MTB

TRANS CROATIA ISLANDS – KRK TO VIS • mountain bike tour

Duration

8 days

Category

MTB

Fitness level

Medium

Tour type

GUIDED, SELF-GUIDED

Technical difficulty

High

Length & elevation

316 km 7330 m

Map of trans croatia islands krk to vis bike tour

Today, the immense beauty of Croatian islands is being praised all around the world. Outside the high season, the Adriatic islands become a mountain biking paradise, offering great solidary trails, breathtaking views and genuine hospitality.

The Trans Croatia Islands – Krk to Vis mountain bike tour kicks off with great biking across the two largest Croatian islands. The adventure begins in the town of Baška, on the “golden island” of Krk. The route leads across the Moon Plateau stone desert and through olive groves and vineyards to the port in Valbiska, from where a ferry to the wild island of Cres is taken. The latter is known for its high biodiversity and healing climate.

Mountain bike adventures continue on the beautiful Lošinj island, before catching a ferry to the mainland and exploring the historic town of Zadar. The fascinating islands of Ugljan and Pašman, which are connected by a bridge, are next on the list. The accompanying views of the Kornati archipelago and the Velebit mountain range are truly unforgettable. Upon returning back to the mainland, it is time to discover the lively alleys of Split, the second largest city in Croatia.

Mountain biking on the island of Brač ends in Bol, where one of the most beautiful beaches in the Adriatic can be admired. Passing through some mystic abandoned villages, the tour continues on the famous island of Hvar. Here, a steep climb to Mt. Sveti Nikola is rewarded by breathtaking views of the Adriatic. The mountain bike adventure comes to an end on the island of Vis, where old submarine shelters and underground bunkers make up for an especially interesting biking stage.

On Lošinj, Brač and Hvar, additional circular routes can be taken. Some extend daily stages, while others demand additional overnights. To avoid the heat and tourist crowds, and ensure the best experience of the Kvarner regionand the Dalmatian islands, the Trans Croatian Islands tour is scheduled outside of peak season.

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Mountain bike adventure in eight different islands in only a week
  • The stunning islands of Hvar, Brač and Vis
  • High proportion of single trails
  • Biking from the Kvarner gulf to South Dalmatia
  • Delicious Mediterranean cuisine

In media

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Gallery

Itinerary

DAY 01

ARRIVAL TO KRK

The Trans Croatia Islands – Krk to Vis mountain bike tour starts with the arrival to Baška, a small town situated at the southern part of Krk island. The island was named the “Golden island” as early as the ancient times due to its mild climate, strategic geographical position and a variety of beautiful natural sites.

The fertile Baška Valley is surrounded by vineyards, olive groves and fig trees and embraced by the beautiful karst mountain of Velebit. One of the main reasons to visit Baška is its unique, 1800-meters long pebble beach. With great infrastructure for bikers and other visitors, the town also makes for a perfect starting point of this MTB tour.

Tour briefing takes place upon arrival or the next morning.


DAY 02

BAŠKA – CRES: TWO ISLANDS IN ONE DAY

DistanceDistance: 66 km
DistanceElevation: 1460 m

The Trans Croatia Islands mountain bike adventure begins with a panoramic trail across the Moon Plateau stone desert above Baška. The bare, rocky landscape seems like from another planet. The path then descents towards the coast before climbing to the highest point of the island, Veli vrh. From this point onwards, a fun single trail leads almost directly to the town of Punat. The route leads through aromatic olive groves and vineyards towards the main settlement on the island, the town of Krk, and later carries on to the port of Valbiska.

The 30-minute ferry ride to Cres offers wonderful views of both islands. After the initial steep ascent to the ridge, it is time for a thrilling downhill ride combining trails, gravel roads and forest roads. The MTB expedition of the day ends here, so there is still enough time to discover the charming town of Cres.

 


DAY 03

CRES – MALI LOŠINJ: WILD TRAILS CONNECTING ANCIENT SETTLEMENTS

DistanceDistance: 53 km
DistanceElevation: 1100 m

Cres is considered as the least inhabited island in the wider region, but not when talking about plants and animals. In fact, the island features 1300 different plant species, nests 200 species of birds and is home to the largest number of reptiles in the Mediterranean. Its special climate is very suitable for the treatment of allergic respiratory diseases. One of island’s special features is also the freshwater Vransko Lake, the deepest point of which reaches below the sea level.

The third day begins with some easy gravel biking along the coast, but mostly includes demanding trails with many ups and downs. The route passes a typical fishing village of Valun and the famous Lubenice, which stands right on the edge of a high cliff and offers a fantastic view over the northern Adriatic.

More challenging trails lead to Osor, where the islands of Cres and Lošinj are artificially separated with a channel. The magnificent town square features buildings from the 15thcentury and a well-preserved defense wall. A shuttle transfer is organized to the town of Mali Lošinj, which serves as the final destination of the day.


DAY 04

MALI LOŠINJ – ZADAR: THE LOŠINJ LOOP

DistanceDistance: 35 km
DistanceElevation: 620 m

The island of Lošinj is narrower and less steep than Cres. Its many bays and mild climate make it a popular tourist destination and a nautical heaven. With over 8000 inhabitants, Mali Lošinjis the largest island settlement in the Adriatic.

The day kicks off with some great single trails that were used in the 2018 Mountain Bike Downhill World Cup. Next, a wonderful path leads to Veli Lošinj, a small picturesque town and a perfect place for a lunch break. Following the coast, the biking ends upon the return to Mali Lošinj.

This MTB stage should be completed relatively early to catch a ferry for Zadar. The journey takes several hours, with the ferry arriving to Zadar late in the evening. Dinner is served in the form of a lunch package.


DAY 05

ZADAR – SPLIT: CHASING THE VIEWS

DistanceDistance: 39 km
DistanceElevation: 850 m

The fifth day of the Trans Croatia Islands – Krk to Vis mountain bike tour is all about island hopping. However, Zadar is way too beautiful to not explore its alluring center before leaving. A visit to the first sea organ in the world is also strongly recommended.

A short ferry ride to the island of Ugljan is followed by a steep climb and a very nice trail providing for a morning packed with great fun. Moderate coastal path leads to the bridge that connects Ugljan with the island of Pašman.

The inland gravel road on Pašman combines various ascends and descents. The view over the famous Kornati islands on the one side and the mighty Velebit mountain massif on the other side remains present throughout the entire ride. The daily MTB stage is concluded with a direct descent into the village of Tkon and another ferry ride to Biograd. A shuttle transfer is then organized to Split, the second largest city in Croatia.


DAY 06

SPLIT – BOL: THROUGH THE WILDERNESS

DistanceDistance: 55 km
DistanceElevation: 1210 m

 

Splitis always full of life and is simply a must see in the morning before departure. The impressive UNESCO-listed Diocletian’s Palace is situated right in the center of the city that neatly combines history and modern urban life.

On the sixth day, biking continues around the island of Brač, the largest island in Central Dalmatia that is full off rocky cliffs and pine forests. Brač is known for its glittering white stone that, among other, provided building material for the Diocletian’s Palace.

The initial destination, which is reached by a ferry, is the town of Supetar. It is advised to get some snacks here, as this biking stage mostly runs through unpopulated terrain. At the pretty Lovrečina Bay, the path starts climbing through the diverse landscape covered by olive groves, vineyards and meadows. The view over Brač and Hvar islands from Mt. Sveti Vid, where the route turns next, is truly fascinating. A technically undemanding descent then leads straight tothe famous Zlatni rat beach in Bol, which is highly praised for its beauty and often portrayed on postcards.

Brač boasts many other trails and roads that offer supreme mountain biking. At least three alternative loops ranging from 30 to 70 km can be taken around the island, each catering to specific wishes and needs.


DAY 07

BOL – HVAR: THE SUNNY ISLAND

DistanceDistance: 37 km
DistanceElevation: 960 m

Hvar is perhaps the most famous Croatian island, mainly due to its notorious capital of the same name. In addition to being the longest island, it is also said to be the sunniest. Despite its popularity with tourists, Hvar still offers some quiet secluded corners, especially outside the high season. Although the landscape here is not as wild as on Brač, it is no less varied, offering an equally exciting mountain biking experience.

The day begins with a private boat transfer from Bol to Jelsa, a friendly village in a protected bay, where warm hospitality is a century-long tradition. The path then moves along the coast and through vineyards to Vrboska, the smallest town on the island located at the end of a narrow bay. The uphill ride to Mt. Sveti Nikolais rewarded by remarkable vistas and a panoramic descent through some tiny stone villages, many of which are abandoned.

The following part of the mountain bike tour includes a beautiful trail running between the towns of Stari Gradand Hvar. There is a short section where bikes need to be carried for a few minutes before hopping back on. This is followed by a descend towards the Hvar fortress, offering some breathtaking views of the town, the Pakleni islandsand the island of Vis.

While there are many well-preserved ancient places on the Adriatic islands, Hvar is a truly special place. A monument which, despite the surge of tourists, retains the appearance of lost times, is undoubtedly worth a long visit.

For the most eager bikers, additional biking loops are offered on Hvar as well, ranging from 30 up to 60 km.


DAY 08

HVAR – VIS: BLUE BAYS AND UNDERGROUND BUNKERS

DistanceDistance: 42 km
DistanceElevation: 1130 m

The last biking day starts yet again with a ride on a private boat, this time to Vis, the outermost island along the Croatian coastline. Vis has been used as a military base from the end of World War II to 1989 and was therefore closed to foreigners, resulting in the hilly island remaining quite intact. It was the Mamma Mia movie that made this island paradise more popular in recent years.

Vis can be classified among five, if not even three best Croatian islands in terms of mountain biking. A spectacular gravel path leads from the town of Visto the former underground bunker for ships and submarines at the Rogačič Bay. The island is dotted with bunkers, gun nests and well-preserved entrances into the underground tunnel system, which make up for a particularly interesting MTB stage.

Gravel paths run over the most charming parts of Vis, offering fantastic views over the blue bays and the famous island of Biševo. The route passes by the village of Oključno, which was almost completely abandoned a few years ago, but is now being revitalized. After reaching the fishing village of Komižaon the Western coast of the island, mountain biking continues along the coast back to the town of Vis. On the way, a small detour towards Humcan me made in order to visit the Titova špilja(Tito’s Cave) site, which the former Yugoslavian president used as shelter during the World War II.

A downhill ride to the town of Vis once again offers fantastic views over the bay. What a splendid way to complete this Trans Croatia mountain bike adventure.


DAY 09

DEPARTURE DAY

The Trans Croatia Islands – Krk to Vis mountain bike tours ends with breakfast in Vis. After a ferry ride back to Split, a transfer is organized to the tour starting point.


Dates

  • October 13 – 21, 2020 GUIDED
  • March - June *TAILOR MADE
  • October - November *TAILOR MADE

*In season, tour can be organised on any date. Please contact us for individual offer.

Price for guided TRANS CROATIA ISLANDS tour includes:

  • 8 nights accommodations in 3-4 star hotels/guesthouses
  • 8 breakfasts and 8 dinners; Meals include typical local food
  • Fully qualified and experienced mountain bike guide for the duration of your trip
  • Baggage transfer between stages
  • Navigation pack: GPS track, maps, tour booklet
  • Accompanied local driver following the group
  • Transfer from route ending point to route starting point
  • Ferry ride fees
  • 24/7 hotline number (support)

Rates are valid per person, based on double occupancy.

Optional:

Price excludes:

  • Travel and activity insurance
  • Personal safety and cycling equipment
  • Lunches
  • Any beverages consumed with meals that are included in the package
  • Any other items not mentioned as included.

We recommend self-guided cycling tours to everybody who knows how to navigate a map or a GPS device and has previous experience in self-guided cycling. If you think you don’t fit this description, maybe a guided cycling tour would be a more enjoyable option for you.

The price of a self-guided tour depends on the number of people in the group. Please contact us for the offer.

Price for self guided TRANS CROATIA ISLANDS tour includes:

• 8 nights accommodations in 3-4 star hotels/guesthouse
• 8 breakfasts and 8 dinners; Meals include typical local food
• Baggage transfer between stages
Navigation pack: GPS track, maps, tour booklet, Skype call
• Accompanied local driver following the group
• Transfer from route ending point to route starting point
• Ferry ride fees
• 24/7 hotline number (support)

Optional:

Price excludes:

  • Travel and activity insurance
  • Personal safety and cycling equipment
  • Lunches
  • Any beverages consumed with meals that are included in the package
  • Any other items not mentioned as included.

Would you like to customize this tour?

Are you worried you are not prepared enough physically? Would you like to select a different starting or ending point, or perhaps have a day off before, after or during the tour?

Send us an e-mail: [email protected]

Logistics

The adventure starts and ends in the village of Baška on the Krk island.

GETTING THERE

Three international airports are located within a 2-3-hour drive from Baška, those of Zagreb (Croatia), Trieste (Italy) and Ljubljana (Slovenia). We are happy to arrange airport shuttles from any of these airports upon request.

If you are traveling by car, parking is possible at the tour starting point.

ACCOMMODATION

Our tours are mostly operated through small towns and villages. We always make efforts to select the most authentic and visitor-friendly accommodation and dining arrangements available. That way the tour groups can enjoy local hospitality and great food on the entire route.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

  • One guided group can include a maximum of 8 people.
  • On guided tours a briefing session is organized every evening. During briefing, the guide(s) reveal details about the next day’s cycling stage, including the altitude, length, difficulty etc.
  • On most cycling stages alternative trail variations can be chosen according to the specific requirements of the group.
  • The meeting instructions and final trip arrangements are sent to participants two weeks before the tour start date.

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