveling with a small group? Consider semi-private trips.
For groups of up to six people, semi-private trips offer unique flexibility within a larger Trek Travel guided trip. Learn more »

*Pricing, availability and guest minimums are all subject to change at any time. Certain dates have a minimum number of guests required, please contact us for details. Private pricing is not available on Ride Camp, Race, Special Edition or Cross Country style trips.
Looking for a date that you don’t see?
Look no further. Simply tell us your preferred travel dates and we’ll work together to deliver the same great trip on your custom schedule.
*Pricing, availability and guest minimums are all subject to change at any time. Certain dates have a minimum number of guests required, please contact us for details. Custom dates are not available on Ride Camp, Race, Special Edition or Cross Country style trips.
Want to customize this trip?
We've got you covered. We’ll work with you to build your perfect vacation from scratch, including your choice of riding, accommodations and dining options. With the help of our trip designers and travel experts, the world is available like never before.
*Pricing, availability and guest minimums are all subject to change at any time. Certain dates have a minimum number of guests required, please contact us for details. Custom trips are not available on Ride Camp, Race, Special Edition or Cross Country style trips.

Your Trek Travel guides will meet you at the Urban Boutique Hotel Center at 9:30 AM on the first day of the trip. You’ll then shuttle 30 minutes to your first hotel, where your Trek Travel guides will discuss the rules of bike safety and spend time familiarizing you to your Trek Domane for the week. You will then warm up on the way to the town of Grad where your first climb of the week starts – Krvavec is one of the most famous and most challenging in the area, featured several times at the Tour of Slovenia. It goes up steeply, then it levels a bit as the road opens up where your eyes can take in the green valley below. On the top, enjoy a well-deserved lunch prepared by our friend, Simona, who makes the best homemade pesto with skuta, the local farmers cheese. After lunch, it’s all downhill back to the valley and our home for the next two nights. This evening you’ll gather at the hotel for drinks, and discuss the week ahead, before savoring Slovenia's flavorful cuisine to fuel up for tomorrow’s adventures.

Today's Ride:

Grad to Krvavec and back
Approximately 19 mi | 32 km and 3,600 ft | 1,100 m

Hotel:

Strmol Castle Hotel

Included Meals:

Lunch | Social Hour | Dinner

Wake up to a royal breakfast at the hotel, before beginning a dreamy day of spectacular riding. Start with a gentle climb that will bring you to the green, natural area of Jezersko and the local bar on the shore of the once glacier-fed Planšarsko Lake, where a coffee stop is a must. After a short refreshment, you’ll continue climbing before reaching the summit where you’ll be crossing into Austria. As you descend, you’ll quickly turn back into Slovenia and tackle steep switchbacks on the panoramic road leading to the famously beautiful Logar Valley where we stop for lunch. Enjoy impressive views of the Kamnik–Savinja Alps as you make your way back to the hotel. Tonight, after experiencing a full day of rewarding cycling, you’ll rest and dine at our favorite local restaurant and prepare for more great days to come!

Today's Ride:

Grad to Austria Loop
Approximately 71 mi | 115 km and 7850 ft | 2,394 m

Hotel:

Strmol Castle Hotel

Included Meals:

Breakfast | Lunch | Dinner

A private morning shuttle takes you to the town of Bled, which is probably the most recognized and celebrated spot in Slovenia; it is a view not to be missed. Before getting on your bike, don’t forget to take plenty of photos of the crystal blue lake and its emblematic island. You’ll start riding through the quiet roads of the Triglav National Park to Kranjska Gora, where you’ll start your big climb of the day. Vršič Pass from Kranjska Gora is almost six miles long with an average gradient of 8%. It’s known as the “Russian Road” as it was built by Russian prisoners during the first World War and its 24 switchbacks up this side are still partially cobbled at the turns. Once at the top you’ll have a long descent into the valley where you will be amazed by the emerald-green water of the Soča river. Your charming hotel tonight holds the same name and it’s a perfect place to relax after a challenging day. Tonight, stroll into the village of Bovec armed with a list of recommendations from your guides and enjoy a delicious dinner of your choice.

Today's Ride:

Bled to Vršič Pass to Bovec
Approximately 50 mi | 80 km and 6,400 ft | 1,953 m

Hotel:

Hotel Soča

Included Meals:

Breakfast | Lunch

After filling up on a bountiful mountain breakfast, you will start your warm-up straight from Bovec toward the village of Log pod Mangartom, where the official climb to the top of the imposing Mangart begins. Your first part of climb begins in the trees, but when it reaches higher altitude the pines begin to give way and the final couple of miles open up to expose a wonderous world around you. The road to the Mangart Saddle is the highest paved road in Slovenia which ends at the top, where your efforts are rewarded with a spectacular view of Italy. It’s well worth pausing to admire the vista before beginning the descent the same way you came up. You won’t descend all the way to the valley floor but instead take a turn to climb Predel Pass, the point where your cycling adventure in Slovenia rolls into Italy. Be sure to snap one last picture on the top before you cross the border! After a long, well-earned descent, a private shuttle will quickly bring you to Sutrio, and the Osteria Da Alvise, your comfortable home base for the next two nights.

Today's Ride:

Bovec to Mangart Pass to Predel Pass to Italy
Approximately 41 mi | 66 km and 6,920 ft | 2,110 m

Hotel:

Osteria Da Alvise

Included Meals:

Breakfast | Lunch

It can only be described as an epic day for cycling enthusiasts when you are given the chance to climb the legendary Zoncolan. Climbing specialists all over the world have called Monte Zoncolan "the hardest climb in the world," in the same rarified company as Spain's Angliru and Italy's Mortirolo. It's a mix of steep grades over a long ascent, and has been featured in the Giro d'Italia multiple times. Take your time, pace yourself, and be sure to take some photos as you ride to the roof of the Dolomites, gaining almost 4,000 feet over six miles! This is hallowed ground as this road has created race champions like Simoni, Basso, and Nibali. At the summit, you will feel the ultimate joy of conquering the beast. A lunch of your choice awaits you on your descent back to the hotel which sits at the base of this magnificent mountain. Tonight, it’s a night to celebrate all your achievements during this past week. We’ll enjoy a feast together at a great restaurant in a picturesque mountain village and toast to new friendships, conquered climbs, and unforgettable cycling.

Today's Ride:

Sutrio to Zoncolan Loop
Approximately 34 mi | 54 km and 5,290 ft | 1,607 m

Hotel:

Osteria Da Alvise

Included Meals:

Breakfast | Social Hour | Dinner

It's hard to believe that our adventure is coming to an end. This morning is yours to recover after an epic week of cycling. You'll have time for a short loop to stretch out your legs on one last climb, or choose to sleep in and have a slow breakfast for a full recovery. You'll say farewell to your guides at 11:00 AM at the hotel and a private Trek Travel shuttle will take you to the Udine train station, arriving at around 12:00PM. Trains run from here to Venice every 30 minutes which is a great place to launch into the next part of your adventures!

Today's Ride:

Forcella Duron Loop
Approximately 12 mi | 20 km and 1,620 ft | 495 m

Hotel:

Osteria Da Alvise

Included Meals:

Breakfast

Hotels

hotel image

Strmol Castle Hotel

Cerklje na Gorenjskem, Slovenia

Explorer Accommodation | Strmol Castle is one of the oldest and best-preserved castles in Slovenia that has been magically transformed into a boutique 4-star hotel with a unique atmosphere and beautiful grounds. Each room has been designed differently with period furnishings to preserve the cultural heritage of the castle, and the hotel also includes newly renovated apartments above the Strmol Café. Its location is perfect for discovering the area and is set up to offer relaxation after a day of challenging riding in this spectacular region.
hotel image

Sport Hotel Soča

Bovec, Slovenia

Explorer Accommodation | The Sport Hotel Soča is located in the heart of the Soca Valley in the town of Bovec, an outdoor paradise that sits on the threshold of the Triglav National Park, and is wrapped in impressive views of the surrounding peaks of the Julian Alps. The architects have designed a perfect connection between modern elements with classic Alpine style, creating an idyllic and relaxing environment. Their outdoor pool assures a perfect refreshment after climbing Vršič Pass and the spa will revitalize your legs to prepare you for next epic climb.
hotel image

Osteria da Alvise

Sutrio, Italy

Explorer Accommodation | New hotel in 2023! Perfectly situated at the base of the magnificent climb to Monte Zoncolan, this family-run hotel has been a meeting place in the village since 1994, and has recently undergone renovations that provide you with a comfortable, modern stay in their relaxing, understated rooms. Enjoy delicious home-cooked meals that highlight the cooking traditions that are typical of this region of Italy. You will also appreciate the onsite spa after a solid day in the saddle.

What's Included

For us, the details matter most

Every moment of our Trek Travel Classic Climbs Slovenian Alps bike tour has more than you could have ever dreamed. More romance. More scenery. More choice. It's the little additions to every Trek Travel cycling vacation that make it truly special. And that's how we help you create more memories.

bike

New Trek Domane SL 7 in 2023

New for 2023! Experiencing your cycling vacation of a lifetime is not complete without a world-class bike and the Trek Domane is the best way to enjoy the ride. Trek Bikes just launched the all-new Trek Domane and you can ride it on trips in 2023. It raises the bar to deliver incredible endurance road bike comfort without sacrificing performance and features highly responsive disc brakes and electronic shifting. This new bike is lighter than ever before, and carbon wheels come standard on every bike. The road-smoothing IsoSpeed technology lets you ride as long as you want with less fatigue. The bike you ride on a biking vacation matters. That is why we provide the newest and best bikes in the business. Available starting in 2023 trips. Learn More

WHAT'S INCLUDED

  • Five nights of accommodation at handpicked hotels
  • Two experienced guides to provide local knowledge, support, and camaraderie
  • Daily route support with both guides and our support van
  • Daily breakfast, four lunches, and three dinners
  • Two social hours of drinks and hors d'oeuvres
  • Ride a Trek Domane SL 7 disc
  • Up to three daily route options on riding days
  • Snacks and drinks for each day's ride
  • Trek Travel Bontrager cycling jersey to keep
  • Trek Travel water bottles to keep
  • Cinch sack day bag to keep
  • Each bike is equipped with a Garmin Edge 1030 GPS computer, a flat pack (containing a tube, levers, and a CO2 cartridge with inflator), front and rear Bontrager Flare R lights, a Bontrager saddle, and pedals (Shimano clipless road pedals, Shimano clipless mountain pedals, caged, or flat pedals)
  • Bontrager WaveCel helmets
  • All gratuities for drivers, local experts, and hospitality staff
  • All luggage transfers and transportation during your Slovenia cycling trip
  • A digital photo album of your trip
  • Entrance fees for all activities, private tours and events

GEAR

  • Trek Domane SL 7 disc carbon road bike with Shimano Di2 electronic shifting
  • Trek Travel Bontrager cycling jersey to keep
  • Trek Travel water bottles to keep
  • Shimano clipless road pedals, Shimano clipless mountain pedals, caged, or flat pedals
  • Bontrager WaveCel helmet
  • Bontrager men's and women's specific saddles
  • Bontrager front and rear Flare R lights
  • A flat pack containing a tube, levers, and a CO2 cartridge with inflator
  • Garmin Edge 1030 GPS computer
  • Cinch sack day bag to keep
  • Coupon valued up to $500 off a new Trek Bicycle. Your coupon will be delivered via email prior to your trip.
  • For the most comfortable ride, you may choose to bring your own pedals, saddle, and helmet on the trip. Your guides will install your gear on the first day during your bike fit.

WHAT'S NOT INCLUDED

Guide gratuities are customary and at your own discretion, to recognize service, hospitality, and the little extras that surprise and delight. For this trip, we recommend $240-$300 per guest. While local currency is preferred, there are other options to make tipping easier. Most guides accept gratuity via PayPal or our staff can help before or after the trip. Gratuities will be divided among the guide team, so feel free to leave your gratuity with whomever you choose at the end of your trip. 
  • Airfare and transportation to and from the trip pick-up/drop-off locations
  • Lodging before and after the bike trip
  • Personal items purchased during the trip
  • Optional activities not scheduled by Trek Travel
  • On select trips some meals are not included. On these trips, Trek Travel invites you to explore the local cuisine at your leisure.

More Information

Rider Level: 4 - Avid?

AVERAGE DAILY MILEAGE:
61 kilometers / 38 miles
TOTAL MILES:
367 kilometers / 228 miles
AVERAGE DAILY ELEVATION:
1,603 meters / 5,260 feet
TOTAL ELEVATION:
9,620 meters / 31,560 feet
TERRAIN: MOUNTAINOUS
NON-RIDING ACTIVITIES:
This destination is best suited to guests who want to cycle every day. Because of the terrain and/or remoteness of the hotels and riding routes, there are few, if any, non-riding options available. If a non-rider wants to accompany a rider guest on this trip, they would need to spend many hours in the van and/or at the hotels on the trip. Due to this, we strongly discourage non-riders from this destination. As an alternative, call a Trek Travel Trip Consultant at 866-464-8735 for trip suggestions where more non-rider activities are available, such as:
  • Slovenia Bike Tour
  • Croatia
  • Provence

See itinerary for specific daily ride distances and elevation options. On all of our vacations, Trek Travel strives to find quiet, paved secondary roads or bike paths to experience a region; busy roads are avoided as much as possible. Our itineraries are an approximation of our trips. Trek Travel strives to offer every guest a vacation of a lifetime on every trip. At times routes, hotels, activities, etc. listed here may change at the discretion of the trip designer or guides to improve the trip experience.

The terrain is challenging and climbs can range from four to fifteen miles in length at a variety of grades. The routes include one to three climbs per day. Our Classic Climbs bike tour in the Slovenian and Italian Alps is best suited for our Type 4 Riders. Our Trek Travel guides can also accommodate Type 3 Riders, who seek less mileage or fewer uphills, with a boost in the van. Type 4+ Riders will enjoy the extra mileage the avid route options offer.

Travel Details

How to Get There

FLY INTO:
Ljubljana Jože Pučnik Airport (LJU)
MEETING TIME:
9:30 AM
MEETING LOCATION:
Urban Boutique Hotel Center

Say Farewell

FLY OUT OF:
Venice Marco Polo Airport (VCE)
DEPARTING TIME:
12:00 PM
DEPARTING LOCATION:
Osteria da Alvise, Sutrio, Italy

Arriving

We suggest that you arrive at least one day prior to the start of your bike tour in Slovenia, which will enable you to adjust to the time zone and minimize the risk of missing the trip start due to flight-related delays. We recommend that you fly into Ljubljana Jože Pučnik Airport (LJU). The Ljubljana airport is about fifteen miles from the town center. You can take a taxi (approximately 25 euros) directly to your hotel, or a bus which departs hourly. Most hotels also arrange airport shuttles.

Your Trek Travel guides will meet you at the Urban Boutique Hotel Center (4 Štefanova ulica, 1000 Ljubljana) at 9:30 AM on the first day of the trip. You’ll then shuttle 30 minutes to your first hotel, Strmol Castle Hotel, where your guides will do a bike fitting to ensure your comfort on your Trek Domane this week before you take your first spin. Please have your first day’s riding gear handy and separate from your other luggage to facilitate the bike fitting and ride.

If you will be late for the pick-up or are going to miss it altogether, please inform your guides. You will receive an email a week before the trip start with their names and contact details. If you cannot reach them, please call our first hotel, Strmol Castle Hotel (+386 426 015 99) and leave a message with your expected arrival time and contact details. You may take a taxi to the first night’s hotel for approximately 50 euros. The trip takes around 20 minutes from the airport.

View our pre hotel recommendations

Leaving

You will say farewell to your guides at 11:00 AM at the Osteria da Alvise. You will then shuttle one hour to the Udine Train station and arrive at approximately 12:00 PM. Trains run from here to Venice every 30 mins, where there are easy connections to all major Italian cities. Please don't book any trains before 1:30 PM, allowing adequate connection time for any ongoing travel or possible traffic delays. For further information please see www.TrenItalia.com.

View our post hotel recommendations

Planning For Your Trip

Packing and Weather

In the summer months, Slovenian mountains are usually clear and sunny during the day, with warm daytime temperatures from 70s to mid-90s and evening temperatures 10-15 degrees cooler. Whenever traveling in the high mountains, it is best to be prepared for variable conditions, as weather can change very quickly and there is always the chance of snow and rain. We recommend always traveling with rain gear, as well as plenty of breathable layers, to provide warmth if the temperature drops. Packing List

Before and After Your Trip

before

Before: Ljubljana, Slovenia

Ljubljana is one of Europe's hidden gems. It is one of the smallest European capitals, one of Europe's greenest, and definitely the most magical. It was the European Commission's Green Capital of Europe in 2016. Car traffic is restricted in the centre, leaving the leafy banks of the emerald-green Ljubljanica River, which flows through the city's heart, free for pedestrians and cyclists. The promenade, the squares, and the ancient buildings, as well as the markets and galleries, the restaurants and cafes all come together to create a simply wonderful urban atmosphere. The city is surrounded by parks and areas of protected nature. It’s a green capital of a green country which offers relaxing time while enjoying the sights. We recommend the following accommodations for your pre-trip hotel:

after

After: Venice, Italy

Whether you’ve never been to Venice or have been there 20 times, there’s always something new to discover. Indeed, even the most seasoned visitors get lost in the city’s labyrinthine network of islands, bridges, pedestrian alleys, and canals. And therein lies the beauty of the destination: afternoons spent wandering from palace to piazza, exploring the small art museums, shopping the stalls that line the streets, and encountering a fresh side of Venice, a fascinating amalgamation of influences— Roman, Byzantine, Ottoman, and Italian—every time you round a corner. The UNESCO World Heritage site comprises the city of Venice and its lagoon situated in the Veneto Region of northeast Italy. Founded in the fifth century and spread over 118 small islands, Venice became a major maritime power in the 10th century. The whole city is an extraordinary architectural masterpiece in which even the smallest building contains works by some of the world’s greatest artists. We recommend the following accommodations for your pre- and post-trip hotel:

Customer Reviews

Why Trek Travel

Our Bikes

Our unrivaled selection of Trek Bikes sets the bar for quality and comfort. From the ultra-smooth Trek Domane SL 7 to the Trek Electric-Assist Verve+, you deserve the best ride on your vacation. Plus, we offer a range upgrade options to take you the extra mile.

Our Guides

Our guides are trained to make your trip magical. They aren't just experts in riding; they're trained in delivering uncompromising service in ways you won't believe. We know that it's the unexpected surprises that make a trip magical. That's why our guides pride themselves on anticipating your needs before you ask.

Your Day. You Decide.

Our vacations are built to deliver the ultimate in flexibility, from extreme relaxers to hard-core roadies. You pick your mileage, itinerary and experiences. We take care of the rest.

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