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Pocketmags Digital Magazines

E-BIKING IN ITALY

If you really want to experience the beauty of a natural landscape there is no better vehicle than the bicycle. And it needn’t be an exercise in strength and endurance. Jon Palmer goes e-biking in Italy…

PART 1 – LAKE GARDA

Image © Verona Garda Bike

Team Verona Garda Bike visit the Masi vineyards; a seat tube mounted battery; even on the flat, an e-bike will make the going easier; Malcesine, on the eastern shore of Lake Garda

The hills of Valpolicella, which rise in an uncoordinated eruption of undulations on the eastern shore of Lake Garda, have given us not only one of Italy’s most famous wines, but also some its most distinguished and distinctive olive oils – and the enchanting curiosity of the most northerly lemons in the world. Yes, that’s right: nowhere else on the planet can you grow lemons outside at this latitude. They grow them for fun these days (wine and olive oil are bigger business) but in times of yore the people of central and northern Europe relied on Lake Garda for their citrus-sourced Vitamin C.

It’s all about the microclimate, and that’s a product of the topography: the sheltering effects of the Alps to the north; the sun-trap south-facing valleys; the temperate breezes from the lake; the peculiarities of terroir of a onceglacial terrain. For students of wine (and presumably geography) it’s a paradise; and seeing it for yourself, and what and how people cultivate here, will really help you develop your understanding of the region’s produce. However, these hill roads aren’t really designed for car traffic, and you don’t see much from inside a car anyway. Cycling is a much better way to get around. But then there is the issue of those hills…

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About Italia!

Our new issue will take you from the chilly alpine splendour of Courmayeur in Valle d’Aosta right down to Sicily – visit the majestic Valley of the Temples near Agrigento or stay nearby at the Verdura Resort. A recent fl ying visit to Florence inspired our ‘48 Hours’ feature this month; from new discoveries at the Duomo to a new way of getting around (by tuk-tuk), this venerable city is always a pleasure to visit. And, turning to another alternative mode of transport, we take a tour around Lake Garda by e-bike.