4 hidden gem museums you will experience on bike tour!
One of the main reasons we love traveling to Europe is that it’s a treasure chest of art and culture just waiting to be explored. While every Ciclismo ride is designed to be scenically stunning and make your heart and soul pound, we also want to make sure that your curiosity is sparked and re-charged daily. That’s why we guarantee an abundant diet of cultural hidden treasures on every tour that includes walking tours, historical talks, and visits to hidden gem museums where the spirit of a culture and place comes alive.
From a museum dedicated to World War I history in Slovenia, to a museum in Siena where we have VIP access to a contrada (a neighborhood museum), here’s the short list of our favorite museums you will experience on a Ciclismo bike tour!
Discover the Wonders of Sicily at the Museo Mandralisca.
On Day five of our Bike Across Sicily tour, we experience Cefalù, one of the most evocative villages in all of Italy and here, on our rest day, you can visit the Museo Mandralisca. An undisputed home of Sicilian history, this museum preserves precious works of art including paintings, pottery, furniture, and shells from the IV century BC to the XIX century. Within a few rooms, you learn about Sicily’s history and soul.
You’ll see the second most famous smile after the Mona Lisa: the mysterious “portrait of an unknown sailor” by Antonello da Messina. After your museum visit, relax with a glass of dry Zibibbo in the historic center of Cefalu where you’ll gaze in awe at its main cathedral, one of the jewels in Sicily’s Arab-Norman crown. Explore Bike Across Sicily!
Learn about World War I History at the Kobarider Museum.
Kobarid is a small town in north-western Slovenia located on the Soča River that marks the border between Italy and Slovenia. If you are fascinated by World War I history, this town and the Kobarider Museum will exceed your expectations. Awarded “The Museum of the Year” by the Council of Europe, the museum displays exhibits on the events that occurred during WWI. (12 battles were fought to control the river.)
Of course, our favorite history lessons come from our local guides, who will share many family stories from this land. After a full day immersed in Slovenia’s abundant nature and culture, make a toast to the stunning beauty of the Soca valley with a crisp Slovenian white wine. Explore Friuli and Slovenia!
Celebrate Carnival at the Museo delle Maschere Mediterranee.
If you are intrigued by the carnivals of Venice, Rio, or New Orleans, then the extraordinary Museo delle Maschere Mediterranee is a must-see and will take you back to the dramatic and mysterious origins of carnival! Created in 2001, this museum was born to illustrate the cultural link between the traditional, world-renowned Sardinian masks and the Mediterranean area.
This fascinating Sardinian treasure is located in Mamoiada, a small town in the Nuoro region of Sardinia tucked into the Barbagia mountains, known as shepherd country where the natives live by the land and listen very carefully to it rhythms. On this very special bicycle tour of land and sea, we’ll get swept away by the views, the history, and the culture as we nibble on local pecorino and wash it all down with a glass (or two) of full-bodied Cannonau. Explore Swept Away Sardinia!
Get VIP access to a neighborhood museum and learn about the Palio di Siena.
The “Palio di Siena” is one of the most coveted events in Tuscany. Boasting centuries-old origins, this famous horse race is held in the Piazza del Campo, regarded as one of Europe’s greatest medieval squares. On our Heart of Tuscany Tour, Ciclismo guests visit a “Museo della Contrada”. Not open to the public, this tiny treasure is only open to members of the community. Given Ciclismo’s Tuscan roots and connections, we have been given VIP access! Here we will admire the treasures of the district, learn about the costumes used in the parades, the horses and the jockeys, talk with the local veterans busy preparing the next race, and admire the “rags” or Palio (a painted long banner)” won over the years! Before we stroll off to dinner, we’ll pair our learnings from the day with a glass of Brunello di Montalcino in the Piazza del Campo. Explore Heart of Tuscany!