Four fantastic cycling tours for a true taste of France.by Jessie Beyer - Tuesday, March 6, 2018
Few countries stir the imagination like France. You may have already pictured yourself bicycling through small villages composed of beautiful stone buildings, quaint cafés, and Romanesque churches that gaze across the valley at each other under the Provençal sun. Explore the many regions of France with us as you cycle through this beautiful country.
This bike and barge cruise takes you along the Seine River Valley, passing by splendid estates including the castle and grounds at Fontainebleau, and through small medieval towns on the way to Montargis. Enjoy this scenic ride on easy canal paths, with frequent stops to sip café au lait in quaint French villages. The barge floats quietly along the Seine River, slipping through locks and under bridges while sumptuous meals are prepared on board. This tour is ideal for anyone who loves the French joie de vivre, and those who are new to cycling and want to try bicycle traveling without having to pack and unpack their bags. Our 11-day Plus! tour gives those who want to keep exploring the chance to spend another few days on land pedaling between important chateaux including Blois, Chambord, Amboise and Chenonceau.
Highlights: Paris, Castle of Fontainebleau, Artists’ villages – towns that inspired 19th and 20th century Impressionist painters, Medieval fortified towns and castles, Prehistorical museum of Nemours, Honey making farm and “living museum”, Château de Chambord, canoe to the famous castle of Chenonceau, Private castle visit.
Bike and Barge the Seine (8 Days)
Western France’s Dordogne River flows nearly 500 kilometers from the volcanic Massif Central region through deep gorges, steep cliffs, fertile farmland and famed vineyards to its mouth in the Bay of Biscay near Bordeaux. Our route traces the river’s descent from Cahors to St. Émilion by way of some of the most scenic cycling routes and most hospitable hosts in Europe. Add visits to the Lascaux 4 cave, two nights in St. Émilion, wine tastings and great food, and you have one of our all-time favorite bicycle tours.
Highlights : Lascaux Centre International, 3 nights in Sarlat, Rocamadour, Côtes de Bergerac & St. Émilion, wine areas of Monbazillac, Gouffres of Padirac, medieval castles, beautiful landscapes
Cycling the Dordogne (7-day)
The South of France, or Langue d’Oc region, has always been a border region – between Spain and France, the Atlantic and the Mediterranean, and, in ancient times, between Rome and northern Gaul. Today it’s classic Mediterranean France with vast expanses of vineyards, vestiges of Roman history in Nimes and Narbonne, and a mix of languages that include classic French, traditional Occitan, and Catalan. Join us to bicycle and explore this little traveled region on quiet roads so small you’ll swear you’re on a bike path.
Bicycling the South of France (8-day)
Bicycling the South of France Plus! (11-day)
Alsace is arguably the most unique region of France. As a place that has changed hands 5 times between France and Germany over the last 150 years, it’s now a cultural crossroads where French finesse meets German gusto. Tucked between the Vosges Mountains and the Rhine River, the region enjoys a perfect balance between architecture, nature, and gastronomy. Although officially located in France, the Alsatians have a distinct identity and refuse to be grouped with the French from the “interior” or the Germans across the Rhine river. As you move into Germany on our “Plus” trip, enjoy 2,000-year-old thermal baths, the center of Germany’s haute cuisine, wineries, beer gardens, and spectacular rides through magical villages. Join us as we explore the wine roads and villages of Alsace and the Black Forest.
Bicycling the Vineyards of Alsace (8-Days)