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Italy: Mantova – Venice

Duration: 7 Days
Price: from € 890
Level: Easy
  • Italian culture in a lovely landscape

    This unique tour that starts in the enchanting city of Mantova winds its way along the Mincio and Po river, penetrating into rural areas of the Italian countryside of the Po valley that are still uncontaminated, and ends in the warm of the Venetian Lagoon. This territory has been reclaimed from the marshes for many centuries now and is framed by green pine-woods, which offer protection for numerous species of animals. The work of man overlaps nature in a constant game of roles: reclaimed land alternates with natural canals, fishermen’s huts are camouflaged in the reeds, and bridges formed of boats reduce the distances between strips of sand. The cities of Mantova, Ferrara and Venice are the cultural highlights of this fantastic journey.

    Itinerary: Mantova – Zelo – Adria – Ghioggia – Venice


  • TOUR DATES 2019 – Vita Pugna: 
    Mantova – Venice: April 6 and 20; May 4 and 18; June 1, 15 and 29; July 13 and 27; August 10 and 24; Sept. 7 and 21 and Oct. 5
    Venice – Mantova: April 13 and 27; May 11 and 25; June 8 and 22; July 6 and 20; August 3, 17 and 31; Sept. 14 and 28 and Oct. 12

    Value: April 6
    Standard: April 13 till and incl. Aug. 24
    High: Aug. 31 till and incl. Oct. 12

    Cabin Type Max passengers    Price
    Twin  € 890 / € 1090 / € 1190

    TOUR DATES 2019 – Ave Maria: 
    Mantova – Venice: March 30; April 13 and 27; May 11 and 25; June 8 and 22; July 6 and 20; August 3, 17 and 31; Sept. 14 and 28 and Oct. 12.
    Venice – Mantova: April 6 and 20; May 4 and 18; June 1, 15 and 29; July 13 and 27; August 10 and 24; Sept. 7 and 21; Oct. 5 and 19

    Value: March 30, April 6
    Standard: April 13 till and incl. Aug. 24; Oct. 19
    High: Aug. 31 till and incl. Oct. 12

    Cabin Type Max passengers    Price
    Superior Twin 
    Standard Twin
    Bunk bed Twin

    2
    2
    € 1130 / € 1480 / € 1680
    € 990 / € 1340 / € 1540
    € 890 / € 1240 / € 1440

    Single Supplement: € 300
    Reductions
    250 € 3rd/4th adult in the cabin
    Children reductions (only Ave Maria)
    100% 0-2 years
    50% 3-6 years
    30% 7-10 years
    Discount only applying if child is occupying 3rd or 4th bed in the cabin. 4th bed. Only available in the superior cabins (Ave Maria)

     

    Check availability here and book

  • Vita Pugna ( 21 passengers)
    The Vita Pugna has been in use for many years as a passenger ship and sails since 2009 in Italy. Vita Pugna was originally a Dutch ship, 36 meters long and 5.4 meters wide. The ship has recently been adapted to modern comfort requirements. In the cozy lounge, where you can also enjoy your breakfast and dinner, you have a beautiful view.
    The ship has a lounge / restaurant with air conditioning and a large sun deck, where you can sit cosily. There is free Wi-Fi , a free hot drinks machine (incl. Italian ground coffee) and a 42″ screen for video/internet in the living room.
    There are 9 twin cabins and a triple one, accommodating up to 21 guests. Each double cabin with traditional portholes (which can be opened) is approx. 7/8 sq.m. big and has 2 low twin beds with en-suite facilities and air conditioning. Bed size is: 1.90/2 m x 0.75/0.80 m.


    Ave Maria (34 – 36 passengers)
    This Italian ship has started cruising in 2011. She has been totally rebuilt in order to meet the most challenging clients’ requests. Only the hull of the original 1970s sand digger sailing along the Po has remained and the boat is now brand new. It has been completely designed by a renowned Italian architectural firm. Its shapes, colours and materials have been chosen carefully in order to create a warm, sober and yet sophisticated atmosphere.
    The air conditioned living room is divided into two areas: the restaurant and the lounge. There is free Wi-Fi. In the lounge there is a large 55″flat screen for video/internet and a free hot drinks machine (incl. Italian ground coffee). The barge has two sundecks and a dedicated bike parking.
    The ship can accommodate max. 40 guests and has a total of 17 cabins; 10 standard twin cabins of approx. 11 sq.m. (3 of these can become triple cabins, with a bunk bed); 4 superior twin cabins of approx. 11 sq.m. (two of these cabins can become a triple or four bed cabin) and 3 bunk bed cabins of approx. 7,5 sq.m. (all can be sold as single cabin). All cabins have a large window, comfortable low beds, en-suite facilities and air conditioning.

  • Day 1 (Sat): Embarkation: Mantova
    We welcome you aboard your new home-from-home from 4.30 pm onwards, and then regroup for the introductory briefing – at 6.30 pm – with your tour leader, skipper and crew, along with a first refreshing “aperitivo”. After dinner we can stroll into town and savor the historic center at its most evocative: Benvenuti a Mantova!

    Day 2 (Sun): Mantova (round tour approx. 35 km/21 mi.)
    A day dedicated to the discovery of this little visited cultural gem, its three picturesque “lakes” formed by the Mincio, and its surrounding countryside – once a City State ruled by the Gonzaga family and now considered by many as Italy’s “Sleeping Beauty”. This afternoon we meet our Mantuan guide for a walking tour of the historic center, and enjoy the rest of the day in town, at our own leisure.

    Day 3 (Mon): Mantova – Governolo | Governolo – Ostiglia – Bergantino – Zelo (Approx. 50 km/30 mi.)
    After breakfast, you set sail from the “lakes” of Mantua and cruise through the lush wetlands that lead to Governolo Lock, where Mantua’s River Mincio flows into the Po. Here, you saddle up and follow the broad sweeps of the levee towards Ostiglia, renowned for its medieval fortress and fierce fighting in 1945, as the Allies drove Hitler’s forces back. Next: Bergantino, home of the distinctive Museum of Fairground Rides and its collection of street organs, all expertly restored (and thunderous!). This village is also in the heartland of Grana Padano – the arch-rival of Parmesan – and a visit to the local cheese factory, sampling some well-seasoned Grana, is de rigueur. You catch up with your barge in Zelo, a sleepy village on the Canal Bianco, the waterway which runs parallel to the Po.

    Day 4 (Tue): Zelo – Ferrara (Approx. 50 km/30 mi.) | Ferrara – Adria (60 km by bus)
    This morning you cross the Po and ride southwards through a patchwork of farmland, orchards and hamlets, as far as Ferrara. Under its ruling family, the Este, this city state attracted architects, artists and scholars for centuries, pioneering town planning principles that have been emulated worldwide ever since. To this day, Ferrara University ranks among the best, and the town is dubbed the ”Cycling Capital of Italy”. A private bus and trailer then take you back to your floating hotel in Adria, an ancient Roman port once washed by the sea which bears its name. Adria is also renowned for its Etruscan and Greek heritage. An after-dinner passeggiata into town for a well-earned grappa or gelato is in order.

    Day 5 (Wed): Adria – Po Delta Nature Reserve  – Chioggia/Pellestrina (Approx. 40 km/24 mi.)
    After a short cruise, you cycle into the delta of the life-giving Po. This unique wetland is the prime reserve in Europe for herons and home to a size-able colony of flamingos. Weather permitting, as we continue towards Chioggia, we can also enjoy a break at a fine-sand beach nearby for a dip in the Adriatic – not forgetting a hot savory piadina! Chioggia is also known as “Little Venice”, a colourful fishing hub. The overnight takes place on the Island Pellestrina, just in front of Chioggia.

    Day 6 (Thu): Chioggia/Pellestrina | Island Pellestrina – Lido Island (ferry) | Lido Island – Venice (Bike Tour Approx. 30 km/18 mi.)
    Venice beckons, but first another world altogether: Pellestrina, the first of two islands you traverse today – a humble and tranquil fishing backwater, picturesque as ever with its cottages, boats and nets. A short island-hop by ferry lands us on the Lido. Fashionable in high society ever since the Belle Époque, the Lido di Venezia is now home to the International Venice Film Festival and its galaxy of stars. After rejoining your barge, an unrushed cruise  in front of St Mark’s square takes you to our final destination. After dinner you can savor Venice at night, now free of the crowds and at her most romantic: Benvenuti a Venezia!

    Day 7 (Fri): Venice
    After breakfast – and perhaps following a wander off the beaten track with your tour leader – you all meet up with a Venetian guide for a tour through the historic center. Christened La Serenissima (“The Most Serene”), the Venetian Republic held sway over much of the Mediterranean (and beyond) for centuries – both as a military power and a beacon of culture, her explorers reaching as far as China and Newfoundland. After your guided tour, you have the afternoon free to enjoy the city at your own pace.

    Day 8 (Sat): Disembarkation: Venice
    After breakfast and the customary goodbyes, free time for individual visits of Venice, or return home, if you haven’t booked any extra night.

    Parts that are printed in italics parts will be covered by the ship.
    All distances are “approximate distances” of recommended bike tours.
    The planned itinerary is subject to change due to nautical, technical or meteorological reasons and other unforeseen circumstances. If there is low or high water and a route cannot be shipped, the captain reserves the right to change the route in view of your safety (this cannot be accepted as a reason for free withdrawal).

  • Day 1 (Sat): Embarkation: Venice
    We welcome you aboard your new home-from-home from 4.30 pm onwards, and then regroup for the introductory briefing – at 6.30 pm – with your tour leader, skipper and crew, along with a first refreshing “aperitivo”. After dinner you can savor Venice at night, now free of the crowds and at her most romantic: Benvenuti a Venezia!

    Day 2 (Sun):  Venice
    After breakfast – and perhaps following a wander off the beaten track with your tour leader – you all meet up with our Venetian guide for a tour through the historic center. Christened La Serenissima (“The Most Serene”), the Venetian Republic held sway over much of the Mediterranean (and beyond) for centuries – both as a military power and a beacon of culture, her explorers reaching as far as China and Newfoundland. After your guided tour, you have the afternoon free to enjoy the city at your own pace.

    Day 3 (Mon): Venice – Island Pellestrina/Chioggia (Approx. 30 km/18 mi.)
    Leaving Venice behind after a gentle cruise in front of St Mark’s square, our cycling adventure starts on the Lido, the first of the two islands you explore today. Fashionable in high society ever since the Belle Époque, the Lido di Venezia is now home to the International Venice Film Festival and its galaxy of stars. A short island-hop takes you into another world: Pellestrina, where you ride past the picturesque cottages and boats of this humble fishing backwater. You rejoin the barge and sail to Chioggia – a bustling and colorful fishing harbor known as “Little Venice”.

    Day 4 (Tue): Chioggia– Po Delta Nature Reserve –Adria (Approx. 40 km/24 mi.)
    You open the day with a stroll through Chioggia, followed perhaps by a visit up the millennial clock tower – the oldest in the world – for some breathtaking views. Weather permitting, you can also bask in the sun at a fine-sand beach nearby: a dip in the Adriatic, a hot savory piadina – and you are well and truly local! Then onwards into the delta of the life-giving Po. This unique wetland is the prime reserve in Europe for herons and home to a colony of flamingos. You moor for the night in Adria, a key Roman port, once washed by the waters of the sea which bears its name. Adria is also renowned for its Etruscan and Greek heritage. An after-dinner passeggiata into town for a well-earned grappa or gelato is in order.

    Day 5 (Wed): Adria – Ferrara – Zelo (Approx. 35 km/21 mi. + 35 km by bus)
    After a short cruise you saddle your bikes and, following the Po through farmland and hamlets, you reach Ferrara. Under its ruling family, the Este, this City State attracted architects, artists and scholars for centuries, pioneering town planning principles that have been emulated worldwide ever since. To this day, Ferrara University ranks among the best, and the town is dubbed the ”Cycling Capital of Italy”.  A private bus and trailer takes you back to your floating hotel in Zelo, a sleepy village on the Canal Bianco, the waterway which runs parallel to the Po.

    Day 6 (Thu): Zelo – Bergantino – Ostiglia – Mantova (Approx. 50 km/30 mi.)
    This morning you head for the village of Bergantino, home of the distinctive Museum of Fairground Rides and its collection of street organs, all expertly restored (and thunderous!). But first things first: you are in the heartland of Grana Padano – the arch-rival of Parmesan – and after visiting the local cheese factory, you enjoy a degustazione of sharp and seasoned Grana, washed down with a glass of Valpolicella. After your customary picnic lunch, you leave Bergantino and follow the river to Ostiglia, famed for its medieval fortress and the fierce fighting that took place here in 1945, as the Allies and partisans drove Hitler’s forces back. You ride on and rejoin our barge at Governolo Lock, where Mantua’s River Mincio flows into the Po. Veering north, you cruise through the lush wetlands that finally emerge into the glorious “lakes” of Mantua.

    Day 7 (Fri): Mantova (round tour approx. 35 km/21 mi.)
    A day dedicated to the discovery of this little visited cultural gem, its three picturesque “lakes” formed by the Mincio, and its surrounding countryside – once a City State ruled by the Gonzaga family and now considered by many as Italy’s “Sleeping Beauty”. This afternoon we meet our Mantuan guide for a walking tour of the historic center, and enjoy the rest of the day in town, at our own leisure.

    Day 8 (Sat): Mantova
    Departure after breakfast.

    Parts that are printed in italics parts will be covered by the ship.
    All distances are “approximate distances” of recommended bike tours.
    The planned itinerary is subject to change due to nautical, technical or meteorological reasons and other unforeseen circumstances. If there is low or high water and a route cannot be shipped, the captain reserves the right to change the route in view of your safety (this cannot be accepted as a reason for free withdrawal).

  • Included in the price
    – Boat & Bike tour with the Vita Pugna/Ave Maria, 8 days/7 nights; accommodation on board in the booked category
    – Full board (breakfast and dinner on board, a self-made packed lunch during bike tours); Tea, coffee and other hot drinks on board
    – Use of bed linen and towels; daily short cleaning and mid-week cabin cleaning service and towel change
    – Courtesy kit
    – English speaking tour leader (within an international group) on board and during bike tours
    – Second tour leader with a minimum of 25 people (only aboard Ave Maria)
    – Travel guide, maps and roadbook
    – Bike helmet
    – Bus transfer Ferrara – Zelo/Ferrara-Adria
    – Guided tour in Venice and Mantova
    – Visit of a cheese factory with tasting of the typical Grana Pardano
    – Visit of Carousel and Street Entertainment Museum
    – Wifi

    Not included
    – Transfers to/from docking places
    – Rental bicycle or E-Bike (optional)
    – Other transfers and Ticket for public transportation in Venice
    – Parking fees
    – Entrance fees & excursions
    – Ticket public transportation Pellestrina (we recommend you to buy a 72 hour-ticket, price 40 €)
    – Drinks on board
    – Personal (travel) insurances
    – Gratuities (at your discretion)

    Rental bicycle: € 85 per week/person
    Rental E-Bike: € 195 per week/person (only on request, limited number of e-bikes available, early bookings strongly recommended.
    You can find a description of the bicycles when you click on ship.
    Bike helmet:  All the helmets have a certification mark according to the DIN EN 1078 (CE) European norm. Helmet is incl. in the price.

    Diets and allergies:
    If you are vegetarian, gluten-intolerant, allergic to some specific ingredients/substances or if you suffer from any other kind of allergies please indicate it at the moment of booking.
    Once on board, make sure that the kitchen staff is aware of your allergies, in order to avoid unpleasant situations. A supplement can be charged.

  • Good to know

    Tour program variations

    The program has been planned to feature navigation along the Fissero/Bianco canal, which runs parallel to the Po river and connects Mantua to the Adriatic Sea. Due to organizational reasons, weather conditions or provisions issued by local authorities, the itinerary may be subject to some changes before and/or during the holiday. Issues with high and low water, as well as logistic obstacles such as officially ordered – previously not announced – repair work on locks or bridges can modify some of the daily stretches or overnight stays and may even request a transfer by bus. These decisions are only taken by the boat’s captain.

    Route profile:
    Total length: 190/205 km
    Total vertical up: 20 m

    Terrain: 95% tarmac, 5% unpaved

    This cycling tour is largely along the flats of the Po plains, and the daily stages vary from 25 km to 55 km (15 to 33 miles) – mostly on tarmac cycle paths along rivers and canals, or quiet country roads. The boat is moored at night and normally cruises of after breakfast, meeting up with the cyclists in the afternoon. Some parts of the itinerary are undertaken by boat, to allow easier access onto cycling paths  or simply to enjoy the cruise.

    Tour leader
    Our tour leaders are carefully selected and rigorously trained. They are all multi-lingual, and speak at least English and German. Smart, entertaining, caring and endlessly enthusiastic, they have a true passion for sharing their love of the outdoors, people, culture and local food. Thanks to a deep knowledge of the territory, they can give you useful hints and help you appreciate the place you are visiting. Of course they love cycling and will be happy to give you some advice about how to correctly use the bicycle gears and whenever necessary they can fix your flat tire. As we like to say, our tour leaders are CDO (Controlled Designation of Origin), a real traveler’s ticket to discover the land with ease and to live an unforgettable active travel experience.

    Level of difficulty
    The trip is rated as level 1: easy. 
    These holidays are appropriate for anyone with good physical condition and basic cycling skills. On virtually flat terrain, with distances up to 50 kilometers. You spend about 4 hours on your bicycle.

    Type of bike
    City bikes are available in various sizes in unisex models. At the moment of booking, you can choose from the following bikes:
    City bike 27-gear Shimano Deore
    Electro-bike
    Features: aluminium frame, mudguard, rear rack, comfort gel saddle, anti-puncture Schwalbe tyres, ergonomic bicycle grips and Speed Lifter system (only for city bikes).
    You can also rent helmets for adults as well as children’s bikes and devices. More information on request.
    Own bike
    The use of own bikes for this tour is not recommended only for cost reasons and logistical difficulties to leave the boat from the harbour of Giudecca Island in Venice where you will be moored at the start or end of the tour. Bikes, for the regulation of the company ACTV, cannot be loaded on ordinary vaporettos (public boat in
    Venice), so you must pay on the spot the cost for the private transport for the bike from the boat.

    Point of departure
    This tour starts in Mantova or in Venice.
    In Mantova you will find the ship in porto Catena, close to the city centre.
    In Venice the ship is moored at Giudecca island.
    You are expected aboard at 16.30 hours.
    If you cannot arrive on time, will you please notify us by telephone or e-mail?

    Transfer back:
    The towns of Mantua and Venice/Mestre are well connected by train, there are about 15 trains per day between 6:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. There are no direct connections, you always have to change in Verona Porta Nuova or Monselice. The transfer takes approx. 2.5 hours and costs about 30-50 € per person depending on the type of train. For further information on times and costs please consult the website www.trenitalia.com or www.goeuro.co.uk

    Legal notice:
    Boat Bike Tours is not the operator of this tour; this is a so called ‘partner tour’. Tour operator is: Girolibero, Vicenza, Italy

    CONTACT:
    Tel Vita Pugna: +39 (0) 3388562512
    Tel Ave Maria: +39 (0) 3771686753
    Tel Office: +31 (0) 299313071
    e-mail: info@eurosailtravel.com

    Mooring Mantova

    Mooring in Venice at Giudecca island.

    Venetië weergeven op een grotere kaart