This wonderful bike tour in Istria will find you pedaling through diversity, experiencing not only "Blue Istria" along the coast, but the verdant "Green Istria" inland. Your cycling adventure starts on the Italian Coast, leads into Slovenia as you meander inland, and then returns to the pristine Adriatic in Croatia.
You will pedal the Parenzana, or Istrian Railway, an abandoned railway track that was in operation between 1902 – 1935, allowing you the pleasure of cycling on a dedicated bike path, away from vehicle traffic. Today this revitalized link that connected Trieste to Porec is known as "the route of health and friendship."
The guided option includes a cycling guide. A support vehicle can be added for a supplement. For special tour date requests, you can add van support and or a guide, costs to be shared among the number in your group. For group bookings, this can be a very economical option.
This tour is appropriate for families, groups of friends or individuals, and anybody who appreciates a relaxed yet active cycling vacation combined with good local food and a glass of good wine. Since the majority of the journey takes place along the coastline of the Adriatic Sea, there’s always an opportunity to swim in the Adriatic!
- Magical Piran
- Grožnjan, city of art
- Cycling immersed in nature, away from traffic
- Green Istrian hilltowns
- Blue Istria coastal attractions
- Motovun, a picturesque Istrian medieval town on top of the hill
- Local Istrian wine and food
Day 1: Individual arrival to Muggia
Day 2: Muggia to Piran, 22 mi. (35 km)
Day 3: Portorož to Grožnjan, 19 mi. (31 km)
Day 4: Grožnjan to Motovun, 20 mi. (32 km)
Day 5: Motovun to Poreč, 22.5 mi. (36 km)
Day 6: Poreč to Umag, 26 mi. (42 km)
Day 7: Umag to PIran, 20 mi. (32 km)
Day 8: Piran
*All distances are approximate.
Day 1: Individual arrival to Muggia, region of Trieste
Arrive to your hotel in Muggia settle in and enjoy the Venetian atmosphere of this quaint harbor village. The architecture, dialect, customs, and culinary are all influenced and connected with the Republic of Venice. You might want to consider arriving a day early and exploring Trieste before beginning your bike tour. You can take a boat from Muggia to the port of Trieste. Trieste is a seaport city with a long and complex history, lying at a crossroads influenced by Latin, Slavic, and Germanic cultures. You will have a tour introduction before you begin your tour.
Sample accommodation: Hotel San Rocco
Day 2: Muggia - Piran, 22 mi. (35 km)
For this day, you begin cycling directly from your hotel. Your rental bikes will be waiting for you at the hotel. Following the Slovenian coast, you cycle into the charming town of Piran, sitting pretty on the tip of its peninsula. In the middle of the town is Tartini Square with a monument dedicated to the great violinist and composer Giuseppe Tartini, born in Piran in 1692. Adding to the list of worthwhile places to visit is the town hall and the law-courts, the Gothic Venetian mansion, and the cathedral on an eminence, commanding a glorious panorama. You overnight in Piran, one of the most photogenic cities in the Mediterranean. The old town, which is one of the best-preserved historical towns in the Adriatic, is a gem of Venetian Gothic architecture. It is hard not to fall in love with Piran’s atmospheric winding alleyways, sunsets and seafood restaurants.
Elevation: 253 m
Sample accommodation: Hotel Piran
Day 3: Portorož - Grožnjan, 19 mi. (31 km)
Today, you leave the coast and head inland toward the Croatian border. The landscape changes and you experience the thickly forested Istrian hinterland dotted with ancient villages and farms. Grožnjan, known as the city of artists, is an ancient hilltop town and is the day's final destination. Once a dying and decaying town, in 1965 it was declared an artists' colony and was transformed into the enchanting and magical place it is today, The influx of creativity resulted in the fairytale-like atmosphere you will find here. Its history still permeates the present with ancient churches and castles, prehistoric archaeology, magnificent palaces, and many other old buildings, whose past glory have been recovered through restoration. You will either be transferred to Motovun and the next morning back to Groznjan due to lack of accommodation availability in Grožnjan or overnight in Grožnjan.
Elevation: 323 m
Sample accommodation: Hotel B & B Artegnana
Day 4: Grožnjan to Motovun, 20 mi. (32 km)
In the northern part of Istria, overlooking the Mirna river valley lies the most famous and attractive Istrian medieval town called Motovun. The captivating hilltop settlement is often used as a typical Istrian interior decoration motif. Situated on a hill rising 270 meters above sea level, its houses are scattered all around the area.
The 13th-century Romanesque-Gothic bell tower with a crenulated crown, which stands next to the Parish Church of Saint Stephen from the 17th century, dominates the town’s historic core. Motovun serves as a venue to many events, the most significant being the International Motovun Film Festival that takes place at the end of July and where many world-renowned film artists can be spotted.
The Mirna river flows at the foot of the hill. On the other side of the river is the famous Forest of Motovun with an area of about 10 square kilometers and a patch of 280 hectares that has been placed under special protection. This area is completely different not only from the nearby forests but also from the entire surrounding karst region because of its wildlife as well as the moist soil rich with prized black and white truffles (Tuber magnatum) which grow here in abundance.
Elevation: 239 m
Sample accommodation: Hotel Kaštel
Day 5: Motovun - Poreč, 22.5 mi. (36 km)
Day 4 is all about comfortable cycling in rural farmland with fields that are rich in fertile red soil, before returning to the coast. The final destination is the town of Poreč at the western coast of the Istrian peninsula. The major landmark, the 6th century Euphrasian Basilica in the historic old town, is famous for its gem-studded Byzantine mosaics. In 1997, it was proclaimed a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The almost 2000 years old town of Poreč is situated around a harbor and protected from the sea by the small island of Saint Nicholas. Ever since the 1970s, the coast of Poreč and that of the neighboring Rovinj have been the most frequented tourist destinations in Croatia.
Elevation: 315 m
Sample accommodation: B & B Villa Hasi
Day 6: Poreč - Umag, 26 mi. (42 km)
Heading north now along the coast, the day's destination is Umag. The old town has narrow, cobbled streets, so typical of the region and the coastline is full of pretty little bays. Umag is a small town and port on the north-western coast of Istria. A place Croatians say presents ‘Croatia’s gateway to Europe’.
Elevation: 230 m
Sample accommodation: Villa Badi
Day 7: Umag - Piran, 20 mi. (32 km)
On the last day of the cycling tour, the route follows the Croatian coastline as far as the terrain allows. It is worth making a few stops to enjoy the beautiful vistas and the easy breeze before crossing the border to Slovenia. The last leg of the journey leads back to Portorož and then Piran, where the tour ends.
Unlike the first visit to Piran on Day 2, there is now enough time left to enjoy the impressive atmosphere of the old town. That would be the right time to enjoy a cup of coffee at the Tartini Square that features a monument dedicated to the great violinist and composer Giuseppe Tartini, who was born in Piran in 1692, and to take a dip in the sea before the dinner.
Sample accommodation: Hotel Piran
Day 8: Piran and transfer back to Trieste Central
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Hotels & Bikes
Standard Accommodations are three-star hotels. An upgrade is possible based on availability for self-guided cyclists. Listed in the itinerary is the standard preferred accommodation. However, please note, final hotel list will be based on availability and is subject to change. 4-star upgrade list is also based on availability and will be made available upon request.
Scott Aspect 940
The SCOTT Aspect 940 is a mountain hardtail that is designed to be light, efficient, and reasonably priced. Featuring a lockout mechanism for the fork, disc brakes, and Syncros components, this is the perfect bike for both the novice or experienced mountain biker.
Photos may not be of the exact rental bike but of a similar model.
- Alloy frame: Aspect 900-700 series, Alloy 6061
- Lockout front suspension
- Shimano 18 speed gearing
- Shimano hydraulic disc brakes
- Kendra Booster tires 29 x 2.4
- Sycros 3.0 saddle
- Approx weights: 14.15 kg
Scott Sub Cross ERide
Meet the Sub Cross eRIDE 10, the easy way to explore gravel roads or smooth trails. The bike is equipped with the powerful Bosch Performance CX drive unit and a 625Wh battery, intelligently integrated into the frame for a slick and smooth design. An adjustable stem and ergonomic saddle result in optimal comfort.
- Alloy Frame
- Bosch Performance CX 625 watt battery
- Shimano Deore 10 speed gearing
- Shimano Disc brakes
- Schwalbe Smart Sam Tires (29 x 2.25)
- Approx. weight: 25.10 kg
- Accommodation for 7 nights in 3–4 star hotels/guest houses
- 7 breakfasts
- Introductory meeting & tour briefing
- Luggage transfer
- Scott Contessa or Scott Aspect bike rental for 6 days
- Water bottle, first aid kit, snack package, & free gift
- Navigation pack: pre-loaded GPS (one per group), maps, & tour booklet
- Final transfer back to Muggia or Trieste
- 24/7 hotline number
- Accommodation for 7 nights in 3–4 star hotels/guest houses
- 7 breakfasts & 6 dinners featuring regional cuisine
- Fully qualified & experienced bike guide
- Luggage transfer
- Bike rental for 6 days, includes lock, helmet, spare tube, & tool kit (one per group)
- Meeting & tour briefing at the tour start
- Final transfer back to city center Muggia/Trieste
- 24/7 hotline number (support)
What’s Not Included
- Any meals not indicated as included
- All beverages with included meals
- Arrival transfer to the first hotel
- Cycling guide & support vehicle on self-guided tour dates
- Cycling guide on non scheduled guided tour dates (can be booked for supplement)
- Support vehicle on scheduled & non scheduled guided dates (can be booked for supplement)
- Bike protection
- Travel Insurance
Dates & Pricing
June 5, September 18, & September 25, 2022
Maximum number of participants:
Special tours can be organized on any date for a group with a minimum of 2 people.
Arrivals are possible on any day. Pricing is based on the number of participants. See pricing.
Guided (scheduled tour dates) Double/twin $ 2857 £ 1511 $ 2,598 € 1775 ₪ 6440 NZ$ 3032 kr 18666 $ 2,051 Single supplement $ 338 £ 179 $ 307 € 210 ₪ 762 NZ$ 359 kr 2208 $ 243 Self-guided 2 ppl 4 ppl 6 ppl 8 ppl Double/twin $ 2390 £ 1264 $ 2,174 € 1485 ₪ 5388 NZ$ 2537 kr 15616 $ 1,716 $ 2133 £ 1128 $ 1,940 € 1325 ₪ 4807 NZ$ 2263 kr 13934 $ 1,531 $ 2036 £ 1077 $ 1,852 € 1265 ₪ 4589 NZ$ 2161 kr 13303 $ 1,462 $ 2004 £ 1060 $ 1,822 € 1245 ₪ 4517 NZ$ 2127 kr 13092 $ 1,439 Single supplement $ 338 £ 179 $ 307 € 210 ₪ 762 NZ$ 359 kr 2208 $ 243 $ 338 £ 179 $ 307 € 210 ₪ 762 NZ$ 359 kr 2208 $ 243 $ 338 £ 179 $ 307 € 210 ₪ 762 NZ$ 359 kr 2208 $ 243 $ 338 £ 179 $ 307 € 210 ₪ 762 NZ$ 359 kr 2208 $ 243
Dinners included (6): $ 241 £ 128 $ 220 € 150 ₪ 544 NZ$ 256 kr 1577 $ 173 Upgrade to 4-star hotels: on request*
*Hotel list will be based on availability. We can provide more details at time of your request.
Guided & Self Guided
Electric bike: $ 113 £ 60 $ 102 € 70 ₪ 254 NZ$ 120 kr 736 $ 81 Set of 2 rear panniers: $ 90 £ 48 $ 82 € 56 ₪ 203 NZ$ 96 kr 589 $ 65 Van support, applicable to both self-guided, scheduled guided dates, and special requests (to be shared among group members) for 6 days: $ 2688 £ 1421 $ 2,445 € 1670 ₪ 6059 NZ$ 2853 kr 17562 $ 1,930 Supplement for cycling guide, applicable to self-guided, and non scheduled guided requests (to be shared among group members) for 6 days: $ 2849 £ 1506 $ 2,591 € 1770 ₪ 6422 NZ$ 3023 kr 18613 $ 2,046 *
*Included in scheduled guided tour dates
Venice Airport to Muggia, up to 8 people: $ 636 £ 336 $ 578 € 395 ₪ 1433 NZ$ 675 kr 4154 $ 456 Trieste Airport to Muggia, up to 8 people: $ 290 £ 153 $ 263 € 180 ₪ 653 NZ$ 307 kr 1893 $ 208 Piran to the airport in Trieste, group transfer up to 8 people: $ 129 £ 68 $ 117 € 80 ₪ 290 NZ$ 137 kr 841 $ 92 * Piran to the airport in Venice, group transfer up to 8 people: $ 386 £ 204 $ 351 € 240 ₪ 871 NZ$ 410 kr 2524 $ 277 *
*price to be shared among participants
Skill Level — Moderate
This is a moderate self-guided or guided tour, that is approximately 215 km in length. The tour mainly uses an abandoned railway track known as Parenzana which is a comfortable and safe gravel or dirt path, away from vehicle traffic. However, as always, you will "share the road" when entering or exiting the towns/cities. The climb into Motovun is steep, but short. If you are not accustomed to riding on rails to trails type path or never venture off-road, do note that there are gravel paths and off-road sections that require good balance and good command of your bicycle.
This tour begins in Muggia in Italy and ends in Piran, Slovenia. Closest international airport to Muggia is the Trieste Friuli Venezia Giulia Airport (TRS) located 60 km away. Another option is the Venice Marco Polo Airport (VCE) located 169 km from Muggia.
Trieste Airport: Take a bus (bus line E 51) from Trieste Airport to Trieste Centrale train station. From the train station, you can take bus line 40 or 41 to Dommio. Then Bus line 47 to Muggia. Total travel time is approximately 2 1/2 hours to 3 hours depending on your departure times and transfer times.
Venice Airport: Take a bus (bus line 68) to Portogruaro Caorle. Train from here to Trieste Centrale train station and then bus number 20 to Muggia.
Upon arrival, airport transfers can be arranged to your first hotel for a supplement. See pricing. At the end of the tour, there is an included return transfer to Muggia from which you can access onward travel to your departure airport. One suggestion is that you fly to Trieste, overnight and explore this unique city, and then take a ferry to Muggia for the start of your tour.
The area experiences a warm and temperate climate with significant rainfall at different times of the year. Please check local conditions prior to your arrival.
Important to know
It is each traveler's responsibility to ensure that you are in compliance with the country or countries you plan to visit. This includes and is not limited to passport validity, visa requirements and acquisition, blank passport pages required for your destination (s), etc.
US citizens: A good website to research the requirements of the Schengen Agreement and entry into other countries is travel.state.gov.
Non-EU and EU residents: Please research the requirements of your country of residence for international travel and your destination country or countries.
*Important note: Please check on the European Travel Information and Authorization System (ETIAS) status as once implemented, this will be required to visit any of the 26 Schengen-member countries for tourism, business, medical, or transit. This is an additional check on security rather than a visa.
Country Entry Requirements
Due to the changing requirements for entry, it is imperative that you stay up to date on requirements set by the country/countries that you are visiting. Please visit our Travel Restrictions Tool page and the country/countries government webpage for this information.
This tour is run by Bike Good Place.
We value the strong relationship we have with our local partners and the services we provide.
We are not a broker.
We do not inflate tour prices.
We are simply travelers helping travelers.