Cycle tourism is a “soft” form of tourism which assures respect for and full fruition of the host territory: Ciclovia dei Laghi and Sport e relax in bici are two cycle tourism projects that cover the area between Lake Como and Lake Maggiore (Provinces of Lecco, Como, Varese, Verbano-Cusio-Ossola in Italy, and Canton Ticino in Switzerland).
The Cycle Lane of Lakes (Ciclovia dei Laghi)
The Cycle Lane of the 14 lakes, runs through the territories of the Province of Lecco, Como and Varese, from Colico to Ponte Tresa, crossing 9 different landscape ambits, each one of which represents an apex, around which the thematic courses contained in the 9 itineraries have been developed.
The Cycle Lane, which is 270 km. long (and about 310 km. if you consider also some alternative routes and links with the ring), assumes multiple value. It can in fact be considered like a local itinerary that develops through various scenic ambits and where the routes have a limited length and allow the tourist to visit the most remarkable cultural and environmental assets in the region. It is also like a single itinerary that crosses the 14 lakes and links up with the international and interregional, connecting up with the cycle lanes that were created in Canton Ticino and with the cycle tourist itinerary of the Province and the bordering districts.
Bike Sports & Relaxation (Sport e relax in bici)
Cycling is loved by thousands because it tells stories: stories of men and women, of places, of feats, of hard work. The areas described in this guide have a great deal to tell: indeed, with their landscapes where flat zones suddenly turn into steep climbs, have been the theatre of epic, exciting feats throughout the history of cycling.
To keep the memories of these places alive and offer the ever growing numbers of cycling fans a chance to test themselves, 25 routes were designed. The itineraries, which will be completed by late 2012, focus on two main user types: general and specialist cycle tourists. The main need of the former is physical activity, competitive and non, while the latter seek milder physical activities, using the cultural and nature resources of the territory.
Which is why three different route types are proposed:
• 5 mountain time trials – serious climb routes with timed results in real time;
• 2 sports itineraries – difficult climbs without timing;
• 18 relaxation itineraries – medium-low difficulty routes suited to those who want to enjoy a pleasant excursion with less physical effort.
The fascination of the challenge, the lake, the mountains, and also the historic villas and monuments…all within the range of a bike ride.