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Italy by bike and by boat, between Mantua and Venice - Vita Pugna

Reference - VBIT803G/VBIT804G

Bike and boat trip in 8 days and 7 nights in Italy between Mantua and Venice aboard the cruise ship Vita Pugna. Discovery of the Po Delta, the towns of Adria and Chioggia.

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Italy by bike and by boat, between Mantua and Venice - Vita Pugna
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From Mantua
From Venice
Vita Pugna

Bike and boat trip between Mantua and Venice on the Vita Pugna



Cycling and boat trip aboard the Vita Pugna, a comfort cruise ship on the Po cycle route between Mantua and Venice in northern Italy. Unique trip combining gastronomy, nature and culture. Visit the stunning towns of Chioggia and Adria and admire the panoramas over the Po Delta. This route can be done from Mantua or Venice.


Highlights of the stay:

  • Mantua, Venice and Chioggia
  • the Po delta
  • Ferrara, cycling town
  • Nature, culture and gastronomy

Day 1 - Mantua

Arrival on the boat possible from 4 p.m. and installation in the cabins. Bikes are delivered to you on site. The Vita Pugna is moored in Porto Catena, a 15-minute walk from the station. Meeting with the team during dinner at 7 p.m. Self-guided tour of Mantua in the evening, one of the most beautiful cities in northern Italy.


Day 2 - Loop around Mantua - 40 km

Departure for a short bike tour towards the lakes of Mantua to the Bosco Fontana Nature Reserve.
The afternoon is devoted to the visit and discovery of the city.

Day 3 - Circuit between Mantova - Governolo - Zelo - 50 km

The Vita Pugna takes you to Governolo, bastion of the Mincio Pirates and the starting point of the cycle route along the Po River, to the village of Ostiglia to discover its medieval ruins. Then you will have the opportunity to visit the Carrousel museum and see the folk show in Bergantino. Also enjoy a tasting at the cheese factory. Walk along the "Canal Bianco" to reach Zelo.


Day 4 - Circuit between Zelo - Ferrara - Adria - 50 km

After breakfast, take your bike to Ferrara. The number of cycle paths and the great popularity of cycling make it the city of cycling in Italy. Visit the historic center of the old town which is still surrounded by its walls. From Ferrara, take the bus to Adria, an ancient Greek port, known for the Baltic amber trade.


Day 5 - Adria circuit - Nature reserve of the Po Delta - Pellestrina island - 40 km

Departure from Adria by boat towards Porto Viro. You discover the Delta and cross the Adige river. You then follow the Po-Brondolo, which connects the river to the Venetian lagoon. Night on the island of Pellestrina in front of Chioggia nicknamed "Little Venice": do not miss the fish market at dawn.


Day 6 - Circuit between the island of Pellestrina - Venice - 30 km

A short island tour by ferry takes you to Lido di Venezia which now hosts the Venice International Film Festival and many stars. Visit to a historic glass factory on the island of Murano, with demonstration of glass blowing by a master craftsman.
After reaching the Vita Pugna, enjoy a cruise to Venice. After dinner, discover Venice at night, now free from the crowds: Benvenuti a Venezia! Then short boat trip to Lido Island, along the Murazzi with a stop in Malamocco. Night in the lagoon near Saint Mark's Square.


Day 7 - Venice loop circuit

Free day to discover the magnificent historic center of the capital of the Republica Serenissima and its magnificent islands. You stay in Venice for the last night.


Day 8 - End of the tour in Italy

After breakfast with a view of the lagoon and the ritual of greetings end of the trip by bike and boat and departure. You can enjoy Venice with extra nights.

Depending on the departure dates, the tour departs from Mantua or Venice.

Due to the navigation plan, the route may be reversed or changed.

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From Venice
Vita Pugna

Day 1: Arrival in Venice


Each participant arrives individually in Venice, and boarding aboard the Vita Pugna begins at 5:00 pm. At 6:30 pm, a welcome drink is served. The on-board team and your guide will be on hand to explain the itinerary and answer any questions you may have. After dinner, a first stroll through the center of Venice is organized.


Day 2: Loop tour of Venice 


After a pleasant guided walk, you're free to explore Venice's iconic sites at your own pace. The majestic Piazza San Marco awaits you, with its breathtaking monuments, followed by the Castello district, the Campo dei Santi Giovanni e Paolo with its imposing Gothic basilica and the Scuola Grande di San Marco, now the city's civic hospital.

You can also admire the famous Rialto Bridge.

At the end of the day, why not consider an excursion to the charming, colorful towns of Burano and Torcello? The choice is yours, the main thing being to get back on board in time for dinner!


Day 3: Bike from Venice to Pellestrina - 25 km

Set course for Murano, where a visit to a historic glassworks will give you the opportunity to discover the age-old art of glassmaking through a captivating demonstration. Then hop on your bike to explore two islands with very distinct characters: first, Lido, renowned as the home of the Venice Mostra, with its Belle Époque-style hotels and exclusive beach resorts.

Then on to traditional Pellestrina, an authentic fishing village with colorful houses, where time seems to stand still. Then return to your boat to re-board.


Day 4: Pellestrina to Adria - 40 km

This cycling tour of Italy begins with a stroll through the picturesque fishing village of Chioggia, where the thousand-year-old clock tower stands majestically.

Weather permitting, you can enjoy the beach.

Then drive along the banks of the River Po, lined with poplars and cultivated fields.

Explore another facet of the Po Valley, far from the hustle and bustle of the cities. Your day's cycling ends in Adria, the ancient Greek port that gave its name to the Adriatic Sea.

After dinner, you'll have the chance to stroll through the charming city center.


Day 5: Adria to Zelo - 35 km


After a short barge crossing, hop on your bike and follow the course of the River Po to Ferrara.

This fascinating city of art, also home to a prestigious university, deserves its nickname of "Italy's cycling capital".

At the end of the day, a private coach will take you to the village of Zelo. There, you'll find your boat ready to welcome you: with just over 300 inhabitants, a church and a pretty arched bridge, this place offers the ideal atmosphere for a well-deserved evening of relaxation.


Day 6: Zelo to Mantua - 50 km

This stage begins with a magical visit to Bergantino, a small town where you can step back into the carefree days of childhood at the Museum of Rides and Popular Entertainment.

After this enchanting experience, taste the grana padano cheese to recharge your energies before reaching the second stop of the day: Ostiglia. This town of Roman origin, located between Mantua and Polesine, is where the Mondadori publishing house was founded in 1907.

Then join the Vita Pugna in Governolo, where the Mincio "falls into the Po", as Dante described it. In the evening, head for Mantua, the final destination of our Italian bike and boat trip.


Day 7: Visit Mantua


Start exploring the city of Mantua and its surroundings. The view of Mantua, surrounded by its "lakes" created by the Mincio River, offers a spectacular panorama, giving the impression of a veritable island, dominated by the castle of San Giorgio.

In the afternoon, visit Mantua, a city once ruled by the Gonzaga family, who made it a major political, artistic and cultural center of the Renaissance.

From Piazza Sordello, with its majestic Ducal Palace and Duomo, you'll reach Piazza delle Erbe, dominated by the Clock Tower, the Rotunda of San Lorenzo (the city's oldest church), and the Basilica of Sant'Andrea, a jewel of Renaissance architecture and art.


Day 8: End of trip in Mantua


Your bike and boat trip in Italy aboard the Vita Pugna ends after breakfast. You can then take the train back to Venice, or enjoy the city even more with an extra night!




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From Venice
Vita Pugna


General informations :

  • 8 days and 7 nights
  • Boat comfort level: Comfort


The dates :

  • From Mantua :
    • Low season: 13/04

    • Mid season : 27/04, 06/07, 20/07, 03/08, 17/08

    • High season : 11/05, 25/05, 08/06, 22/06, 26/10

    • Very high season: 31/08, 14/09, 28/09, 12/10

  • From Venice : 
    • Mid-season: 20/04, 29/06, 13/07, 27/07 and 10/08
    • High season: 04/05, 18/05, 01/06, 15/06 and 19/10/2024 
    • Very high season: 24/08, 07/09, 21/09 and 05/10/2024


SPECIAL OFFER - €200 discount per person on departures on 06/29 and 08/24

Contact by phone (05 49 35 42 56) or by email (bicycletteverte@respire-voyages.com) to benefit from it!



Included :

  • 7 nights
  • Full board (breakfast, dinner and homemade packed lunch)
  • Coffee, tea and other hot drinks on board
  • Sheets and towels
  • Free courtesy kit
  • Short daily maid service and midweek cabin cleaning service and towel change
  • Bicycle helmet
  • Application including maps, points of interest and GPS tracks
  • Information about the digital tour
  • English speaking tour leader within an international group
  • Second companion with a minimum of 22 people
  • Guided tour in Venice and Mantua
  • Visit to a cheese factory with tasting of typical Grana Padano
  • Visit of the Carousel and the Street Entertainment Museum
  • Visit to a historic glass factory on the island of Murano
  • Ferrara-Adrian bus transfer

Not included :

  • Transport to the place of departure
  • Drinks on board
  • Museums, fees and extras in general
  • Ticket for public transport in Venice and in the lagoon (we suggest the ACTV 48h ticket)
  • Personal expenses
  • Visits

The options :

  • VTC or VAE rental
  • Bike theft insurance (for rented bikes)
  • cancellation insurance


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Ground :

Most of this cycling tour takes place along the Po plains and the daily stages vary from 25 to 55 km, mostly on paved cycle paths along rivers and canals, or on quiet country roads. The boat is moored at night and usually sets sail after breakfast. Some parts of the route are made by barge, to allow easier access to the cycle paths or simply to enjoy the cruise.
Recreational cycling in mostly flat areas with only a few short climbs and descents. Little effort required, suitable for most people.

The tour is also suitable for children. If the child one day does not want to ride a bike, he / she can stay on the boat with one of the parents.

Weather :

Warm temperatures and sunny region.



30 to 55 km of hiking per day, or about 3 to 4 hours of cycling.
Easy to follow route. No difficulties, accessible to all.



Cycling maps for Italy on cartovelo.fr
Bike guide on Po cycle route (Bikeline)

Additional nights:

An additional night is offered to you at the start and end of your stay, in a hotel.


The participants :

On board you meet an international community of all ages, men, women, singles and couples with children.



Here are the people responsible for your bike and boat holidays:
On board, the captain and his boy. They are responsible for the smooth running of the holidays (on the boat) and take the boat from stage to stage. The cook prepares the meals.
Participants are accompanied by a guide. This will help you in the event of a breakdown and will advise you on the route to follow and give you the necessary tourist information. He or she is multilingual.


Meals :

- Breakfasts: on the boat, you will find a substantial breakfast.
- Lunches: 'lunch' (sandwiches, fruit, snack, drink).
- Dinners: three courses (drinks not included)
Drinks, such as wine, beers, lemonades and mineral water are not included but can be purchased on board.


The bike :

21-speed VTC available for hire. At the end of the tour you leave the rental bike on the boat.
The bikes are equipped with saddlebags as well as an anti-theft device, a card holder, a bottle and a tire repair kit.

If you take your own bike, the return to the starting point is at your expense. (crossing in Venice around 130 €). It cannot be insured against theft by our company, you will have to make the necessary arrangements with your usual insurer. Don't forget your anti-theft device!

Roadbook :

We will provide you with information on the progress of your stay as well as the itinerary, subject to change.


Transport :

- By train: Venice is on one of the main railway lines and serves the largest Italian cities. Mantova accessible via Verona.
- By car: Mantova is on the A22 (Brennero-Modena) motorway 50 km from Verona. Venice is on the A4 motorway.
- By plane: Venice international airport.


Your vehicle:

In Mantova: free parking 500m from the port and supervised paid parking 1.5km from the port
In Venice: Very expensive parking, it is advisable to park in Mestre and take public transport. Secure parking near Mestre station.


Cancellation insurance :

In order to guarantee the reimbursement of costs in the event of cancellation of your stay, you can take out cancellation insurance. To learn more about insurance, click here.

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Vita Pugna

To access the boat description: click here.

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Vita Pugna

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