What is the TET?
The TET, or Trans Euro Trail is a 51000km adventure motorcycle route that passes through most of the countries in Europe and allows like minded motorcyclists to enjoy a mix of road and offroad routes.
Currently the TET crosses thirty countries and is expanding. Each section of the TET is mapped out and updated by a volunteer known as a “linesman” that ensures the best experience whether it be cultural or riding for people using the route.
Why ride the TET?
If you are excited by a true motorcycle adventure but don't have the time or ability to travel across the World then the TET is just the answer. Mixing accessibility with the feeling of travelling somewhere adventurous it is perfect for a one day or two week holiday that can fit in with your work and family commitments.
Most parts of the TET can be reached within a few days from the UK via the Eurotunnel or cross channel ferries and allow access to some very unspoint and remote landscapes that are very different to those in the UK.
It’s also great for a cultural experience of visiting different countries and trying the food and traditions of the locals.
The TET route of Italy circumnavigates the country and allows riders to see a good overview of Italian life and culture all the way from Milan to Palermo.
Like many countries Italy is vastly different in both lifestyle and business form the North to the South and the Italian TET allows riders to experience the differences. Be warned though as the temperature is vastly different too and riding is Sicily in the heat of summer can be a real test!
Terrain is also very different from the North of Italy to the South. The North comprises the towering alps of central Europe that feature snow capped peaks with lush green Alpine meadows while the South is much drier and flatter but features beautiful coastline and beaches.
Ballabio to Cene
The great thing about the TET is that the off-road sections tend to be accessible in both location and size. When you have only a Sunday afternoon these shorter sections allow you to get away from the grind but also be home in time for dinner!
Such is the section between Ballabio and Cene in Lombardy. The road sections wind up and down the beautiful Bergamasche Prealps through small villages and hamlets that have many great small pizzeria’s and trattorias to stop in for lunch.
As the route heads further up into the mountains we pass around the range peaked by Monte Resegone, a large 1800m snow capped peak that towers over the TET route. The section is marked by short, sub ten km sections of smooth graded gravel road that take you away from the busier main roads and submerge you in quintessential Italian Alpine culture.
Due to the well graded gravel roads it is perfect for 2 up riders on the large Adventure bikes who are visiting Italy for a touring holiday and want to take in a small amount of off-road gravel riding without getting into trouble. Even though there are always cafes and help nearby, these gravel sections really feel peaceful and wild and are a great antidote to the Italian cities you might experience on a motorcycle touring holiday.
There is plently of beautiful mountain views along the route including charming medieval churches and of course castles.
It is important to note that with many Gravel tracks in Italy the rules are quite different to most European Countries. Each Gravel track belongs to the local area known as the commune. You usually must purchase a small ticket of between 5 and 10 euros from either a nearby cafe or from the commune offices. Some also have car park style ticket machines. Some also come with an allowance for overnight wild camping too! The sign below may look scary and look like motorcycles are not prohibited but you are allowed access with the relevant ticket.
Navigating TET Italy
All GPX navigation files are available from the TET website under the relevant location heading. These can be loaded into any sattelite navigation system that uses GPX files.
There are many free or cheap to use smartphone apps that provide live traffic and road condition updates.
By simply installing the apps through either App Store on iPhone or Google Play Store on Android you will be able to load the TET GPX files.
If you would like to find out more about the TET in general or the Italian section please visit the Trans Euro Trail website.
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