Two vacations rolled into one? Yes please. On a cruise, I discovered the best way to bike Croatia is by boat
Staff, 2022-12-23 05:03:57,
So much beauty. That was my first thought after pulling into the sun-soaked harbour on the Croatian island of Hvar, where the sky and sea seemed to be duking it out for the prettiest shade of blue.
My second thought: so many tourists.
Lots of them arrived here just like me, on a cruise ship plying the waters of the Adriatic, ping-ponging between storybook settings on the Dalmatian Coast. But unlike most cruisers, I would spend much of my time on terra firma sightseeing from the saddle of a bicycle, pedalling along quiet roads flanking olive groves, vineyards and ancient stone walls.
I could do this because I was on an active cruise, which might sound like an oxymoron. But that’s how California-based adventure travel company Backroads bills its Venice-to-Croatia ocean cruise bike tour, a trip that’s like two vacations rolled into one.
Over the course of the weeklong voyage, I got a workout cycling roughly 300 kilometres, mostly in the hilly Croatian countryside. I climbed a total of nearly 15,000 feet, the equivalent of more than eight CN Towers, returning each night to my floating hotel room.
Dressed in a cycling jersey and padded bike shorts, I tucked into hearty lunches at rustic, family-owned restaurants in remote locales. For dinner, I was back on-board the small luxury ship Le Jacques-Cartier, indulging in an elegant multi-course meal under the stars or in the formal dining room.
The bike-cruise combo meant I could cover a lot of ground, both on two wheels and by…
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