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Lessinia, Veneto

DESCRIPTION

This wine dense area stretches from the outskirts of Bardolino on Lake Garda to the north-east edge of Verona and the Valpantena area south of Lessinia. Vineyards cover Valpolicella from top to bottom, literally occupying the lower slopes of the valleys which trap the most amount of south facing sunshine. Montecchio, Negrar, San Pietro in Cariano, Garganego, Prun (600m) and Fumane constitute the main territories which manufacture the areas signature red DOCG Classico, Superiore, Recioto and Amarone vino in vast barrel (botte) loads every year (2006-2009 & 2011 were particularly good years). The flatter southern terrain passing close to the Adige river allows a more relaxed return back towards Verona  if you don’t wish to venture higher up the lake or into Lessinia for more climbing and a faster return. Succulent fruit is also grown here, dark red ‘Duroni’ cherries (ciliegie) early season and large juicy peaches (pesche) later in the summer which are extremely welcome on hot rides to the lake. Verona made famous by Shakespeares’ Romeo and Juliette offers excellent hospitality, restaurants, pizzerias and sightseeing opportunities. The Arena for opera, Piazza Bra, Teatro Romano for Shakespeare plays and Piazza Erbe for just hanging out with the trendy locals and ‘borghese’, close to the famous balcony of the aforementioned famous couple. Castellvecchio on the Adige and a multitude of fascinating churches from different periods showcases the architectural delights of this open air museum. Much of the cycling can be combined across the valleys; Monte Baldo at the bottom of the Vallagarina in warm weather, exploring Val d’Illasi, Valpantena and Soave famous for its dry white wines to the East of Verona, Valeggio-sul-Mincio and the delightful Borghetto towards the South of the lake in and around Custoza and Lugano. Val Squaranto runs through Lessinia to Montorio with it castle perched high above the town.

Route highlights

  • Vinyard lined roads of the signature red wine producers Masi, Sartori,  Tommasi and Serego Alighieri weave towards lake Garda.
  • Varied gradient hills with views of the Veronese plains and lake below.
  • Flatter routes south of Lake Garda to Sommacampagna/Valeggio and Mincio river, and the white wine territory of Soave to the east.
  • Easy access to bigger days out in Monte Baldo and Lessinia.
  • Historical Verona with excellent sightseeing opportunities and great hospitality, Valerio Catullo airport 30min.

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