Riding through the Julian Alps.
In a dozen trips overseas, this was the first time my wife and I went on an international bicycle trip. Yes, we have been avid cyclists for 20 years, but it took some cycling friends to urge us to see a part of Europe a different way.
We selected the 10 day, easy tour. This is one half day in Ljubljana, Slovenia, five and half days of cycling and one day, on the back end, in Salzburg, Austria.
We elected to add a few more days in Salzburg.
The riding was mostly flat or slightly downhill, with mileages from 10 to 30 miles each day. The few steep climbs were all optional.
Now the trip.
We got into Ljubljana the afternoon of the first day. It is a lovely, small city, designed to be seen on foot. Our half day was fine for us, particularly since we were planning to spend more time in Salzburg. An extra day here, would not be wasted, however.
The next day, we drove two hours, had our lunch break, got our bicycles and took an introductory ride.
We opted for road bikes. Nice Fuji’s with standard double gearing. (This latter was a challenge for me on the optional climbs as my bicycle is compact gearing with a 32 tooth gear on the cassette.)
The options were a 3k climb to a scenic few, then back to the start for a 16k (I think) ride to the first hotel.
The following photos are from various days rides. As you can see, the scenery just kept coming and coming. This had to be one of the prettiest ride tours I have every been on. Yes, I know this was my first one overseas, but I have been on many in the US.
Most of the riding was on trails closed to traffic. The few trails open to cars and the few roads we travelled were not heavily travelled.
Another nice feature was that VBT put all the rides on Ride With GPS. You download the app through their link, then download the rides to your phone, so you do not use data on the trip. After some configuration issues, each complete ride with maps and commentary, activated at every turn and view point. Really nice.
We also road through several small quaint villages, which added a nice change from the mountains, rivers and fields. We lucked out, with no rain on any ride days.
With the European Union, all borders are open, but we took some photos at the crossings anyway.
VBT always had a snack stop and either lunch or a recommended place to eat.
At many points you could, for any reason, opt out of more riding and take the van back. Of course, all step climbs were optional.
We really enjoyed Lake Bled. Unfortunately, we got there on weekend and riding around it was crowded and slow.
The only so, so day of riding was the last day, around Lake Worthersee in Austria. However, we stayed in nice spa hotel overlooking the lake.
Our final stop was Salzburg, Austria, where we toured for a few days in dry and wet weather. My only advice here is get a good guide book from the internet. The VBT books did not cover this city well.
Also noteworthy, Mozart’s home, Modern Museum (there is also a lift to get up to it), residence of archbishop, walking tours and more.