With its picturesque countryside, imposing mountains, and long miles of road that can stretch out with no end in sight, France is one of the most popular destinations for cyclists. In fact, the Tour de France, which is held yearly in various locations throughout the country, is perhaps the most prestigious cycling event in the world. This is one of the reasons why many cycling events continue to be organized yearly in France, whether it is for beginners or those with years of experience.
The country has some of the conditions that are ideal for cycling. There are a wide variety of routes to choose from, ranging from those that anyone can ride on, to those that would take professional skill and training to successfully complete. Many tourists regularly visit France simply to cycle through the country for training or for leisure, and there are a number of bike tours available along the most popular routes.Here are some of the best destinations to check out if you are interested in going cycling in France:
The Loire Valley
Designated by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site, the Loire Valley and its surrounding areas are known for the numerous castles and chateaux that are scattered throughout the region. It was once the playground of French royalty, but now it is one of the most popular cycling destinations in the country. This is all thanks to its small and peaceful country roads providing a perfect opportunity to explore on a bike. Along the way, you will be able to pass by vineyards, orchards, and historic settlements, all of which will make for an enjoyable cycling tour.
The Dordogne Valley
One of the most exciting options for a bike tour, riding through Bordeaux and the Dordogne Valley can give you everything you could ever ask for from a visit to France. With numerous historical pit stops, including the site of the final battle of the Hundred Years’ War andthe peaceful, green banks of the Dordogne River, you will be able to enjoy everything that a cycling tour can possibly offer. Aside from this, the presence of large swaths of lush forests and greens make the weather perfect for cycling all year round, making it easier to plan a visit.
Provence and Cote d’Azur
Home to challenging mountain routes as well as the less demanding rolling hills, the region of Provence in southern France is one of the best spots to visit if you are interested in getting some cycling done. Although the region is full of larger cities that each have their own fair share of sights, the countryside and small villages truly make for some hidden gems, where you not only get to witness both natural and manmade sights, but also relax and take a break in a small cafe or restaurant.
From there, head south to the Mediterranean coast and you will find yourself in the world-famous Cote d’Azur region, better known as the French Riviera. The region is popular among cyclists for its picturesque inland roads and notable climbs in nearby mountains. However, it is also a big draw for non-cyclists, meaning that it is relatively easy to find accommodations or to take part in some other activities during your trip.
Cycling is one of the most worthwhile hobbies to pursue, whether competitively as a sport or simply recreationally. As you bike through the wonders of the French landscape, you get to experience the beauty of nature while getting some exercise and solitude at the same time. This is all you need for the vacation of your dreams.