France-Bike has created this wonderful bike tour in the vineyards around the lovely town of Pézenas.
Come and discover Pézenas and the beautiful land around. For sure, Pézenas is not the most famous town of southern France. However it is one of the most beautiful with its medieval old town and all this historic buildings of that time that often are listed as protected monuments. And so it is not by chance that Molière and the famous ‘Illustre Théatre’ used to come here so many times to play and also to find again some inspiration. And the land around Pézenas is certainly not less worth to be discovered. You will ride through a gently hilly countryside always marked by its vineyards. In the north you will see the first mountains of the Cevennes. And the daily destinations are really worth to be seen. Agde and Béziers are former Greek colonies and two of the oldest towns in France. They have been founded more than 2500 years ago and so their cultural heritage is enormous. The Canal du Midi with all its bridges and locks is a unique monument and has changed people’s lives here so sustainable since the end of the 17th century. The Etang the Thau between Mèze and Sète is one of the most important places for oysters along the Mediterranean Sea and there are lots of little cozy restaurants on the bank of the lake where you can taste them in a perfect atmosphere…what a wonderful experience.
Day 1: Arrival in Pézenas
For 6 nights you will stay at the 4**** Chambre d’Hôte de Prestige with swimming pool.
Day 2: Through vineyards to Faugères, ~35-50 km/22-31 miles
On this first stage you will ride to the northwest to a lake. To your right you can see the first hills of the Cevennes Mountains. On small roads without much traffic you cycle through a gently hilly landscape that is marked by enormous vineyards and sleepy little villages. Take your time and make a wine tasting in one of the ‘Cave Cooperative’ along your way. And why not buying a bottle for a cozy picnic in the heart of all these beautiful landscapes.
Day 3: Through vineyards to Agde, ~50 km/31 miles
Today you are riding southwards to Agde. The town is a former Greek market town that was built on an extinct volcano. And on your way you will again pass by lots of vineyards. But this time most of the grapes are for the production of white wine, while yesterday you rode through the red wine fields in the north. In Agde there are lots of things to see. First of all there’s the Cathedral Saint-Etienne d’Agde that is made of black volcano stone. It is the heart of the beautiful medieval town center that is also worth a visit. Furthermore it is the first time on the tour that you will see the Canal du Midi. And here in Agde you find the only round lock on the whole canal. And who still has got some energy left in his legs can ride on to Cap d’Agde and its sunny beaches to swim before returning to Pézenas.
Day 4: Valmagne Abbey & oysters in Mèze, ~40 km/25 miles
From your hotel you will ride eastwards and after about 10 kilometers you’ll come to the town Villeveyrac and then to the ‚Valmagne Abbaye‘. This former monastery of the Cistercian Order were confiscated and sold by the state after the French Revolution so that it became a wine cellar, which it is still today. And as it is open to the public you can visit the very well preserved cloister and make some wine tasting, too. Afterwards you cycle on to Mèze, a small and lovely town on the banks of the Etang the Thau. This lagoon is famous for its oysters and so in Mèze there are lots of small and cozy restaurants where you can try them…it’s so delicious.
Day 5: Hérault Valley, ~45 km/28 miles
On today’s stage you will ride northwards to the nice little town Canet.
Day 6: Béziers and Canal du Midi, ~65 km/41 miles
On this last stage of the tour you will ride to Béziers, which will be without any doubt a highlight of your holidays. Béziers is about 2.500 years old and has a very rich cultural heritage to offer. The darkest moment of the town was the 22nd July 1209. As a center of the Catharism, which the Catholic Church condemned as heretical, on this day the town was attacked by Catholic forces in the so called Albigensian Crusade. Nearly the whole population of the town where killed. The famous phrase ‘Kill them all, God will know his own’ was born that day. Much less bloody but not less worth visiting are the constructions along the Canal du Midi that you can find here in Béziers. First the canal is led over the Orb River on an impressive canal bridge. And only a few kilometers later it is lifted about 35 meters in the ‘Fonserannes Lock ‘. This staircase lock is by far the most impressive construction along the whole canal.
Day 7: Departure
6 nights in a wonderful 4**** Gîte de Charme with swimming-pool
6x copious breakfast
carefully chosen roads and paths
detailed documentation, brochures, plans, maps, etc.
France-Bike signs along the route
GPS tracks on request
France-Bike security vest
self-guided tour - 7 days / 6 nights
arrival every day
season I (600 €/person in double)
season II (+150 €/person)
route (2): ~235-250 km/150-160 miles
on quiet and mostly flat roads that anybody can do. But some climbs too. In addition to our detailed road book and maps, you'll be guided by signs that help you to find easily the route all along the bike tour.
how to get there
by car: motorway A7, exit Agde Sud, then take the main road to Pézenas
by train: nearest station Agde, TGV from Paris to Montpellier and regional train
by plane: airport Montpellier, direct from London, Paris, Amsterdam, Dublin, Copenhagen and Stockholm or airport Agde-Béziers, direct from Paris, London and Stockholm
on request, 40 €/week
airport transfers from Béziers or Montpellier to Pézenas for 150 €/ride, other transfers possible on request
is not possible on this tour, we give recommendations on request
can be booked on request
can be booked on request from 50 €/person in double room and from 85 €/person in single room
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