Italian News Headlines 26-09-2023 - Cosa Nostra mafia boss, Messina Denaro, has died of colon cancer at the age of 62. He was being held in a maximum security prison after 30 years on the run. He was responsible for dozens of murders including those of anti-mafia magistrates, Giovanni Falcone and Paolo Borsellino --- Giorgio Napolitano, the only Italian President to be elected twice, has died in Rome at the age of 98 --- Italian Prime Minister, Giorgia Meloni, met with European Commission President, Ursula von der Leyen, on the Italian island of Lampedusa to discuss the European refugee crisis after more than 7,000 migrants arrived from Tunisia in a single week --- Venetian authorities vote to introduce 'ticket only' access to the city from 2024 --- A man who posted a video of himself carving his name into the wall of the Colosseum, while his girlfriend watched, has been identified as living in Britain --- Following the death of Silvio Berlusconi, on June 12th, Antonio Tajani will be appointed the new president of Forza Italia --- Silvio Berlusconi, 4 times Italian prime minister, has died at the age of 86 from complications resulting from Leukaemia --- Extreme weather in Emilia-Romagna has led to 14 dead and 35,000 displaced. There are 500 roads closed and over over 300 sites at risk of landslides --- Two new victims of the Vesuvius eruption in 79AD have been discovered during excavations in Pompei
Cycling in Italy

Cycling in Italy

Only cycling in Italy can take you from a stunning mountain climb to a quiet country road, along a car-free sandy coastline and into glitzy seaside resorts - all in the same day.

Italy’s appetite for cycling can be traced back to the beginning of the annual Giro d’Italia in 1909. Since then, the country has become known as the most popular cycling destination in Europe. The hobby is especially popular in Tuscany, Veneto and Lombardy.

The Mediterranean climate means cyclists can indulge all year round. Although, the months of April-May and September-October will ensure you don’t have to adapt too much to the weather. Water fountains can be found all over Italy, which is crucial for summer cyclists.

There’s no better place to begin your cycling journey than the location for the annual competition that started it all: the Dolomite National Park. Almost every road in the Dolomites is a well-ridden cycling route, taking the cyclist through incredible mountain scenery along a range of routes requiring different skill levels. Far more daring and experienced cyclists can try the Maratona dles Dolomites route, a tricky annual cycling race covering seven mountain passes.

Cyclists also have a worthy home in Tuscany. Tuscany, in central Italy, is home to many famous cyclists and Strade Bianche, the annual road bicycle race which takes in the white gravel roads of the Crete Senesin. In the countryside, marvel as you zip past olive groves and vineyards. Then take your throbbing legs to the healing waters of Ancient Roman hot springs Bagno Vignoni and Vivo d'Orcia.

Once you’ve cooled down, you can follow a coastal path to the Cinque Terre alongside the Ligurian and Tyrrhenian waters. This route from Levanto to La Spezia takes in a total of 40km. Or if you’re looking for something a lot quieter, the empty 159km Grand Tour della val di Merse will ensure you read in peace without bumping into a soul.

Similar solitary cycling can also be found along Liguria’s Cycling Riviera, an easy 24 km route down an old railway path - with no cars allowed. If you’d like to explore ancient Etruscan sites, caves and tunnels, Il Grand Tour della Maremma will help you to explore the ancient regions of Tuscany and Lazio. Be aware though, it takes you on over 5,000 km of elevation with some 20% inclines.

Elsewhere, the Italian lakes of Como and Garda offer fantastic cycling spots. The former features Passo del Ghisallo, a key hub for serious cyclists, as well as the Cycling Museum.

Il Lombardia is an annual 253km cycling race in Lombardy, departing from Bergamo and finishing in Como. It is a very demanding course, with very steep inclines and a thrilling sprint finish.

It is the second Italian race of ‘The Monuments’, five classic cycling races considered to be the most traditional, prestigious and toughest one-day events in the world of cycling. The other covers Milan to San Remo, a 115-year-old race referred to as La Primavera.

With masses of options in every region, there is no doubt Italy is the world’s number one choice for cycling.

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