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Guide to Cycling in France

France, a country renowned for its diverse landscapes, rich history, and vibrant culture, stands as a premier destination for cycling enthusiasts seeking an immersive and scenic adventure. A Cycling holidays in France offers an unparalleled experience, weaving through picturesque countryside, charming towns, and historic landmarks. 

Highlights of Cycling in France?

Bienvenue to the world of cycling holidays in France, a country where charming landscapes, rich history, and a passion for cycling converge to create an unparalleled two-wheeled adventure. France, often regarded as a cycling paradise, offers a tapestry of routes that wind through picturesque vineyards, historic villages, and iconic landmarks. Here are jsut some of our highlights of this cycling hub.

Stunning Scenery


France offers a breathtaking canvas of diverse scenery that beckons travellers from across the world into its beautiful grasp. From tranquil canals meandering through the countryside to the lush vineyards that produce some of the world's finest wines, France boasts an array of landscapes. In the majestic Alps, golden eagles gracefully soar above snow-capped peaks that glisten in the forgiving sun, while iconic trails lead keen cyclists through the panoramic mountainous landscape. Cycling paths wind along the country's coastline, offering mesmerising vistas of the Atlantic Ocean's wild waves crashing against the cliffs and the Mediterranean Sea's serene beauty. The contrasting landscapes, from the rugged coastlines to the serene vineyards, reflect the richness and diversity that France has to offer, making it a haven for nature enthusiasts and travellers seeking varied and stunning views.



France's coastline presents a captivating medley of landscapes and atmospheres that enchant visitors from the Channel to the Mediterranean. The northern coast along the English Channel showcases a picturesque blend of sandy beaches to the east and rugged, rocky coves dotting the western expanse. As you ride along the western edge of the country, the Atlantic Ocean unfolds in all its glory. From the town of Saint-Nazaire and southward, the coastline boasts an unending stretch of pristine, white sandy beaches. Here, beautiful sand dunes and incredible cycle paths frame the shoreline, welcoming the crash of powerful ocean waves. Further to the south, the Mediterranean coast defines an entirely different allure. This region is adorned with world-renowned resort towns such as St. Tropez, Nice, and Cannes, where society converges in vibrant sophistication. The contrast between the untamed, wild beauty of the Atlantic coastline and the glamorous allure of the Mediterranean beaches offers a striking reflection of France's multifaceted coastal charm.

Fascinating Geology


A cycling holiday in France leads you through a mosaic of beautiful and picturesque towns and cities. From the historic allure of Normandy with its iconic sites like Bayeux, to the charming beauty of Strasbourg's unique blend of French and German influences. The journey along Loire à Vélo meanders through vineyards and historic towns, painting a picturesque scenery. Along the coast, the route from Arcachon to Biarritz offers glimpses of the lively spirit of vibrant Hossegor and the serene beauty of Biscarrosse. Inland, Burgundy beckons with its rich heritage, boasting jewels like Dijon, Beaune, and Chalon-sur-Saône, each adding a unique hue to the colourful palette of France's towns and cities.

Where's best to go Cycling in France?


The renowned Burgundy region stands as a global epicentre for its exceptional wines, acclaimed as some of the finest worldwide. Here, a deep-rooted passion for all things wine permeates the local culture, whether it's the meticulous craftsmanship in production, the art of selling, or the simple joy of haring a glass amongst friends at the dining table. 

A cycling holiday in Burgundy unveils a treasure trove of experiences, starting with the mediaeval allure of Dijon, the ancient capital steeped in history and charm. The cycling routes wind along tranquil canals and through sprawling vineyards, offering a serene journey that unveils the region's natural beauty and cultural heritage. Delving deeper, encounter the historic Hospices de Beaune, an architectural marvel and the esteemed site of the world's most famed wine auction. In Chalon-sur-Saône, the pulse of life beats through its bustling streets, allowing visitors to immerse themselves in the vibrant energy of local culture. Each experience in Burgundy, whether savouring the wines, exploring historical sites, or feeling the vivacity of the towns, contributes to a rich tapestry of moments that celebrate the essence and spirit of this captivating region.



Embark on a historic journey through Normandy, immersing yourself in the tales of the D-Day Normandy Landings. Uncover the layers of history dating back a millennium in Bayeux, where the famous tapestry narrates compelling stories. Pedal along coastal lanes, passing through picturesque patchwork fields and visiting charming fishing villages that breathe the essence of Normandy. Among the serene landscapes, take a poignant pause at Omaha Beach, paying homage to the thousands of soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice during the D-Day invasion. While exploring, savour the delectable offerings of Norman cuisine and treat your taste buds to a sampling of the renowned Calvados brandy.

Cycling an average of 45 kilometres per day along tranquil lanes, flanked by tree-lined fields and emerging at cliff-top viewpoints, presents the perfect vantage to absorb the transformation of this landscape. Less than a century ago, it served as a relentless battleground, starkly contrasting the serene farmlands and coastal idylls that now adorn the cycling tour. It's a journey that intertwines the peaceful beauty of the present with the poignant echoes of a tumultuous past, creating a unique and captivating exploration of Normandy's diverse and compelling history.


French Alps

The French Alps stand as the majestic pinnacle of France, boasting unparalleled natural beauty. Europe's largest mountain range is home to stunning, snow-capped peaks and breathtaking vistas that attract adventurer travellers and cycling fanatics from across the world. The awe-inspiring landscapes host the legendary Route des Grandes Alpes. This iconic cycle route takes riders through breathtaking vistas, providing an opportunity to ride the famous cols of Iseran, Galibier, and Izoard, challenging and rewarding cyclists with their steep ascents and thrilling descents. The journey through the French Alps offers an opportunity to experience the iconic paths where numerous classic Tour de France mountain stages have unfolded.


Loire Valley

Cycling through the picturesque Loire Valley offers an enchanting experience from Blois to Saumur, a gateway to the many magnificent châteaux scattered along the route. This historical trail invites travellers to immerse themselves in the beauty of the Loire à Vélo, where the path winds through expansive vineyards and unveils the hidden treasures of quaint, storied towns along the way. Chinon, with its revered status as a favourite destination among French nobility, invites visitors to indulge in the fine art of wine tasting, where the rich flavours of the region come alive, creating a sensory journey through the essence of its renowned vineyards. The iconic Château d'Usse, famously linked to the tale of Sleeping Beauty, stands as a captivating emblem of fairytale inspiration. Meanwhile, the charming town of Saumur, gracefully situated at the merging point of the Loire and Thouet Rivers, captivates visitors with its unique blend of history, architectural beauty, and natural wonders. It's a town where the past meets the present, offering a tapestry of cobblestone streets, historic sites, and the allure of the serene river confluence.


Best Time for a Cycling Holiday in France?


The best time for a cycling holiday in France often depends on personal preferences and the specific region you plan to visit. However, generally speaking, late spring (May and June) and early autumn (September and October) are typically considered the best times for a cycling trip in France. During these periods, the weather is often mild and pleasant, making it ideal for cycling. The temperatures are usually comfortable, not too hot nor too cold, and there's less chance of encountering extreme weather conditions. Additionally, these months generally see fewer tourists compared to the peak summer season, allowing for a more enjoyable and less crowded experience.

However, if you're considering cycling in the mountainous regions such as the French Alps, summer months (July and August) might be more suitable due to the snowmelt and better access to higher altitude routes. However, the summer months are often when the trails are the most crowded. 

For those willing to wrap up warm and don’t mind the occasional rainfall, from late autumn through to early spring (November to April) the trails are almost empty, giving you the opportunity to explore France’s magnificent web of paths alone. 

How difficult is the cycling in France?


France has a hugely diverse range of cycle paths catering to cyclists of all abilities - ranging from leisurely trails along smooth tarmac roads to tough, off-road paths. Casual cyclists can enjoy Burgundy’s forgiving trails that meander alongside tranquil canals or Normandy’s peaceful coastal lanes that carry cyclists through patchwork fields and quaint fishing villages. These routes allow you to explore some of Europe’s most fascinating destinations at your own pace, with time to enjoy the local cuisine and famous wine. 

For those looking to push themselves on tricky trails with tough terrains, the Alps has a beautiful web of iconic trails that lead you through continuous climbs towards towering summits. Test your mettle along routes that challenge the worlds’ greatest riders in the Tour de France and be rewarded with panoramic mountain views and an enormous sense of achievement. These epic routes are recommended for experienced cyclists only, who relish the challenge of long, consecutive and very hilly days on the bike. Demanding a high level of endurance, these holidays are aimed at regular sportive / club riders.

What is the accommodation like in France?


The French countryside is filled with idyllic  hotels serving as perfect havens after a long day on the saddle. Ranging from cosy 2 to 4-star hotels, each is meticulously chosen for its warm hospitality and strategic locations along your cycling route. These accommodations offer a diverse array of features, from idyllic beachfront settings to historically rich properties that remained unscathed from war, as well as inviting communal areas ideal for unwinding post cycling adventures.

Moreover, all these hotels ensure a fulfilling start to your day, providing a hearty breakfast buffet. The offerings are extensive, featuring an assortment of hot and cold options—ranging from meats, cheeses, bread, eggs, pastries, cereals, fruits, and more—ensuring a substantial and varied meal to energise you for the day's ride ahead.

Alternatives to Cycling in France


The similarities between Spain and France go further than their shared border. Both nations host a thrilling network of cycle paths that take riders through picturesque landscapes. Embark on an immersive, self-guided cycling adventure along the breathtaking expanse from Alicante to Valencia, meandering through the enchanting paths that lead away from the lively tourist hotspots. The journey unveils the hidden treasures nestled within the picturesque landscapes of the Costa Blanca, offering a serene escape from the hustle and bustle of popular tourist trails. Alternatively, embarking on a week-long cycling holiday through Southern Spain offers a captivating journey through the heart of Andalusia, where the enchanting cities of Cordoba and Seville await. This immersive adventure allows you to delve into the rich cultural tapestry of these historically significant cities, all while gracefully navigating their cobbled streets and vibrant neighbourhoods on your bicycle.



Discover the serene beauty of Portugal with a laid-back cycling holiday set at the charming eco-lodge nestled in the southern tip of Algarve. Enjoy the delightful accommodation at the eco-lodge, boasting great food and hospitable hosts. Discover a magnificent chain of coastal and inland routes, navigating a network of charming backroads and gravel forest paths. Pedal along these enchanting trails, where every turn reveals a new breathtaking vista. Witness the breathtaking sunset from Cabo Sao Vicente, a mesmerising viewpoint that stands as Europe's most south-westerly tip, and experience the historic coastal town of Lagos on your cycling adventure.



Embark on an epic cross-border cycling journey, discovering the rich history and stunning landscapes of the Netherlands and Belgium. Immerse yourself in the captivating ambiance of Amsterdam, an iconic city celebrated for its UNESCO-listed canals and rich cultural tapestry. Navigate through the vibrant streets and along the winding waterways, uncovering the city's artistic heritage and architectural splendour. Encounter iconic windmills at Kinderdijk, and pedal through serene green spaces and picturesque canals, experiencing the excellent cycle network of the region. As you journey into Belgium, relish the allure of Bruges and its UNESCO-listed historic centre. Explore the mediaeval city's cobblestone streets, adorned with architectural marvels and centuries-old charm. Along the way, be sure to enjoy the flavours of Belgium and the Netherlands, indulging in the world-renowned Belgian beer and chocolate while savouring the delectable taste of Dutch cheese. 

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