Aosta is the capital of the Aosta Valley region, with a population of 35,000 and is the major hub to explore some of the most famous mountains and stunning landscapes on the globe. It's here you'll find some of the best mountain bike trails in the world, no questions asked.
Located in the centre of the Valley, the town was founded by the Romans in 25 BC at a geographical point where the valley floor reaches its maximum width, and where the mountains heading to France and Switzerland converge. The presence of the Piccolo and Gran San Bernardo pass makes Aosta an important strategic junction from a transport point of view and gives amazing access by uplift vehicles to the epic terrain that is hidden away in these hills.
Famous for it's snow-capped peaks of the Matterhorn, Mont Blanc, Monte Rosa and Gran Paradiso. There are several major ski resorts here which include Courmayeur and Cervinia, but what we are really interested in are the hills of the surrounding valley and the resorts of La Thuile and Pila!
We'll be taking you to the Aosta Valley's best riding spots, some you'll have heard of, maybe even ridden, some you won't, unless you've been exploring the Valley for years like our friends at Swit Shop Aosta have....
- Two guided days in La Thuile's natural bike park, a must do for any enduro mountain bike aficionado. It's a world-class natural bike park with some of the best alpine singletrack gnar you could ever wish to ride.
- One guided day in Pila, beyond the park we all know, you'll see some of the best-hidden trails and ridgelines found in this iconic destination. You'll have a chance to ride more of the bike park on your down day should you be itching to get in there!
- Two van supported and guided days exploring the Aosta Valley in the high alpine backcountry. Truly epic riding with incredible backdrops, we're talking once in a lifetime trails here. There will be a pedaling involved on these days, how much depends on how epic you want to get and how rad you want to be!
NB - Though we can operate an Epic Aosta Valley Tour from June through September, the lifts of Pila and La Thuile are open for July and August only. The Couis 1 Chairlift that accesses the very top of Pila operates from the end of July to the end of August. Booking outside of these dates you will have an amazing, bespoke, shuttle van focused trip.
You'll arrive in Turin or Geneva airport where we'll be there to meet you and take you to your stunning B/B accommodation in the centre of Aosta, metres from all the action.
The accommodation is a stunning B/B accommodation bang in the centre of town, lovingly renovated and steeped in local culture, it's a luxurious and comfortable base for your Aosta Valley mountain bike holiday.
We'll have a welcome aperitivo on the Sunday evening with your guide for the week, to speak about the program, what you'll be riding and what you'll need. As well as picking the guides brains you'll also get to know your fellow companions, should you be a mixed group.
You will meet at 9h each morning, some days will start earlier in order to transfer you to the resort or location planned for the day. You'll ride until the lifts close or the shuttle finishes at around 17:30 each day. Lunch will be taken at a variety of locations, from mountain refuge's and osteria's to a backpacked sandwich with an epic view.
La Thuile - Natural Enduro
La Thuile hosted rounds of the Enduro World Series in 2014, 2016 and most recently in 2018. A rider favourite every year it's been on the calendar, it is the epitome of gravity enduro mountain biking.
A stunning village located just beyond the Mont Blanc range, it's picturesque views and quiet Italian alpine way of life put you at one with nature and the raw mountains surrounding you.
The riding is a reflection of this connection with the mountains. Advertising itself as a 'natural bike park' there is not a berm or table top, rock or root to be found that wasn't put there by nature. The trails are technical and challenging, fast and rewarding. Serviced by two chairlifts taking you up to a height of 2200m, it's all about epic singletrack, loamy forest, open foot out flat out turns, steep chutes, rocky descents and off camber roots.
Consisting of 1 green, 2 blues, 4 yellows, 3 reds and 6 blacks, there's plenty of variety on offer here. Though you'll quickly find yourself wanting more than the blues once you've ridden them, careful what you wish for! Trails like Lupin go from 0 - 100 almost immediately! This is what your enduro bike was made for, we'll be taking you beyond the bike park as well, to access some of the lesser known terrain found on La Thuile's opposing valley, where the terrain smooths out and you see nobody but your friends, the guide and the odd Marmotte.
You can check out the fun we have over in La Thuile on our tracks check videos here.
Pila - More than a bike park
Pila is recognised for flat out DH tracks, dusty corners and jumps. It hosted a UCI World Cup in 2005 and has hosted many Italian Championships and IXS rounds in it's park. Insanely good fun on any kind of gravity oriented bike, it's certainly worth spinning a lap or two on these trails if you haven't before.
What many who ride here don't realise is the array of epic singletrack that can be ridden with a little bit of work, directly from the chairlift network. Exposed ridgelines, insanely long descents that cross an incredible variety of terrain all found on Pila's famous moon dust dirt, that runs just as well in the wet as in the dry!
A purpose built Ski resort in the winter, Pila is a small village found at the top of the Aosta-Pila cable car. Offering epic views over the bustling city below and the incredible mountain range beyond, the riding here is challenging, fast and has flow and variety that's hard to better anywhere else.
It's also an excellent way to introduce yourself to what the greater Aosta Valley has to offer. Somewhat less 'traditionally alpine' than La Thuile, the trails here show off Aosta's high alpine character, you'll start to see fewer trees and more rock as the altitude pushes 3000m at the top.
Have a look at the fun we had in summer 2017 here.
The Aosta Valley is stunningly epic
The Aosta Valley - This is mountain biking
The Aosta Valley, a vast area of natural beauty, huge mountain ranges and stunning scenery. Centred around the city of Aosta, it's about as epic as you can get and stay within the boundaries of civilisation.
Throughout the centuries, long even before the Romans used Aosta as a gateway to the Alps, man and beast have used the mountains to navigate and farm. These pathways have in some cases remained as they were, yet other with the introduction of the bike have really evolved. However they occurred we as mountain bikers have been left with a treasure trove of opportunity to have fun and explore in one of the most beautiful locations you could ever wish to ride push bikes.
We will be using a shuttle van to do the majority of the hard work for you, though our guides will ask you to put some effort in to access the good stuff! This is nowhere near the bike park, out here you are sharing the mountains with everyone and everything. A feeling of calmness and respect of nature becomes very apparent when riding here, it's a different kind of fun, it's a feeling that stays with you, seeing and riding terrain you will never forget.
Some of the descents here are intimidatingly long, imagine descending more than an entire weekends worth of a UK bike park in one run!
- Accommodation in a stunning hotel in the centre of Aosta town.
- Return airport transfers from Geneva or Turin Airport with bike carriage.
- Amazing, locally sourced Breakfast ingredients
- Five full days of guiding in Pila, La Thuile and the Aosta Valley backcountry
- Crisp linen, towels and toiletries.
- Experienced, passionate, professional and knowledgeable resort host to see you through your week.
- Secure bike storage, bike wash with Peaty's Products, works area with Park Tool stand, tools and pump.
- Welcome dinner and beers
What we can help with -
Transfers We'll have a van at the airport ready take you to your hotel in the centre of Aosta, metres from all the action. We will combine collecting everyone as a group from the airport. It’s best to book the holiday then the organise the flights once we have spoken with all the potential guests to avoid long wait times.
Flights You can fly into Turin from London Gatwick with British Airways, to Geneva from all London airports, Bristol, Birmingham, Manchester with BA or Easyjet. Note that BA offers FREE bike carriage!
Local Guides We have partnered with our friends at Three Seasons Bike to provide your guides and uplift vehicles for this bespoke mountain bike holiday. Our main guide Daniele is an Aosta local who knows his way around this mountain bike mecca as well as anyone.
Local Restaurants We have developed relationships with some of the best restaurants local to your accommodation to offer you great Aostan cuisine. Do your own thing or be led by us, it's your call, you'll find it hard to go too far wrong in this town!
The Aosta Valley holiday package is designed for very competent riders, available to individuals and groups alike, designed to provide you with everything you need for your week's mountain biking in Aosta. So book those flights, bring some cash and let us take care of the rest.