Temperatures have dropped, the year is coming to an end. We are tired. Tired as hell. But we still need to be outdoors, refreshing our minds and spirits, tested by 12 months that have been challenging in so many ways.
No, we don’t put the bicycle away. No, we are not affected by falling temperatures. Yes, we keep well in mind the Scandinavian adage “there is no such thing asbad weather, there is only bad clothing.”
So what do we do? Pedaling. But with a new goal: allowing ourselves, at the end of our adventure, a well-deserved, desired, and earned relaxation. Therefore, after the bike ride, we go to the spa.
Cycling and wellness
In the enchanting combination of winter cycling and spa relaxation, a world of unique experiences opens up to embrace winter nature while rejuvenating body and mind. The evocative combination of cycling in the tranquility of the season and beneficial spa stops is one of the beauties of the season.
Winter offers fascinating scenery, even for cyclists, with its crystallized, snow-white, silent landscapes bathed in the magic of cold.
After a hike through snow-covered forests and breathtaking views, don’t you think a break at the spa is really deserved? There are places that turn into sanctuaries for relaxation, offering a chance to release the muscle tension accumulated during cycling and the emotional tensions built up during the year.
Among the destinations to explore, there are bicycle routes that lead directly to spas, others pass through quaint villages and towns, and still others climb into the mountains or skirt them. What does not change is the atmosphere at the finish line: the warmth of the thermal waters, a cozy haven where you can devote yourself to your well-being. A touch of luxury, a break from the rigors of the cold season.
In this journey between bikes and spas, suitable winter cycling routes are explored, and thermal establishments and centers are discovered. What better way to appreciate the beauty of winter in an active and relaxing way?
Three travel ideas for your next bike and relaxation vacation
In Bormio, it’s time for fat bike tours. Whether in the picturesque Forni Valley or the enchanting Viola Valley, the tranquil Rezzalo Valley or the legendary slopes of the Gavia Valley, a fat bike or fat e-bike tour is ideal for an out-of-the-ordinary ski vacation. Riding outdoors, among snow-covered trees and glistening snow, reaching picture-postcard locations and taking a break at a mountain lodge are the perfect alternative to the classic winter ski vacation.
And what better break, after a day in the great outdoors, than a soak in the panoramic pool at Bormio’s Bagni Vecchi? But not only that, there is also an underground treasure in the center of the uniquely atmospheric building: the sweat cave. It is a jewel set in living rock masterfully divided into the three zones of Tepidarium, Calidarium and Frigidarium.
Another cave, used since ancient times, houses two large adjoining pools with the evocative name Bagni Romani, a tribute to Plinius the Elder and Cassiodorus, the first to pass on the wonders of the Bormio Baths. These historic areas, transformed into a hotel in 1826, are harmoniously integrated with the more modern spa spaces, including the outdoor pool. From here, the spectacular view of the Bormio basin turns into a spell when the snow envelops it.
Colli Euaganei – Euganean Hills, Veneto
Through the Colli Euganei Natural Park, a fascinating itinerary winds its way, offering evocative views of castles, Venetian villas and charming villages surrounded by landscapes of vineyards and canals. The Euganean Hills, with their isolated wavy lines and unique profile, emerge on the traveler’s horizon, creating a stunning backdrop. In this distinctive geological landscape, nature is exhibited with extraordinary biodiversity, enhanced by vineyards that produce excellent wines.
The Colli Euganei Cycle Ring follows ancient waterways that border the Park, passing through walled cities such as Este and Monselice and the renowned spas of Abano and Montegrotto. Here cyclists can take the hard work off their shoulders, indulge in treatments and pampering, and let themselves be “cured” by the three elements Air, Water and Earth, the essence of the local spa.
This loop can be approached either as a day trip or as a short stay, allowing cycling to be combined with spa wellness, visits to archaeological museums, Venetian villas, and historic centers. The route mainly follows bicycle paths, mostly paved, with a smooth elevation profile and few significant climbs. Easy detours lead to enchanting places such as Arquà Petrarca and the city of Padua, further expanding the experience of the trip.
Castelli del Ducato – The Castles of the Duchy, Emilia – Romagna
With its 45 km and an elevation gain of about 1,000 meters, the Castles of Duchy Route offers a cycling adventure through the picturesque territory of the ancient Duchy of Parma and Piacenza.
Starting from Tabiano and heading towards Salsomaggiore, the route embraces the history of the region, among forests, resurgences and cultivated landscapes. Challenging climbs, sometimes cobbled, lead to fortified fortresses transformed over time into noble residences, offering a unique feeling of pedaling directly into history.
After passing Salsomaggiore, the route skirts the Salsominore depression, enhanced by the remains of the ancient Roman Baths. A detour uphill leads to the village-castle of Scipio, witness of the Middle Ages and defender of the precious salt wells. The view of the plains and the cycle route connecting Salsominore to San Nicomede opens up from here, promising further adventures.
Proceeding toward Vigoleno, the road plunges into rural scenery, passing through farmhouses, fields, woods and vineyards. Vigoleno, one of Italy’s Most Beautiful Villages, sits atop a hill, offering spectacular views.
The route concludes with a return to Tabiano from Contignaco, an imposing 11th-century fortress ordered by Adalberto Pallavicino. The surrounding area offers a backdrop of oaks, vineyards and ancient Romanesque churches, complementing the cycling experience with the striking presence of a monumental oak tree in the castle courtyard, a living testament to the region’s history.
And here in Tabiano we can get off our bikes to relax and try treatments at the famous Tabiano Spa, state-of-the-art spa facilities where we can also find body care products.