What you need to know

Dolomites
Dolomites

How many people are on each tour?

We run a minimum of 4, maximum of 7 bikes + the guide. With potential for 4 pillions in each tour group, this gives a total of 7 riders, and a maximum of 11 people (+guide).

Are the bikes up to date and current models?

As far as we know, we are the only tour company in the world that offers new model demonstrators freshly replaced at the commencement of every tour season. You have the choice of three models included in the standard package, or a further six models for minor additional cost. See Bikes for more information.  

Do I/we have to travel with the group?

No. Most days there is a choice of routes; an easy, medium and challenging. The group (and guide) generally takes the medium route, which will take in at least one mountain pass. Each morning we check in with riders and decide on a majority basis which route will be the guided one, taking into consideration aspects such as weather etc. The easiest option usually involves one or more freeway (autobahn/autostrada) style sections, and will see people arriving at the following night's stop well ahead of the rest of the group. The 'go-large' option can take in as many as 8 mountain passes ...
Ultimately the experienced guide will make the final decision - and all options are good.  So there will be some opportunity to choose your own daily riding companions, routing, and time schedule. The guide is always there if you want to follow that majority chosen route, and not worry about maps and navigation.

How do I know where to go if I want to go alone without the guide/group?

There is a briefing each morning at breakfast to outline the day's suggested routes and any other ride options available. A daily map is provided with the key roads, passes and overnight stay clearly marked.

We can work out who would like to go on which option - e.g. highly-skilled few may all choose to take on a more challenging option (more mountain passes) on their own. Or if all participants choose to take this option, the guide will obviously head this way too. If some feel they would like to take a more 'tourist route', they may feel comfortable to tackle this on their own given easy navigational instructions, or the guide may accompany them, etc. Flexability is the key

Are there shorter or longer tours?

We've found that 12 days is a good balance, considering that it will be a minimum of a fortnight out of Australia , including the flying time. It takes a couple of days for most people to shake any jetlag cobwebs, get familiar with a different bike (and generally), 1 day to absorb riding on the right-hand side of the road. 

For these reasons we recommend sticking with the group for the first  'orientation' day, although there are still options for those ready to leap into big days of riding. If you feel you are just getting into your stride at the end of our tour (and are lucky enough to have not met your time and money restrictions), there are options for extending the bike hire and continuing the adventure on your own. We will have brought you up a few notches in your confidence with the navigation, language and road-craft skills needed for riding / driving in Europe.

Our Northern Italy tour extends to 16 days, but is not by necessity a great deal more riding- extra time can be spent being a tourist in Florence, Lago Du Garda, Venice and Pisa.

Or maybe you would like to extend your holiday before or after the tour with a non-motorcycling visit to other parts of Europe such as the British Isles , Northern Europe , or Spain etc, etc. Good value car hire is available back at our base, and the car can be returned anywhere in Germany.

What do I need to bring?

Detailed recommendations / suggestions re. clothing / ride gear is sent to participants on receipt of deposit for tours; generally you will need all your regular riding apparel- helmet, boots, gloves, wet-weather gear etc. and options for both hot and cold conditions. 

The bikes are equipped with one 36 litre GIVI top-box, and panniers provided for pillion bikes. We can also provide a magnetic tank bag if you like to carry lots of gear- but this generally overkill.. Generally the combination of panniers and top-box on the pillion bikes is more than room for clothing/ baggage required on the tour. Additional luggage for other travel and not required for the riding (your suitcase) may be stored at base until the completion of the tour. 

We also require participants to have a mobile phone with international roaming activated. Even some 'pre-paid' sim cards now have the option of international roaming - check with your service provider. Pricing for use of your Aussie phone in Europe has come down greatly in recent years, and we have tips to avoid any phone company 'traps'.

How far do I have to ride each day?

A: Minimum distances average 150km per day, with 350km being the largest minimum distance, and 75km being the shortest. These distances indicate the most direct route to the next overnight stop, and in most cases we will be taking a much less direct option i.e. the curvy (fun) stuff. 

Expect to spend about 2 to 4 hours on the bike each day - or up to 8 if you want to.  Each of our tours has a minimum of 1x 2 night stop-overs in the same location, where you can either take a day off riding, or pack in as much more as your bum can handle. National parks area of eastern provincial France (Five Countries West), Island of Krk in Croatia/ Cortina in Dolomites (Five Countries East), and both Florence and Cortina (Northern Italy Tour).

Generally, the suggested daily rides are designed to take in the best the roads have to offer and still have time for photos and relaxing. It's fun to mix up big days with shorter ones in a cruise-day then 'go large' pattern.

Do I have to be an experienced rider?

Yes. You need to be able to handle an open-class road bike (smallest are 650cc- see 'bikes') over a variety of road surfaces and in traffic. The European Alps are no place to learn the basics. 

You should also consider that we back up 3 days of riding before resting a day, so some understanding/ experience in motorcycle touring is an advantage. 

Riding on 'the wrong' side of the road is not as daunting as it sounds - it usually only takes a day or so for your brain to 'switch polarity'. As long as the operation of the bike's major and minor controls is second-nature, attention can be focused on staying on the correct side of the road for the 'orientation' stage.

Who can participate?

Each rider obviously must have a valid Australian (or other internationally recognized) motorcycle license that allows you to ride the bike you choose / is available for you. If taking a passenger, your license obviously must allow you to do so. 

Passengers as young as 12 are welcome to join the group, but they need to be ready to spend extended periods on the pillion seat, same for all passengers.

What's included in the tour price?

Bike hire - current model Kawasaki demonstrators Z800, Z650 or Versys 650. Z1000SX (Ninja), BMW F800R, Versys 1000GT, KTM 1290 Super Adventure and SuperDuke GT + 1090 Adventure, and BMW S1000XR & R1200GS all available at additional cost from standard hire. See bikes for more information. Bikes have accident / theft insurance - a 2500 euro 'at fault'  security deposit is required for insurance excess.

Note; Travel,  personal accident / injury / illness insurance cover is not  provided nor implied. Ozalps recommends the independent purchase of appropriate insurance cover. Policies are available from various insurers. A travel policy that covers riding the bike size you have booked (regularly policies designate under / over 200cc engine capacity), plus cover for the insurance excess for damage to the hire motorcycle is best. 

Twin-share accommodation which is a combination of off-season ski-resort lodges, pensions, gasthoff's (guest houses), and bed and breakfasts - dependent on the country we are in. Accommodation is equivalent to, or in most cases better than 3 star Aussie hotels/ renovated and modern pubs. A variety and picked at beautiful locations with emphasis on cultural experience. Single-room option may be available (on a limited basis) for most of our stays (9 out of 12 on the Five Countries tours), and adds an additional $420 to these tour package costs.

All breakfasts are also provided - awesome and quite different to Australia - true 'continental breakfasts'. 

Transfers from Munich to Weilheim for bike pickup, return transfers to Munich (city or airport). Please contact us for exact details of what is included.

Return airfare from Australian capital cities is also available for additional cost - please advise us early if you requre this.

How much will this cost?

Five Countries Tours (East and West)$5780 for rider, $3500 for pillion passenger, plus airfares- . These is for the 'standard' bikes, category 2, 3, 4 additional cost. See Bikes page for more details.

Northern Italy Mugello MotoGP and Corsica Tours : $6980 for rider, $3900 pillion for standard bikes. This is to cover additional bike hire and accommodation costs for a 16 day tour.

The 2015 return airfares ranged from $1600 to over $3000, depending on when you book, what stopovers you wanted, class of flight etc,etc.

We are finding the 2016 flights prices are so far remaining similar, and oil price reductions, demand + a whole range of economic factors can effect prices, both up and down..

How do I secure my position on particular dates and the bike I want?

A $600 booking deposit is required to secure a position in any tour. Spots in each tour and your prefered bike are assigned in a first paid deposit basis. 

Payment of any flight component is due at final flight confirmation, and can be paid via credit card. Full payment for the tour is required 90 days prior to the tour commencement date. Tour payments can be made by direct deposit.

What's not included in the tour price?

  • Airfare to Munich and return.
  • Lunch, dinner, beverages, laundry, road tolls, fuel, items of a personal nature, and souvenirs are individual expenses. These expenses can vary greatly- depending on your priorities. 
  • Fuel is not as bad as you'd think, at about $20 to $25 Australian dollars a tank. Count on using about a tank a day on average- so less than $250 for the 12 day tours . But you could use up to 2 tanks every other day if you are really intent on maximizing the available riding time.  
  • Road tolls- generally apply to the autostrasse / strada, so if you choose that option on the day, the expense will be offset by fuel and time savings. There are also a number of toll roads high in Austria , which are well worth the minor expence due to the amazing nature of their road surface and scenery.
  • Most days we do lunch at an outdoor cafe and enjoy the weather and the views - but if you've had a big breakfast, you might just skip lunch. And also we highly recommend doing a picnic on a mountainside somewhere. Restaurants are open from about noon to 3:30 for lunch, so you can do that every day if you like, or save your appetite for a splash out in the evening. 
  • The local beers in Europe are much better priced than at home, and the wines and food are also considerably cheaper.
  • For Northern Italy Tour, track entry for Mugello MotoGP up to the individual (when available).
  • Note: Travel, personal accident / injury / illness insurance cover is not  provided nor implied. Ozalps recommends the independent purchase of appropriate travel insurance cover. 
 
More questions? Contact us!