Italy : Piedmont

Gastronomic Barolo Cycling

Trip code: C08PD 4.8 (82 reviews)

Self-guided cycling

8 nights,
hotel-to-hotel

Level: 2+
Moderate plus

18.0Kg CO2e

Headwater
Navigation App

Optional
e-bike hire

SUMMARY

  • Beautifully scenic cycling in the UNESCO vineyards of Piedmont
  • Luxury hotels in stunning locations - most with with panoramic pools
  • A mecca for foodies: atmospheric enoteche, gourmet cuisine, outstanding wines
  • Sun-drenched hamlets and stunning, far-reaching views
  • Historic castles, frescoed chapels, pretty medieval villages

WHAT'S INCLUDED?

  • 8 nights accommodation
  • All buffet breakfasts and 4 gastronomic evening meals
  • Bike fitting and briefing at the start of your holiday
  • Headwater navigation app
  • Bike hire included
  • Luggage transfers between hotels

TRIP DESCRIPTION

Tucked away in northern Italy, Piedmont is a region brimming with vineyard covered, softly rolling hills, sun-drenched hamlets, world-class wines and incredible hotels.

Your cycling holiday is varied and mainly follows quiet, traffic-free country roads. Starting in the lush hazelnut hills, you'll wind through terraces of swaying vines, verdant pine forests and rippling rivers to discover pretty hilltop hamlets and ancient castles. The region boasts an incredible array of fine wine towns, including Barbaresco and Barolo, both ideal lunch stops on your cycling days or free days. Other highlights include Alba's crimson, cobbled streets (where you can sample the local chocolate), the expansive views as you freewheel out of Mango, and strolling amongst the tangle of streets and geranium-decked houses of Monforte d'Alba's wonderful centre.

The hotels we've chosen are, quite simply, fabulous! In Benevello your 4 star hotel is a stunningly restored 19th century family villa; in Neive you're the guest of Patrizia at her 12-room country house with a breathtaking panoramic pool and in Monforte d'Alba private tastings can be organised in the hotel's vast wine cellar.

Terrain

Routes are mainly on asphalt with 6% on an unpaved surface. Routes follow quiet, secondary roads; there are frequent ascents and descents, some of which are long with steep sections.

Read more about this holiday in Meet the Expert.

READ MORE

DAY-BY-DAY ITINERARY

 

Day 1: Arrive at Benevello

There's time to relax by the pool before your first gastronomic dinner of the week in Villa d'Amelia's superb restaurant (included).

You stay at Relais Villa d’Amelia.

hotel details



Relais Villa d’Amelia, Benevello

HOTEL WEBSITE      TRIP ADVISOR

Shops
Mastercard
AmEx
Pool
Hairdryer
WiFi
TV
Minibar
Aircon
Safe


The Relais Villa d'Amelia is a luxuriously restored 19th century family villa (and a member of the 'Small Luxury Hotels of the World'), just outside the Alta Langa village of Benevello.

The Villa d'Amelia has 37 ensuite rooms including three suites (one of which is located within the old chapel!) decorated in a modern style with neutral paints and dark leather and beech furnishings.

The hotel also boasts a central courtyard with sofas and chairs for relaxing outside, and a stunning lounge area complete with a grand piano!

Facilities at the hotel include a sauna, jacuzzi, Turkish bath, and lovely outdoor swimming pool.

Room upgrades: Deluxe Room, Junior Suite or Suite.
Deluxe rooms - offer views onto the surrounding hills; some (not all) of the deluxe rooms have a 4 poster bed and are a little larger. Junior Suites - much larger than the other room types. You will also benefit from a sitting area, with sofa, dressing gowns and larger bathrooms. There are just 2 junior suites - one overlooking the courtyard and the overlooking the hills. Please note that as these rooms have 4 poster beds, only double rooms are available.

Extra nights: Please contact us for details.

Day 2: Benevello to Neive (35km/21.7mi)

Visit the lovely Mango, with it's beautiful castle rich in WW2 history, then continue to Santo Stefano Belbo, the birthplace of one of Italy's greatest writers. On the way to Neive you'll pass the famous Moscato vineyards, then you'll spend two nights at the Hotel Villa Lauri, with a choice of restaurants within easy walking distance of the hotel.

elevation

You stay at Hotel Villa Lauri.

hotel details



Hotel Villa Lauri, Neive

HOTEL WEBSITE      TRIP ADVISOR

Shops
Market
Bank
Cash machine
Mastercard
AmEx
Pool
Hairdryer
WiFi
TV
Minibar
Aircon


The small yet cosy, family run Hotel Villa Lauri is situated on the fringes of the old walled town of Neive. Dating back to the 1800s, the villa has a panoramic terrace and pool with sweeping views over the Langhe hills and vineyards.

Each of the 12 rooms is individually decorated in bright colours and all feature ensuite bathrooms.

Room upgrades: Executive Room, Superior Room or Junior suite.
Superior rooms are south facing, larger and have a terrace. The junior suites are larger and come with a large terrace and a view over the Langhe hills.

Day 3: At Neive (9km/5.6mi)

Officially one of Italy's prettiest villages, you can wander Neive's cobbled streets that are lined with brightly-coloured flower boxes. After a morning spent by the panoramic pool, cycle or take a public bus to nearby Barbaresco for lunch and cheese-tasting in the piazza. Enjoy some wine in the enoteca or head across to the spumante capital of Asti, with its quaint cobbled centre.

elevation

You stay at Hotel Villa Lauri.

hotel details



Hotel Villa Lauri, Neive

HOTEL WEBSITE      TRIP ADVISOR

Shops
Market
Bank
Cash machine
Mastercard
AmEx
Pool
Hairdryer
WiFi
TV
Minibar
Aircon


The small yet cosy, family run Hotel Villa Lauri is situated on the fringes of the old walled town of Neive. Dating back to the 1800s, the villa has a panoramic terrace and pool with sweeping views over the Langhe hills and vineyards.

Each of the 12 rooms is individually decorated in bright colours and all feature ensuite bathrooms.

Room upgrades: Executive Room, Superior Room or Junior suite.
Superior rooms are south facing, larger and have a terrace. The junior suites are larger and come with a large terrace and a view over the Langhe hills.

Day 4: Neive to Fontanafredda (36km/22.4mi)

Cycle through the vineyards to Castagnole delle Lanze before exploring the cobbled streets and bustling piazze of chocolate perfumed Alba, the home of Ferrero Rocher. Continue to Grinzane Cavour with its impressively panoramic castle before ending the day in Fontanafredda (dinner included).

elevation

You stay at Hotel le Case dei Conti Mirafiore.

hotel details



Hotel le Case dei Conti Mirafiore, Fontanafredda

HOTEL WEBSITE      TRIP ADVISOR

Mastercard
Visa
AmEx
Hairdryer
WiFi
TV
Minibar
Aircon
Safe


Nestled amongst verdant vineyards, the Hotel le Case dei Conti Mirafiore is a wine estate come hamlet, which was founded by the son of Italy's first king. It was originally home to all the 250 people who worked on the estate and many of the buildings still house the staff who work on the vines and in the hotel. Accommodation is over 2 buildings, the Forestiera delle Vigne, where the standard rooms are housed, and the Vigna Magica building, where you'll find the upgraded rooms.

The hotel has 2 restaurants. the Guido Ristorante and the Osteria Disguido.

There are guided tours of the historic wine cellars here as well as tastings.

Day 5: At Fontanafredda (17km/10.6mi)

Enjoy wine tasting in the historic wine cellars at your hotel, once owned by Italian royalty, or head to the atmospheric wine village of Serralunga d'Alba. For the best views of the region, cycle to La Morra, 'Balcony of the Langhe', spread out along a panoramic ridge above the vineyards. Dinner is included tonight.

elevation

You stay at Hotel le Case dei Conti Mirafiore.

hotel details



Hotel le Case dei Conti Mirafiore, Fontanafredda

HOTEL WEBSITE      TRIP ADVISOR

Mastercard
Visa
AmEx
Hairdryer
WiFi
TV
Minibar
Aircon
Safe


Nestled amongst verdant vineyards, the Hotel le Case dei Conti Mirafiore is a wine estate come hamlet, which was founded by the son of Italy's first king. It was originally home to all the 250 people who worked on the estate and many of the buildings still house the staff who work on the vines and in the hotel. Accommodation is over 2 buildings, the Forestiera delle Vigne, where the standard rooms are housed, and the Vigna Magica building, where you'll find the upgraded rooms.

The hotel has 2 restaurants. the Guido Ristorante and the Osteria Disguido.

There are guided tours of the historic wine cellars here as well as tastings.

Day 6: Fontanafredda to Monforte d'Alba (26km/16.2mi)

Cycle to Barolo, an ochre-hued village perched above its world-famous vineyards, where you can admire Marchesi Falletti's 11th century castle. Then to Monforte d'Alba and Villa Beccaris, where you'll spend two nights. There are plenty of restaurants in the village to choose from for your mouthwatering evening meal.

elevation

You stay at Villa Beccaris or La Ribezza.

hotel details



Villa Beccaris, Monforte d'Alba

HOTEL WEBSITE      TRIP ADVISOR

Shops
Market
Bank
Mastercard
AmEx
Pool
Hairdryer
WiFi
TV
Minibar
Aircon
Tea/coffee


Hotel Villa Beccaris is a gorgeous 18th century villa overlooking the beautiful town of Monforte d'Alba.

The Villa has 23 rooms, which are divided into categories; Headwater guests will be allocated classic rooms. All rooms, however, are beautifully furnished in an individual, traditional style often with antique furniture but with modern touches.

The Villa is located within beautiful gardens and has a panoramic swimming pool which overlooks the honey-coloured town, surrounding countryside and mountains beyond.

The hotel also boasts several elegant sitting rooms, its own enoteca and a very charming bar.

La Ribezza, Monforte d'Alba

HOTEL WEBSITE      TRIP ADVISOR

Pool
WiFi
TV
Aircon
Safe
Tea/coffee


As an alternative to Villa Beccaris, stays can be taken at ***** Hotel la Ribezza.

Opened in 2018, la Ribezza is a stylish, modern boutique hotel, located overlooking the medieval town of Monforte with beautiful views of the surrounding hills and vineyards.

Rooms are comfortable and elegantly styled in a mix of modern and classical design.

Relax by the pool and enjoy the stunning views or soak up the ambience and the impeccable service in the exquisitely designed restaurant.

Room upgrades: Deluxe Auditorium, Luxury, Executive Attic

Day 7: At Monforte d'Alba (19km/11.8mi)

Monforte is a lively medieval town with attractive buildings grouped around the cobbled piazza; or visit Dogliani, famous for Dolcetto wine production and dominated by its lovely church.

elevation

You stay at Villa Beccaris or La Ribezza.

hotel details



Villa Beccaris, Monforte d'Alba

HOTEL WEBSITE      TRIP ADVISOR

Shops
Market
Bank
Mastercard
AmEx
Pool
Hairdryer
WiFi
TV
Minibar
Aircon
Tea/coffee


Hotel Villa Beccaris is a gorgeous 18th century villa overlooking the beautiful town of Monforte d'Alba.

The Villa has 23 rooms, which are divided into categories; Headwater guests will be allocated classic rooms. All rooms, however, are beautifully furnished in an individual, traditional style often with antique furniture but with modern touches.

The Villa is located within beautiful gardens and has a panoramic swimming pool which overlooks the honey-coloured town, surrounding countryside and mountains beyond.

The hotel also boasts several elegant sitting rooms, its own enoteca and a very charming bar.

La Ribezza, Monforte d'Alba

HOTEL WEBSITE      TRIP ADVISOR

Pool
WiFi
TV
Aircon
Safe
Tea/coffee


As an alternative to Villa Beccaris, stays can be taken at ***** Hotel la Ribezza.

Opened in 2018, la Ribezza is a stylish, modern boutique hotel, located overlooking the medieval town of Monforte with beautiful views of the surrounding hills and vineyards.

Rooms are comfortable and elegantly styled in a mix of modern and classical design.

Relax by the pool and enjoy the stunning views or soak up the ambience and the impeccable service in the exquisitely designed restaurant.

Room upgrades: Deluxe Auditorium, Luxury, Executive Attic

Day 8: Monforte d'Alba to Benevello (35km/21.7mi)

A steady climb takes you to a stunning panoramic ridge. From here, cycle to Serravalle Langhe, a great lunch spot with belvedere views before returning to your country hotel at Benevello, with dinner included in the hotel's wonderful restaurant.

elevation

You stay at Relais Villa d’Amelia.

hotel details



Relais Villa d’Amelia, Benevello

HOTEL WEBSITE      TRIP ADVISOR

Shops
Mastercard
AmEx
Pool
Hairdryer
WiFi
TV
Minibar
Aircon
Safe


The Relais Villa d'Amelia is a luxuriously restored 19th century family villa (and a member of the 'Small Luxury Hotels of the World'), just outside the Alta Langa village of Benevello.

The Villa d'Amelia has 37 ensuite rooms including three suites (one of which is located within the old chapel!) decorated in a modern style with neutral paints and dark leather and beech furnishings.

The hotel also boasts a central courtyard with sofas and chairs for relaxing outside, and a stunning lounge area complete with a grand piano!

Facilities at the hotel include a sauna, jacuzzi, Turkish bath, and lovely outdoor swimming pool.

Room upgrades: Deluxe Room, Junior Suite or Suite.
Deluxe rooms - offer views onto the surrounding hills; some (not all) of the deluxe rooms have a 4 poster bed and are a little larger. Junior Suites - much larger than the other room types. You will also benefit from a sitting area, with sofa, dressing gowns and larger bathrooms. There are just 2 junior suites - one overlooking the courtyard and the overlooking the hills. Please note that as these rooms have 4 poster beds, only double rooms are available.

Extra nights: Please contact us for details.

Day 9: Leave Benevello

Extending your holiday

If you'd like to extend your trip with extra hotel nights we recommend: Andreola Central Hotel, Milan; Grand Hotel Sitea, Turin.

hotel details



Andreola Central Hotel, Milan

HOTEL WEBSITE      TRIP ADVISOR

Shops
Bank
Cash machine
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Hairdryer
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TV
Minibar
Aircon
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The Andreola Hotel in Milan is ideally located for a stopover hotel. It is only 300m from the central station, from where shuttle buses run to Malpensa and Linate airports. The building is in the financial district - it is around a 20 minute walk into the renowned cathedral. The early 1900s building is more impressive inside than out - the marble columns, floors and gilt furniture in the lobby makes the interior very plush and elegant, and the 84 bedrooms are decorated with rich fabrics, paintings and marble en suite bathrooms.

Please contact us for prices.



Grand Hotel Sitea, Turin

HOTEL WEBSITE      TRIP ADVISOR

Shops
Bank
Cash machine
Mastercard
AmEx
Hairdryer
WiFi
TV
Minibar
Aircon
Safe


Boasting a prime location in Turin's stunning centro storico, just a short walk from Piazza Castello, the Grand Hotel Sitea certainly lives up to its name, with its elegant entrance hall and opulent yet traditional sitting rooms. Bedrooms are similarly stylish, with marble ensuite bathrooms and all the comforts you'd expect from a 4 star hotel.

The Hotel Sitea has been accommodating travellers for over 90 years and perfectly blends the modern with the traditional. Previous guests at the hotel include the musician, Louis Armstrong.

Unusually for a city centre hotel, the Sitea also benefits from a quiet garden - perfect for a relaxing drink after a day's sightseeing.

CHOOSE A DEPARTURE DATE

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These tour only prices are based on two people sharing. Single supplement from £560.

These flight inclusive prices are based on two people sharing. Single supplement from £560.

OPTIONAL UPGRADES
  • Flights from Heathrow to Milan Malpensa with British Airways
  • Other flights, including regional departures
  • Alternative flights, including regional departures
  • Business/club/first class fares
  • Electric bikes
  • Room upgrades and extra nights at selected hotels
TRAVEL DETAILS

Our aim is to provide holidays that are unbeatable for choice and flexibility. We've listed our most popular travel options below, however you aren't limited to these - we can tailor-make virtually any holiday to suit.

Air prices include our standard flights/transfers
Out: British Airways Heathrow to Milan Malpensa then transfer to hotel 2 hours 10 minutes Return: Transfer to airport 2 hours 10 minutes British Airways Milan Malpensa to Heathrow

Business/club/first class seats are available on request.

Alternative Air Travel
Alternative flights, onward rail to your holiday area, and connecting private transfers can be arranged from most UK airports. If you would like to use one of the many 'low cost' airlines, we can book these on your behalf. We can also book UK shuttles to connect with your onward flight, please call for details and prices.

Self drive
We can arrange various channel crossings for you. Please call for details and prices.

Alternative transfers
If you require alternative transfers (because you will be arriving at a different time to our standard flights), then we can usually arrange these for you (there may be an additional charge).

To find out more about the travel options available call our sales team on 01606 720199, use our live webchat (we open again 9am Monday) or email sales@headwater.com

Should you require overnight airport accommodation, airport parking or even a uniformed chauffeur to take your car from your departure terminal and park it for you, we can arrange this for you through Holiday Extras. You can book airport parking, airport hotels and executive lounges through their website or contact us for further details. Early booking is recommended to obtain the best availability and prices.

REVIEWS

Great company with whom we have travelled previously and will do so again.Jo Chaplin very helpful and local agent in Piedmont excellent

Kym Bannister, 22 May 2024

 

A great trip

Jennifer Clark, 22 May 2024

 

I have scored the experience highly. A couple of issues which may be down to the timing of the holiday. 1) The weather was mixed - could have been better. 2) I was the only person booked for the week and as I was travelling alone that was a bit of a disappointment. - but overall I still enjoyed the holiday.

John Walley, 12 May 2024

 

For an older man e-cycling solo this holiday was perfect. I was fortunate to have the amazing rolling vineyards and hazelnut groves of Piedmont in beautiful autumnal sunshine all week. Routed by the Headwater app for leisurely rides on mainly quiet small roads and occasional track was pretty stress free. Passing through iconic wine villages and towns to stop for a morning coffee and then onwards to lunch with possible arranged winery visits and tastings was right up my street. The small hotels were spot on (especially Villa D’Amelia) and the arranged restaurant food varied from very good to exceptional. Although relatively expensive, you certainly get a high quality holiday. Fantastico 🇮🇹.



A special mention to Fabrizio (your man in Piedmont). When my bike chain broke (luckily near to one of the hotels), he was on hand to provide a replacement bike ‘pronto’ the same evening. As the replacement e-bike frame was too small for me he willingly changed it back again to the repaired original bike the following evening, consequently minimising the whole inconvenience. A pretty good show I think. Please pass on my thanks for his efforts in not letting this adversely affect the holiday.

Ivan Myatt, 28 Sep 2023

 

We were lucky enough to enjoy seven straight days of beautiful cycling in the sunny hills. Each route was really well thought out, challenging but immensely rewarding. We cycled on the standard bikes which we found to be very comfortable with good gears for the long climbs. We are both active fit people but not regular cyclists and we found the routes very manageable. We particularly appreciated being able to choose the optional longer routes.

Peter Bamford, 27 Sep 2023

 

A beautiful part of Italy which is well worth exploring and enjoying.

Marjorie Rogers, 12 Sep 2023

 

Thoroughly enjoyed the holiday. More info possibly about booking wine tours would be good although hotels happy to do it for you. Villa d'Amelia fell over backwards to help us when our flight was re-routed. I wrote and thanked them. Just one other thing about bikes - you need a 'walk' mode in case you have problem going up the very steep hills. Pushing an e bike with no walk mode is exhausting.

Susan Mcnaught, 9 Sep 2023

 

A thoroughly enjoyable holiday. Scenery superb and the accommodation was the best we had experienced on a Headwater holiday. Food was excellent, the only disappointment was the electric bikes as these were so much heavier than we are used to. It was good to have the extra nights in Milan to see all the sights. It would have been great if Headwater had prebooked a tour of the wine cellar at Fontannafreda as there were no tours available during our time there and your agent had highly recommended this.

Martin Browne, 7 Sep 2023

 

Always available to help if there is a problem

Product is a great itinerary

Duncan Yellen, 25 Aug 2023

 

Had a really lovely holiday and would book again. Disappointed with one hotel as mentioned and pick up on arrival everything else was great.

Angela Halstead, 9 Aug 2023

 

Very good, as before.

Tom Canham, 13 Jun 2023

 

The whole experience was excellent, from dealing with the travel agent to the brilliant staff at the hotels. The route was very good and the app provided all the information I required. The highlight of the holiday was definitely the tasting menu on the last night.

CROSS, 8 Jun 2023

 

This is a wonderful holiday but it is much more than grade 2. May of the hills are long and some are very steep (14% gradient). Only extremely fit cyclists should even consider using a road bicycle. Some of the tracks are rough and our UK bikes would have shredded tyres, and inadequate grip. After rain, these tracks can be quite muddy.

The catering is outstanding, especially at Villa d’Amelia, where the gastronomic menu is worthy of at least one (and probably two) Michelin stars.

There is sufficient daily exercise to justify the calorie intake

SHUTTLEWORTH, 7 Jun 2023

 

We really enjoyed the Barola wine trip. The hotels and the service was excellent. The countryside was beautiful, similar to Tuscany and no crowds. The hilltop villages were so pretty and each hotel was so comfortable and welcoming.I like some previous reviewers recommend an e bike unless you are a seasoned biker. Some of the hills were grueling.



For headwater. Recommend your guests to book ahead for the wine tours in Fontanafredda. We got there and they were all booked up which was disappointing.



Dr Mounsey, 11 Sep 2022

 

Wonderful (first time) leisurely biking high class gastronomic wine tour with beautiful mountain vistas every day

Mr Hammond, 1 Sep 2022

 

We loved our trip! and we are already planning more bike trips in 2023!! Some disappointments. 1. The boys’ bikes seemed to be much older than for the girls, with batteries that would hardly last a day, so that Fabrizio ended up replacing one of the batteries. Their power for turbo was often not enough for the steeper hills (and we all have bikes in Canada so we are used to pedal assist on hills). The girls’ bikes were excellent. 2. The app was great, except outdated for some places, which might have been a covid related issue. It would be handy for the app to include where free charging stations are, as it seemed that quite a few villages had them, and we definitely needed these at times with the battery issues. 3. We were disappointed with Fontanafredda, who did not seem to know how to deal with bikes, such that one of the bikes was plugged in near the lobby. 4. The other hotels were excellent in handling the bikes, and just lovely. Thanks for such a great trip!

Mr Clarke, 1 Sep 2022

 

What a glorious holiday! The cycling routes; the quality of the bikes; the standard of the hotels; the locations; the food - everything was perfect! One of our best ever holidays. Hard to find any ways this holiday could be improved.

Ms Forster, 31 Aug 2022

 

Amazing holiday but beware the gradient guide can be deceptive! Barolo Gastronomic is hilly - electric bike recommended and we are active fit cyclists !

Mr Freer, 24 Aug 2022

 

Fabulous countryside, interesting villages, great wines.

Mr Shepley, 5 Aug 2022

 

Wonderful locations cycling through the Piedmont countryside with its vineyards, Hazel groves and rolling hills. On clear days we could see the French Alps in the West and the Italian Alps to the East. Great choice of hotels, with warm welcomes after a hard day’s cycling. Always delicious meals and a great choice of wines. E bikes are essential unless you are strong cyclists. These bikes enabled us to conquer the steepest climbs. Relatively expensive but good value for money; highly recommended.

Mr TOWNSON, 21 Jun 2022

 

A good cycling break with a wide variety of good eating. Spectacular scenery. Be prepared for some serious hill climbs if you don't use an electric bike, gradients up to 13%, but manageable for those who are used to it. The mobile phone based navigation leaves a bit to be desired: difficult to hear in traffic, difficult to see if you need reading glasses: and a few quirks. A back-up paper map is useful or possibly a Garmin type GPS works better. If you like cycling this is a great holiday: if you are an occasional cyclist it would be fair to say that some routes take the long and occasionally tortuous way round between places which are quite close to each other. A few sections use quite rough tracks: if you aren't confident riding over large pebbles and avoiding big potholes, take care! A great selection of wineries to visit, and if you are tempted to buy, many will ship it for you.

Mr Berrey, 22 Sep 2019

 

Joanne Chaplin, our contact at Headwater was excellent, as were Phaedra and Paul our reps in Piedmont. The e-bikes were amazing - they made the whole experience a real pleasure and enabled our group of different ages and abilities to enjoy the cycling equally. Thank you for a really happy and memorable holiday.

Mrs Harbach, 2 Sep 2019

 

Great value holiday with very good back up service. Cycling offers a very good opportunity to see an area and experience it's culture while at the same time not feeling guilty for eating and drinking too much.

Piedmont is the next big thing in international tourism with its stunning countryside and world class restaurants so get in before it takes off.

Mr Avery, 18 Jul 2019

 

You notice lots of detail when exploring a region by cycling at a gentle pace. You can stop whenever you want to and explore more or speak with people along the way. GPS is a must and saves so much time. The standard of hotel accommodation and cuisine at the end of each day's cycle is a delight. You feel yourself getting fitter and fitter with each day of your holiday. We enjoyed the Gastronomic Barolo Cycling so much two years ago that we returned this year and were not disappointed. We especially love Hotel Villa d'Amelia near Benevello.

Mr Lawson, 8 Jul 2019

 

We love the sporting holiday as a family. It brings us all close together. The Barolo experience was relatively difficult and at times the weather was rather hot. The E bikes made it more enjoyable for the 2 of us who are a bit older. The hotels and restaurants were all unique and enjoyable.

Mr Dunn, 30 Jun 2019

 

This was our honeymoon trip, and I can safely say overall it was a brilliant experience. The hotels were excellent, the food and restaurants selected gave us a good variety and experience of what that part of Italy had to offer. Transfers and bag drops worked very well, and the support team were readily available for queries and help when needed.

We feel more information should have been available about the longer routes, and better advice about suitability of gearing and types of bikes needed in advance of the trip (we wanted to take our own bikes). The longer optional routes have some very steep sections and even a seasoned club rider would need gearing lower than is standard on most road bikes.

Mrs Lidington, 16 Jun 2019

 

The holiday was excellent. The hotels and food was great, we did flag one restaurant that needs to be changed. Our only negative point would be that the steepness of the routes were not reflective of the grade of holiday and we found this quite unpleasant. I think you need to offer e-bikes only! We made it though and the sense of achievement I guess is greater!

Mr Mills, 6 Jun 2019

 

We wouldn't have done this type of holiday if it hadn't been packaged by some one else. It felt like good value for money. I can't think of anything that I would have wanted to be different.

Mr Price, 31 May 2019

 

The holiday was about as good as it gets, especially the accommodation and food, which was often provided in nearby restaurants. The only worrying glitch was a vey late cancellation of our flight from Gatwick to Turin. Morgan at Headwater dealt with this efficiently and quickly arranged an alternative flight from London City to Milan.

Mr Mcgeoch, 21 May 2019

 

Stunning scenery, with views you cannot capture on camera. Electric bikes essential unless you are extremely fit and able to cycle up hills easily.

The hotels and locations are very good, the optional riding days are also worth doing.

All but one of the restaurants was very good with lovely food and good service.

The reps,Phaedra and Paul were very helpful and friendly.

This a lovely part of rural northern Italy, highly recommend.

Mrs Shann, 15 Apr 2019

 

This is our second holiday with Headwater and both have been excellent. We enjoyed cycling Piedmond and the high standard of accommodation and food that was on offer. The two nights spent in every stop over is a great format giving one time to explore the area. Some of the cycling was challenging which we expected but were able to complete it successfully. However we feel the grading could possibly be reviewed and changed to a 2.5 We went in the third week of September and the weather was wonderful. Thanks to Headwater and also to Greg and Laura for all their advice and information on each village that we stayed in. Jim/Anne Sandy/Janet

Mr Dayton, 20 Sep 2018

 

We thoroughly enjoyed our gourmet cycling holiday in Piedmont. Everything was well organised. The scenery, the food and wine were all excellent. The Hotels were all different and very comfortable . All the hotels and meals were of a high standard. We were very glad that we had electric bilkes. We would have struggled on the very challenging hills in the beautiful weather, and would not have enjoyed our holiday so well. Unless very young or fit I would recommend e bikes. You will still have plenty exercise to earn your dinner! Although quite an expensive holiday it was good value for money.

Mrs Craig, 20 Sep 2018

 

A wonderful adventure. Challenging cycling through stunningly beautiful countryside. Ending each day with fantastic food and wine in very comfortable hotels.

Mrs Smith, 8 Sep 2018

 

Excellent routes and good hotels, good reps

Ms Velarde, 6 Sep 2018

 

Avoid taking this holiday in August. We loved the holiday but it was too hot.

Brown, 1 Aug 2018

 

This is our third holiday with Headwater and we very much enjoyed our experience. The Barolo Gastronomic cycling trip in Piedmont was excellent with amazing countryside.

Mr Payne, 2 Jun 2018

 

Excellent holiday. Very helpful and friendly Headwater staff. Be honest with yourself with regards your fitness for long uphill rides

Mr Liddell, 15 May 2018

 

Great food, beautiful scenery, cycling level wrong it is tough, some routes not good. not enough choice, but overall enjoyable holiday.

Mr Salter, 13 May 2018

 

Well organised, reps were lovely and very helpful.

Mrs Graham, 13 May 2018

 

We have enjoyed at least 10 Headwater holidays since our first ride in the Loire in 2002, and the Gastronomic Barolo would have to be one of the best.



We have enjoyed at least 10 Headwater holidays since our first time cycling in the Loire and as we have travelled all the way from Perth in Australia, we obviously love our Headwater experiences. Gastronomic Barolo Cycling is probably the best in terms of countryside, scenery, accommodation, fantastic cuisine and helpful rep. But I suggest that grading of 2 bike is misleading as countryside is very hilly indeed. Thank goodness that my husband and I who are fit but 70 and 72 chose ebikes! Another couple in their late 60s struggled each day with the steep terrain and had to spend much time pushing their bikes. The weather was perfect for riding but it would have been very difficult if the temperatures were high. Another couple on the ride who are serious cyclists who ride regularly found some sections very difficult. Overall it was a great ride for us as it showed how enjoyable ebikes can be as we still got plenty of exercise to justify eating the amazing 4 course meals; enjoying the famous local wines and enjoying the company of fellow Headwater travellers.

Mrs O'Hare, 8 Sep 2017

 

A truly gastronomic experience! An excellent introduction to the food, wines and culture of Piedmont. The cycling was sometimes frustratingly hilly but that is the nature of vineyards!

Mrs Price, 8 Sep 2017

 

Wonderful hotels, exquisite food and a friendly warm welcome from reps and hoteliers. The cycling was challenging at times but the uphills rewarded us with stunning views and we felt deserving of our gastronomic delights!

Ms Pye, 29 Aug 2017

 

We thoroughly enjoyed the holiday and would recommend it to other travellers.

Ms Clarke, 3 Aug 2017

 

Wonderful again!! Our fifth holiday with you & again it was perfect. Perfectly organised routes so that we didn't need to see our great reps from start to finish! Beautiful, well considered hotels which all had really positive things to say about Headwater guests!

Mrs Ergatoudis, 24 Jul 2017

 

A superb blend of countryside cycles and splendid evening meals. Our local representatives Greg and Laura were consistently helpful; rescuing our bikes when needed, and proactively working out a new route for us when they realised a car rally would make the original journey planned for that day impossible. The restaurants were varied but all delightful. The unanticipated June heatwave made some of the uphill stretches a little more challenging than might be expected from its grading

Dr Sinclair, 11 Jun 2017

 

Really pleased we chose this tour. Fantastic location, food and wine. We were lucky to have great weather and tour reps (Laura and Greg), that certainly helped. The cycling was tough at times in the heat, so glad we had water and could top up at fountains. Invariably there was a tough hill climb to the hotel destination, Peidmont is all about hill top locations, however the reward of a nice room, shower and dip in the pool made it worthwhile before dinner. Hotel staff were friendly and welcoming. We would do a similar tour again without question. Thanks Headwater!

Mr Powell, 21 May 2017

 

We had a great week touring Piedmont on our pushbikes Most of the days rides were quite challenging with some steep climbs but fortunately the distances we travelled were quite short We were blessed with fantastic weather in September so the secret was to set off promptly after a great breakfast each day to get to your destination before mid-afternoon and the hottest part of the day

The standard of hotels is very good although the air conditioning in a couple of them was not really very effective The hosts & locals were all very friendly whenever we stopped or needed directions The pre-arranged meals were all of a high standard and there are plenty of excellent places for lunch on the routes

The roads were always pretty much traffic free with occasional tractors & trailers passing laden with grapes

The guest exclusive secluded pool at the Albergo Castiglione deserves a special mention & I will remember our picnic lunch by the pool brought down by the hotel owner & two beautiful daughters on a baking hot day for a long time

All the route plans were accurate & realistic with several options on some days The bikes themselves worked well and the support team Dan & Cat were discreet but attentive

Finally the food, every meal was enjoyable ranging from a delightful local trattoria in the village to the award winning castle. No matter how hard you try I suspect you will eat too much of it! All the hosts seemed happy to advise you & would often let you drink it by the glass rather than the whole bottle if you wanted

This was an excellent holiday & I think reflects Headwaters long experience in organising these sort of trips Well Done



Mr Hughes, 4 Sep 2016

 

Le Langhe in Piedmont - one of Italy's best kept secrets - a mecca for food and wine lovers, with breathtaking scenery.

Mrs Quick, 25 Aug 2016

 

Overall we really enjoyed the holiday and will be looking to book again. We chose the holiday for the gastro experience and really enjoyed the mix of restaurants from Michelin starred to more local / rustic. However we felt that the guide notes could have provided a brief summary of the restaurants to assist with expectations as some were really upmarket requiring smarter dress and had expensive wine, while others were more local where casual dress was acceptable and had reasonable wine prices. We also found some of the gradients challenging and thought that this holiday should have been graded 2 x bicycles+. Finally, we learnt by experience that shops shut on different days and afternoons. Unfortunately, we found ourselves without water on occasions despite reading the notes. For example, on route to Monteforte we did not stock up on water as the guide notes said that there were bars and shops. Unfortunately on arrival on Wednesday all shops were all shut meaning that we had to buy water from a bar at inflated prices. A line in each town description to show shop closing day would have assisted greatly. Hopefully, these points will be taken as constructive to help others as we really did have a great time.

Mrs Hill, 14 Jul 2016

 

This is a beautiful part of the world. some of the nicest scenery we have cycled through. I think possibly the nicest hotels and food [apart from 2 nights see below] we have enjoyed. BUT it is hard!! There is more climbing on this route than we have experienced before on other 2 bike routes. I think this does need flagged up. The 2 women in their mid 60s found the going very tough on the first day - over 900metres of climbing. BUT our excellent reps jumped to the rescue and produced e- bikes for the 2 elderly ladies! What a transformation - we could enjoy the rides- the views- and our husbands did not have the worry about us! Highly to be recommended on [in our opinion]this 3 bike holiday.On 2 nights we had to travel to a restaurant . this meant we had the same menu 2 nights running -for a non meat eater- the fish was poor. It was not a great ambience. We did speak to the reps about it. the food elsewhere was largely extraordinary and the hotels that only did breakfasts gave excellent breakfasts.

We did not find your new map system helpful. the route notes mentioned names of places that were not on your new maps. Thankfully our reps provided proper maps at our request.

Dr Young, 24 Jun 2016

 

This is the second holiday package organized by Headwater and both experiences have been simply great. We love you guys! Thank you so very much!

We've noticed Headwater doesn't have a package for Greece, please do so! Let us know about it.

Mr Brandao, 28 May 2016

 

The holiday, although accurately described etc,, the reality exceeded my expectations! Thoroughly enjoyed every moment. The meals, wines, and accommodation were all of a consistently high standard - without pretension or ostentation - a testament to the Italians respect and belief in the quality of their products. The countryside and people were also amazing, acts of kindness from strangers showed me several times what it means 'to go the extra mile'. The cycle routes are well designed, as is the holiday that alternates cycle days with rest days.

Ms D'Arcy, 27 May 2016

 

We went for our honeymoon and the holiday was a perfect mixture of challenging cycling with beautiful views, lovely hotels and fantastic food.

Mrs Moulton, 11 May 2016

 

Great holiday. Everything just worked. Reps were helpful and knowledgable. Hotels and food were amazing. Cycling up the hills was hard work but all worth it when you reached the view at the top.

Mr Richens, 26 Sep 2015

 

This was a wonderful holiday. We have done a number of cycling holidays in Italy with different tour operators and this was by far and away the best. Such beautiful landscape, food and wine and so un touristy. We didn't meet a single Brit. The hotels were simply fabulous and Headwater organisation faultless. We are a 70 and 65 year old who for various reasons had not managed do as much cycling this summer as we had intended and the cycling was challenging but we managed it. Hills meant wonderful views at every turn and then a downhill glide, and most hills were very manageable in lowest gear, slow steady pedalling and plenty of stops to admire the views. The distances aren't huge so you can afford to take your time, and with 2 nights at every hotel, you can break up the cycling with a rest day. We enjoyed this aspect, especially as the hotels were so lovely, and it was nice not to be re packing the suitcase each morning. We will definitely choose Headwater again, but this holiday has spoilt me and I shall be looking for another gastronomic trip!!!

Mrs Green, 12 Sep 2015

 

It was well organised, the reps were great and we had a great time. The hotels were terrific, very comfortable, a great selection.

Dr Foo, 10 Sep 2015

 

Excellent holiday. The holiday representatives are a credit to the company. We would certainly book another holiday with Headwater!

Mrs Geddes, 2 Sep 2015

 

Great food and accommodation. Tough cycling but scenic. Thoroughly enjoyable.

Dr May, 18 Jun 2015

 

A first class package in terms of organisation, accommodation and quality of food. The cycling was a challenge in that the temperatures were in the mid thirties and the route notes could be improved.

Mr Denton, 31 May 2015

 

A beautiful area unspoilt by development. Fabulous food and wine. Loved it.

Mis Perry, 17 May 2015

 

The holiday was fantastic, better than expected. Hotels, food, wine, weather all perfect, with great cycling routes on very quiet roads.

The views were to die for, and the hills a challenge but rewarded with the downward ride on the other side.

Would love to do it all again.

Mrs Lee, 26 Sep 2014

 

A most enjoyable holiday.However I think that it should be graded as a 3 bike holiday or 2++ at least. the cycling on the last day was extremely challenging-- we chose to go via Dogliani.

Mrs Lodge, 24 Sep 2014

 

Headwater take the headache out of arranging your holiday all you have to do is turn up and enjoy.

Mrs Ovenden, 24 Sep 2014

 

I found cycling in Piemonte quite challenging. I did the Undiscovered Provence and also the Umbria cycling trips last year, and I would say I found Piemonte a notch more difficult, at least subjectively (I reviewed my cycling computer data, and Provence was actually much more climbing). It may be because there were very few flat spots, the hills were quite relentless and the warmth and humidity were quite high on several days.

Piemonte had the best food and hotels of the three itineraries I mentioned, while Provence had the better scenery and riding terrain variety (but much poorer hotels and food). Umbria was probably the best compromise of food and hotel quality and terrain variety.

Dr Miller, 16 Sep 2014

 

Not sure - with 6 of us booking together (ie a lot of custom for Headwater) it would have been much more helpful if someone in head office had thought through our travelling requirements more carefully. The girl who took the booking always said that we could fly on Friday or Sunday, but did not explain the implications of choosing the Friday in terms of extra travel problems to and from Munich, nor at the outset of the cost implications. The extra costs crept in as the booking progressed - as full time workers it was easier to just carry on with the booking than say hang on, why weren't all these extra costs explained before we started this process (room supplements, transfers, extra prices for flight because a busy weekend (did the UK sales rep explore whether the Sunday departure would have been cheaper for us, for instance - I think not). We also thought that Headwater should have had another rep out there in Piedmont - Martha and Esme could not help us out on non cycling days as they were on airport runs .... but with a holiday of this quality, there should be someone available at all times.. I would also add that I have been on a number of other holidays with cycling companies - more down market - but the experience and knowledge of the rep and mechanic has far outweighed the knowledge and experience of Esme and Martha; they did nothing wrong, but did not add the type of spark to the holiday a good rep can.



The daily notes explaining the route would have benefitted enormously from a proper map - with other companies we have been given laminated copies of the map giving all the local details - your sketches together with the provided maps were not easy to interpret. We suspected they needed a bit of an update - gradient outlines for example would help - we knew it would not be easy but the hills did seem to dominate!



We probably will go with Headwater again on account of the quality of the hotels, but will ask a lot more questions next time about exactly what is involved and what help will be available.



We did have a good time, but a lot of niggles that ought to have been sorted. I have never complained before about a holiday .....

Ms Sobczyk, 15 Aug 2014

 

What a wonderful holiday! We thoroughly enjoyed it. Regarding the hills - yes, they're steep, but the bikes were perfectly maintained (thanks, Esme!) and the overall distances aren't that long, so I (reasonably fit but not a great cyclist, had probably been out 10 times this year previously and in Hertfordshire so hardly hilly) found them perfectly doable, and certainly easier than I had feared from reading earlier reviews. We did all the tougher options and the amount of cycling was just hard enough to give a sense of achievement/work up an appetite for the next feast! Personally, I enjoyed the challenge of the hills and the wonderful views at the tops! Having said that, if you haven't been on a bike in years/aren't generally active, this might not be the holiday for you.



Hotels were all lovely; restaurants all very good and the majority truly excellent. Spa facilities at Villa d'Amelia were particularly good.



We found plenty to fill the non-cycling days, sometimes on foot and sometimes by bike. Almost always there were local walks (e.g. on noticeboards in the town centre and signposted from there) which we enjoyed.



Overall a hugely enjoyable and memorable holiday!



Mrs Conway, 13 Aug 2014

 

We had a wonderful holiday with Headwater. The hotels and food were excellent. The scenery is stunning because the area is hilly. (You definitely need to have done some recent cycling and be reasonably fit.) A great holiday for food and wine enthusiasts. We were planning our next Headwater trip on the flight back!

Mrs Wilson, 30 Jul 2014

 

The holiday was a lovely mixture of fabulous scenery, challenging cycling and good food and wine. Your website does have some comments about the grading of the cycling, we did all the longest routes and although there were some steep hills the overall length of the routes was quite short so we agreed with the grading.

Dr Lyttelton, 22 Jun 2014

 

We had a fabulous cycling trip in this beautiful part of Italy. The accommodations were lovely and the dinners ranged from very good to excellent. The cycling was challenging at times, but not unmanageable. As usual, the Headwater bikes were great and the local reps were very helpful. The people in this region are very friendly and there were lots of opportunities to do wine and grappa tastings. This was our 4th Headwater trip and we are already planning the next one.

Mrs Scheer, 18 Jun 2014

 

Excellent route through the countryside beautiful but the cycling can be very challenging at times particularly if it is very hot.

Mr Payne, 4 Jun 2014

 

Cycling quite tough; should be rated Two-Bike +. Landscape lovely but little variation. Rest days can be hard to fill. Accommodation good, breakfasts mostly wonderful.

Mr Holway, 27 May 2014

 

Piedmont is a very attractive area and not at all 'touristy'. It is, however, much hillier than we expected from brochure description, and though the climbs were interesting at times, the rewards were the views from the top and the descents!

The accommodation was excellent in every respect, the hotel and restaurant staff almost invariably very welcoming and helpful and the food and wines were generally very good. Special mention to the Osteria Dai Cateri in Monforte d'Alba for the best dinner of the holiday but most of the others were extremely good. Moda again in Monforte d'Alba was only average and Verde Rama in Castiglione Tinella was a bit disappointing; they gave us a restricted '?Headwater' menu and several of the dishes served were poor. I think all the other restaurants gave us a choice from their a la carte menus.

This is our third Headwater holiday and the bikes provided were the worst. The bikes were fairly basic and slightly heavy hybrids compared with what the Chain Gang gave us last year but they were poorly maintained and my bike was unsafe. My wife's bike's handlebars weren't straight and she couldn't get into the lowest gear (not handy in hilly terrain!). My bike's gears were also not set up corrrectly but I was able to sort that myself, but the bike felt unsteady on corners. Eventually it started creaking loudly going up hills and my wife observed the rear wheel wobble especially on corners. I've a little experience in bike maintenance and the problem seemed to be due to slack spokes that needed tensioned. Marc brought out, the following morning, a replacement wheel taken from another bike and this seemed ok during a quick test in the hotel's garage but after a few yards with panniers on, ball bearings started falling out of the rear wheel bearing. Unfortunately the reps had gone and as they'd forgotten their mobile, it was some time before I got a replacement bike. This was a Giant and much better than my original Headwater bike, thankfully. If both our bikes had been of this quality, we would have definitely considered another Headwater holiday and recommended you to our friends and family.

During the booking process, Headwater arranged the train tickets from Nice to Cuneo and informed me on the phone and in the original invoice, the train departure times and that we would change trains at Breil Sur Roya. When the final invoice arrived, train depature time and station to switch trains at (now Ventimiglia), had been changed. Fortunately I noticed the alterations but I think Headwater should have drawn our attention, specifically, to this, as we might have missed it.



Mr Robertson, 20 Sep 2013

 

We were unprepared for the heat or the severity of the hills

Mrs Gentle, 4 Sep 2013

 

We enjoyed our holiday in Piedmonte a great deal. Accommodation and food etc were excellent. Backup was good too. However, we felt that the cycling difficulty rating as stated (moderate/leisurely) was a little on the optimistic side Having cycled the 'Secrets of San Gemiagno' route last year (moderate), we thought 'Gastronomic Barolo' was significantly more difficult, despite selecting the 'easier' options when there was a choice of route.



Future travellers heading for this holiday via Nice (Easyjet) should note that you will have a 5 hour wait in Nice following the 6 a.m.departure from Gatwick The Castle Hill to the east of the city is pleasant place to spend a few peaceful hours, but had we known that we could have dumped our cases at the station this would have improved the experience.

Mrs Melhuish, 31 Aug 2013

 

Just what we wanted!

Mrs Hunt, 17 Aug 2013

 

A fantastic holiday. Great cycling routes and all the accommodation was of a high standard, beautiful scenery and fabulous food!

Mrs Ferguson, 9 Aug 2013

 

We had a fantastic holiday! The food was fabulous and the hotels were perfect. Villa Beccaris is particularly stunning. It is a beautiful part of Italy which is very lush - even in August. The reason for this is that it sometimes rains, so take some waterproofs for you and your valuables. We had 2 rainy days - the showers were short but heavy. The panniers supplied seemed watertight but some extra protection did not go amiss.



Grading a cycling holiday is difficult as it is subjective and depends and on what you are used to. We are in our mid-fifties, reasonably fit and do most of our cycling in Scotland or occasionally Yorkshire so are used to hills. We can happily cycle 50 - 60 miles/day. All of the towns in this region are on the tops of hills but you are often given the option of shorter/easier routes longer/more challenging ones. We always took the 'challenging' option as they are usually very scenic and didn't find them too difficult. However, so if you have not cycled for a while you will enjoy it more if you try to improve your fitness before you go. The bikes are good, with lots of gears and the distance between the hotels is not excessive so you can take your time and enjoy the scenery which is stunning. It is not really leisurely, however, and a novice might find it tough going at times.



The bikes also come with comfy gel saddles but we can recommend wearing proper cycle shorts. The extra padding helps and the seams in normal shorts can cause uncomfortable friction. The water bottles supplied by Headwater only contain 750 ml and there is no way of securing them to the bike so you have to keep them in the panniers.Bottles cages are not supplied for safety reasons but we took Camelback rucksacks which are very useful. They hold 1500 ml and the tubing means water is always readily available to drink on the move rather than having to stop half way up a hill. There are lots of public drinking fountains to top up so you don't need to worry about buying water in shops.



If you are thinking about an August holiday, be aware that this is peak holiday time in Italy so some shops and restaurants will be closed. As a result, we ate at the same restaurant on 2 consecutive nights but that was no hardship.

Mrs Campbell, 7 Aug 2013

 

A marvellous combination of exercise, high class food, excellent accomodation in an unspoilt part of the world.

Mr Smyth, 26 Jul 2013

 

All good. Particular thanks and compliments to Mark and Marsha who are lovely people and excellent reps.Also admired their efforts to speak Italian and to integrate with local people.

Mr Ogden, 16 Jun 2013

 

This is our third Headwater holiday, and each one gets better. The Piedmont is a beautiful area, the hotels and restaurants are first class, and the staff friendly and efficient. It is a very hilly area, hence the wonderful views (and also the long steep climbs on the bikes). The cycling directions were good overall, but a bit confusing in parts. Our reps were extremely friendly and helpful, and as I sprained my ankle on the 3rd day they had to move me on with the baggage! Nothing was too much trouble for them. I have already recommended this holiday to our friends!

No-one should expect to lose weight on this cycling holiday - the food and wine is superb!

Mrs Maffre, 23 May 2013

 

A little-known corner of Italy with some of the most captivating scenery, best food and wine and least touristy small cities the country has to offer. The holiday is definitely a grade 2 when it comes to the cycling as every village is perched on top of a hill but the food and wine are more than compensation for the effort of getting there. May seem expensive at first sight but the standard of accommodation and food are second to none. We've been on many Headwater holidays and this was one of the best.

Dr Foley, 17 May 2013

 

We've been on a headwater holiday once before (to Switzerland) and it was amazing - in fact it was the best holiday we'd ever had! However we were very disappointed this time. Although the scenery, accommodation and food were lovely the cycling was not enjoyable, it was punishing! Since this is the most important element of a cycling holiday it completely ruined our stay.

The difficulty rating was totally wrong. We're a couple in our 30's (not unfit) but not regular cyclists- the description suggested this would suit us fine and included descriptions of 'softly rolling hills'. This was certainly NOT our experience. The hills were steep and long and never ending.I'm aware that since we returned the difficulty rating has changed. Furthermore, the various stop-offs on the way (cafes etc) to refill water were closed due to the time of year (which we were not forewarned about) - considering the heat this made the cycling even more intolerable.

All in all very disappointing. We paid 5000 and were expecting another dream holiday. Instead we needed a week to recover once we got home.

Dr Johns, 20 Jul 2012

 


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