How I Got To Maratona Dles Dolomites (via Cycling In Lucca...)

Why Lucca Is Great For Cycling

My recent adventure to the beautiful Italian Dolomites actually started twelve months earlier at a music festival in Lucca, Tuscany.

A small group of us visited Lucca because it makes a perfect spot for a long weekend of cycling - beautiful mountains, culture and great food with easy access from UK airports to Pisa, which is only thirty minutes away by car.

Lucca sits on the Serchio river and is well known for the Renaissance walls encircling the historic centre, its cobblestone streets and, being the birthplace of opera composer Puccini, it has enough to intrigue just on its own.

For 3 years running we have been during the music festival, now in its 20th year. The Rolling Stones were the big name this year (you might know them?) but also Rag'n'Bone Man, Lauryn Hill and Robbie Williams. A stage is built in the town square and you can see some great acts and be amongst a crowd of only a few thousand.


Another bonus to a cycling trip to Lucca? The gelato is delicious and had us queuing up both day and night after some hot days in the saddle.

You can hire bikes of all description from various shops. We had some rather fine Pinarello's from Chrono Bikes.

Pirarello for Lucca

Hire a guide if you like. Pootle around the city walls or head out into the mountains.

We rode every day, and those climbs in the heat were pretty tough going.

Agreeing To Ride Maratona Dles Dolomites...

We stopped for lunch at numerous spots and at one hilltop restaurant the pasta 'special' turned out to be a sensational lobster on pappardelle pasta. The need to celebrate this fine surprise led to a flow of ice cold rose and discussions of next year.

This was when Maratona Dles Dolomites was mentioned.

"It will give you something to train for!" 

I was told.

Blindly, under the influence of a hot ride, a cold glass of rose and a fine dish of lobster pappardelle, I was full of enthusiasm and pledging myself to join the fray.

"Training starts tomorrow!"

Twelve months later, it's 7.00am and we are at Gatwick....

Have a read of my next blog to find out a little more about the very big Maratona....