Information : From Royan to Oléron - The Velodyssee
French / English
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 coast to Ronce-les-Bains where you are welcomed in a lovely hotel looking out over the sea. The following day takes you on a trip all around the town of Marennes, especially famous for its excellent oysters. Then it's on to Brouages, a charming fortified village tucked away in the marshes. The climax of the trip is over on the Isle of Oléron with its long cycle paths between land and sea.
A warm welcome awaits you in your hotel a few metres from the beach. And there's nothing quite like a dip in the sea to recover from the day's efforts! In the evening you can contemplate the setting sun before eating out in one of the little restaurants along the coast.
Night and breakfast in 3 star hotel at the Ocean's edge.
From Royan to Talmont sur Gironde
Round trip, 40.5km. About 4 hours.
A day spent cycling along a bike track beside the many seaside bays of the Royan coastline. It's an out-and-back ride during which you can choose your own beach or - why not? - enjoy a locally -made ice cream on a shady terrace.
Towards the end of the ride you can visit the peninsula of Talmont, reserved for walkers and cyclists. A haven of peace, with pretty narrow streets, just by the Ocean.
Night and breakfast in 3 star hotel at water's side.
From Royan to Ronce-les-Bains
40km stage, around 4 hours.
This is one of the loveliest parts of the Vélodyssée. Leaving the Gironde estuary you cycle past the Atlantic beaches along a cyclist- and pedestrian-only itinerary. No more loud noise, no more cars, just people talking, enjoying the view, listening to the waves settling on the sand. Then you cross through the Forest of La Coubre, a vast plantation of pine trees reminiscent of the Landes. There's a lighthouse you can visit, a listed building, if you care to. Then in the evening you will be warmly received in your hotel facing the sea.
Night, evening meal and breakfast in 3 star hotel facing the Atlantic.
Ride in the vicinity of Ronce-les-Bains then on towards Marennes
47km, around 5 hours.
Once over the bridge across the Seudre river, you come to Marennes, a town celebrated for the quality of its oysters. Feel free to pop into a 'paillotte' (typical local restaurant) and appreciate! Then you go on towards Brouages, a remarkable fortified village deep in marsh country where you can enjoy watching the sun go down over the distant sea - before returning to your hotel in Ronces.
Or if you like, may we suggest a trip over to the Isle of Aix and its remote beaches. If you'd like to do this PLEASE BOOK the outing at the beginning of your holiday so it can be organised.
From Ronce-les-Bains to the Isle of Oléron
42 km stage, about 4 hrs15.
This is the day you get on your bike and pedal across the famous bridge that links the continent to Oléron. On the island,cycle tracks take you through forest and oyster park, village and marsh, a land betwixt earth and sea, not to mention sky. Don't miss the "Marais aux Oiseaux" (bird reserve) with lots of information about the rich fauna of the island. Then towards day's end, you could slip down to one of the beaches a stone's throw from your hotel in the village of Cotinière .
Bed and breakfast in 3 star hotel with pool, facing a much larger one!
Around the Island of Oléron
44.5 km, about 4hrs30.
Now it's time to head for the North of the island. You go all the way along the track that brings you to the lighthouse at the Pointe du Chassiron. 225 steps to climb if you want the real view, but it's worth it! Next you cycle at the Ocean's side - vast beaches and out to sea, the majestic Fort Boyard, built from 1801 till 1857, in use as a fort till 1913, and today the location for the TV game that in Britain evolved to become the Crystal Maze!
The port of La Cotinière is a lively place in the evening, and the ice creams are to die for...
Bed and breakfast in 3 star hotel facing the sea.
After breakfast, a taxi will take you from the hotel back to your own vehicle at Royan.
End of a fine adventure, but what memories...
Electric power bike rental for adult or junior: 180 €
What's not included?
Dinners on days 1, 2, 5 and 6
Parking for the duration of your holiday
Beverage and extra
Return transfer from Home to the first accomodation
Facultative cancellation and repatriation insurance
Characteristics of circuits
Unaccompanied cycle holiday
Daily stages between 40 and 47 km, 4 to 5 hours at your own rhythm
Easy cycling (minimal uphill bits)
Route: cycle tracks, narrow quiet all-vehicle roads, short stretch on major road
Country bikes recommended (wide tyres)
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.
Accommodation has been chosen for its atmosphere, warm welcome and environmental and architectural excellence.
N.B : the accommodation described above is given as an indication and may vary according to availability at the moment your reservation is finalized.
From: Paris - Autoroute A10(motorway), sortie 35 "Saintes" (4 hrs 50) Poitiers - Autoroute A10, sortie 35 "Saintes" (1 hr 50) Bordeaux - Autoroute A10, sortie 37 "Mirabeau" (1 hr 30) La Rochelle - D 77 (minor road) (1 hr) ("Autoroute" means "Motorway", "sortie" means "exit". You usually take a ticket on entering "Autoroutes" and pay on leaving.)
Royan-Médis airport La Rochelle airport (1hr15 from Royan) Bordeaux Mérignac airport (1hr45 from Royan)
Royan station. SNCF - French Railways: Tel 0033 (0)5 46 05 62 32
"Ouibus" coach company serves Royan in the French summer holidays (pretty much July and August). See their website: http://fr.ouibus.com/fr (In several languages, including English.)
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