Self-guided: Bicycle Romagna – Heartland of Italy’s Homemade Pasta?

  • Length 7 days
  • From EUR1035
  • Style/Level Self-Guided 2.0
  • Countries Italy
  • Begin/End Ravenna/Bologna

This tour allows you to explore the famous ceramics town of Faenza, medieval villages such as Brisighella and Dozza, built by the Medici family to protect the northern flank of Tuscany in 1564. Start in Ravenna once the capital of the Western Roman Empire and cycle through Romagna region all the way to Bologna, the culinary capital of Italy. Easy, flat rides and more serious hill rides make for a cycling paradise through the heartland of homemade pasta, so don’t wait until you arrive to Bologna to delight your culinary taste buds with freshly made “tagliatelle”, “lasagna”, “ravioli” and more, all washed down with local Sangiovese wine.

This itinerary has two nights in Faenza, our base of operations in Italy! Please feel free to stop by and say hello – ask us for directions and we will be happy to show you the way to our office.

If you are looking for a shorter cycling tour, ask about how we can make this tour a 5 day tour.


  • Ample choice of easy or challenging rides

  • Medieval town of Brisighella

  • Ravenna and its 6th century mosaics

  • Bologna and its 60km of porticoes

  • Faenza, one of Italy’s most famous ceramics towns

  • Wine village of Dozza and Emilia-Romagna Regional Wine Museum

  • Planned Renaissance town of Terra del Sole built by the Medici family in 1564.

    Extra meals & activities (separate fees apply)

  • Cooking classes available in various tour locations! Organized by Le Cesarine where you will be hosted by a local at their home and will help the Cesarina (the host) prepare three courses. In the fourth and final hour, you will enjoy the meal (lunch or dinner) which you prepared during the class. Water and one bottle of house wine for every 3 people are included.


Keep in mind

We work hard to maintain consistency across all of our tours, but some trips have unique differences. Here are some things to keep in mind about this tour.

The final itinerary, including hotels and/or activities described here, are subject to changes according to availability. City hotel taxes are not included.
If the self-guided format isn’t right for you, check out our page about the differences between Guided and Self-Guided Tours.

From USD $1550

  • PRICING: Based on double occupancy. Solo departures may require supplemental fees.
  • HIGH SEASON SURCHARGE: $120 per person for bookings in May, June, September and early October.
  • START DAYS: This tour departs any Tuesday between March 1 and October 31. Other start days of the weeks may available by request for $120 extra. Please note that changing the start day could make some cultural visits and activities impossible.
  • REQUEST A DATE: Submit your start date by clicking on the blue “Hold a space” button.
  • DATES LISTED BELOW: Any date below are booked departures. Multiple parties can join any trip.

Date Price Private room fee Note
Jun 18-24, 2024 TBA TBA
DateJun 18-24, 2024
Private room feeEUR245

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  • Total distance 181 – 261 km (112 – 162 miles)
  • Average daily distance 55 km (32 miles)
  • Tour style Self-Guided
  • Tour level 2.0

Highlights: Byzantine mosaics, 8 UNESCO World Heritage Sites

Arrive in Ravenna today, once the capital of the Western Roman Empire. Your centrally located hotel allows you to walk to Dante’s Tomb and the UNESCO World Heritage mosaics of San Vitale, Sant’Apollinare Nuovo and the Mausoleum of Galla Placidia this afternoon. Don’t miss these early Byzantine churches with their colorful mosaics that draw travelers from around the world, as well as the beautiful Renaissance historical center of Ravenna.

Accommodation: Hotel Palazzo Bezzi

Highlights: Faenza International Ceramics Museum and Renaissance Town Square

Meet our staff in the early morning to fit bikes and get ready for your tour ahead. Exiting Ravenna you have the choice to visit another very important Byzantine masterpiece: Sant’Apollinare in Classe. Cross the plains through fruit plantations and arrive at Faenza. Your hotel is a restored convent near the central square of this regional market center and famous ceramics town. Enjoy the bustle in the market square and the main “piazza” which is always full of bicycle riders of all ages. Faenza is world-renowned for its hand decorated ceramics; we recommend a visit to the International Ceramics Museum as well as several of the local artists’ studios specialized in this colorful pottery.

Daily distance: 56 km (35 miles)
Elevation gain: + 143 m (469 ft)

Accommodation: Hotel Vittoria, or similar.

Meals : Breakfast

Highlights: Castrocaro Castle, Terra del Sole Medicean Fortress, Romagna farms

A lovely, gentle loop ride out and back to Faenza. After exiting Faenza, you will pedal past farms and fruit orchards, mostly on quiet backroads, with the nearby Apennines in view. Cycle through Terra del Sole and its impressive fortress – once an outpost of the Medici Family when Tuscany bordered with Romagna in late Medieval times – to Castrocaro Terme, a picturesque medieval city on the lower hills below the Apennines. We recommend a visit of the castle at Castrocaro if open! On your return ride to Faenza, you may choose to pick up supplies for an outdoors picnic in any of the countless farms along the way!

Daily distance: 58 km (36 miles)
Elevation gain: +215 m (705ft)

Accommodation: Hotel Vittoria, or similar.

Highlights: Medieval Brisighella; Via degli Asini

Enjoy a quiet ride through vineyards and kiwi orchards on your way to the enchanting Medieval town of Brisighella. You should certainly plan to explore the historic town center and to see the unique Via degli Asini, one of the best preserved medieval artisan streets anywhere in Italy. The homemade pasta in Brisighella is worth a lunch stop (and the gelato is not bad, either)! Your ride continues through lovely scenery on to Riolo Terme, a picturesque town on the Romagna hills, with its medieval castle and moat still intact.

You have two options for your ride today:
Short option: 26 km (16 miles), with + 382 m (1253 ft) elevation gain.
Long option: 61 km (38 miles), with + 996 m (3267 ft) elevation gain.

Accommodation: Grand Hotel Riolo Terme, or similar.

Meals : Breakfast

Highlights: Wine village of Dozza; beautiful views across the Po Valley; historic Imola

Your ride today takes you through more vineyards and rich orchards to the Medieval hill town of Dozza, famous for its wall murals. The castle in Dozza houses the Emilia-Romagna Regional Enoteca or wine museum. Regional specialties include the red Sangiovese (father grape of Chianti) which is gaining more and more worldwide recognition as an important wine in and of itself, the light and fizzy Lambrusco from the hills of Modena and Bologna (excellent accompaniment to the regional cold cuts like prosciutto and salame), or the sweet Albana di Romagna. Tonight’s destination is Imola, famous for its Formula 1 racetrack. Originally built as a Roman town along the Via Emilia, the historical center is definitely worth exploring this evening.

Daily distance: 51 km (32 miles)
Elevation gain: + 520 m (1706 ft)

Accommodation: B&B Callegherie 21.

Highlights: Bologna – Italy’s Culinary Capital

We’ll leave Imola to ride to Bologna today, Emilia Romagna’s administrative capital, and, arguably, its culinary capital too. Home to the oldest continually operating university in the world, Bologna has a long tradition of studies, arts, and gastronomy. Speaking of gastronomy, Bologna gave birth to the mortadella, vulgarly distorted abroad as “bologna,” although the fresh, artisanal mortadella has nothing to do with processed ham! Make sure you put this culinary delight on your ‘must try’ list!

Daily distance: 73 km (45 miles)
Elevation gain: + 260 m (853 ft)

Accommodation: Hotel Touring.

Highlights: Tour End

Your bicycle ride in Emilia Romagna ends this morning in Bologna. If you have the time you might consider an extra night or two in Bologna to enjoy the rich cultural history here . Alternatively, train connections are convenient to Rome, Venice or Milan. Thanks for joining us and buon viaggio!

PLEASE NOTE : The final itinerary, including hotels and/or activities described here, are subject to changes according to availability. City hotel taxes are not included.

Meals : Breakfast

Visit our Tour Level page to learn more about terrain levels and how we determine day and tour levels.

Pre-trip planning checklist

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