We propose an 8-day cycling trip, during which you will cycle along the Vélodyssée cycle route, then along the Flow Vélo. An unusual itinerary that will allow you to discover the secrets of the Charente-Maritime by bike. During 8 days, you will cycle along rivers and discover breathtaking tides and river ports. Your itinerary will continue along the Vélodyssée, where you will have a splendid view of the sea. Along the cycle paths you will pass through the coastal forest and beautiful beaches, including the charming beach of St-Palais. You will follow the coastal road to reach the impressive cliffs and sandy beaches of Royan.
You individually travel to Saintes. Check in at your accommodation. Have you arrived early, take a stroll through this historic city of Charente-Maritime.
Diner included for the first night!
The rivers become tidal and there are regular river ports along the way, great places to halt at. This stage, though, mainly takes you through countryside a bit away from the Charente River. However, Port d’Envaux and the châteaux of Panloy and Crazannes will stop you in your tracks. Then you arrive at Saint-Savinien-sur-Charente, nestled in its meander. Take a break here and savour the charm of this village, one of the most picturesque in the county of Charente, labeled Petite Cité de Caractère. Imagine how beautifully-cut stone from the surrounding quarries was once shipped out from here to Ghent, Antwerp and even London.
Challenge: 48.1km, 491m ascent, 589m descent
After Saintes, you feel the pull of the ocean !
On the way to Royan, stop at the distillery “Domaine & Distillerie Brillouet” for an exciting visit and passing front of “Tour de Pirelonge”, A curiosity to discover that retains a part of mystery.
Before reaching Royan, cycling through Saujon, renowned for its thermal baths, a town full of charm in the heart of the La Seudre basin. Not far from the beaches, aspire to the calm and tranquillity of the Saintonge countryside.
Challenge: 49km, 315m ascent, 415m descent
This morning, departure by bike to discover the authentic village of Mornac-sur-Seudre, labeled one of the most beautiful villages in France!
Here cycle paths are numerous and a truly memorable part of the route takes you through the forest of Coubre as La Vélodyssée reaches La Palmyre. This part is fit for a king, with splendid sea views. Following cycle lanes throughout, it weaves through the coastal forest and array of pretty beaches, one of which is the charming St-Palais, along the coast road to reach the striking cliffs and sandy beaches either side of the beautiful streets of Royan.
Challenge: 56.9km, 366m ascent, 369m descent
Past Royan’s port, this stage begins at Royan’s Grande Conche Beach. Head along the seafront on a lovely shaded cycle path. The cycle route then threads between tracks and quiet roads to Meschers-sur-Gironde before reaching Talmont-sur-Gironde (labeled one of the most beautiful villages in France), an astonishing look-out post onto the estuary. Caillaud Cliff and the square fishing nets suspended above the waters add to the atmosphere. The stage continues via quiet, sometimes steep roads and tracks to Mortagne-sur-Gironde, a port well protected from the temperamental Gironde.
The rest of your journey will be on small country roads to Pons, located on a rocky promontory overlooking the Seugne, this medieval town, with its picturesque alleys, testifies to a rich past.
Challenge: 68km, 1506m ascent, 1396m descent
On the program today, the discovery of Jonzac for a loop from Pons. Jonzac is a city where well-being, beauty and relaxation mingle for each traveller taking this detour in the heart of Saintonge, not far from Pons. This medieval city, with a millennial history, has forged an extraordinary destiny for itself, come and discover it...
Challenge: 55.1km, 621m ascent, 662m descent
Riding off along the town of Cognac’s quays makes for a fine start to the next stage of La Flow Vélo. Along this bucolic stretch, you’ll encounter several tributaries of the Charente River heading for the town of Saintes. Little chain-operated ferries enable you to cross the waters at Rouffiac and Chaniers in a fun way, plus there are simple riverside inns (guinguettes) to enjoy. The cycle route continues on through riverside flood meadows to Saintes, a place boasting 2,000 years of history for you to explore. Wandering around the streets on foot is the best way to take in the many sights of this deeply historic town going back to Gallo-Roman times.
Challenge: 68.2km, 1489m ascent, 1601m descent
After breakfast, end of your cycling trip!
All accommodations are carefully selected because of their location, atmosphere and/or unique services.
We choose comfortable 2*/3* hotels or B&Bs where all rooms have private en-suite bathroom and every morning breakfast are included.
For this trip you can choose between Comfort and Comfort +. The accommodations for a Comfort+ trip, will be in 3*/4 * hotels wherever possible (supplement applied).
7 Nights included
2/3 Star Hotels or 3/4 Star Hotels (supplement applied)
Tourist tax included
Breakfast included, 1 dinner included for the first night
Maps and tourist information on all the places of interest
24/7 Bilingual Emergency hotline
Luggage transport to your next accommodations. Luggage accepted per person: 1 suitcase or travel bag (20 kg maximum)
For time tables and further information check the website of SNCF or rome2rio for all French National trains (SNCF).
We strongly advise you to download the sncf mobile app prior to departure. If you want to travel on a train with your bike, you can find more information via this link.
Parking informations on request
We will supply the directions of this trip with a personalized code which gives you access to our travel App.
The closest airports for this trip are La Rochelle (LRH) and Bordeaux (BOD).
From La Rochelle, you can take a train (TER) to Saintes (50 min). From Bordeaux, you can take a shuttle from the airport to the station, then a train to Saintes (1h50).
For timetables and further information, you can consult the SNCF website or rome2rio for all French national trains (SNCF).
From Paris to Saintes (approx. 4h45 - 474 km). Acces to driving routes see the website ViaMichelin.