Cycling the Wine Trails of Umbria

9 days
Activity level:
Activity Rating - Moderate
Trip code: 
Way to Travel:
Self-Guided Holidays
Self-Guided Cycling
Min group size:

Self-guided cycling through the Umbrian countryside

The sun-drenched Umbrian countryside is an enchanting place to blend cycling with food, wine and cultural highlights. The riding is idyllic through olive groves, sunflower fields, vineyards and apricot orchards. There is plenty of time to absorb the timeless atmosphere of the hilltop villages and hamlets and uncover the cultural highlights of Spello, Montefalco and Assisi. Each evening you can unwind in our specially selected hotels and enjoy the wonderful food and wine of the region.


  • Enjoy totally unspoilt cycling through Italian countryside
  • Visit medieval Montefalco, Spello and Assisi
  • Relax in friendly, high quality hotels, most with swimming pools

Key information

  • 8 nights hotels
  • 7 days cycling (including 3 optional rides) with luggage transfers
  • Optional electric bikes
  • 90% quiet tarmac roads, 10% easy tracks
  • Undulating terrain but distances are kept relatively short
  • GPS route navigation provided
  • Countries visited: Italy

What's included

  • All breakfasts and 6 dinners
  • All accommodation (see below)
  • Luggage transfers
  • Route notes and maps
  • Local bike hire
  • Management by your local Headwater-appointed agent

What's not included

  • Optional electric bikes
  • Travel insurance
  • Single accommodation (available on request, compulsory supplement)
  • Any Solo traveller supplements (where only one person is travelling on a departure date)

  • Visas or vaccinations
Call for general departures:
01606 720003
Call for private group trips:
020 8772 3936
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.


Days of Cycling

Leisurely: 10-13km/6-8miles an hour


Low altitude; 90% tarmac, 10% easy tracks

Day by day breakdown
Day 250.0km/31.0miles
Day 331.0km/19.0miles
Day 444.0km/27.0miles
Day 522.0km/14.0miles
Day 642.0km/26.0miles
Day 715.0km/9.0miles
Day 843.0km/27.0miles

Responsible Travel

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 


Expand all
  • Day 1

    Arrive at Spello

    Arrive in picturesque Spello in time for dinner in your hotel's atmospheric restaurant.
    You stay at La Bastiglia Hotel (breakfast and evening meal)

    Meals included: Dinner
  • Day 2

    Spello to Spoleto

    Today is level cycling most of the way along the Teverone Valley with some of the best views of the week. We strongly recommend the short uphill detour to Trevi, a beautiful hilltop village dating back to Roman times and capital of the Umbrian olive oil industry. The ride then takes you to the centre of Spoleto to a really friendly 3-star hotel situated in a quiet area next to the Menotti Theatre and the contemporary art Museum. There are two bars , a reading room and Sauna/ massage Centre. Breakfast can be taken indoors or Al fresco. As its quite central there are plenty of restaurants and trattorie nearby.

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 3

    At Spoleto

    The historic city of Spoleto, apart from from being a great city of art, has buildings seemingly reflecting every major architectural style in history, including a Roman arch, a 10th Century church, 12th Century Duomo and a 80m high 14th Century aqueduct. The castle here was a former prison and now houses an impressive art museum. The archaeological museum houses many treasures and sculptures found in the Roman theatre as well as artefacts dating back to the Etruscans. The tourist office in Piazza Liberta can provide you with lots of useful information in English so it may be worth planning your day from here with what interests you. Of course, there are many lovely cafes and trattorie for lunch.

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 4

    Spoleto to Marcellano

    This morning we will climb up to Montefalco, the 'balcony of Umbria', it is a fair climb but well worth the effort! The town occupies a marvellously scenic position and on a clear day you can see as far as Perugia in the north. The town has retained its mediaeval atmosphere and structure. The church of San Francesco, now a museum, houses a fabulous 15th Century art collection. The town is perhaps most famous for its wine, you should arrive in plenty of time for lunch  (the climb here is 5% up to 444m). There are lots of cheap trattorie or osterie serving the local wine. The Rosso di Montefalco is a popular choice, but by far the most intriguing vintage is that of the sagrantino. This is made using the sagrantino grape which is only found in Europe. It is well worth a taste while you admire the spectacular view. From here continue past lush green fields, poppies and buttercups before your last climb up to the mediaeval village of Marcellano. Your 4-star hotel is set within its own lovely gardens, with fabulous panoramic views across the entire valley.

    Meals included: Breakfast Dinner
  • Day 5

    At Marcellano

    It's tempting to spend the day relaxing by the pool in the hotel's tranquil grounds, but it would be a shame to miss the Roman walled town of Bevagna (10mins by taxi; or you can cycle) - Umbria's hidden gem. Visit the 13th Century Gothic Palazzo dei Consoli, the golden mediaeval theatre, or the 2nd Century Roman temple and baths that include a spectacular lobster mosaic. Alternatively, you can opt for a circular cycle (optional ride approx. 22km - directions provided) to Ceralto Castle.

    Meals included: Breakfast Dinner
  • Day 6

    Marcellano to Torgiano

    Not long after leaving Bevagna you will find yourself in the picturesque medieval village of Gualdo Cattaneo with its imposing 15th century castle and 13th century crypt. You can then enjoy some freewheeling before flat riding across the plains. There is a final ascent into the old wine town of Torgiano with its famous Lungarotti cellars. The local tipple, Rubesco Riserva, is now considered one of the best wines in the country. There is a museum dedicated to the history of wine making in the town and also one that is dedicated to the production of olive oil.

    Meals included: Breakfast Dinner
  • Day 7

    At Torgiano

    Today is free to explore the tastes of the wine and olive oil production in Torgiano. Alternatively, if wine and olive oil don't take your fancy today, perhaps the renowned Baci chocolates of Perugia might tickle your taste buds? You can take the local bus or taxi (approx. 15 mins) to the university town, which is also famous for one of Italy's finest art collections. The town is picturesquely located on top of a commanding hill, high over the Tiber. For the more energetic there is an optional cycle ride (optional ride approx. 15 km - directions provided) to the capital of painted ceramics, Deruta.

    Meals included: Breakfast Dinner
  • Day 8

    Torgiano to Spello

    Your last day's cycling takes you along the ‘Wine and Art Road’ to Brufa, with lovely views of Perugia and Assisi. The cycling then takes you through the Chiasco Valley, on country lanes passing sunflower fields, ochre-coloured farmhouses and meadows redolent with wild apricots and figs. You will enjoy spectacular views of Saint Francis' Basilica as you approach Assisi. It is worth setting some time aside to explore the fascinating streets of Assisi and enjoy an authentic lunch. Founded by the Umbrians and later taken over by the Romans it became Assium, from where its modern name derives. The most famous monument of the town is St Francis' Basilica, which ranks second only to St Peter's Basilica in Rome as a place of Catholic pilgrimage. The historic centre of the city is compact so it is easy to cover the main sites in an afternoon. The beautiful Piazza del Comune, the 13th Century Giotto frescoes and the well-preserved temple of Minerva are all well worth taking the time to look around. Once you are ready to leave you will cycle along the lovely traffic free Via degli Ulivi and through olive groves back to Spello.

    Meals included: Breakfast Dinner
  • Day 9

    Leave Spello

    After breakfast, depart Spello.

    Meals included: Breakfast
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Essential Info




There are no specific health risks.

Eating and Drinking

All breakfasts and 6 dinners included.

Umbria represents Italian home cooking at its best and the region's cuisine reflects its landlocked location. The distinctive taste of the region's olive oil and black and white truffles flavour many of the dishes. The origins of many of the dishes derive from thrift, for example, bruschetta comes from toasting stale bread, covering it with olive oil and rubbing it with garlic. Similarly, crostini are thin slices of toast with a smear of pate, usually made from chicken liver, anchovies and capers. Cooked and cured meats also have a fantastic reputation in the region. You will get to try many of these famous and delicious antipasti, which will then be followed by a 'primo' (a first course). In Umbria this is usually a pasta dish oozing with flavour. Wild asaparagus is popular in the spring and truffles feature more strongly in autumn. Secondi (second course) will then follow, the Umbrian preference is for grilled meats. Rapidly grilled spatchcocked rabbit and guinea fowl remain favourites. Desserts do not feature strongly on the Umbrian menu, cheese is often the post dinner preference and you will find the option to dip them in oil or honey.

Meal times are usually later throughout the day (08:00-10:00 for breakfast; 13:30-15:30 for lunch; 20:00-22:00 for dinner).

Wine also has a strong history in this region. It has been produced in Umbria since Etruscan times, when vines were first planted. Possibly the most unusual wine of the region is the Vernaccia di Cannara, a desert wine which is unlike any other as it is red.


The dates run from May through to October which will take advantage of the nicest weather of the region. May and October have the lowest average temperature, with highs of around 22 degrees Celcius. In the morning and evenings the temperature may drop to as low as 13 degrees Celcius so it is worth having an extra layer for your top and bottom that you can take off as it warms up. October will also see more chance of rain. From June to September the temperatures will be much higher, rising to 35 degrees Celcius in July and August, with much lower chance of rain. The weather is always variable so this should be used as a guide only.

Is this trip for you?

Cycling Conditions

Classification: Self-Guided
Average daily distance on move on days: 45km (28 miles).
No. of days cycling: 7 (including 3 optional rides)
Terrain and route: The suggested cycling mainly follows quiet tarmac roads with a few sections on dirt roads. The terrain is mainly undulating but the distances are kept relatively short to give you lots of time to enjoy the scenery. 
Vehicle Support: This is a self-guided trip for those who prefer to cycle independently, but with our assistance to take out the stress of the logistics and planning. We arrange your accommodations, provide you with a map and route notes so that you can cycle at your own pace, while your bags are transported from one hotel to the next. A local agent will be there to meet you, make sure the bikes are all set up and will be on call throughout the trip should you need.

It is important that you are happy reading maps and following route notes, we make these as accurate as possible and they are regularly checked. Where possible we stick to cycle tracks and quiet roads to make the journeys as pleasant as possible, however, on occasion we have to use busier routes.

As this is a self-guided holiday there is no group and no leader. There maybe others on the same departure date as you, but you will not be organised together. The route notes contain a 24-hour emergency assistance telephone number should you need it and in emergencies, the local agent is normally able to dispatch a taxi or pick you up themselves. They may wish to charge for this service.

Self-guided cycling holidays are a perfect option for families as they offer the freedom for you to take your holiday at your own pace. You can stop as and when you want and need, at the cafes and restaurants that suit your family and the sites that interest you. We have suggested the minimum age for this trip is 8yrs as we feel they will be able to ride the bikes we have to offer and complete the route. However our local partner is able to offer child seats for children aged 2-4yrs (max. weight 22 kg, hills will be tricky). These are all subject to availability, and therefore we ask that you enquire about these on booking. Please note due to the size of the bikes and distanced required to cycle, this trip is not appropriate for children aged from 5-7yrs (who are too big for the child seats, but not big enough to ride the children’s bike). As a guide we have suggested that 8yrs is the minimum age for this trip, but as it is self-guided and you will be leading your own family we will ultimately leave this decision up to you. The daily distances are all published in the trip notes along with a description of each days cycling so you have a good idea of what to expect. However, if you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact one of our experts. The principle idea is that these holidays can be as flexible as you like, with logistical support but no group or leader to dictate the daily activities. Please bear in mind the weather when choosing to book, temperatures can be very high in the middle of summer and the child seats provided do not have any shade. We therefore recommend going either earlier or later on in the season if you have young children.

Call for general departures:
01606 720003
Call for private group trips:
020 8772 3936
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.



All hotels have been specially selected for their warm welcome, location and regional cuisine. We use a mix of 3 and 4-star hotels; all have en suite facilities and 3 out of 4 have swimming pools. Food is a big part of your experience and dinners will be provided each evening at your hotel. Amongst the hotels is the Grand Relais Laurenti in Marcellano, a converted convent with parts of the hotel dating back to 1516. They pride themselves on their cuisine, with meat sourced from their land and home-grown olive oil.

All prices are based on 2 persons sharing, so if there is an odd number of people travelling in your party or you are travelling alone, there will be a compulsory single room supplement. Please call your sales consultant for prices and availability. 

Call for general departures:
01606 720003
Call for private group trips:
020 8772 3936
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Call for general departures:
01606 720003
Call for private group trips:
020 8772 3936
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Expert Blog Entries

  • Reviewed June 2016

    Beautiful Scenery, Great Hotels, Lovely Food

    This was our first time travelling with Exodus/Headwater but it won't be our last. This was a wonderful holiday taking in magnificent scenery in an area with an interesting history and fantastic hospitality. There's a few difficult climbs (especially the optional ride to Trevi on day 2) but the scenery is so beatiful it's worth the effort. The fitter you are the more you'll enjoy it. The accommodation was of a really good standard, with the hotels in Spello and Speleto being the stand outs for us, the former for its food and the latter for it's location. Friendly, helpful staff at all the places we stayed

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Making it to the top of Montefalco in one hit, then enjoying the fantastic views and a wonderful lunch in the town square. There are many others - the beautiful medieval hilltop villages are all spectacular and the local cuisine is an inspiration in itself

    What did you think of your group leader?

    John and Donna were always there to help, though fortunately we didn't need their assistance except for the transfers and moving the luggage between hotels. John's phone is on 24 hours a day should you need him which is a great safety net.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    There's lots to do and see in Umbria so read up on the area and prioritise what you want to do. In hindsight we would have preferred to have flown to Perugia which is only a 25 minute car ride to Spello and would have saved a day travelling each way from Rome. Also Perugia is worth visiting in it's own right so provides an option to extend your stay. This was a great holiday for us, we would thoroughly recommend it

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Some of the trip notes could do with updating. They sometimes referred to signs which weren't there or were overly complicated where a simple "straight on" would have done. That said if you read them carefully there's enough detail to get your where you want to go and the back up of the maps. John had thoughtfully marked the routes on the maps which was helpful on the occasions we strayed off piste.
  • Reviewed July 2013


    Easy cycling in beautiful countryside, very quiet roads and excellent food.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The whole trip was brilliant and we were amazed by lack of traffic on this well chosen route. The four accommodations are all individual and difficult to compare. Each of them were of good quality with helpful staff and great dining experiences. Three of the four swimming pools were excellent, the pool at Spello was not so good, as it was smaller and in an area of shade.The bikes were as new and well maintained. There are two notable hills on the route, otherwise it is totally flat. 

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Javier was extremely helpful, a very nice person and our luggage arrived in our rooms before we arrived after the cycle rides.He gave the most comprehensive and informative briefing. He clearly knows every inch of the route.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Don't hesitate to book this trip, you will enjoy it.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I left the maps on the bike overnight and one of the maps was taken. Even in such a nice hotel it only takes one individual, so don't leave anything on the bikes.However the route notes are so good, we didn't need the maps. 

Dates & Prices

An overview of flight options

Exodus is committed to making joining our tours as easy as possible, wherever you live. We generally only block book seats from London, but this certainly does not mean that you need to fly from there. Depending on the route and airlines available, there will usually be various options available for those who want to fly from their local airport.

This page aims to provide a useful overview of the options available to our clients. However, the best flight arrangements should be tailored to your personal requirements, so please contact our Sales team for expert advice.


What kind of options do I have ?

1. We can book for you: Flights from anywhere in the world - not via London  

Depending on the route, this may be direct or via an overseas hub like Amsterdam, the Middle East or elsewhere. On short haul routes there may be direct flights with low cost airlines, charter flights or scheduled airlines. Exodus can book most, but not all, of these for you. The most appropriate airline may be different to that which we use for the group flight from London, but many people now travel on different airlines and meet up with their fellow passengers at the destination.

Pros Cons
  • May be the most direct route
  • Often the extra fare compared to the London flight is minimal.
  • As you will be in the hands a single airline for your entire journey, the airline will be responsible for your bags and your connections.
  • You may not be able to join the group transfers. However, we can usually arrange private transfers, or book your flights to try and coincide with the group transfers. See notes on transfer arrangements below.


2. We can book for you: Connecting flights from your local airport to London

Exodus can book connecting flights to London so you can join the group flight there. Connecting times will be followed according to airline advice, or as requested by clients. There are two types of fares we can use for this option: a 'through-fare' or a 'published fare'.
a) A 'through-fare' is where you will be in the main airline's care throughout. You change planes, but your bags are checked all the way through to your final destination. 

b) A 'published fare' ticket is completely seperate from your onward ticket from London. It is usually cheaper than a through-fare but will need to be paid for and issued as soon as it is booked. This can be a problem if your tour has not yet reached minimum numbers. On 'published fares' neither airline is aware that you have connecting flights, so Exodus is responsible for timing your connection, not the airlines involved. The tickets are also usually non changeable and non refundable.

Pros Cons
  • Depending on the fare type, Exodus or the airline is responsible for flight connections.
  • Through fare tickets can be expensive.
  • On a published fare, tickets must be issued immediately; tickets on published fares can be very difficult to change if onward flight times change; bags are not checked though to your final destination.
  • Published fares are non-refundable.


3. Booking some or all of the flights yourself

You can also book connecting air travel yourself, either to London, or all the way to the start point. There may be certain airlines or routes we don't have access to, so this is always an option. However, if you make your own travel arrangements you become liable for any delays, cancellations or missed connections, and Exodus is not required to offer refunds if you have trouble reaching the start of your trip.

Pros Cons
  • You might find cheaper fares, or routes not available to Exodus.
  • You are responsible for any delays or missed connections, and the cost of the tour is not protected should you miss your flight be cancelled.


 Notes on transfer arrangements

Sometimes it is possible to travel on a different airline to the group flight from London. Where this is the case, we need to think about ensuring you meet up with the group with minimum extra cost and hassle.

  • On certain trips, it is easy to arrive on a different flight and still meet the group at the hotel with time in hand. We can usually arrange private transfers (at extra cost) or offer advice on taking a taxi to the start hotel.
  • On other trips (especially in Europe), the transfer meets the group flight and then travels some distance to the first night's accommodation. Where this is the case, our Sales team will try to arrange flights that arrive before (and depart after) the group. However, we do have to make it clear in your final documentation that if your flights are delayed, the transfer cannot wait for you. While Exodus or our local operators will do what we can to help you reach the start point of the tour, any additional costs must be paid by the client. 


Next steps? 

Call our Sales team on: 0203 733 0698

Email your query: [email protected]

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