2022-08-17 at 6:51 pm #70994
Locked in the rainswept cabin in Skene’s Creek my mind has turned to 2023, and in particular a pan-European jolly with a Italian Giro and/or hills oriented climb tour somewhere in the middle. Why Italy; I love Italian wines and food, have always wanted to do the Dolomites, and have a vague plan to sneak off afterwards to Tuscany…
A number of the ARC crew have been on various tours and I am seeking some insight and recommendations. I have turned up 3 Australian based Tour Co’s so far:
– TopBike (Sicily, Giro, Italian Climbs). Several ARCers have participated (Hedding is well represented on their website!) https://www.topbike.com.au/2023-tour-calendar/
– Gruppeto (Giro, Classic Climbs, even a gravel tour in Tuscany) https://www.gruppettocyclingtours.com.au/tours
– Aqto (Sicily, Giro, Como/Stelvio/Dolomites, plus some other interesting ones) https://www.aqtocycling.com/italian-cycling-tours/
Price and inclusions of these are relatively similar.
And one Eurotour Co:
– Italy Bike Tours (Trento, Grand Alps, Climbers Week plus others) https://italybiketours.com/cycling-holidays-in-italy. Pricing based on current Euro:AUD is pretty good – cheaper than the Aussie tours.
I have heard some other tour co’s mentioned. Blakey and Scar were there recently, GarryD currently, Steve G, GarryTP et al, actually pretty well everyone… So i am hoping I can get some good advice.
BTW if anyone is interested in joining the expedition let me know!
R2022-08-18 at 11:13 pm #70997Phil ScardamagliaModerator
Italian Dolomites is definitely my favorite overseas riding destination. I’ll email you some info and insights from my previous trips soon.2022-08-20 at 12:07 pm #71012
Thx Phil2022-08-20 at 4:27 pm #71018Garry DowdModerator
Our ventures to these parts have been self planned (mostly by Wayne!) and self supported, although we have always used hire bikes in various locations and they have overall been fine.
Dolomites is a great riding and scenic location – not too difficult to pick 2 or 3 locations (e.g. Bormio, Cortina) and do 2 or 3 days riding from each one, or just go with a tour and let them do the work.
Garry2022-08-27 at 4:32 pm #71100
Thanks all for response thus far. Thx Phil for your notes – allowed me to add Thomson tour co to the list (https://www.thomsonbiketours.com/trip-calendar/trips/country/italy/).
For the various Italian climb tours inclusive of transfers, accomm, bfast/dinner, support:
– TopBike, aqto (Aus) around $6.8-6.9k for 9 day/8 nights
– Gruppetto (Aus) around $6.4-6.5k for 10 day/9 nights
– ItalyBike Tour (uk base) around $4.7-4.8k for 10 day/9 nights
– Thomson (us base) around around $5.1-5.2k for 8 day/7 nights
All these have typically 2 locations throughout the period. ItalyBike also has some shorter duration options.
Self support is an option, requiring a little more planning and hiring car etc, but cheaper.
I am starting to lean towards last week Aug, first week Sep 2023 with a view to further hols in Europe post the riding extravaganza. (although end f Giro, early June remains an option)
Keen for a partner(s) in crime for the Italian climbing so do let me know if you might be interested.
Ciao!2022-10-01 at 11:13 am #71488
The Italian Job news was interrupted due the website hiccup. That didn’t daunt us and we resorted to emails and old fashioned pub conversations (Deeds Brewing to be precise).
The trip is ON: Italy Bike Tours (IBT) “The Best Of The Alps And Dolomites” 16-25 Jun 2023 (https://italybiketours.com/the-best-of-the-alps-of-dolomites-cycling)
We currently have 12 confirmed/booked/paid; 7 riders, 5 non riders (Myself/Caroline, Ken/Leanne, Matt/Liz/son, Brad/Helen, StephenG, Frank/Barb). Non rider in a couple/family get a discount. There are non-rider activities including access to e-bikes for local riding etc.
Given the size of our contingent IBT will turn this into a private tour – same dates, routes (although we will be able to vary), but with dedicated support for our group. This also mean that we can add more participants.
Tour headlines (do have a look at the above link)
– 10 days 9 nights, in Verona, out Milan, 2 accomm locations (less transit, also good for non-riders. Canazei, Bormio – 1 day in transit), 630km, 17000m (most of the well known climbs – no Zoncolan)
– Cost €3,250 ~$5,000 incl transfers accomm, bfast, dinner, some lunches. Bike hire €500 ~$770. Deposit €500 ~$770. (Obviously €->$ continues to move). Final payment in April 2023 (cancellation policy is reasonably good)
Overall tour price is pretty good, multiple conversations with business owner, others riders who have toured before, routes and accomm look pretty good.
With travel coming back on stream for Europe tours are beginning to get booked out. We will have some flex given we are now on a ‘private tour’. However, if you are interested in joining the Italian Job (aka Dolomites Dreaming) please let me no as soon as practical.
In the mean time I am busy planning Caroline and my before and after excursions!
R2022-10-07 at 8:28 am #71671
Quick update on the above. I have checked in with Clive/IBT re additional riders. They are very flexible on the private tour and can take more (noting their tour caters for 18 riders and we are only 12 in the group and 7 riders at present).
However, we will need to get bookings/deposits locked down by end of October. You’ll probably need to do that if your are booking flights accom etc. PLEASE get back to me in October if you have interest (confirmed our otherwise in joining).
Most of the discussion now is TRU turning to flights and related travel schedules!
We’ll look to have another Dolomites Dreaming @ Deeds night over the next couple of weeks.
On a separate but sort of related note I am hoping to have a ARC kit order up and running shortly for the group, and to allow for those who want to refresh, add a set before Christmas and Italy! (BTW Clive/IBT was suggesting min 2 pref 3 sets for the 10 days. Note also an IBT jersey is part of the package)
Ciao!2022-10-14 at 7:46 pm #71752Perry BrownModerator
Hi Rusty – only just caught up on these posts but am definitely interested! Will get in touch off line.
Perry2022-10-22 at 12:47 pm #71850
Tour headlines (do have a look at the above link)
– 10 days 9 nights, in Verona, out Milan, 2 accomm locations (less transit, also good for non-riders. Canazei, Bormio – 1 day in transit), 630km, 17000m (most of the well known climbs; Sella Ronda, Gavia, Stelvio, Mortirolo but no Zoncolan – yay)
– Cost €3,250 ~$5,000 incl transfers accomm, bfast, dinner, some lunches. Bike hire €500 ~$770. Deposit €500 ~$770. (Obviously €->$ continues to move). Final payment in April 2023 (cancellation policy is reasonably good).
(The published price for this tour has now increased to €3,575 our earlier/lower price is locked for late joiners until end oct)
The current confirmed ‘list’ looks something like this:
Russell Ives + Caroline
Brad Philips + Helen
Matt Douglas + Liz +1
Frank & Barb Niglio
James & Lib Johnston
Perry & Carol Brown
15 all up, with 6-ish non-riders.
For those that still have this ‘under consideration’ we want to close out all the additional participants this week and lock it in with Clive/IBT. Doesn’t mean we can’t add later, but no guarantees on prices, accommodation and availability from then on.
Happy to discuss further if you have some interest in joining the tour.
R2022-10-28 at 9:14 pm #71914Richard HeddingModerator
Hi Rusty, just back from Europe after Corsica tour and have caught up on the planned Italy tour – I’m interested, will contact you offline,
Richard2022-10-29 at 11:23 am #71929
Richard, welcome back – photos looked great. Talk soon.2022-11-07 at 8:08 pm #72018Glenn SwaikParticipant
Just back from Europe but alas no cycling. I have just found out about your tour d’Italy and wondering if it’s still possible to join in.
Glenn Swaik2022-12-25 at 10:05 pm #73399
Hi Glenn, apologies I have not been monitoring this thread over the last month! Please call me 0408754033 when convenient and I can update you. Thx R
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