Cycling the Croatian Coastline
Croatia boasts almost 21000 km of marked bike routes, and 3000 km of them are in the Dalmatian region. It is a part of the Eurovelo network of international cycling routes, crisscrossing and connecting the European continent.
Four out of 15 Eurovelo routes go through Croatia.
The selection of routes is extremely varied with off road, paved, uphill, downhill, cross country, and Enduro trails, so you are bound to find the level of challenge you enjoy the most.
Riding on a bicycle is one of the best ways to truly get to know Croatia. The routes will take you through some of the most beautiful countryside. If you get the chance, visit one of 8 national parks — diverse biomes that epitomize the natural wonders of the land.
While in Dalmatia, use the opportunity to see the Mediterranean as it once was. On your travels, you are bound to discover interesting small towns and villages and see firsthand the traditional, relaxed way of life.
Croatia is a practically sized country, which translates into less travel between beautiful locations (we could argue that there are few if any parts that are not beautiful) and more time spent experiencing and discovering.
The Croatian food is a must try, especially the local specialties. They include age-old recipes, always made from local, and often from eco-grown ingredients. Each region has its own pride and joy dishes and we heartily recommend that you taste at least some of them during your holiday.
Where you hang your hat is going to be a matter of personal preference as all the options are available to you. You can rent a nice BnB flat, couch surf, pitch a tent or park a trailer in one of the camps. Alternatively, choose from a range of hotels with an additional level of comfort for the weary traveler.
If you join us for a Jamming adventure cycling tour, you will have a choice between a 3 and a 4-star hotel in Biograd — a perfect home-base for further exploring.
As we chose one location for your accommodation for the entire action-packed holiday, there will be less (none, to be exact) hassle with moving from accommodation to accommodation and much more time to actually have fun and explore with our friendly, knowledgeable guides.
Jamming tour experience — what to expect
One of the best ways to experience Croatia in a thrilling and healthy way is to sign up for a Jamming Adventures guided cycling tour. Travel in a small group, pedal your way through some of the most beautiful parts of the Dalmatian coast, see the sights, feel the atmosphere and have fun.
1. Biograd route
Even though it is relatively small, Biograd is a treasure trove of activities and landmarks.
Two monasteries, a multitude of churches and a museum bear witness to its former glory as a royal town and a seat of Croatian kings and bishops. If you are at all interested in history, you will thoroughly enjoy exploring Biograd.
When you dismount your bike, you can find many opportunities to challenge yourself — from aquatic activities, like scuba diving, water skiing, and windsurfing, to land-based sports such as beach volley, bocce, mini golf, soccer, tennis, and basketball.
The first-day cycling trip will be warm-up 30 km circle route starting and ending in Biograd, with a lunch break along the way.
2. Dugi otok route
Long and narrow, like a stretched out hand protecting the archipelago from the fury of the sea, Dugi otok is a wonderful Dalmatian cycling spot. The island is hilly, culminating in Vela Straža, an ex-army lookout post with a spectacular view of the whole Zadar aquatory and Kornati national park.
The island’s name translates to Long Island, so, when the daily challenges are done, this is the perfect opportunity to stop at a beach bar and order a delicious, mood-setting Long Island Iced Tea. Just don’t drive afterward.
3. Ugljan and Pašman route
Meet “the Green” and “the Clean”.
Ugljan is known as the green island because of its lush vegetation dominated by olives and pine trees. Pašman has the cleanest sea of the whole Adriatic, thanks to the fast-changing currents around the island. If the opportunity arises, take a dip in the crystal clear water and enjoy.
Our route will take you across the many bike trails on both islands. We start in Preko, the ferry landing on Ugljan, ride through this fragrant Adriatic island to the bridge connecting Ugljan and Pašman, and all across Pašman.
It is a lovely, scenic, relatively easy route, all the more enjoyable for scarce road traffic.
4. Murter to Vodice route
This route starts on Murter, the HQ island of Jamming Adventures.
From the town of Murter the route with a view of old olive and fig trees and vineyards takes us to the tiny bridge at Tisno, that connects the island with the mainland.
From there we ride southeast, following the coast, toward Tribunj. We will pass this typical Dalmatian town and see its historic center on a tiny island, from where the town grew and spread to the coast.
The trip takes us through Vodice, the spot of one of the toughest and most attractive mountain bike tracks — Orlov krug (Eagle’s Circle). This is where the famous MTB XCO World Cup takes place each year.
Our finish line is Jadrija, a small settlement southeast of Vodice. Dismounting, we will enjoy a lovely view of the St. Nicholas on Ljuljevac island at the mouth of Šibenik canal. St Nicholas is one of four fortresses that protected Šibenik on both sea and land.
5. Krka route
One of the most beloved national parks in Croatia along with its surrounding trails makes a great cycling spot. Pedal across the many routes against the backdrop of noisy cascades and the incredible nature. This is an active sightseeing trip second to none.
Krka National Park is a gorgeous location featuring pools and lakes formed by the namesake river cascading over travertine rock formations. A place famous for its natural beauty and rich history showcased throughout the park.
Our route takes us along the bicycle trails in the park and the countryside around it. During the trip, we will visit the winery, have lunch in Skradin, and maybe even go for a swim in the Krka river.
But wait, there’s more
You might have noticed that the trips we have mentioned cover only 5 days out of a seven-day tour. Ok, the day of your arrival will be spent meeting the rest of the group and exploring Biograd on foot, but what happened to the sixth adventure?
It takes place on the fifth day of your Jamming holiday. On that day, we will mix things up a bit and let you choose. There will be a great climbing opportunity in Paklenica national park for the free(climbing) spirit and a chance to hike through Plitvice if you feel you could use a walk amidst some of the most gorgeous nature in all of Croatia.
Both options are super exciting, so don’t worry that you will make the wrong choice.
Most of the daily routes we have planned range from easy to somewhat challenging but none are unbearably demanding. When choosing between various routes we will always try to adapt to the group average fitness level. If at any time you decide you have had enough for the day, our van is always nearby to pick you up and let you enjoy the rest of the trip cozying inside.
What to pack
1. For cycling trips
The clothing, of course, depends very much on the season you pick for your holiday and the weather forecast. Weather in Croatia is generally mild, but coastal areas can be somewhat fickle, especially when the trademark northern/north-eastern wind called bura (bora) starts to blow.
For the summer dress light, go for a long-sleeved jersey shirt to prevent sunburns and don’t forget to bring water and refill wherever you can, as it can get pretty hot on the coast.
For the wet season and cold weather, go with layers of preferably water-resistant clothing. A wool zip shirt, long tights, and a helmet liner will keep you warm and dry during all but the coldest of days.
Bring a few pairs of socks to keep your feet warm and dry.
Some cash, converted into Croatian Kuna will be nice to have for lunches, snacks, and those side of the road souvenir stalls.
Finally, don’t forget the camera, as there will be sights you will want to show to your friends and family when you return.
All the rest is up to us, we will provide a helmet, bring all the accessories, repair kits and everything needed to keep your ride in tip-top shape.
2. Standard luggage
Feel free to bring as much as you want to, as you can keep your bags at the base in Biograd hotel for the entire trip. That means you won’t have to skip from accommodation to accommodation at all during the adventure.
Leave some empty space in your bags for souvenirs, such as hearty Dalmatian wines, divine Croatian rakija brandy, some of the world’s best olive oil, and Dalmatinski pršut (Dalmatian cured ham). All of those make great and tasty mementos and will let you relive the holiday when nostalgia kicks in.
We will prepare a hybrid sports bike, the mighty Kona Splice Deluxe to set you up properly for the adventure.
This multipurpose, rugged, and efficient two-wheeled hybrid makes urban and off-road exploration fun and easy (NOTE: on our adventures, we will stick to the road exclusively). Kona is a great choice, meaning you don’t need to carry your own ride on this trip. Of course, if you can’t bear to be parted from it for a week, do bring it along.
Kona Splice Deluxe is a light and durable thing. The 27 gear drivetrain, courtesy of Shimano, makes uphill pedaling less of a chore, while the Suntour fork makes those bumps on the trail virtually disappear. Add the Tectro disc brakes in the equation and you will be virtually (un)stoppable, come hell or high water — weather wise.
See you in Croatia
Now you know a little bit more about what to expect when visiting this interesting, true Mediterranean destination. We hope you have acquired a brand new travel itch and that you will put Croatia and Dalmatian coast in your itinerary.