Cycle the glittering coastline of the Adriatic Sea on this wonderful gem-filled journey in the Balkans. Start in Croatia’s famous walled city of Dubrovnik, where you feel the Middle Ages at every turn of the stone fortress. Pass through the golden Konavle Valley before crossing the border into Montenegro, a nation defined by its rugged mountains and dazzling beaches. Follow a disused railway line towards the Bay of Kotor and explore many highlights along the way including picturesque Perast, the pearl of the bay and the ancient settlement of Risan. Take the back roads through Montenegro’s ancient olive groves before entering Albania and discovering another Balkan lifestyle. Enjoy Albanian hospitality as you dine on local foods and work it off by pedaling along the mighty Drin River. Return to Montenegro and soak up the splendid panoramas over Shkodra Lake, complete with the Accursed Mountain Range in the background. Become immersed in Balkan culture in the small villages of Ostros with their humble monasteries and vineyards. Enjoy the spectacular descent from Lovcen National Park to the Bay of Kotor and embrace the lively Mediterranean atmosphere in the Old Town.
Arrival and welcome at Dubrovnik Airport and then we drive to your hotel in the small coastal town of Cavtat, located close to the airport. If you like you can visit Dubrovnik in the late afternoon. The old town is a 20 min drive from Cavtat. Overnight in Cavtat.
After breakfast the cycle begins from your hotel taking you on a route past small villages in the Konvale valley before you reach the coast. After 35 km you cross the border into Montenegro. The last stage follows an old railway track, once connecting Herceg-Novi, the first town you reach in Montenegro, with Dubrovnik. The town is located at the entrance to the Bay of Kotor and at the foot of Mount Orjen and with its seaside promenade, is a great place to swim at the beach and dine on excellent seafood. Overnight in Herceg-Novi.
After breakfast we will go around the magnificent Bay of Kotor. The cycle route continues to follow the old railway line from the previous day until you reach Zelenika. Along the shoreline you cycle to Risan and Perast, the pearl of the bay. Take your time to explore the picturesque historical town and its beautiful church islands (reached by shuttle boat). Later you meet your transfer driver in the old town of Kotor (you return to this town on day 7) and continue by vehicle (1.5hrs), along the beautiful Adriatic coast line via Budva and Sveti Stefan. Overnight in Bar.
After breakfast, the cycle begins directly from the hotel. On a secondary road above the Adriatic you ride through the olive groves around Bar, the “oil capital” of Montenegro. You enjoy beautiful views as you continue through a vast valley until you meet the road Ulcinj – Shkodra which you follow to the Albanian border. Continuing into Albania you soon reach the city of Shkodra, one of the oldest in Europe with its ancient Rozafa Fortress overlooking Lake Shkodra and a pretty Old Town with pastel painted buildings. The city is set on Lake Shkodra which is shared by Montenegro and Albania. Overnight in Shkodra.
After breakfast, we cycle to the Drin river and enjoy lunch at one of the best restaurant experiences Albania has to offer, the slow-food restaurants “Mrizi I Zanave” (“Garden of the Fairy”). After lunch, we turn back to shkodra. Overnight in Shkodra.
After breakfast you will be transferred from your hotel (1h) to Montenegro where you begin cycling with a first major ascent. A wonderful and panoramic but challenging, three major ascents await you today. You follow a narrow road above Shkodra Lake, passing vineyards, villages and, again and again, wonderful views of the lake and the dramatic Albanian Alps in the background. Around the village of Ostros you ride through centuries-old majestic chestnut groves. Near the village of Murici you can see the small monastery islands and in front of the village of Godinje there is Montenegrin “Alcatraz”, a former prison dating back to the time of King Nikola. In Godinje, a traditional wine region, you can regain your strength before the last ascent on your way to Virpazar. This is where you will be picked up and transferred to Cetinje (1hr). On arrival there is time to explore the historical center of Cetinje before you are transferred to your hotel in Lovcen National Park. Overnight in Lovcen.
After breakfast, the cycle takes you directly from the mountains to the sea along the famous Austro-Hungarian serpentine road, with the most beautiful panoramic views of the Bay of Kotor. You start from your hotel in the National Park. From the observation platform there is a breathtaking 360-degree view of “almost” all of Montenegro. As soon as you have conquered the initial ascent, you roll downhill for more than 30 km. Along the road there will be several great spots for photo stops. You finish your cycle in front of the Old Town of Kotor where your hotel is located. Enjoy the Mediterranean atmosphere in the Old Town of Kotor, exploring the medieval center, cathedral and maritime museum or simply relaxing by the port. Overnight in Kotor.
After breakfast we will transfer you to Dubrovnik airport. End of our services.
Tour Itinerary: Cycling from Croatia to Albania
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