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The region is globally known for its Bordeaux wines, but all of Aquitaine is a vineyard, from Bergerac in the north to Irouléguy or Jurançon in the south. Vineyards are everywhere in this area, the wine culture blends with the lifestyle and the vineyards are still open to tourists.
Display in 3 points, from south to north to change…
In Béarn, within Gascogne and Bigorre, discover the Madiran vineyard with a 48km bike track, passing several châteaux and, of course, the cooperative cellar of Crouseille.
In Lot-et-Garonne, the « Vineyards and orchards in Duraquois » circuit fully lives up to its name. From the village of Duras, it passes through hills, spans the Dropt and lets you discover a real gem of a vineyard.
North of Bordeaux, beside the Gironde estuary, Blaye and its citadel are the starting point for a cycle track on an old railway connecting it with Etauliers, where there is an asparagus festival in April. 13km in complete nature, through the vineyards.
In Dordogne, the greenway of Berges de l'Isle, 23 km long, runs through the towns of Périgueux from east to west. You can also go down the river by canoe. Peace and tranquillity guaranteed.
Did you know that all the seaside resorts on the Arcachon Basin are linked by the network of cycle paths? 85 km between Cap-Ferret and Arcachon. Take the opportunity to go to the beach by bike, along the dunes.
You will appreciate Aquitaine for its vast natural, protected areas, both at the coast and inland. Reserves, protected areas, 1 national natural park in the Pyrenees and 2 regional natural parks:
In Périgord Limousin regional natural park, an old 19th century railway has been developed. Cyclists, roller-skaters and walkers can travel the 17km in peace, between Thiviers, the capital of foie gras in Périgord Vert and Saint Pardoux la Rivière in the park.
Landes de Gascogne regional natural park has many cycle routes with a variety of levels and distances, for mountain bikes or road bikes. Also think about taking a look at the many events throughout the summer or during the “Bike Park” days.
Go for ride along the 700 km of the Canal des Deux Mers by bike. This exceptional cycle route links the two seas of the Atlantic and the Mediterranean. Your itinerary will take you along the Canal de Garonne and the Canal du Midi, which is a World Heritage Site, to explore great landscapes and sites.
Discovering the Vélodyssée, this major European route which runs along the Atlantic Ocean from southern England to Spain. In the Landes, it's a great idea for a family excursion, breathing in the smell of pine trees, like here in Biscarrosse.
The major European routes allow for great journeys through such a variety of cultures and landscapes! Now, with Scandibérique, you can arrive at the Spanish border, precisely in Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port. This crossing point for many pilgrims on the roads to Compostela is at the heart of the Basque Pyrenees.
Our cities are green enough to make cycling here like being in the country ... In this picture, we see that the right bank of Bordeaux offers an incomparable view of the famous eighteenth-century facades. And from one bridge to the next, the ride is certainly worth it!
With the “Vcub” bike rental system, you can hire a bike in town (and in the surrounding towns!) and return it to another resort. Subscription for 1 / 7 day(s) / 1 month / 1 year, first half hour free then 2 Euros/hour.
Bayonne, the gateway to the Basque Country
There is a bike hire service at various points around the town centre: Tourist office, covered car parks, association houses. Free hire, subject to a deposit for a maximum period of one day, and the bike must be returned to the place that you hired it from.
Périgueux, the art of the Périgord way of life
A town in the countryside and a 15km Green Way along the Isle river.
Pau, a town at the foot of the Pyrenees
In the birth town of Henry IV, you can hire a bike for a subscription of 1 or 7 days. After the first free half hour, the hourly rate varies between 1 and 2 Euros, depending on the length of use.
Unique in France: the first bicycle resort, in Créon in the Entre-deux-Mers region, along the Roger Lapébie track. In the same way as at a ski resort, it is possible to hire all the equipment and to choose between a leisure bicycle and a mountain bike. 35,000 people use the resort each year.
Known for its white wines, Entre-deux-Mers is also the King area for bicycles. No less than 23 cycle circuits around this cycle track with bike hire (rental in Créon) and relay points for possible repairs.
Also see Sauve-Majeure abbey, the fortified towns of Cadillac and Sauveterre-de-Guyenne, little gateways to the Dordogne and Garonne.
In Biarritz, you can ride your bike without ever taking your eyes off the ocean. Stop off at villa Bielz ... the view over the coastline's cliffs, the Basque mountain in the distance - wow!. If you're fairly athletic, carry on to Saint-Jean-de-Luz then up to Hendaye. Difficult stages due to the terrain but they offer breathtaking views of the Bay of Biscay.
The more sporty among you might set off to conquer the legendary passes of the mountain pass. 34 passes punctuate the route from the Atlantic to the Mediterranean. Very accessible passes alternate with other high-mountain ones, including the famous Tourmalet, Aubisque, La Pierre-Saint-Martin ... Once you have defeated the Arnosteguy, enjoy the beautiful green scenery offered to you before diving down into the Nive valley.
In Labastide d’Armagnac, in Landes, a chapel dating back to the 10 century was turned into a place of pilgrimage by a priest passionate about cycling. Blessed in 1958 then again, in a different manner in 1989, when the Tour de France made it the starting point for the 8th stage, a compulsory stage, the Notre Dame for cyclists!
Christine Coutant and Thierry Monfort are cycling enthusiasts: they took the Vélodyssée® from Le Verdon to Hendaye. This Breton couple started out in Nantes. « We couldn't wait to get to Aquitaine, with the magnificent forest, the fresh smell of the pines and the greenery. We really loved this environment, we really felt like we were getting away from it all as we enjoyed the wide open spaces.
It's not at all monotonous » explained Thierry, a fifty-something executive. « The landscape is changing all the time. We were cycling through natural landscapes practically all the time, and we felt like we had escaped! It was almost like meditating, or going on a pilgrimage, communing with nature » confirmed Christine Coutant, an athletic forty-something.
« There's the effort you put in, pedalling for 70 kilometres a day over an average of 7 hours a day, both an inner adventure and an opportunity to explore this lovely region » explained Thierry Monfort. « When we got here, we didn't feel like stopping, we wanted to forge ahead » he confided. When we asked the two cyclists for a tip, they immediately replied : « Just go ».
Christine et Thierry
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