Classic Cols of the Dolomites

Dolomites

  • Flexible itinerary to suit mixed ability groups with optional extras for those looking for a challenge.
  • Climb the infamous Giro d’Italia passes including Zoncolan, Motirolo and the Stelvio.
  • Ride the Maratona Cyclosportive route.
  • Comfortable and friendly 2 and 3* hotels with Italian cuisine geared to cyclists.
  • Excellent support from 2 customised support vans and 2 experienced, proactive guides focused on making your holiday the best it can be.

Days on the bike

6 days

...some of the best scenery I have ever experienced

M Noblet

Introduction

Made infamous by the Giro d’Italia, the Dolomites is one of the worlds greatest places to ride a bike where every road leads to another exquisite climb, each with their own character.  This road cycling holiday showcases the region perfectly, offering epic climbs, breathtaking scenery, delicious Italian food, and excellent support from 2 Marmot guides and vehicles.

We have designed the Classic Route so that, taken steadily, it is manageable and enjoyable for healthy cyclists regardless of experience in the mountains.  However, this holiday also offers a fantastic challenge to those wanting to push themselves further: each day there are ‘optional extras’ increasing the possible daily ascent to between 3000 and 4200m on the Challenge Route.

It is important to us that you book the correct holiday so do download and read the Trip Notes for all you need on how this holiday works, food, accommodation & travel…

Departure Dates & Prices

2017

Month
Departure
Amount
Single Room Supplement
Aug
26th Aug - 2nd Sep
£1420.00
Single Room Sup. £300.00
Sep
9th Sep - 16th Sep
£1420.00
Single Room Sup. £300.00

2018

Month
Departure
Amount
Single Room Supplement
Jun
2nd Jun - 9th Jun
£1420.00
Single Room Sup. £300.00
10th Jun - 17th Jun
£1420.00
Single Room Sup. £300.00
16th Jun - 23rd Jun
£1420.00
Single Room Sup. £300.00
Jul
14th Jul - 21st Jul
£1420.00
Single Room Sup. £300.00
Aug
25th Aug - 1st Sep
£1420.00
Single Room Sup. £300.00
Sep
2nd Sep - 9th Sep
£1420.00
Single Room Sup. £300.00

Map

Itinerary

Day 0: Travel Out

Included transfers from Venice Marco Polo Airport  to Tolmezzo.

Our pick up times are when we will be leaving the airport, all being well.  Please don’t book flights arriving later than suggested below (in brackets).

NB Standard Transfers below are for Sat – Sat trips.  Departures 11 – 18th June & 9 – 16th July are Sun – Sun trips with exceptional transfers – see below

Standard Pick up (Sat): Venice Airport (VCE) @ 12:40 (for flights arriving before 12:10).  Caters for direct flights from LGW (EJ, BA, Monarch), LHR (BA), London City (BA), Bristol (RA), Edinburgh (Jet 2), Manchester (EJ, Monarch, Jet 2), Birmingham (Monarch) and Dublin (AL).

11th June & 9th July Pick Up (Sun): Venice Airport (VCE) @ 17:30 (for flights arriving before 16:55).  Caters for direct flights from LGW (EJ, & BA), LHR (BA), and Luton (EJ).

Full travel advice (essential reading before booking your flights) can be found in our Trip Notes.

Meet your guides, assemble bikes and have a welcome briefing and great dinner.

Day 1: Tolmezzo to Vigo di Cadore

The 30km climb up Sella Ciampigotto (1790m) is a great introduction, starting off gently and ramping up to a few challenging sections in the middle. The Refugio at the top is worth a stop for re-fuelling before a fabulous descent to your hotel in the mountain hamlet of Vigo di Cadore.

The optional extra today warrants serious respect: Sella del Monte Zoncolan (1750m) is considered one of the toughest climbs in professional road cycling and with a fair proportion of its 10kms being over 18%.

Classic Route: Ciampigotto (70km, 1700m ascent)
Challenge Route: Zoncolan + Ciampigotto (89km, 2900m ascent)

Day 2: Vigo di Cadore to Cortina d'Ampezzo

Todays ride epitomises all that is beautiful about the Dolomites – towering limestone peaks, lush green meadows and big views. First up is the Passo di San Antonio (1475m) to warm up the legs, leading nicely into the Passo di Montecroce (1636m) from where you descend into the Dobbiaco valley, which feels distinctly Austrian. So, after a sneaky strudel you head South over the Col Sant’Angelo (1750m) to the fabulous Lago Misurina, ideal for a pause and some people watching!  The view of the iconic mountain of the Tre Cime di Lavaredo, may tempt you if you fancy cycling up the really rather steep road to the Rifugio Aronzo (2362m) or you may prefer to stick with eating ice cream! From the lake you enjoy the gentle gradients of the Eastern side of the Passo Tre Croci (1802m) before descending to our hotel in the centre of Cortina d’Ampezzo.

Naturally there is more cycling that can be done and nipping back up the Passo Tre Croci (1802m) from the West should take you into the early evening.

Classic Route: San Antonio + Montecroce + Sant’Angelo + Rifugio Aronzo + Tre Croci (86km, 1950m ascent)
Challenge Route: San Antonio + Montecroce + Sant’Angelo + Tre Croci (100km, 2700m ascent)

Day 3: Cortina to La Villa

You conquer the mighty Passo Giau (2237m) from the North today, one of THE classic climbs that the Dolomites has to offer. Apart from a (very) short section of downhill half way up, it is relatively gruelling! From the top you descend to the hamlet of Caprile from where you can deviate up the savage gradients of the Passo Fedaia (2057m) from the East or continue on the Classic route over the Passo de Campolongo (1873m) from the South. Regardless of your choice, La Villa is a great place to enjoy the atmosphere of the Dolomites and the Passo de Valparola (2198m) from the North is a good optional extra! You stay in La Villa for 2 nights.

Classic Route: Giau + Campolongo (66km, 2000m ascent)
Challenge Route: Giau + Fedaia + Campolongo (92km, 3050m ascent)

Day 4: Maratona Routes from La Villa

The Maratona dles Dolomiti is one of the worlds greatest cyclosportives and happens to start in La Villa. Today you get to take part in the Marmot Tours version of this great event, benefitting from the lack of other entrants and the fact that we allow you to stop for food & drink!
Have a look at the Maratona website (external) for full details of the event, history, maps, profiles etc. Below are the route choices open to you:

Selaronda Course: 55km with 1780m ascent: Passo di Campolongo (1875m) from the North, Passo Pordoi (2239m) from the East,  Passo di Sella (2244m) from the South and the Passo di Gardena (2121m) from the West.

Middle Course:106km with 3130m ascent: Passo di Campolongo (1875m) from the North, Passo Pordoi (2239m) from the East,  Passo di Sella (2244m) from the South and the Passo di Gardena (2121m) from the West, back up the North side of the Passo di Campolongo (1875m) and finishing off with the South side of the Passo di Valparola (2192m).

Maratona Course: 138km with 4230m ascent: Passo di Campolongo (1875m) from the North, Passo Pordoi (2239m) from the East,  Passo di Sella (2244m) from the South and the Passo di Gardena (2121m) from the West, back up the North side of the Passo di Campolongo (1875m). From here you take on the Western face of the Passo Giau (2237m) and finish off with the Passo di Valparola (2192m) from the East!

Day 5: Transfer to Stelvio and ride to Bormio

Take advantage of the 3hr transfer today to recover a little from yesterday! Before you know it you will be back on the bike and heading up the infamous Passo Dello Stelvio (2758m) from the East. Starting steeply, it continues steeply ending in the iconic switchbacks up to the pass. Celebrate your climb with a hot dog, a tacky gift and the descent all the way to our hotel in Bormio.
Now…relax by the hotel swimming pool or heading back up the Passo dello Stelvio (2758m) from the West? Decisions, decisions…!
Classic Route: Stelvio – East (50km, 1875m ascent)
Challenge Route: Stelvio – East + West  (94km, 3450m ascent)

Day 6: Ride from Bormio (Motirolo)

The western aproach to the Passo di Mortirolo (1851m) is a fitting end to our week in this amazing part of the world. As always there are options….the first being to enjoy the ‘slightly easer’ way up the Passo di Mortirolo, having lunch in the restaurant and then returning the same way up the valley to the hotel and swimming pool! Option 2 involves going up the side of the Passo di Mortirolo used by the Giro (the really steep one) and continuing over the pass before taking on the south side of the Passo di Gavia (2650m) which warrants quite a lot of respect in its own right! If the gradients of the Mortirolo are not your kind of thing then the climb up the Passo di Gavia from the North is bound to ‘tick the box’.
Whatever you do, tonight a celebration is in order!
Classic Route: Mortirolo (73km, 1700m ascent)
Challenge Route: Mortirolo + Gavia (110km, 3050m ascent)

Day 7: Transfer Back

We offer included transfers from Bormio to Milan Malpensa Airport only.  As there are several ‘Milan’Airports, please ensure you are booking flights from MALPENSA (MXP).

Our drop off times are when we will be arriving at the airport, all being well.  Please don’t book flights leaving earlier than suggested below (in brackets).  

Standard Drop off (Sat): Milan Malpensa Airport (MXP) @ 09:45 (for flights after 11:30).  This drop off captures direct flights to: LGW (EJ), LHR (BA), Bristol (BMI) and Edinburgh (EJ).  NB: We can drop at any MXP Terminal – we just need to know which, in advance.

18th June & 16th July Drop Off (Sun): Milan Malpensa Airport (MXP) @  09:45 (for flights after 11:30).  Caters for direct flights to LGW (EJ), LHR (BA), Bristol (BMI) and Luton (EJ).

Full travel advice (essential reading before booking your flights) can be found in our Trip Notes.