Cycle tourism, an activity that combines the pleasure of traveling with a passion for cycling, is becoming more and more popular. The latest data, such as those provided by Legambiente in their press release of 2023, confirm that bike tourism is no longer a niche, but is emerging as an increasingly widespread travel trend.

Family on a cycling vacation
Family on a cycling vacation, picture by Pierluigi Palazzi via Canva PRO

The Numbers Provided By Legambiente

According to the data provided by Legambiente in collaboration with Isnart in 2023, cycling vacations have recorded a significant increase compared to previous years.

The total number of cycle tourists in Italy is constantly growing: there were 9 million in 2022 (in 2019 there were 4.4 million), a number that created an economic impact of over 1 billion euros.

A key point highlighted by Legambiente concerns the growth of this sector in Italian regions where this touristic product had not yet taken hold.

In addition to the established regions in this product, such as Tuscany, Veneto, and Trentino-Alto Adige (which alone attracted 47% of cycle tourism flows in 2022), there is emphasis on the progressive spread of this trend throughout the rest of the country. It’s worth mentioning:

  • Basilicata, which hosts 21 cycle tourism itineraries for a total of 1,729 km.
  • Abruzzo, where the experience of cycling along the “Costa dei Trabocchi” stands out.
Stretch of cycle path along the "Costa dei Trabocchi"
Stretch of cycle path along the “Costa dei Trabocchi”, picture by only_fabrizio via Canva PRO
  • Puglia, which aims for a “bike” positioning, especially through the organization of many sport activities.
  • Calabria, which has strongly focused on the “Bike paths Park“.
Some stages of the "Bike paths Park" of Calabria
Some stages of the “Bike paths Park” of Calabria, picture via Canva PRO

Sustainability And Cycle Tourism

In addition to participation numbers, the data emphasize how cycle tourism is becoming an increasingly popular choice for those seeking sustainable travel experiences. Traveling by bike, in fact, reduces carbon emissions, providing an ecological alternative to traditional modes of transportation.

This connection between sustainability and cycle tourism could be one of the main drivers of this exponential growth. In the face of global attention to environmental protection, cycle tourism emerges as a practice that not only allows exploration of new places but also contributes to preserving the ecosystem.

Bike surrounded by greenery
Bike surrounded by greenery, picture by vzwer via Canva PRO


In conclusion, cycle tourism is no longer confined to a niche but is becoming a fast-growing trend that requires resources and investments. The sustainable aspect, along with the positive impact on local communities, makes biking tourism an enticing choice for travelers.

If you’re looking for an exciting, healthy, and responsible way to explore the world, cycle tourism is definitely the way to go!

Author: Filippo Brunato

Hi! My name is Filippo, I come from Udine and I study Lingue per l’Intermediazione Turistica e d’Impresa at the University of Trento. Sport, learning foreign languages and tourism are my greatest passions. I love travelling and getting to know new places and cultures, and I believe that the sustainable approach is vital for the future of this valuable economic sector.
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