Umbria Bike Trips

On this page, you will find...

This link will take you to a little photo gallery of Umbria, thanks to our riders.


Home of St. Francis and olive oil capital of Italy, Umbria is a landscape of sleepy valleys, solemn poplars and medieval towns perched atop hills.  The land in between is filled in by green forests, grain fields in the plain, and vineyards on the slopes.  And the beauty of your surroundings is complimented by the warmth and hospitality of a region long accustomed to travellers, but not trampled by tourists.

Umbria offers one of Italy’s most least convention-bound cuisines, delightfully co-opting outside influence.  But plenty of local input remains:  mushrooms, black truffles, suckling piglet, and approachable wines....

The towns are full of surprises:  exuberant jumbles living in their old stones as if they were features of the landscape.  Underground parking lots in the foundations of a 16th century fortress, a Roman aquaduct used as a cycle path, a guy who’s a hero for talking to birds....  Our route is articulated around three of these:  ancient and beautiful cities set in lovely landscapes.




The following trips visit Umbria:

Giro d'Italia (3 weeks)
Visits 3 of our Italian itineraries:   Tuscany, Umbria, the Dolomites, and the Italian Lakes — not offered in 2017

Etruscan Trails (2 weeks)
Visits Tuscany, followed by Umbria

Kingdom Off the Sea (2 weeks)
Visits Umbria, then the Italian Lakes — not offered in 2017

France & Italy (2 weeks)
Visits Umbria and one of our French routes
— no 2017 departures include our Umbria itinerary.

Umbria Unravelled follows this itinerary exclusively.
Departure dates and prices are in the table, below.



Our Cycle Trips

Overview Map
of the places we stage trips


Departure Calendar
of our scheduled trips


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or...
Short Trips from Paris
 

What's Included
...
...in the Trip Cost


Additional Services...
...which you can add to your trip.


Other Trips We Offer

 

Day-by-Day Itinerary:  Umbria

Day of the Week
Description
Typical distances, in km
Sunday
TRAIN to SPOLETO (Access Package subscribers)
Most arrive via Rome, though a few come from Milan or elsewhere.  If you are in Rome, a quick train ride has you in Spoleto.  If you are coming from Milan, your trip is longer, but the dining car serves up a pleasant presso fisso lunch that will help you pass the time.

All Riders:  MEET in SPOLETO
Spoleto is the epitome of Umbria to Italians.  Gothic on Roman on Etruscan, a beautiful walled town climbing up a hillside, built in a jumble on top of its own ruins, and crowned by a forboding fortress.  A Blue Marble or two should be rolling around by the end of the lunch hour... if you arrive in the afternoon, fit your bike and go for a spin up to the Ponte delle Torri, spanning the valley behind the town, and in the hills behind.  Or visit the fortress, or wander the streets around the cathedral.

At the very least, be here for dinner:  Spoleto is an introduction to the best Italian cuisine it has been our pleasure to discover -- quite a statement!  Mushrooms, black truffles (countering neighboring Tuscany’s white ones), suckling pig, and wonderful, approachable (affordable) wines....

Half Baggage
0 - 20 k
Monday
SPOLETO LOOP
Short, medium and long routes are on offer, to cater to all tastes.  Our riding takes us out onto the plain... unless you would rather go up the mountain!  Lines of cypress trees, olive groves, and quiet lanes with “decent” views decorate a variety of loops designed to cater to those with jet lag, as to those trying to stretch their legs.

Half Baggage
20 - 70 k
Tuesday
TREVI, MONTEFALCO
Trevi emerging like a dream from a sea of silver olive trees.  Montefalco is the center of the local red wine trade around here: stop on the town square for a tasting.

Then to Assisi. St. Francis hailed from here.  When not preaching to birds, he inspired a devotion in humans that remains a marvel.  Construction of the Basilica of San Francesco was begun just two years after his death.  His namesake city in the U.S. came along some time later. Nowadays talking to birds rarely gets a city named for you:  too much competition.
50 - 60 k
Wednesday
ASSISI, MONTE SUBASIO
A beautiful hillside ride on manageable grades carries us around the flank of Monte Subasio, the biggest thing out here.  Our destination is Spello, whose unusually linear layout belies Umbria’s purest Roman town.

Long-routers can spice things up a bit by dropping down into the valley and climbing back up, or by detouring into Folignio, one of the rare towns down in the plain.

Leave time for Assisi before you go or after you come back....  If the Basilica is not enough, there are a good 20 other churches to gawk at.  Or, just sit in a café and debate the merits of the town’s “other” saint, Chiara.  By all accounts a good lady, but, frankly, you should be thinking “Washington Generals” here.
35 - 50 k
Thursday
VALE UMBRIA, WINE JARS of TORGIANO
Our favorite Umbrian town is our destination, and it is only 20 k away.  But it’s not an easy ride, even if you go there directly.  And in any event, that is not what we suggest.

No, we suggest climbing a huge mountain or two, in the back country behind Assisi.  This is another Umbria, without cars and without tourists, and frankly somewhat lacking in pavement.  It is also a way to get in 1,000 meters of climbing before lunch.

Those not tempted can set out hours later, and meet those who took on the hills just 20 minutes from Assisi: long and short routes continue together to pass by a bunch of “stuff.”  Fortified Bettona has a charming town square and an art museum that has two rooms, takes 10 minutes to visit, and allows you to tick your culture box for the day.  Torgiano offers a wine museum sponsored by local powerhouse Lungarotti.  And, on the outskirts of Perugia, you will find an Etruscan burial temple (Hypogeum dei Volunni).

Half Baggage
40 - 80 k
Friday
PERUGIA LOOP
Our ride out of Perugia offers the prettiest biking of the trip, but Perugia itself is stiff competition for your attention.  This was a city-state six centuries before Christ started stirring up trouble.  Wonderful restaurants, beautiful caffés, lotsa stores, and a draconian traffic management scheme that makes finding your way into town by car into a giant game of “Where’s Waldo” (the locals are g-o-o-d...).

Break the available riding down between the two days, or take Friday off to explore the city, and do a long route on Saturday.

Half Baggage
Variable k
Saturday
TIBUR VALLEY, LAGO TRASIMENO
When you do finally leave town, it will be via a long, narrow urban thoroughfare, which comes out one of the town doors into the lush surrounding countryside.  Coast down the mountain in a winding route that carries you past Roman temples, walled hill towns, monasteries, olive farms, vineyards....

Up the Tibur valley, and then across the hills to Lago Trasimeno, the inland ocean of Umbrian mythology.  Our trip disbands in Terontola, a railway junction, at the end of a full riding day.  We suggest an Access Package to cheer you up.  Trains to Florence, Rome or elsewhere are available.

If you are headed for the Italian Lakes, you will spend the night in Florence before continuing to the Lakes tomorrow morning.

Half Baggage
50 - 75 k
Sunday
CONNECTION DAY from FLORENCE or ROME

Trains to Switzerland, Germany, France... are all on offer.
Lots, by train / plane


Umbria Unravelled — Facts & Figures
2017 Dates
Baggage Services Offered**
(optional)
Difficulty of the Ride
October 8 - 15
$2,050 US
$2,535 C
1,495€
Daily, Half
As You Like It...

A broad range of riding options is available each day.  The easiest routes travel moderate distances, and keep out of the worst of the hills, though there is still a nightly climb to reach your destination hill town.  If you are at peace with Spoleto’s 150 meters, and tolerate Assisi’s 200, how will you feel about Perugia’s 300?   Why on earth would anyone put a city up there?

The hardest routes are real workouts, start to finish.  Mix n' match, to yield the challenge (or lack thereof) that you are looking for!

* Prices in $ and € do not include precisely the same things.  Click here for details.



Prices of Optional Extras (links lead to explanations)
Currency
$ prices include
the bike.
See here for information on bringing your own.
** At least 4 riders must subscribe to a given baggage service for it to operate.  The services listed are those currently offered on the departure in question.  Services which appear in bold already have at least 3 subscribers (so, one more would ensure their operation).
Daily
Half
$US
$260
$198
$310
$C
$320
$246
$380
€uros
220€
168€
260€
225€

Reaching & Leaving Your Trip:  General Information on Access Packages
Specific information on reaching your trip’s start in... Spoleto
Specific information on departing from your trip’s end... Terontola