Home > The Old Dolomites Railway: Dobbiaco to Venice
Enjoy exploring the stunning, idyllic landscapes of the Dolomites on this tour which sees you follow parts of the Old Dolomites Railway. Built during the First World War to ferry military supplies on the Italian Front, the railway, which linked Toblach and Calalzo, was closed during the 1960s and now provides a fantastic cycling route!
Along the way you will ride past the iconic Tre Cime di Lavaredo (Three Peaks), passing through typical Italian villages before leaving the railway behind and experiencing the changing scenery as you move from the mountains down to the plains. The trip culminates in the stunning “city of water”, which we are sure needs no introduction - Venice.
Set amongst glorious and verdant mountains, your first hotel in Alta Pusteria (the Pustertal valley, or Hochpustertal in German) provides a warm and friendly welcome upon your arrival. Make sure to enjoy the fantastic surroundings before you set off to ride through them tomorrow.
Today’s ride begins along the bike path through the Höhlenstein Valley and past Lake Toblach. A War Cemetery is a reminder that this region was the Italian Front during the First World War. Once you reach Lake Dürrensee, make sure to look over to your left where you will see the iconic Three Peaks looming up above you! Declared a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2009, these three giant peaks loom nearly 3,000m up above you! Continue on along the cycle path and leave the South Tyrol region behind, as you enter into the Veneto and arrive into the former Olympic town of Cortina d`Ampezzo, where you will be staying this evening.
Today’s ride is longer than the other days but is mainly downhill along the Old Dolomite’s Railway! You will pass close by to the magnificent Cinque Torri (Five Towers) mountain along your way. Continue heading south through the Boite Valley towards Pieve/Calalzo di Cadore. From here the cycling path takes you to Longarone, a town which was completely rebuilt in 1963 after a landslide blocked a dam above the village and caused a huge flood. Follow the cycle path until you reach your destination for the day – Belluno.
After a hearty breakfast, you’ll leave behind Belluno, the ancient city and capital of this province. From here the tour follows tree lined avenues and hilly landscapes and passes through small, authentic villages, ideal for stopping off in for a coffee. From time to time the route will take you along the course of the Piame river. Make sure to look North and admire the magnificent southern Dolomites, your companions over the first few stages of this tour! Eventually you will arrive into Feltre, where you will staying this evening, in time to relax in the stunning Piazza Maggiore.
Today after a few steady climbs you will descend down into the Brenta Valley. At Cismon del Grappa you will begin to follow the river Brenta more closely, passing through Valsagna before winding your way to Bassano del Grappa, where you will be staying this evening. It is from here, in Bassano that the river Brenta spreads out and flows across the plains in a series of canals. The name Bassano del Grappa comes from Mount “Monte” Grappa, and also lends its name to the distilled spirit grappa which this region is renowned for. There is much to visit here such as the San Francesco church, the Museo Civico (museum) and the Piazza della Libertà.
Leaving the Dolomites firmly behind you now, you will head towards Treviso today. Along your route you will come across various villas designed by the renowned architect, Palladio. The town of Asolo is an ideal spot for a rest and to grab something to eat before you continue riding through the plains to Treviso, your destination for this evening. Treviso is often referred to as one of the regions “little Venice’s” for its network of canals, and it is also a hub for Italian fashion. Along the canals there are lots of wondeful shops and interesting architecture to admire.
After saying ciao to Treviso, you’ll follow the cycle path along the River Sile towards the “Serenissima”! Enjoy the gentle, flat route today as you follow the course of the river towards Quarto d’Altilo and then head south-west to make your way down to Mestre. Once arrived in Venice, enjoy exploring this majestic city - the perfect place to explore and a fitting end to this bike adventure from the Dolomites down to the Adriatic Sea.
After breakfast, depart Mestre at the time of your choice. Note that we can arrange post-tour stays in Venice, if desired, in order to soak up more of its dreamy canal magic!
7 nights’ accommodation in 3- and 4-star properties