cycling itineraries 2017-10-09T10:33:16+00:00

All the cycling itineraries


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The EuroVélo6

My friends and I know a few things about cycling trails. You could say that they are in step with our philosophy: it’s physical by not too traumatic, eco-friendly and, above all, liberating! We have already racked up quite a few km on two wheels across France, but one of our fondest memories is still the EuroVelo6. Rest assured that we didn’t do the entire trail! 4000km from the Atlantic to the Black Sea is a bit too much for our legs. We opted for the section that skirts the canals and rivers of Burgundy-Franche-Comté.

On the programme for those 10 days of cycling were easy stages of 30 to 40km with all our gear following on behind us and the joy of riding through and experiencing two different types of ambiance: the wild rivers of the Doubs (we have never seen so many herons as we did along the Doubs!) and the Loire, or the canals with their little lock-keeper’s houses, their pleasure boaters and anglers. It was a different world.

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Don’t miss along the trail

  • The fascinating history of photography at the Nicéphore Niépce Museum in Chalon-sur-Saône

  • Besançon and its citadel, where you can get up close with creepy-crawlies (Insectarium and Noctarium),

  • The vineyards of Pouilly-Fumé, so you can take home a few bottles in your backpack.

The Tour de Bourgogne à vélo®

My husband and I had been preparing our cycling trip for a while and one thing was certain; we didn’t want to get it wrong! The one time we managed to both have 15 days holiday at the same time… We had already travelled around quite a bit, in France and aboard, but one thing was missing from our hit list: the TBV (the Tour de Bourgogne à Vélo® trail).

It honestly has to be experienced! It’s impossible to get bored here. Every turn of the wheel means a change of scenery (Ok, that may be a slight exaggeration: o). We start off by following the vineyards and a few hours later we end up skirting a river or a canal… And we still haven’t completed the trail (it is 800km to be fair!)… But only because we quite simply haven’t had the time!

What is more (and we only learnt this after our trip, unfortunately…), it appears that there are companies on site that can transport your luggage from one hotel to the next… We would certainly have taken advantage of this if we’d known! Just so we could ride without having to worry about it. In any case, I think that this itinerary is one of the most beautiful we have ever ridden!

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Don’t miss along the trail

  • Visit the Château de la Verrerie at Le Creusot

  • Stop off at Fontenay Abbey (UNESCO World Heritage)

  • Cross the canal-bridge at Digoin

The V50

Last Wednesday my husband proudly announced: « It’s decided. This weekend we are off to Burgundy-Franche-Comté »… OK….but? The way he announced that made me a bit apprehensive!

In fact, he’d hatched a little plan… To set off on a road trip by bike for the weekend… After all, why not give it a go? (But why Burgundy? There are other places close by…). We set off with our bikes loaded to breaking point, in the direction of the Saône Valley, along the « V50 » (which starts in Luxemburg all the same, before reaching Burgundy!).

As the km rolled by I quickly understood why he’d chosen Burgundy! Here’s a clue: the little stars all over the map are not museums or châteaux! :o). We actually loved our trip into the depths of the Saône « wilderness »… I loved the fresh air and the leafy landscapes as far as the eye can see. My husband loved the tasting sessions held by local producers that are worth the trip alone (I have to admit that I developed a taste for them too: o)…It was clear that those guys loved what they did, and loved talking about it too!

Don’t miss along the trail

  • Make an obligatory stop at Tournus Abbey

  • Enjoy the countryside ambiance of Val de Gray’s leafy landscapes

  • Discover Mâcon, that marks the threshold of the South of France

Charles the Bold


My mission before every summer is to find the right cycling itinerary for my husband, who loves to eat and drink well (yes, gastronomic tourism is compatible with cycling!), and for me, who is never too sure whether I prefer the town or the countryside. I just can’t decide between them.

This year I managed to find THE itinerary. What is more, it passes through Burgundy (in fact it goes all the way to Belgium, but we decided to take the section that crosses Burgundy-Franche-Comté) the paradise of gastronomy and fine wines! My husband is going to be delighted when I tell him about the many villages we are going to cross: Pommard, Santenay…Along this section, I fear we will spend more time at the bar than in the saddle.

Another good thing is that the trail essentially travels along greenways and towpaths, so we are talking about flat trails in beautiful countryside or at the water’s edge. There are no really difficult sections and there is lots of greenery to enjoy, especially on the banks of the Saône, which are meant to be very wild! And once we’ve had enough of the water and the countryside, we can pop into Dijon, Beaune or even Charolles that all sit along this circuit.

Don’t miss along the trail

  • When you set off on a trail named after Charles the Bold you have to stop at Dijon, the capital of the dukes. It makes perfect sense and is well worth the detour.

  • The Château de Ray-sur-Saône and its English-style park.

  • Beaune with its wine cellars filled with Grands Crus and its Hospices that (you may recall) make an appearance in the film La Grande Vadrouille

The Grande Traversée du Jura à Vélo trail


Pontarlier – 5th May 2017 – I have an early start. 7H30 and there is nothing on the roads, perfect for starting off my sporting tour along the Grande Traversée du Jura.

The GTJ is the dream itinerary for any amateur cyclist in search of a training ground that is not too arduous, ideal to help them get back in the saddle slowly but surely after a winter break. No dizzyingly high hills but enough climbs to vary the landscape and make you feel like you are being sporty!

My first stage on this 2-day sports break takes me alongside the pretty Lac St-Point. It’s a matter of getting the body used to the effort, so I decided to try the Alpine variant that takes me past Métabief and the Mont D’or. It’s the opportunity to remind my body what it feels like to tackle 7% gradients. This is not all in vain, however, as my reward at the summit is a magnificent view of the Alps. Nevertheless, I am acutely aware that I still have some work to do to get in shape…

But the effort is a real pleasure and I set off again along my route with renewed energy. In the afternoon, I arrive at Chaux Neuve with 65km on the clock and ready for any test, motivated to tackle any challenge! And it’s a good thing, because I go again tomorrow!

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Don’t miss along the trail

  • The tuyé chimneys that are so typical of the Jura Mountains, where smoked meats like the famous Morteau sausage are hung to cure.

  • The Château de Joux, impossible to miss up high and proudly overlooking the valley from its rocky outcrop.

  • The well-preserved and extremely wild Lac Saint Point, the 3rd largest natural lake in France and forbidden to motorised boats. Long live peace and quiet!

The Francovélosuisse Trail


Last weekend for the very first time we tried 2 full days with the children (12 and 14) by bike on the Francovélosuisse trail! Quite a challenge!

Arriving by train in Belfort, we made the (tactical) decision to head off on the trail straight away and save our visit to Belfort for the following day. There was nothing too difficult about the trail. It is flat, well sign-posted and safe. We passed pretty villages, crossed a border (Switzerland), rode past cows…in short, it was all very pleasant. In fact for us, the greatest challenge was convincing our kids to pedal for 40km.

We brought out the big guns when it came to the rewards. Ice creams for all at the end of the first third of the trail, then we stopped to say hello to the bison at the Parc de Beaucourt (a big hit) and we saved the best till last, with the open-air swimming pool in Porrentruy. Water + sunshine + bikes are the perfect cocktail for a good night’s sleep. The next day, inspired by their exploits of the previous day, the children racked up the km at pace! After that, the thought of visiting the citadel when we arrived at Belfort inspired them even more! We got our tactics spot on…

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Don’t miss along the trail

  • The bison park of Beaucourt, where the iconic animal of the American West comes to France

  • The Citadel of Belfort and the Lion, designed by America’s favourite sculptor (he designed the Statue of Liberty), Bartholdi!

  • A little historical and military escapade at the fort of Danjoutin

The V53

I don’t know about you, but I find that time flies these days…what with work, « family commitments » (shopping, cleaning…you know what I mean), etc.… I can’t seem to find a moment for myself! Not even to spend time with the kids…

This weekend, I said Stop! Put everything on hold and take a day just for us. And to make sure that we really spent time « together » (I know my teenagers… for them, « together », means « occasionally glancing up from their mobile phone »), I planned a cycling trip  as a family treat!

Once we arrived in Dijon, we set off pedalling along the « V53 ». This trail is not too long and not too complicated…Perfect! What is more, it skirts the Canal entre Champagne et Bourgogne (and when you have a canal, you have locks…it’s amazing how much time it takes for one to fill up! Especially when it’s the 10th one you have stopped to watch! :o)) In short…we took our time and rode at our own pace…it was superb! Even the kids said our ride was « too cool ».

Don’t miss along the trail

  • Visit the city of Dijon and its many monuments (… by bike, of course)

  • Enjoy a relaxing stop at the Château de la Rosière

  • Cross the Oisilly Viaduct.

The Voie Bressane trail


Last weekend, because it was sunny, I had the idea (and a great idea it was, too) of suggesting to some small children (there were 3 of them at our house that weekend) to take a bike ride, with a picnic and everything… Of course, their response was predictable and unanimous « Great, Mummy…when are we going? ». Woah! I didn’t expect such enthusiasm!  I spent Saturday trying to find a trail for us to cycle for Sunday…

My criteria were not all that straightforward: close to Lyon (less than 1h in the car, if possible), ultra-safe (I’m pretty sure their parents would have been upset if I’d lost them along the route…:o))) and with lots of  nature (much nicer for a picnic).

Looking on the Internet, the « Voie Bressane » seemed to fit the bill (in any case, the reviews from those who had done it were all in agreement!). And indeed, once we got there we had a great time! We didn’t ride too far, that wasn’t the point, but our short ride was an absolute delight…a tarmac trail away from the cars, well-maintained and with no shortage of places to stop for our picnic…In short, next time I will be sure to take the whole family along!

Don’t miss along the trail

  • Sample (of take home for later :o) an authentic Bresse chicken

  • Discover the arcades of Louhans

  • Visit the Ouroux-sur-Saône trail in the heart of the Bocage hedgerows

The Grande Traversée du Jura mountain bike trail


It’s the same every spring; the good weather returns and with it the wild desire to jump on a bike. There is nothing you can do about it when you are a mountain bike nut and you live in town. I’m already on the starting blocks!

This year I have found my new playground; the Jura, or rather, the Jura Mountains and their legendary GTJ (Grandes Traversée du Jura for those who don’t know). Because I’m a real enthusiast, I’ve decided to go for 15 days, which I think is the minimum you need to combine sport and the discovery of a region that, from what I have read, is not short of challenging slopes! It is perfect for incorrigible mountain bikers like me! Now I just need to book my accommodation!

I might be sporty but I love a bit of comfort (especially after 30 to 40km of mountain biking taking a toll on your calves, along with all the dust and the mud depending on the weather). That should be no problem as I read somewhere on the GTJ’s web site that there is a network of accommodation sites that are equipped to welcome mountain bikers like me.

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Don’t miss along the trail

  • For avid downhill mountain bikers, it is essential to stop off at the Métabief resort where 25km of trails await you with a maximum change in altitude of -420m

  • The peak of Mont d’Or for the sporting challenge and the views of Switzerland set to the backdrop of the Alps

  • The Saut du Doubs with its meaders, its 27m waterfall and the spectacle of nature that only the Jura Massif can provide.

The Grande Traversée du Morvan mountain bike trail


Along with 3 friends, we decided to treat ourselves to a « mates » weekend, just us and our mountain bikes. We usually meet one another along the way to ride through the woods near home (we all live 5km max from eachother). We were all in agreement that we needed a fresh approach: a change of scenery (we already know that spot by heart :o)

The good thing is that we are all at the same level when it comes to mountain biking (well…it all depends on what we have been doing the night before :o). We wanted an itinerary that shook things up a bit, but without risking our necks at every turn…And then… inspiration! I had read a pretty good article on a blog about the Grande Traversée du Morvan (the GTM, for those in the know). We discussed it and everyone was in agreement…Let’s go!

The blog was spot on and we had a ball for 3 days!! Climbs where you need a low gear, white knuckle descents, hairpin bends…It has it all! At the end, no sooner had we stacked our bikes on the roof rack (by the way, a great thing to know is that there are stations where you can wash your bike and pump the tyres throughout the trail), we were already talking about coming back!

Don’t miss along the trail

  • Stop beside one of the lakes of the Morvan

  • Climb to the top of Mont Folin and enjoy an exceptional view

  • Go head-to-head in the Cousin Valley (it gets hot!! :o)