KING OF UCKA
KING OF UCKA
KING OF UCKA
Romans named Istria terra magica.
Bikenauts call it cycling magic land.
Istria is the largest Croatian peninsula situated in the northern part of the Adriatic. Crystal clear sea surrounds its green heart with vineyards and hundred years old olive groves.
Istria is home and training ground of Martin Cotar, ex-pro cyclist and your chief guide. Each detail of every backroad in Istria lives in his muscle memory. Martin will take you on rides immersed in nature, with local winding roads leading to welcoming villages and hilltop forts.
Did you know Lonely Planet included Istria among the top 10 destinations in Europe to visit in 2019?
KING OF UCKA
Here is your chance to be a cycling king or queen for a year.
Long live the King and Queen of Ucka 2019!
King of Ucka is a hill climbing race open to professional and amateur cyclists. It starts from Icici, at sea level, and finishes on the highest peak of Ucka mountain – Vojak. In total it covers 22 km with 1380 m of elevation.
On top of the excellent race organisation, Bikenauts Team will provide you with comprehensive support. You’ll feel like a winner once you reach the summit, regardless of your official result.
Ucka will reward you with the most amazing views of Kvarner islands and the city of Rijeka.
Labin, which will be your base during the trip, is an Istrian hilltop town with a rich cultural heritage. The old town of Labin is essentially a network of winding cobblestone streets leading to the fortress on the top of the hill. From here you can enjoy a panoramic view of rocky Island of Cres and the nearby seaside resort of Rabac.
Did you know that in 1923, when Labin was an important mining centre, miners organised a mutiny against Mussolini’s fascists and founded the Labin Republic?
The family-run Hotel Peteani is located in the heart of Labin. It is a great base to explore the old town, but also the nearby beaches of Rabac. Most importantly it enables a quick escape to great rides of central Istria and Ucka mountain. Hotel Peteani also features an excellent restaurant, sauna, and all the luxuries of a four-star hotel.
- Three nights stay
- Transfers in Croatia
- Meals and drinks
- Supported rides
- King of Ucka entry fee
- Custom cycling jersey
Deposit of £300 required to reserve.
Full balance is due 30 days before departure.
ISTRIA + KING OF UCKA TRIP INCLUDES
Flights, UK transfers, bike hire and travel insurance are not included.
*Drinks ordered by guests beyond normal amounts and away from group activities will incur additional charges
**Depending on personal preferences and flight times
Representatives from our transportation team will meet you upon your arrival at Pula airport. After a 40 minute drive, we reach Labin and check you in Hotel Peteani.
Depending on your arrival time and preferences, you take part in a spin-off ride on calm roads.
Distance: 37 km
Climbing: 510 m
Today is our first long day on a bike. We’ll head north towards the very centre of Istria and town of Pazin, famous for its abyss. Fully immersed in nature, on roads with almost no traffic, you’ll soon rediscover your love for cycling.
We’ll cruise next to brooks, small lakes and ancient hilltop villages, and then the vast blue mass of Adriatic sea. Selfies will be in order before returning to our hotel for a well-deserved feast.
Distance: 119 km
Climbing: 1840 m
Day 3 - King of Ucka
The day of the hill climbing race is here. After breakfast, we’ll talk about details and tactics, and load our bikes in vans. We’ll drive to Icici, a small coastal town serving as the starting point of King of Ucka.
Warm up and let the excitement rise. You’ll start the race with riders from different countries. We’ll fully support you whether you decide to race or enjoy this exhilarating climb at your own pace. Pride will wash over you as you take in the fantastic views from the top of Ucka mountain.
After a bit of celebration and socializing, we’ll head back to Istria on our bikes. Your reward will come in the form of sweet and well-earned descent through the Ucka Nature Park. We’ll continue on unexplored roads towards our hotel, riding as long and hard as you wish. In the evening we’ll have dinner in a stunning location next to the sea.
King of Ucka
Distance: 22.1 km
Climbing: 1360 m
Distance: 53 km
Climbing: 720 m
Spend your final day relaxing on a beach or go for one last spin around Labin. Our team will transfer you to Pula airport in time for your flight.
Deposit of £300 is required to reserve your place. It can be paid on our website with all major cards. Alternative payment arrangments, for example, bank transfer, are also available on request. The balance is due 30 days before departure. We’ll inform you when it’s time to cover the balance.
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After booking, we’ll be available to you at all times.
We’ll send you several emails with:
- Confirmation of booking
- Reminder to cover the balance
- Forms and additional information about the trip
If you choose to subscribe to our newsletter, we will send you:
- Occasional emails about our latest cycling trips
- Information about exclusive discounts and giveaways
You can unsubscribe from our newsletter at any time. You can also write to us and request the removal of your data.
You will have to:
- Purchase an aeroplane ticket to Croatia with bicycle fees
- Arrange transport to/from UK airport
- Own/rent/borrow a road bicycle
- Own/rent/borrow a bicycle travel box/bag
- Cover your travel, medical and bicycle insurance
- Pay for any extra activities and experiences you wish to enjoy in Croatia outside of the cycling trip
Yes, you can book a trip for more than one rider. When paying the deposit, you can select the number of guests.
In some instances, we are also able to accommodate non-riding family members or friends. However, places are limited and allocated on a first-come, first served basis. Please contact us beforehand to discuss.
Yes, we are available to help with all aspects of trip planning. We can recommend the best flights to get you to and from your selected trip, as well as hotels if you want to stay longer in Croatia.
Definitely. When it comes to road cycling in Croatia, and even the neighbouring countries, we can fulfil all your wishes. We are also able to organise female only trips with ex-pro female guides. Contact us to learn more.
You need to have a valid passport or identity card for the duration of your stay. If your travel document describes you as a British Citizen or citizen of any EU country, you don’t need a visa to enter Croatia.
If you are a citizen of a country outside the EU or in the event the UK leaves the EU, please consult Gov.uk website about travelling to Croatia.
We recommend you fly to Pula.
List of direct flights to Pula on 26/09/2019:
- 06:50 – London Southend – EasyJet
- 07:30 – Manchester – Jet2
- 10:25 – London Gatwick – EasyJet
- 16:45 – London Stansted – RyanAir
List of direct flights from Pula on 29/09/2019:
- 10:00 – London Stansted – Jet2
- 10:40 – Birmingham – Jey2
- 10:30 – London Stansted – RyanAir
- 10:45 – London Southend – EasyJet
- 11:05 – London Southend – EasyJet
- 12:40 – Manchester – Jet2
- 20:30 – London Southend – EasyJet
Once you’re confirmed on a trip, we will send you specific advice. However, in general, you will need:
- Passport or another valid travel document
- Travel insurance
- Road bike
- Cycling shoes and helmet
- Cycling kit for all conditions
- Spare parts – if you have some specific/uncommon accessories or components
- Mobile phone
- Debit/credit card or cash – if you wish to engage in activities outside the cycling trip
You should bring a road bike with drop bars and gears. Your bike must be in full working order. Consider checking/servicing your bicycle before the trip.
All airlines flying to Pula offer bike transport for an additional fee. Your bike needs to be packed before it can be put in the aircraft hold. Rules vary slightly between airlines, but in general your bike:
- Must be packaged in a bicycle box or bicycle bag
- Only one bike per box/bag is allowed
- The handlebars must be flush with the frame
- Pedals must be removed or flush against the frame
- No other items can be carried in the bicycle box/bag (i.e. clothing)
- Baggage allowance must not exceed 32kg
Please see Cycling Weekly’s guide to bike bags and boxes for further advice.
If you do not own a bike box, you can rent one. Many companies are offering affordable rental of bicycle boxes across the UK. Some can even deliver the box to you by post. A simple web search will help you research the market. We are available to assist you in this task if needed.
We encourage guest to bring their own bikes to the trip. However, if needed we can source out top-specification hire bikes in Croatia. If you require a bike, please contact us well in advance and before paying a deposit.
Transfers & Accommodation
Yes. Members of our team will be there to meet you in person.
The car journey from Pula airport to Labin is about 1 hour.
You will be staying in the town of Motovun. Accommodation will be provided on a single occupancy basis in hotel Kaštel.
After booking, you will receive a food questionnaire to inform us of your specific dietary requirements. We will aim to meet them in collaboration with the kitchen staff in our hotel.
You need to have a good level of fitness and cycling experience to complete the rides. Please compare our routes with your past rides. That said, you certainly do not have to be a professional racer. Our trips are not about racing against other riders. They are about challenging yourself.
On our website, we presented the hardest versions of our rides. However, our vast local knowledge allows us to change them on the fly and accommodate the wishes of the group or individual riders. Rides can be made shorter or longer, less or more challenging.
Furthermore, our team will be there every step of the way to support you. We will assist you if you need to stop and rest, ride in the van over some sections, or wish to take a shorter route home.
Experienced guides will ride with you at all times. We will also have support vehicles on the road, usually behind the group. Vehicles will provide food, drinks, clothes and mechanical support. We can also transport riders and bikes if needed.
We carry all the standard bicycle tools, a bike repair stand, pumps, as well as common spare parts. These will include inner tubes, tyres, chains, lubricants, brake pads, bar tapes and cables. In case of a more significant mechanical failure, we have access to local repair shops.
Your safety is our top priority. Before each ride, we will review routes and highlight any challenging segments. In the unfortunate event of an accident, rest assured you will be in good hands. Our team is competent in first aid and has the necessary first aid supplies.
If additional assistance is needed, Istria has its own ambulance service with quick access to General hospital in Pula and University hospital in Rijeka.
King of Ucka
Absolutely not. We’ll cover your entry fee, food and drinks, and even throw in a custom cycling jersey.
No. King of Ucka is open to all, licensed and unlicensed cyclists.
Basically, we aim to make you feel like a pro rider. We’ll offer advice about the course, pacing and tactics. Bikenauts guides will race with you as well, and our van will always stay within easy reach.
It is as competitive as you want it to be. You don’t have to race against others, just challenge yourself. However, if you decide to compete, you’ll have some healthy competition from Croatian, Slovenian and Italian riders. Have a look at the results from 2018. It will take about 1 hour for the strongest riders to finish the race.
Yes. After finishing the race, we’ll continue riding towards our hotel. We’ll adjust the route according to desires of the group.