The Best Cycle Paths in France
At the top of our list of things to love about France, along with its culture, cuisine and sunny summer afternoons, are its cycling routes. Edged with...Read more
With fabulous food and wine, beautiful landscapes, meandering valleys and ancient villages galore, Bordeaux has a lot to offer as a cycling destination. This tour offers a pleasingly varied ride - from easy pedalling along the beautiful Garonne river and canal, to exploring the lush valleys and vineyards of the Dordogne. Charming medieval villages are dotted along the route offering plenty to see (and lots of tasty lunch options), leading eventually to the lovely town of Saint Emilion. Enjoy wonderful regional cuisine everywhere you go - paired, of course, with a myriad of fabulous Bordeaux wines.
What not to miss
• Sampling Bordeaux wine and perhaps a wine-tasting workshop
• Cycling along the Garonne canal under the avenue of Plane Trees
• Macaroons from Saint Emilion
• Hotel Accommodation
• Evening meals each night
• Bed & Breakfast
• Luggage Transfers
• Touring bike with handlebar bags and puncture repair kit
• Route maps and instructions
This tour is operated by our preferred local partner.
Day 1 | Transfer to our base hotel in Saint Macaire
We suggest a stroll around this ancient river port. The charming medieval streets are narrow and dotted with beautiful old houses. In the arcaded square you'll find more stunning renaissance homes adorned with mullioned windows.
Day 2 | Saint Macaire to La Reole Round Trip | Distance 22 miles (35km)
After breakfast you’ll be equipped with your bicycle. We suggest cycling up the Garonne valley to Castets-en-Dorthe where you can enjoy an easy, idyllic ride along the canal path. You could stop at La Reole for lunch, or you may prefer the canalside restaurant at Castets-en-Dorthe. La Reole is a historic village with cobbled streets, a 12th Century town hall built for Richard the Lionheart and an impressively preserved Benedictine abbey. After exploring, the route follows back-roads to Saint Macaire via Langon. You’ll have ample time for a refreshing dip in the hotel’s plunge pool before dinner.
Day 3 | Saint Macaire to Sauternes | Distance 22 miles (35km)
Today you will cross the River Garonne and cycle south to the village of Sauternes in a loop through an area of forest and vineyards. The route passes the villages of Roaillan, Ozeste and Villandraut, all delightful stops for lunch. We also suggest a visit to the Chateau de Roquetaillade and the ruined castle of Chateau de Villandraut. If you prefer a longer route, then you can also cycle via the pretty village of Bazas before arriving at Sauternes for the evening.
Day 4| Sauternes Round Trip | Distance 18 miles (28km)
Sauternes is an appellation famous for its sweet wine produced by the regions rare white grapes, possibly the best in the world. The round trip route will offer you the chance to cycle through this vineyard covered area until you reach the Chateau de Malle near Preignac, a magnificent renaissance building with beautiful gardens. Back in Sauternes, we recommend a guided wine tour and tasting at either Chateau Sauternes or Chateau Guiraud.
Day 5 | Sauternes to Cadillac | Distance 25 miles (40km)
Your cycle now heads North into the River Garonne valley through several villages en route to the small town of Cadillac, which bequeathed its name to the car. The day starts by crossing the Ciron valley to Cerons and then Podensac with the opportunity to visit the Lillet distillery and see how the popular apéritif is produced. In the Garonne valley, you can visit the intriguing Chateau Mongenan in Portets before crossing the river at Langoiran and cycling to Cadillac. Enjoy the view of the Ducal Chateau from the hotel gardens with a glass of the local wine in hand.
Day 6 | Cadillac Round Trip | Distance 13 miles (21km)
Today’s optional round trip takes you out of Cadillac through some more prime Bordeaux vineyards such as Montprimblanc before reaching St Croix de Mont, a superb but less well-known appellation located on a panoramic plateau made up of vast fossilised oyster beds. Then heading back to Cadillac, you’ll pass through Loupiac, where wines have been produced since Roman times.
Day 7 | Cycle to Saint Emilion | Distance 23 miles (37km)
Your final day in the saddle, will take you through a valley towards Targon and the Entre Deux Mers (the land in between the Rivers Dordogne and Garonne). A picnic lunch is recommended next to the remains of a Knights Templar Commanderie before continuing onto Branne, crossing the Dordogne river and cycling into Saint Emilion. Arriving at your last hotel situated at the top of the town, relax with a dip in the pool or drinks in the garden before a final well-deserved delicious dinner.
We say “au revoir” after your final hearty breakfast.
This tour is operated by our preferred local partner.
A fine selection of hotels to choose from
The hotel is surrounded by the famous Sauternes vineyards and the chateau is now a guesthouse offering a large garden and great food. The family run guesthouse offers a warm welcome and lovely outdoor swimming pool.
This smart property is set in attractive gardens with views of the local vineyards. The hotel benefits from contemporarily designed rooms and an outdoor swimming pool, as well as offering innovative cuisine in the restaurant with wines from its cellar.
Right in the heart of medieval St-Macaire, a picturesque town that sits between the vines and the ocean, this hotel is a magnificent, renovated 16th century mansion, decked out with oak furniture, terracotta floors and tastefully modern décor. We recommend a dip in the pool before dining alfresco in the town.
A stunning location, impeccable grounds and stylish rooms make this hotel a real highlight for any itinerary. Tucked away up a quiet street in the UNESCO world heritage site of St Emilion, the amount of space, particularly the gardens and pool, are a pleasant surprise upon arrival. The breakfast are highly touted too.
|Tour Only Prices|
|2018 Departure Dates||Nights||Board Basis||Adult Price|
|May to September||7||Half Board||£1325|
Single Supplement: £63 per night
Ebike Supplement: £20 per day
Extra nights and City Add-on available on request
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