Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Biking Around the Veneto with Bike Riders

My husband says this was the trip of a lifetime. We'd been to Italy but we'd never biked through it, and I'd never been to the Veneto, land of the Renaissance architect Andrea Palladio, who built massive country homes for the Venetian elite. Bassano del Grappa, where the huge bronze statue of the WWI soldier forever faces the mountain passes where so many of the Alpini -- the mountain people of Italy -- died to protect the country. Valdobbiadene, where they make the light clean fizzy prosecco and the vines grow straight up the sheer white cliffs in perfect rows. We were not in great shape, and we rode up and down hills big and small, shadowed by sixty-something locals in full team kit and fancy road bikes, riding faster than we could imagine our legs would ever power us. "Sieti quasi arrivati!" they would shout at us as we struggled up yet another hill. You are almost there! They were totally taking the piss, and since we are both basically from New York, that made us feel right at home.

If you've ever thought about doing a bike tour of Italy, do it! Save up, train hard, and try Bike Riders La Dolce Vita in the Veneto. They move your bags from point to point. The hotels are 4 anf 5-star. The breakfasts are generous with cured meats, cheeses, Nutella, and eggs to order. And you will never forget the beauty of the place and the kindness of the people. Buon viaggi a tutti!

Bike Riders:

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