In the land of light.
'When God created the sun, the earth, the mountains and the sea, and put them into place, he realized that a little of each element remained. So he gathered the bits together to make a paradise and Provence was born' A nice and nearly true story, isn't it? On this bike tour you discover Provence and the Camargue - a land of light, colors and scents. Hence, many well-known painters have lived in Provence: Picasso, Van Gogh, Gauguin, Matisse, Cézanne and Chagall to name just a few. The Mediterranean climate is pleasant, the sun shines more than 3000 hours a year. People live outside, even during the short, crisp and windy winter, and play "Pétanque" and drink their "Pastis". A place of true inspiration that leads to a series of amusing books by Peter Mayle! Provence not only has an easy way of life, but it’s also one of the richest cultural regions in Europe. Numerous monuments testify to a long and great past since the Greek and Roman period going to the middle Ages and, even into the last centuries. And being in Provence we can't forget the quality of wine and food! During the cycle tour you will discover the delicious Provencal dishes and their Mediterranean flavors.
Day 1: Arrival in Avignon
Arrive in Avignon. At the reception you will receive your traveler documents. Afterwards take time to visit the historical town center of Avignon.
Day 2: Avignon - Arles, ~45 km/28 miles
We will meet you at 9:30am at the hotel to adjust your rental bike - if you have rented one - and to give you all the necessary information about your tour. Then you leave Avignon and cycle through the Little Crau and on to medieval village Les Baux de Provence which is situated high up on a rock. From here the view over the surrounding lands is just breathtaking. Finally you will arrive in Arles where a stroll through the historic city center is inevitable as to many Roman sights are waiting for you to be discovered.
Day 3: Arles - Saintes Maries-de-la-Mer, ~40 km/25 miles
Leave Arles southwards and ride through the beautiful Camargue, the delta of the Rhone River. You will cycle around the lake Vaccarès before having lunch time near a bull fight arena in the middle of nowhere. Take the time to observe some rare bird species and then ride on to Saintes Maries de la Mer on the sandy beaches of the Mediterranean.
Day 4: Saintes Maries-de-la-Mer - St. Gilles, ~40 km/25 miles
Take a refreshing bath in the Mediterranean before leaving Saintes Maries de la Mer. The following stage takes you through the Camargue and along some rice fields. You will cross over the Rhone River with a little ferry boat and continue your way to St. Gilles with its Romanesque church and its famous crypt.
Day 5: St. Gilles - Pont du Gard, ~45 km/28 miles
You will leave the Camargue behind to get back to Provence. You will cycle on small roads through vineyards and orchards with a wonderful view of the Mont Ventoux to the Pont du Gard. And your Hotel is within a stone’s throw of this impressive aqueduct.
Day 6: Pont du Gard - Uzès - Pont du Gard, ~40 km/25 miles
On small roads and bike paths you are passing some charming small villages before arriving in Uzès, one of the most wonderful towns in Provence. Stroll through the medieval town center and visit the cathedral before heading back to your hotel near the Pont du Gard. And on your way back you will also have the opportunity to swim in the Gardon River. So do not forget to take your bathing togs with you when you leave in the morning.
Day 7: Pont du Gard - Avignon, ~50 km/31 miles
This last stage of your bike holidays will bring you back to Avignon. In the morning you will ride through the gently hilly landscape of the Garrigue up to the famous wine town of Tavel. Take the time and make some wine tasting and then follow your way through the vineyards back down to the Rhone River and finally to your hotel in Avignon.
Day 8: End of the tour or extra nights
7 nights in carefully chosen 2**, 3*** and 4**** hotels (some with swimming-pool)
7x tourist tax
luggage transport (1 piece per person)
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 - 8 days / 7 nights
arrival on Saturdays
season I (760 €/person in double)
season II (+60 €/person)
season III (+90 €/person)
"arrival any day“
possible 4 persons minimum or with supplement 60 €/person for 3 travelers and 90 €/person for 2 travelers
route (1)-(2): ~260 km/165 miles
mainly on quiet paths and flat roads that anybody can do, one long hill of ~5 km to Les Baux, one climb to Tavel on day 7
how to get there
by car: motorway A7, exit Avignon-Nord
by train: direct from London to Avignon with Eurostar, or direct from Paris to Avignon with TGV
by plane: airport Avignon, Nîmes, Marseille or Montpellier
free at the hotel
from Montpellier, Marseille or Nîmes airports to Avignon with France-Bike bus for 200 €/trip
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