This cycle tour of the Gironde department follows 430km of bike routes designed with safety in mind where you can enjoy exploring the best that this lovely area has to offer…at an easy pace.
A voyage of discovery that takes you from the estuary of the Gironde to the quaysides of Bordeaux, from the vineyards of Blaye to those of the Médoc and the Entre-deux-Mers, then along the Atlantic coast and the Canal of the Garonne river, through the heart of the pine forests of the Landes of Gascogne, and right round the fabulous Bay of Arcachon!
Exploring the vineyards of the Entre-deux-Mers, St Emilion and Sauternes
Visiting the Abbey of Sauve-Majeure and the Bird Reserve at Le Teich
Bordeaux, your starting point, is simply one of the most cycle-friendly towns of France.
Getting around is easy on a bike network that can take you to the Quartier des Chatrons, the Great Belfry (‘la Grosse Cloche’), the Pey-Berland Tower, the quaysides along the river’s edge and the soaring modern architecture of the “Cité du Vin”, opened in June 2016. The view from the top is breathtaking…
After you have found a place to eat (there are plenty), you spend the night in your 3 Star hotel in the heart of the city of Bordeaux.
Ride from Bordeaux to St Emilion
58 km stage – level terrain – estimated time about 4hrs 30.
The Greenway (Voie Verte) heads out from Bordeaux towards Saint Emilion in the heart of the ‘Entre-deux-Mers’ area south-east of Bordeaux. You cycle along the route of a former railroad past a string of attractively repurposed stations. Along the way, a visit to Sauve-Majeure Abbey, a Romanesque masterpiece completed in 1079, is a must. It is situated on the pilgrim’s road - the Chemin de Saint-Jacques-de-Compostelle (Way of St James).
Carefully tended vineyards mark the approach to Saint Emilion whose wines enjoy worldwide renown.
Your accommodation is in the heart of the mediaeval borough.
Dinner at the restaurant and night in guestrooms in the old town centre.
Ride from St Emilion to Fontet
55 km stage – level terrain – about 4hrs30
If you like visiting mediaeval villages, you’ll love La Réole, accredited ‘Ville d’Art et d’Histoire’. Overlooking the river Garonne and the valley below, mediaeval La Réole has a historic centre and narrow cobbled streets. Next you go back to the banks of the Garonne river that guides you towards a delightful abode…
Dinner and night in charming guest rooms with a large garden and swimming pool.
Ride from Fontet to Villandraut
50 km stage – level terrain – about 4hrs (+1hr for option 1, and +1hr for option 2).
Option 1 – Sauternes - is 15 km.
Option 2 - Château de Roquetaillade - is also 15 km.
Today you cycle along the Canal de la Garonne through idyllic countryside. When you get to the Sud (south) Garonne, enjoy a stroll around the small cathedral town of Bazas. On the Chemins de Saint-Jacques de Compostelle, Bazas is not to be missed. The large central square of the old city, with broad shaded passages beneath mediaeval arcades, exudes all the charm of the south-west. The spectacular Gothic cathedral of Saint John Baptist is a UNESCO listed building.
Dinner and night in charming guest rooms. Private swimming pool.
Transfer from Villandraut to Belin-Beliet, then ride to Arcachon
50 km stage – level terrain – about 4hrs
This morning, after the transfer to Hosteins, you cycle on through the pine forests of the Parc Naturel des Landes de Gascogne. As you advance you may well begin to feel a hint of the sea breezes that drift in from the bay of Arcachon. Have a good look at the typical port of Biganos then head on towards the Réserve Ornithologique of Le Teich (Bird Reserve). Here, the exuberant encounter of the flora and fauna of the bay of Arcachon is unique in France. After your visit you follow the cycle track past the oyster huts towards the distinctive town of Arcachon.
Dinner near the beach and night in 3-star hotel.
A ride in the Arcachon Bay area
26 km stage – level terrain – About 2hrs30
A day to enjoy all that the Bay area, with its special atmosphere, has to offer. There’s something for everyone. From the bustling seafront with its shops and sandy beaches, to the meditative peace of the forest of the Landes nearby. From the architectural curiosities of the ‘Ville d’Hiver’ to the huge natural dune known as Le Pyla (the heap!). In short, a delightful cycle ride punctuated, if you fancy it, by a once-in-a-lifetime climb to the top of Europe’s highest sand dune.
You find your own place to eat this evening – plenty of choice - then go on to a comfortable night at the hotel.
Ride from Arcachon to Lacanau
45km stage – level terrain – about 4 hrs
In the morning you load your bike onto a small boat that takes you across the bay to land at Cap Ferret. Then you cycle down to the southernmost extremity of the peninsula, with great views of the Atlantic swell meeting the calmer currents of the Bay. We recommend you take a break to visit one of the pretty oyster cabins bordering the Bay. For a truly spectacular view, why not make your way up the steps of the lighthouse? And remember your towel today, because you can stop and enjoy a trip down to one of the plentiful beaches whenever you like.
Lacanau lies between its Lake and the Ocean. It enjoys an attractive ‘Belle Epoque’ atmosphere and architecture, and a choice of many enjoyable activities on land and water.
Dinner and night in a 4-star hotel with pool and spa.
1 boat crossing from Arcachon to Cap Ferret (jour 7)
2 transfers (days 5 et 8)
2 winery visits with tastings (Entre-deux-mers and Sauternes)
1 visit to the Abbey of Sauve Majeure
Roadbook and maps
Technical and logistic assistance
Bike hire from: :
Adult / or junior: 100 €
Electric bike: 135 €
What's not included ?
Dinner on days 1 and 6
Drinks and supplements
Return trip from your home to the first accommodation
Underground car park in Bordeaux for the duration of the holiday
Personal holiday insurance
Circuit itinérant à vélo, sans accompagnateur
Type de routes : Pistes cyclables, chemins viticoles/agricoles et petites routes de campagne tranquilles
Type de vélo requis : vélos tous chemins
These outings are much more about relaxed exploration than athletic performance. Your luggage is transported between stages and your roadbook will be your guide throughout your stay. We provide logistical and technical support as necessary.
Accommodations has been chosen for its atmosphere, warm welcome, and environmental and architectural excellence.
Some of the stages of the tour are offered without evening meals. At these stages, the possibilities for restoration are numerous and diverse.
N.B: the accommodation described above is indicative and may be modified according to availability at the time of the final reservation
The Gironde possesses one of the finest cyclepath networks in France. You can go all the way round the Arcachon basin with the Eurovelo1, which is a sure temptation to do just that!
You'll see grand Atlantic beaches, wild and free, which contrast…
A very special encounter with the unique beauty of the French Atlantic coast. On the first day, you cycle along the latter from Royan to Talmont, with lots of little bays where you can take a dip. On day two a superb cycle track leads you along the…