Wednesday, October 28, 1998

Best place for cyclists in Italy?

Where would a cyclist want to live in Italy?
(mountain/road cycling)

Answer on Best place for cyclists in Italy?

Italy does have a “cyclist’s paradise” with a very long tradition in cycling (I have a photo of my Great Aunt with my mother on a pre WW1 bike in Ferrara), it’s in the Emilia-Romagna triangle, between Parma, Reggio, Ferrara, Ravenna and Bologna, where you have “cycle paths”, “cycle garages” and “cycle routes, with riding maps”. The ideal way to enjoy yourself is by travelling to the local railway station, renting your own bike and setting off from there, from one “agri-turismo” to the other, with the alternative of the flat Po valley with it's cultural gems (Reggio-Mantova-Ferrara-Ravenna) or the hilly Appenines (Parma-Reggio-Bologna), or the coastal towns (Ferrara-Ravenna-Rimini-Pesaro). The Veneto Region, next door is not as specialised, but still offers a great deal of opportunities, as is the Lombardy Region.

ps the Alto Adige (South Tirol) and Friuli Venezia Giulia (Udine/Trieste) are really beautiful Regions, well worth visiting on a bike (preferibally a mountain bike), even if they are not as specialised as the Emilia Romagna, where farm workers and city dwellers alike, have always preferred cycling to other means of transport.