Dolomites Heritage Gravel Bike Adventure

Tracing Amelia Edwards' 1872 trails

Dates

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Nights

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Difficulty

Availability calendar

Description

In 1872, the British adventurer Amelia Edwards, accompanied by her friend Lucy, embarked on a journey through the Dolomites, chronicled in her book 'Untrodden Peaks and Unfrequented Valleys - A Midsummer Ramble in the Dolomites.' It was a time when traversing the Dolomites meant traveling by horse-drawn carriages and, in some sections, on the back of a mule.

With this holiday offer, we retrace their historic adventure, blending the allure of history and the splendor of nature. As you traverse breathtaking landscapes and unearth hidden treasures, you pay homage to an extraordinary legacy. Our trusty steeds for this journey? Bikes, our modern-day horses, and, in a way, our mules, as you'll need to put in some effort to propel them forward.

If you can't resist the curiosity before joining us on this incredible gravel bike packing journey through the Dolomites as Amelia Edwards did over a century ago, have a look at our tour video.

 

Length: approx. 8 nights

Level: °°°°°

Three program opzions are available:

  • FREE: You choose your arrival and return days in the Dolomites. Holimites will provide the gravel bike and bike packing bags. You'll receive a roadbook with all details and overnight stay suggestions. As the program suggests, you have the freedom to plan your daily stops at your own pace, covering the distance most comfortable for you. The key is to be back on time at the starting point.

  • ELEVATE: In addition to gravel bike and bike packing bag rental, Holimites handles advance bookings for budget accommodations for the different stages. Plus, you have the option of a "reserve baggage" transfer to ONE of the booked accommodations, choosing between the towns of Cortina or Canazei with a 36-hour notice.

  • EFFORTLESS: While the name may sound misleading, you'll still need to pedal during this adventure. "EFFORTLESS" in this context means that Holimites takes care of everything. You share your planned travel dates, and we handle all hotel bookings (budget) for each stage. You'll also receive a "reserve baggage" transfer to the booked accommodations in Cortina and Canazei.

  • +(plus): Add the plus to the ELEVATE+ and EFFORTLESS+ programs, and we'll ensure you stay in high-end accommodations with SPA in all locations. After these amazing rides, you can pamper yourself in style.

Program

Depending on the selected program, the journey can vary from 450 km (280 mi) to 500 km (310 mi) with a total altitude gain of up to 12,000 meters (40,000 feet) and is best completed in 6 to 7 days, depending on your preferred daily distance.

Here's a day-by-day program example with highlights for each stage:

Arrival in Alta Badia: Chek-in ando overnight stay in a hotel.

1st day:

You will pick up and set up your gravel bike and bikepacking bags, as well as prepare for the tour. In the afternoon you will be able to test the rented equipment by taking a ride. In addition, there will be a meeting with one of our Holimites experts, for a general briefing of the tour. This day is crucial to make sure everything is perfectly ready for your gravel bike adventure in the Dolomites.

Overnight stay in a hotel.

2nd day - stage #1: Alta Badia - Pieve di Cadore
approx. 70 km (45 miles) / +1100 m (3600 feet) elevation gain

Starting in Alta Badia, we follow the road to the Valparola Pass (2,168 m) and Falzarego Pass (2,105 m). These places are marked by the fighting of World War I, in fact this is where the border of the Austro-Hungarian Empire was located. We begin the descent to Cortina d'Ampezzo, a top destination for those who love mountains, sports and fun. Slightly downhill pedaling on a bike path we continue through the Cadore Valley with its characteristic villages. The best known is Tai di Cadore, hometown of the famous Titian.

Overnight stay in a hotel.

3rd day - stage #2: Pieve di Cadore - Cortina d'Ampezzo
approx. 75 km (47 miles) / +1500 m (5000 feet) e.g.

Today's stage is dedicated to the 3 famous mountain lakes: Auronzo, Misurina and Landro. We start the day by pedaling to Auronzo, the typical mountain town located on Lake Santa Caterina (Lake Auronzo). We continue on the gravel bike path that connects Auronzo to Misurina, and we arrive at the idyllic natural alpine lake, Misurina. Its waters reflect the southwest face of the Three Peaks of Lavaredo, the Cadini Mountains, Sorapìss, and Cristallo. With a great view of the Three Peaks of Lavaredo we continue to Lake Landro. After a brief stop on the lake shore the tour continues, cycling on the old train track to Cortina d'Ampezzo.

Overnight stay in a hotel.


4th day  - stage #3: Cortina d'Ampezzo - Primiero
approx. 90 km (56 miles) / +2100 m (6900 feet) e.g.

We leave Cortina d'Ampezzo behind us and surrounded by the magnificent peaks of the Tofane we climb to the Falzarego Pass. Now we descend through the Agordina Valley. Once we reach La Muda we take the Val Cordevole. A narrow and deep channel, full of spectacular waterfalls and interesting landscapes. Before reaching Fiera di Primiero, we will notice on our right Castel Pietra, located on an erratic boulder above the village of Tonadico.

Overnight stay in a hotel.

5th day - stage #4: Primiero - Canzei
approx. 70 km (45 miles) / +1900 m (6300 feet) e.g.

San Martino di Castrozza is a small alpine capital of ancient tradition and deserves a visit! After that we conquer Passo Rolle and finally begin the descent to Val di Fassa passing through the impressive Travignolo Gorge with its suspension bridge. The "Dolomites bike path" will take us to Canazei, where we will spend the night.

Overnight stay in a hotel.


6th day - stage #5: Canazei - Val Gardena
approx. 75 km (47 miles) / +2200 m (7500 feet) e.g.

Today's stage takes us back to the famous Dolomite passes. The first major goal will be the climb to Passo Fedaia, at the foot of the Marmolada glacier (2,057 m). After that we will continue to the Campolongo Pass and the Gardena Pass, so we will ride half of the famous cycling tour Sellaronda. We will end today's stage in Val Gardena, known for its artists and sculptors.

Overnight stay in a hotel.

7th day - stage #6: Val Gardena - Val Badia
approx. 90 km (56 miles) / +2600 m (8500 feet) e.g.

After a rich breakfast we hop on our bikes to explore the Alpe di Siusi, Europe's largest high plateau. With spectacular views of the Schlern mountain range, we continue toward the Funes Valley. Arriving at the picturesque village of San Pietro, we begin the ascent to Passo delle Erbe, which will be the last long climb of our tour. The effort is rewarded by the stunning view of Mount Putia, which will be our background on our way back to Badia, the starting point of our multi-day tour.

Overnight stay in a hotel.

8th day: 
Departure.

More info

You have the possibility to do this tour with one of our local tour experts, or, if you prefer, a self-guided tour.


ESCORTED TOURS 2024

  • on request

KEEP IT PRIVATE

Do you want to reserve one of our guided tours exclusively for you and your group of friends? Choose any tour that you like, contact us and remember to tell us how many people are in your group. We will send you a personalized quote based on the number of participants.

SELF-GUIDED TOURS

from mid/end of May to mid October

You can choose your preferred travel time. Send us your estimated dates of arrival/departure and we will send you a detailed offer.

ARRIVAL

Holimites is keen to help you plan and organize your arrival and departure.

Together we will find the best travel solution, and we will help you to book bus or train tickets, arrange the car rental, or book a private transfer service.

Here you will find more information about travel to the Dolomites.


 INCLUDED IN THE PRICE

  • Gravel bike and bikepacking bags rental
  • Detailed roadbook
  • Reservations in the hotels, including accommodation and breakfast (ELEVATE and EFFORTLESS opzions only)
  • Briefing with a Holimites tour expert
  • Reserve baggage transfer (according to the chosen option)
  • All taxes
  • Special Holimites Souvenir

INCLUDED DURING THE ESCORTED TOURS

  • All the services mentioned under “Included in the price”
  • Local tour escort at your disposal during the tour
  • The roadbooks is not included during the escorted tours

NOT INCLUDED IN THE PRICE

  • Dinners and lunches, beverages and anything not mentioned under "Included in the price"
  • Cancellation insurance

Frequently asked questions (FAQ)

Do I need to be trained?

Yes, you must have a good cycling training base to embark on this journey. The more trained you are, the more enjoyable the experience will be. Training in cycling is essential as the elevation in the Dolomites makes a significant difference.

 

Can I choose a shorter program?

Amelia Edwards was a genius in planning this trip, and there are always shortcuts and detours available to shorten the program if necessary. The full program can also be split into three parts: Eastern Dolomites, Southern Dolomites, and Western Dolomites.


What is the reserve baggage?

The "reserve baggage" comes in handy if you encounter unexpected afternoon thunderstorms during the summer. We provide a bag on the briefing day where you can pack additional reserve clothing. This bag will be delivered to your planned accommodations in Cortina and Canazei (EFFORTLESS program) or in one of the two towns with a 36-hour notice (ELEVATE program).

 

What type of bikepacking bags do you rent?

We provide a comprehensive set of bike packing bags for your journey, ensuring you have all the necessary storage. You'll receive a handlebar bag, a top tube bag, a small-sized frame pack bag, and a 10-liter seat-pack bag, all designed to accommodate your gear and essentials while keeping your bike packing adventure organized and efficient. These bags are carefully selected to enhance your experience and make your journey through the Dolomites as convenient as possible.