"Vineyards & Chateaux "
"An extraordinary trip for all wine enthusiasts and lovers of historical buildings discovering France at its most grandiose"
Start & finish: Paris
Duration: 8 days/7 nights -
Riding experience: Intermediate. Warning: the roads are sometimes
narrow and often winding
Km per day: Approx.200 km i.e. an average of 4 to 5 hours of riding
Stops at least every hour. Total: approx. 1,400 km
Price: From € 2 900 (excluding bike)
From € 3 650 (including bike)
Passenger: From € 1825
The all-inclusive price includes:
Train station or airport transfers - Hotel accommodation (minimum 3-star or equivalent based on a double room) - Morning, lunch and evening meals - itinerary - Guide and support vehicle and luggage transportation - Fuel - Entry tickets to visits, etc.
Not included: flight or travel to Paris or Nice - drinks not included in set menus
And more generally anything that is not "included in the package"
See general conditions of sale
From Paris to Chambord, La Rochelle to the Atlantic islands, Cognac Bordeaux, ... A heady mix of vineyards producing the greatest crus in the world and the most beautiful chateaux up to Versailles… Unique and Magical.
Ride past the most beautiful chateaux in the world
Learn how to taste wine the French way
Take a Selfie in front of the Saint Emilion road sign.
Bring back bottles of the greatest crus from the Bordeaux region.
Ride a bike in a boat.
Find out how Cognac is made…
Have fun in the invigorating waves of the Atlantic ocean
Become a driver in the 24H du Mans
Vineyards & Chateaux
Day after Day
Paris - Chambord - Blois 180 kms the chateaux route
You will be picked up the day before from your arrival point in Paris. The next morning it's time to discover the bikes.
After a few checks and a signature (your driver license and credit card are needed for the rental and deposit), we're all fired up to cross the land of the kings!
We start with saluting Louis XIV, in Versailles and then set out for the valley of L'Eure, la Beauce and la Sologne, via the valley of Chevreuse.
A "coffee break" awaits us in a very secret, magical and mysterious chamber... but don't tell anyone.
We pass lots of historical buildings and forgotten villages. Time stands still while we stop for lunch.
Here we are at Chambord boasting the biggest enclosed park in Europe with its chateau. This is the land of François the 1st and its presidential hunting grounds, rife with game, taking us to the royal town of Blois.
The time has come to get some rest in a charming hotel.
Blois - Coulon 250 kms
The Loire valley opens its banks. We take the small roads and go past the majestic chateau of Chaumont, then stop at Amboise. Following the footsteps of Léonard de Vinci, we admire the residence where he lived and died. A banquet fit for a king is laid out in the remarkable chateau of Chenonceau.
We might just hop on a boat to cross the river to the chateau, who knows... this peaceful setting is enthralling.
The afternoon is earmarked for Chateaux of another kind...
We mull over the day at a tasting of the famous Loire wines of Bourgueil or Saumur. Life is sweet in this valley of the Kings, that's for sure!
We finish in Saumur where we sleep like lords bringing an end to our trip to the Loire valley.
Coulon - Saint-Emilion 200 kms
After a good night's sleep, we're off to discover the Marais Poitevin (marshes), close to Niort and Poitiers.
We make a small detour to the monumental Abbaye de Fontevraud reminding us of the church's impact on the Kings, men and the vines...
We cross the wide expanses of Deux Sèvres getting its name from its two rivers and find refuge in an authentic "troquet" (bar).
Following the river at a laid-back, "vacation" pace, we come into the nature reserve of the marais Poitevin and all its wonders with an impressive 18,000 hectares of marsh to relax in.
Welcome to the Green Venice where the trees have shaped the canals, discovered along our boat trip.
The time has come to eat and savor the end of the day, admiring our bikes bathing in the soft, warm evening light ...
Saint-Emilion - Ile de Ré 220 kms
We wake to the morning mist and dewy light, knowing that Cognac is waiting for us.
The journey to this town which gave its name to this beverage showcases fertile land, endless sweeping vineyards and grapes, lovingly and expertly transformed into this delicious nectar. It's a whole art turning this fruit into a delight to the palate.
However, when it comes to the break, we steer well clear of this alcoholic refreshment as all good bikers do!
Cognac. The spirits companies have pride of place in the town and their buildings alike. Each prestigious brand has its own unique taste prompting us to discover this liquor, its history, and the "secrets" of how it is made. Not to be missed!
And on the nourishment front, make no mistake, the food is good here too!
With a new lease of life, it's back to serious business as the wine route is calling us.
We are greeted by vineyards and a smile tickles our face, our heads are filled with the names of the domains we meander through.
We arrive at our destination of Saint-Emilion with our senses pleased and stimulated. A magical moment.
Ile de Ré - Angers 210 kms
We make an early start in the morning chill. There is nothing like taking in the morning air and atmosphere.
With our spirits high, we embark upon the second leg of our adventure, bound for Bordeaux country.
There is lots to discover in Bordeaux and its terraces are very welcoming giving us the time to prepare for our next experience: le Médoc!
The Gironde river guides our wheels and beckons us to the Route des Grands Crus. From Château Margaux to Saint-Estèphe, this route takes us through the evocative vineyards to the delight of all enthusiasts of this "beverage of the Roman God, Bacchus".
We never tire of stopping in the middle of these iconic domains. A winegrower opens up his cellars and little secrets to us... Pure joy. We come away with a few bottles to be consumed in the evening ...
At the tip of Grave with the day drawing in, we head for the sea where the Atlantic ocean meets the Gironde river and find ourselves in Royan.
This is in Charente Maritime where the specialties are of the drinking and eating kind: oysters and Pineau are on tonight's menju. Cheers to all adventurers and our evening here!
Angers - Versailles
All fired up, it's time for the return journey. The bravest (or the true gourmands) amongst us may be tempted to oysters for breakfast.
We make headway through the villages, leaving the vineyards far behind... We take a break in Angers to admire the remparts. They do say that the climate is different North of the Loire and we definitely feel it. We are now in the Sarthe département boasting a special local feature: Le Mans, famous for its 24 hour car and motorcycle race and its rillettes (potted meat) too! We go along part of the route of this iconic race. The old town reveals its little streets of timber-framed buildings and quaint little restaurants. The afternoon brings us to another culinary specialty: boudin (blood sausage). Whether black or white, this Normandy (our current destination) delicassy can be eaten hot or cold, washed down with a cider.
In this ever somewhat wild countryside, we go through the Perche and Orne nature reserve.
This is horse country and that of the local breed, the huge percheron. And so on to the Parisian region.
Our trip is coming to an end with our last adventure before us: Versailles and its golden wonders, its majestic chateau, its park and royal town.
Versailles - Paris
Our last mroning... This day is dedicated to visiting this architectural gem imagined by the Sun King. Not so much road but lots of majestic alleys to wander through.
A relaxing day leaving Versailles with a bike tour of Paris. We salute the Eiffel tower, les Champs élyséees, la Concorde, the Louvre museum, Montmartre and Sacré Coeur, the Ponts des Arts, the Pont Neuf, les Tuileries, the Panthéon ...
What a treat to ride around Paris on a Sunday, far from the usual traffic jams ...
The dreaded time has come to hand back the bikes...
We're a bit worn out after this incredible but happy adventure.
We promise to meet up again ... and we know it will happen as road trips create lasting ties...
With close to 1,700 km under our belts, we have gone through the most beautiful vineyards, passing at the foot of the most spectacular chateaux. Great moments of friendship, human and geographical discoveries have been shared. And great food too.
So many souvenirs to take away or arriving later on a postcard... to prolong and relive the pleasure of this one-of-a-kind trip.
See you soon.