Cycling Holidays France - Courleon France

What did our first guests of 2018 get up to?

April 25, 2018 by Jon Lethbridge

The 2018 cycling season is underway and our first guests found the sun and warm temperatures were here to greet them!

From Ottowa, Canada, they hired a car from Paris Charles de Gaulle airport and spent four nights with us on  our Loire Valley Short Cycling Breaks.  So what did they get up to?

Arriving from Paris in the early evening we fitted our guests out with hybrid bikes and the necessary equipment.  We’d booked a local restaurant, Le Pelican on their behalf, for their first meal.

Day One Sunday

Chateau Langeais

Our guests cycled past Chateau Gizeux and on to Langeais, which was hosting a large market so there was plenty of atmosphere and all the cafes were open.

From Langeais they opted to cycle the Loire a Velo to Villandry, taking lunch.  They declined the minibus pickup home and headed back via the high viewpoint at St Michel-sur-Loire, arriving back at Gue de Ray in the early evening.

For the evening meal they ate at the restaurant Les Escargot in Saumur, which we had booked on their behalf.  Cycling – 75kms!

Cycling Holidays France - Cycle to Villandry

Chateau Villandry Loire Valley France

Day Two Monday

 

Candes St Martin

We had a chat over breakfast and put together a circular itinerary that took our guests directly south, crossing the Loire at Montsoreau.

 

They spent the day exploring the Troglodyte (cave) villages along the banks of the Loire as well as

Chateau Montsoreau and Candes St Martin – both listed in France’s top 100 villages.  Temperature in the mid twenties by lunchtime so they enjoyed a beautiful cycle back to Gue de Ray, again arriving in the early evening – with plenty of time for a dip in the hot-tub.

This time we provided a two course evening meal with wine, before they finished off the day relaxing in front of the wood burner with a glass or two of wine!  Cycling – 65kms.

Day Three Tuesday

Perfect weather!

We always recommend the Bourgueil route on a Tuesday – and so our guests enjoyed the market where they picked up a picnic.  They then headed through the vineyards, stopping for a few wine tastings and ate their picnic on the banks of the Loire at Chouzé-sur-Loire, looking over the river at Candes St Martin.

The return journey passed more vineyards in Saint Nicholas de Bourgueil and the pretty lake at Les Loges.

We all ate together on the terrace – enjoying Paella, a glass of bubbly Rosé and galette.  Cycling – 60kms.

Departure – Our guests looked at extending their stay, but the flight arrangements just wouldn’t work, so it was a Wednesday morning departure – but they intended to explore Amboise on their route back to the airport – so their mini French adventure still wasn’t over!

So, in the space of three cycling days our guests saw four chateaux, enjoyed two outdoor markets, cycled the banks of the Loire and Indre rivers, past through the vineyards of  four appellations, enjoyed two restaurant meals and two meals at Le Gue de Ray and cycled 200kms.  Phew!