Total tour distance: 160 miles
Daily tour distance: 35 miles
Difficulty: 80 / 100
This is an MTB tour in the sense of landscape rather than cycling terrain. Most roads are asphalt, however quite a few of the side trips are on unpaved surfaces and forest tracks. It takes you through some of Slovenia's most picturesque alpine landscapes. Suitable for MTB bikers with a good level of fitness.
Cycling tour highlights:
• Swimming in crystal clear mountain lakes and deep canyon streams.
• Rafting, paragliding & more in the adrenaline capital of Slovenia: Bovec.
• Crossing broad meadows framed by soaring mountains.
• Cycling 1611 meters up over the Vrsic mountain pass or......
• ....climbing 2000 meters up to the Mangart pass on the Italian border.
• Staying in small independent hotels, great food.
Day 1: ARRIVAL at Lake Bled. (**** family hotel).
First stop Bled, a world famous town on the shore of a beautiful glacial lake, with its distinctive island church surrounded by towering alpine mountains and the clifftop castle standing guard over the town, Bled is one of Slovenia’s most popular tourist attractions.
Day 2: BLED – BOHINJSKA BISTRICA (42 km, 950 m elevation gain). (***** spa hotel).
From the high plateau at Pokljuka, you can marvel at the alpine views as you glide down into the neighboring Bohinj Valley. Upon reaching Lake Bohinj, the largest and deepest in the Triglav National Park, you can spend the rest of the day seeing sights such as Savica Waterfall and shimmering mountain vistas from Vogel mountain.
Day 3: BOHINJ – TOLMIN (56 km, 1300 m elevation gain; or 35 km if taking train to Podbrdo). (*** family guesthouse).
Today you peddle off into the heart of the Julian Alps through a narrow, almost canyon-like, valley and join the beautiful emerald-green Soča River as it rushes out of the mountains and into the western valley. Weather permitting, you can take a swim at the confluence of the Soča and Idrijca Rivers.
Day 4: TOLMIN – BOVEC (46 km, 980 m elevation gain). (*** hotel).
Today you follow the mighty Soča River as it roars its way down from the Julian Alps. As you cycle along this crystal clear alpine river, you will pass through the area that saw some of the fiercest fighting during WW1, immortalised in Hemmingway's novel: A Farewell to Arms. Visit Boka Waterfall: at 106m high and 30m wide, this is a spectacle not to be missed.
Day 5: BOVEC, a rest day. (*** hotel).
Enjoy a free day in Bovec – the adrenaline capital of Slovenia. Alternatively you can take a white water rafting trip down the Soča river or a bike short loop to a viewpoint above Soča river. If you like to fly, try one of the tandem paragliding trips.
Day 6: BOVEC – KRANJSKA GORA (45 km, 1460 m elevation gain). (*** hotel).
As the sun illuminates the eastern sky, you will be heading towards it into the tranquility of the Upper Soča Valley of Trenta, and then twisting your way around 50 hairpin bends as you cross over the high mountain pass of Vršic (1611 m above sea level - height difference 1100 m / 3600 ft)
Day 7: KRANJSKA GORA – BLED (38 km, 400 m elevation gain). (**** family hotel).
After your exhausting climb of the mountain pass on day six, day seven takes you across more relaxing terrain along the Radovna River as it meanders its way through a wilderness valley between two plateaus. As you exit the valley and head back to Bled, stop at the 1.6 km Vintgar gorge and take a stroll alongside the river as it cuts its way through the hills.
Day 8: DEPARTURE FROM BLED.