1 star rated Mantova to Venice or Venice to Mantova Bike Tour Reviews 1 to 2 of 2

 

  • Mantova to Venice or Venice to Mantova
    by POM 6 months ago     Permalink/Reply     Verified Reviewer

    My husband and I have been on 12 European bike/boat tours. We love to see the world this way, and we are usually 100% satisfied and happy when we finish a trip.
    In April we took the Ave Maria tour from Venice to Mantova. The first two days we biked on busy highways next to large lorries, semis, and garbage trucks, one of which almost wiped me out. We were shocked at having to ride on these highways because here is the company description of this trip on this website...
    "This cycling tour is largely along the flats of the Po plains, and the daily stages vary from 25 to 55 km – mostly on tarmac cycle paths along rivers and canals, or quiet country roads."
    The first two days of this trip were not on QUIET COUNTRY ROADS. They were on heavily traveled highways, and they were dangerous and certainly no fun! We will never travel with this company again because they were not truthful about the roads and
    paths. This was not a relaxing trip.
    On a good Read more… note...we had wonderful food on board. The chefs were amazing, and we looked forward to dinner every night.
    The Ave Maria advertises air conditioning. It is true they have it, but they don't turn it on very often, like it is off all night, every night. So most of us had to sleep with our doors wide open. Our rooms were like saunas, with no windows to open. For that reason, I would not recommend this boat, no matter what tour it was on.

    Boat: Ave Maria

    Countries: Italy

  • Mantova to Venice or Venice to Mantova
    by Marilyn Walker 7 months ago     Permalink/Reply     Verified Reviewer

    Well-Done
    We rode the entire week independently of the 30-person group, which is our preference. We requested beforehand, and received promptly, the GPX files for each stage, which we downloaded to our Garmin bicycle computers together with relevant open source street maps. We used the GPS directions as our primary navigation, and referred to the jigsaw puzzle of a tour map and the turn-by-turn directions in puzzling moments. All three references agreed very well, which is a great comfort. Tour Guide Michela provided us a separate walk-through every evening, clarifying points of confusion and explaining where the main group would be. Several times we met the group for special sightseeing tours. Otherwise, we did our own thing, took rest stops at our own discretion and ate the picnic lunch at places of our own choosing.

    The bicycles were better than expected. We chose the e-bikes and count the expense as worth the money. The batteries were strong enough to carry us through Read more… the 30-mile days with a couple of power dots left over. The seats were comfortable and the handlebars were especially comfortable to the wrist. The gears changed easily.

    Needs Improvement
    Plating the food before serving meant that a great deal was wasted. It would be more accommodating to serve family style, in bowls, so people can serve themselves what their appetite and inclination suggests.

    The itinerary was generally okay, but we had to meet the boat or bus by appointment several times, which meant waiting around for hours at a time. Other bike-and-boat tours we went on were better organized to find the boat at the end of the day's ride.

    Unsatisfactory
    The company is proud of their cooking, but the quality was badly degraded by the excessive use of salt. Even those people who were indifferent to their salt intake agreed it was "very salty". The taste of the food was ruined by the cook's excess. Upon tasting the first night's dinner, I required that they make special salt-free dinners for me. Two nights they "forgot" and spoiled the food. The cooks should learn to make their food unsalted and let the guests add that seasoning at table. It will improve the dining experience for everybody.

    The internet service was the worst I've seen since dial-up telephone modems. People wanted simple access to email and to post photos on social media, but were continuously thwarted by irregular service and severe deterioration, which seemed to be deliberate. For example, the night we were in Zelo, they announced there was no wi-fi at all because of the remote location, which was fishy to begin with. Next morning, we decided to stay on the boat for the day, which allowed me to observe that within minutes of the big group rolling away, they switched the wi-fi back on for the rest of the day, until that evening when it went to pieces again. There is no excuse for such poor service in this day and age.

    Boat: Ave Maria

    Countries: Italy

PWPC