The rise of rural cycling
Routes to rediscover the beauty of the Italian countryside

Few activities teach you to love nature and time spent outdoors like going to the bicycle. Sustainable medium par excellence, accessible to people of all ages and abilities, healthy for body and mind, cycling allows you to explore and appreciate an area even in its less touristy areas. Therefore, In recent years, so many sportsmen and fans have fallen in love with rural cycling, which is no longer made up only of off-road vehicles but also of real bike paths. Which, in the Italian context, are becoming increasingly popular.

These are. Staged routes to be traveled by bike or e-bike – for those who prefer assisted pedaling – which promote both sustainable mobility and rural tourism, and that allow people to immerse themselves in the local countryside to enjoy local agricultural production up close. Here are some of the bike paths in our regions.

Photo: Jarno Cobbaert

Tuscany

Tuscany, the Val d’Orcia, a UNESCO World Heritage Site., offers a spectacular landscape with rolling hills, wheat fields and vineyards. Here you can find scenic bicycle paths that cross the Tuscan countryside, offering breathtaking views of farms, olive groves and wine cellars. The perfect tour to enjoy magnificent scenery and exceptional food and wine while staying close to spa areas and mountain trails.

Alternatively, there is the Terre di Siena bike path, which allows you to explore the area of the same name through sunflower fields, vineyards and olive groves. Along the way, there are many farms and ranches that produce olive oil, wine and local products.

Photo: Val di Non Bike Path

Trentino-Alto Adige

Trentino-South Tyrol is famous for its orchards and vineyards. The bike paths that wind through the valleys of the Adige and Isarco rivers. allow you to explore the alpine region, passing through traditional farms and tasting local products, such as apples, wines and speck. In particular, we mention the Venosta Valley, which follows the course of the Adige River, and Valsugana, which follows the Brenta River through countryside, orchards and small villages, and reaching as far as Bassano del Grappa, Veneto; the Primiero cycle path, the route of which allows you to explore the villages in the area and appreciate the local crops, which consist of small fruits (raspberries, blueberries, blackberries, strawberries and currants), aromatic and medicinal plants; the Lakes trail, which follows the Sarca River and meets rows of vineyards and orchards; the track of the Val di Non, which flanks apple orchards and meadows.

Piedmont

Last year. in Piedmont, specifically in the Pinerolo area – territory that has repeatedly hosted the Giro d’Italia, famous by the name of “pink race” – are born the “pink cycle routes”. This is a system of trails, dedicated to female travelers but not only, that the Pinerolo and Valleys Tourist Consortium has designed to promote rural tourism and local traditions in the mountain area. The trails, which can be traveled by mountain bike and e-bike, pass through valleys, ridges, mule tracks and small villages, and count on the cooperation of several accommodation facilities, which offer services related to catering, wellness and sports.

Photo: Destra Po Bike Path

Emilia-Romagna

In Emilia-Romagna, a largely flat region and therefore morphologically very favorable for cycling, there is the Po River Cycle Path, which, as the name suggests, follows the longest river in Italy. On the way, we encounter wide expanses of cultivated fields, which offer the opportunity to discover the agricultural traditions of both Emilia and Romagna, both of which are famous for delicious products. In addition, on the outskirts of Reggio Emilia, which is particularly agricultural, the citizenry has initiated “Rural Connections”, a network of alternative cycle routes to official urban ones that allows both greater territorial connection and the enjoyment of a rural landscape that deserves to be enhanced.

Photo: viaverdedeitrabocchi.info

Countless trails to discover

But those described so far are just a few of the countless rural cycling trails that crisscross our regions: such as, for example, the Trabocchi Cycle Route in Abruzzo; the routes among the Envers orchards from Pollein in the Aosta Valley; the Adriatic Cycle Route, linking Marche, Abruzzo and Puglia; the Euganean Hills Cycle Route in Veneto; the Mantua-Sabbioneta Cycle Route in Lombardy; and the Lake Garda Cycle Route. All that’s left is to saddle our two-wheeled steeds and regret the wonder of the Italian countryside.