The Most Diverse Road Cycling Trip in Slovenia
LJUBLJANA · LAKE BLED · JULIAN ALPS · SOCA VALLEY · WINE REGIONS · PIRAN
This is an amazing point-to-point road cycling trip in western Slovenia. Designed for serious & fit road cyclists, but can easily be adapted for fond gravel bikers.
You will bike from hotel to hotel (with only 2 short transfers), cross several mountain passes, bike through medieval towns, and beautiful Slovenian countryside. You will enjoy the diverse & stunning landscape from the Julian Alps, via the sunny wine hills all the way to the Adriatic Sea.
On the way, you will get to know the local way of life, meet the proud & friendly Slovenians, and of course, be spoiled with amazing farm-to-table local food.
We are confident to say that this is the best and most diverse road biking tour in Slovenia. Do you dare to try it?
This is the ultimate road cycling holiday adventure, connecting the most diverse landscape and visuals that Slovenia has to offer.
You’ll travel from the small and vibrant capital Ljubljana to the Adriatic coast. On-road biking will lead through the picture-perfect Lake Bled, across the mountain passes of the Julian Alps and Triglav National Park, as well as Slovenian Karst and Vipava valley.
Navigation will guide your biking adventure, to give you the freedom of independent cycling at your own pace. Your tour leader drives the support van and meets you several times throughout the day to make sure you are doing well. The leader will also treat you with some snacks and cheers during your rides, which feels almost like you’re on the Tour de France.
Day 1: Welcome to Ljubljana
It’s your arrival day to Ljubljana, the little green capital with a traffic-free city center. The city is just 30 min drive from Ljubljana airport and for its core being a 10-min walk across, you’ll have plenty of time to explore it. But you’ll begin with a meeting with your trip leader, to discuss all trip details over a welcome dinner.
After the first encounter with diverse Slovenian cuisine, you can enjoy a relaxed walk across the many lovely bridges, taking you from one terrace to another, where excellent wines are served in lovely by the river ambient.
Let us know if you need any help arranging the transfer to Ljubljana’s city center.
Overnight: 3* hotel in Ljubljana
Meals included: dinner
Day 2: Ljubljana to Lake Bled
Stretch your legs already in bed, as you’re facing the challenge of the trip. Just outside you’ll take control over your bike and make your way towards Lake Bled. Side and back roads and respectful drivers towards bikers will make the ride around the capital pleasant.
Further on you’ll head through the small villages in the suburbs until reaching the beautiful medieval town of Skofja Loka. By now the warmup is done, as onwards you’ll climb some serious hills past Jamnik church. It’s one of the most photographed churches in Slovenia with spectacular views and mountain backdrops, which makes for a perfect spot for a drink. If gelato is more in your domain, a few more revolutions are needed, to another cute medieval town – Radovljica, which is also the chocolate town of Slovenia.
After a calorie boost, you’ll continue towards the shores of stunning Lake Bled, which is the country’s most famous sight and your final destination of the day and your overnight location.
As cycling might make you starving for dinner, there is a nice variety of restaurants in Bled, to suit your foodie or gourmet preferences.
Biking: 85 km / elevation gain +1400m, -1200m
Overnight: 3* hotel or local guesthouse at Lake Bled
Meals included: breakfast
Day 3: Lake Bled to Kranjska Gora
Since you might wake up with shattered legs, you’ll only hop on your bike only after lunch. Therefore enjoy being located in the foothills of the Julian Alps, with sight over the cliff-top castle and a tiny island with a church atop.
Perhaps a relaxed morning with such views suits your style, yet you can visit a local bee-keeper, where a drop of aromatic honey can meet your taste buds here and there. But to shake off the heavy legs, you can do a short hike to the nicest viewpoints of the Lake Bled with the curtain of the Karawanke Alps behind, making for a pretty picture.
After a quick lunch, you’ll cycle beautiful side roads and dedicated bike paths all the way to the ski town Kranjska Gora where you’ll overnight.
Biking: 40 km / elevation gain +700m, -350m
Overnight: 3* hotel or local guesthouse in Kranjska Gora
Meals included: breakfast
Day 4: Kranjska Gora to Kobarid
Today’s ride is dedicated to superlatives, as you’ll cycle across the Vrsic Mountain Pass. Even though the road is open for traffic, you’ll feel safe on the bike, making this ride a very popular challenge among road cyclists.
After an initial flat road warm-up, the gradient enables a steady climb along an impressive road. The road, built by the Russian prisoners during the First World War, takes you through the heart of the Julian Alps. It’s manually carved into the sidehills of the Mt Prisojnik and Mojstrovka and winding up to the saddle. When the incline flattens out, you’ll surely enjoy the most memorable views of some of the highest Slovenian mountains and their vertical limestone walls.
If the ‘Are we there yet?’ questions your mind, remember that people race it on retro bikes with mini wheels and without shifts, to regain motivation.
The descend to the lush valley of the emerald Soca River is fast. To make sure your eyes are on the road, make some stops to soak up its beautiful scenery and come to understanding why Slovenians are so proud of our nature. Further in the Soca valley, you’ll also feel the definition of the EDEN – European Destination of Excellence in Slovenia. It’s where you’ll dip your feet into the cold crystal-clear water and enjoy a break in the shade of the forest, which with it’s 60 per cent ground coverage adds a sweet scent to the fresh air.
The ride ends in the historic town of Kobarid, where you can visit the local WWI museum to learn about the World Wars events in the region.
Biking: 70 km / elevation gain +1200m, -1850m
Overnight: 3* hotel in Kobarid
Meals included: breakfast
Day 5: Kobarid to Goriska Brda
This morning brings a scenic & short transfer that you and your bike will enjoy just as much. It’s to add a little more ease to the otherwise strenuous ascent to a Kolovrat ridge. The ridge rises above the Soca valley and separates Slovenia from Italy, where the clear natural environment of the Alps leads the way to the Adriatic.
As some days before, you’ll rush down the lonely winding road, just that this time you’ll be swapping between Slovenia and Italy. Until finally, you’ll end your day’s journey in the rolling wine hills of Goriska Brda.
Because all along you’ll enjoy lovely views of the distant sky-piercing mountains and the sparkling sea, make shorter stops to grasp the sights and ride safely on the road. Furthermore, to save some energy for tonight’s wine tasting and some great local food.
Biking: 70 km / elevation gain +1200m, -1700m
Overnight: 3* hotel or local guesthouse in Goriska Brda wine hills
Meals included: breakfast, dinner
Day 6: Goriska Brda to the Karst Plateau
If by today you felt like you’re on a different cycling adventure every day, endure the indulgence some more, as you’ll bike along Vipava valley before tackling an ascent to the Karst Plateau.
The road takes you through the Italian town of Gorica and its Slovenian neighbor Nova (New) Gorica, where you’ll learn about the consequences of the border change after WW2. Followed by the happy side of life in the prettiest and left-out corners of Slovenia’s Julian Prealps. Passing hillside villages, historic towns, vineyards, and olive groves in the countryside, you’ll love how the time here still goes slow and away from the black screen.
Once in Karst, we’ll invite you for lunch to our friend’s house who makes excellent prosciutto and wine to savor to the last drop.
The after-lunch destination is Lipica with its famous Lipizzaner stud farm, which you can visit or simply pass the gracefully grazing white horses.
Finish at a lovely countryside inn which offers a great dinner as well.
Biking: 85 km / elevation gain +1200m, -900m
Overnight: Local guesthouse on Karst
Meals included: breakfast, lunch
Day 7: Slovenian Istria and the town of Piran
Today we’ll cut the distances with a short transfer to the hills of Slovenian Istria.
Your last stage will take you along lonely roads amongst the olive orchards across the miniature hills and small villages. As you approach the coast you will enjoy the views of the most northern tip of the Mediterranean Sea arm. Thus finish the ride in the charming coastal town of Piran, to explore Piran’s narrow alleys and petite squares. It’s easy to get lost here, but you’ll always enjoy the maze-like experience, rich with new discoveries.
With a nice final dinner, you’ll relive your fabulous Alps to Adriatic biking vacation in Slovenia with a mouth full of sea delicacies.
Biking: 45 km / elevation gain +700m, -1000m
Overnight: 4* hotel in Piran
Meals included: breakfast, dinner
Day 8: Piran and departure
Like our mothers used to say ‘You can’t leave the table hungry!’, therefore you’ll enjoy a great breakfast, an easy morning in Piran and only then leave Slovenia for your next destination or to the airport.
Meals included: breakfast
Price per person:
2 travelers: 3,140 €
3-4 travelers: 2,300 €
5-6 travelers: 1,910 €
7-8 travelers: 1,670 €
9-10 travelers: 1,510 €
- English-speaking tour leader throughout the trip.
- 7 nights with breakfast in nice 3* hotels or local guesthouses. Double or twin rooms.
- 3 dinners, 1 lunch.
- Wine tasting.
- Luggage transfer between accommodations.
- Organization, 24-hour holiday service & support.
- International flights.
- Airport transfers to Ljubljana and from Piran.
- Meals not specified in the itinerary.
- Travel insurance.
- Personal expenses.
- Guide gratuities.
- Other services not specified in the Inclusions.
- Single room supplement: 310 €.
- High-end road bike rental: 320 €.
Activity Level 4 – STRENUOUS
Expect to bike approx. 85 km (135 miles) and 1400 m (4600 ft) elevation gain on the most difficult days. There are quite a few serious & long climbs and also some steep 15% bumps. You need to be a keen road biker with a great fitness level to fully enjoy the trip. Keep in mind that we can customize everything to your wishes.
The Alps to Adriatic cycling trip is doable between May and October. To avoid the peak tourist season, we recommend doing it outside of July & August.
What is the weather usually like?
In summer (from June to early September) the weather is usually hot, with temperatures around 25-30 deg C (75-90 deg F). In peak season (August) you can expect a heatwave with temperatures likely exceeding 35 deg C (95 deg F) as well as a significant temperature drop in the mountains on a cloudy, windy, or rainy day.
May and especially October are cooler and you should bring gloves and warmer layers as well.
You’ll stay in selected nice and clean centrally located 3* hotels or local guesthouses, in double or single rooms with en-suite bathroom.
According to your wishes, we can also arrange charming boutique hotels.
A passion born in mountain summer camps nurtured through the adolescence and upgraded in different courses brought me to the point of making my hobby a profession. With like-minded friends, I had spent many fun days and starry nights tramping the mountains. Therefore I love spending every day in nature, where I eagerly share my knowledge about Slovenia. So if you wish to experience a fun hike, taste some amazing food, perhaps just spend a few days outdoors or enjoy a debate over a beer, you can count on me! When I’m not in the mountains, you will find me working on various non-profit projects, or maybe sleeping…
“We are back in Calgary and back to reality after our wonderful week in Slovenia!
Thank you so much for the wonderful tour and the taste of what Slovenia has to offer! It was all perfect! We loved the locations we visited, the rides, the food, the hotels, and our guide Aljaz couldn’t have been any more accommodating. What a pleasant young man to spend a week with! I also wanted to thank you and Aljaz for making Don’s 60th birthday such a memorable and special day! The champagne-filled picnic basket on the rocks during our whitewater rafting was so special! Thank you for everything! We hope to visit Slovenia again and when we do we will definitely be in touch!”
Don & Sue Finley
What are the roads like?
Mostly we bike on low-traffic village roads and avoid the busy roads as much as possible. However, sometimes this is not possible and we do have some sections on regional roads. On Day 4 (when crossing Vrsic mountain pass) there are quite a lot of cars in the main tourist season (July & August), but they mostly drive slowly on the curvy mountain road.
What is the maximum group size?
Our mountain biking trips are private. For this trip, we accept up to 10 travelers per guide.
Can I rent an e-bike?
At the moment we do not offer electric road bikes. We do have electric trekking bikes. Scott e-SUB.
Is the trip doable with a gravel bike?
Definitely! With some small changes, it makes a perfect gravel biking trip.