Experience the Heart of Europe by Bike and Boat
8 days / 7 nights | Ship: Tarin | from / to Pula
"The heart of Europe" is what the Istrians call their peninsula. This is where Central Europe and the world of Mediterranean meet. On this one week tour we explore the most popular part of the Croatian coast. Fall in love with the Adriatic Sea on this tour. Relax while being on a romantic motor sailer - your floating home. Get on your bicycle after an invigorating breakfast, enjoy your lunch break ashore or meet your ship in one of the pretty harbors for a crossing. Enjoy the outstanding cuisine aboard after getting to the next harbor while watching the sunset or stroll around historical harbor towns before going to sleep under the stars… either on deck or in your cabin. This tour will occasionally be operated parallel with a mountain bike tour on the same boat as well as trekking tour only.
Level 1 - 2: The cycle tours require a basic level of fitness from participants, which they should have acquired from steady cycling. The tours will take us up to a height of 300 m above sea-level. The day-tours from 16 mi./25 km will take us through hilly terrain and will be completed without any time-constraints. We traverse mostly asphalted roads, which are rarely traveled on outside the holiday seasons. Unpaved or gravel roads will be cycled at times, during which participants are, however, also permitted to push their bicycles. You are free to set aside a half or full day to swim or spend on board the boat, instead of taking a planned cycle tour. Helmet use is mandatory on all cycle tours. You are strongly encouraged to bring your own (well-fitted) helmet. Rental helmets are available in limited numbers (reservation requested).
Day 1 (Sun): Pula (Round trip) – Pula (Embarkation) (Cycling 15 km / 9 miles)
Individual arrival at Pula. The secret capital of Istria with its town full of impressive remains of its Roman past awaits your visit. If you arrive by car, we arrange a secure parking place for you. Around 2 pm/2:30 pm check-in on the motor yacht. Afterwards a first cycle tour starts at 3 pm and takes us in a small circle around Pula and back to the ship. You might get the chance to have a closer look of the famous Amphitheatre. After your cycle tour you go on your first cruise just a couple of miles north to a bay for your overnight stay.
Day 2 (Mon): Vrsar – Poreč (Cycling 35 km / 22 miles)
In the early morning (before breakfast) we go on a very scenic, aprx. 3 h cruise to Vrsar, the town where lady killer Casanova found temporary refuge from lovers pursuing him. Starting from Vrsar, we cycle along the Limski canal to Klostar in the hinterland. After a break, long enough to taste some fresh suckling pig. Our route takes us to Poreč. On a guided walk, we encounter the evidence of the town's eventful past at every step along the way. While strolling through the charming historical centre, with its beautiful buildings of many different periods as well as the bustling shopping lanes, we will not miss the famous Euphrasian Basilica, with its gorgeous early Christian mosaics.
Day 3 (Tue): Poreč – Višnjan – Umag (Cycling 50 km / 31 miles)
Today's cycle tour takes us from Poreč through extensive vineyards to Visnjan, home of the famous white Boskarin-Cattle. After a coffee break we continue cycling through the gentle hills of the hinterland to Vizinada. After a lunch break we cycle back to Poreč. We will not miss a visit to Baredine Cave on our cycle tour. Our excursion takes us through five amazing halls which are beautifully illuminated. It leads us 60 m under ground to a subsurface lake and if we are lucky we'll meet a native – the famous amphebia (Proteus anguinus): the olm. This little cave dweller is a unique one. It is endemic to this karst area. Back at the ship we hop on our boat and enjoy a lovely cruise to Umag.
Day 4 (Wed): Umag – Grožnjan – Novigrad (Cycling 55 km / 34 miles)
After breakfast we start our cycling tour to the north starting at the headland and further on along the coastline. After a climb we get to the artist's village of Grožnjan. Strengthened by a long relaxing stop we continue cycling to Novigrad passing the river valley of Mirna. The Mirna river valley is well known as an area where white truffles can be found. A gourmet's heart will jump of joy. Getting to Novigrad we find the impressive battlement of the city wall as well the 7th century Pelagius Basilica. Around the pretty harbor we find many cafes and bars, where we can end the day. Dinner on board.
Day 5 (Thu): Novigrad – Poreč – Rovinj (Cycling 25 km / 16 miles)
After breakfast we leave Novigrad and cycle along the coast all the way to Poreč. There is time to take a stroll through the beautiful old town and to enjoy the regional cuisine for lunch. The boat awaits you in the harbour of Poreč and will take to Rovinj. Overnight stay in Rovinj.
Day 6 (Fri): Rovinj (Cycling 20 km / 12 miles)
From Rovinj we start todays cycle tour which allows ample time for a refreshing bath in the adriatic Sea. You got time in the afternoon to stroll through the winding alleyways of this picture perfect town. It'll leave you enchanted. The night is spent in Rovinj.
Day 7 (Sat): Rovinj – Barbariga – Vodnjan – Pula (Cycling 35 km / 22 miles)
A longer crossing takes you to Barbariga. We get ashore, have some lunch and hop on our bicycles. Our cycle tour leads us via Vodnjan back to Pula our port of departure. There is enough time to take a walk through the town and to visit the many heritage sites which the city has to offer. A celebrative evening meal with guests, guides and crew brings a fantastic week to a happy end.
Day 8 (Sun): Pula (Disembarkation)
After breakfast disembarkation until 9 am and individual trip home or extended stay in Croatia.
Changes: We reserve the right to make changes to the planned itinerary due to changing wind and weather conditions as well as organizational requirements.
Please note: All cycling distances stated above are approximate only.