This page was last updated Wed 21 May 2014.

Contents: Tours (405)    Trails (13)    Sites (12)    Cycling info pages (19)    Organizations and clubs (5)   

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France (all)

This page lists all reports that for France including those that involve other countries too.
Click here for a list of reports that involve only France.
All descriptions are in English, unless otherwise noted.

Tours (continued)

FRA KAPP A CABO North Cape to Gibraltar by bike
by Willem van Schaik, tour started June 1998

Middle of June 1998, we [...] started the trip we had dreamed of for a long time: by bicycle from top to bottom through Europe. A view on the map shows that this journey covers 36 degrees of latitude and in total has a length of 7200 km. The trip started in Norway and from there led us through Denmark, Germany, France, Spain, Portugal and finally to Gibraltar. Not the shortest route, but also an exploration of the better parts of Europe. This on-line trip-report was built up while cycling.

Camping at Straumen
French Alps and Jura 1998
by Trevor and Thea Warwick, tour started June 1998
Europe: France

An excellent report, with nice pictures, useful information, and a good story

See all 5 reports by Trevor and Thea Warwick

Zürich - Gibraltar
by Regula Baumberger and Alois Renn, tour started 1998
language: de

Es ist schon faszinierend einen kleinen Rucksack zu packen, das Fahrrad aus dem Keller zu holen und sich darauf setzen mit der Zielsetzung Gibraltar zu erreichen. Vor allem, wenn der Startort Zürich heisst und 2800 Kilometer Asphalt in allen möglichen Modifikationen dazwischen liegen. So geschehen anfangs August wo wir uns in Balterswil im Thurgau zum Prolog - so heisst heutzutage der letzte Materialtest - trafen. Der ging über 50 km nach Zürich, bei Wunderwetter das pure Vergnügen, und das Material war perfekt. Also etwas Carbo laden, letzte Details besprechen, die leichte Aufregung spüren und dem nächsten Morgen entgegenfiebern.

See all 3 reports by Regula Baumberger and Alois Renn

The Alps East to West 1998
by Carsten Gregersen, tour started 1998

From Carsten's Cycling Web, the Web site of Carsten Gregersen.

This tour has it all: Deep Austrian lakes, steep rocks in the Dolomites, impressive Swiss mountain scenery and the gentle slopes of the Jura Mountains. Last, but not least, there is Europe's highest mountain, Mont Blanc. I have only one day off-road in the Dolomites - otherwise I go along surfaced roads. Starting out as a group of ten we eventually split into smaller groups. I ride most of the tour by myself.

See all 11 reports by Carsten Gregersen

The Fanes-Sennes nature reserve is definitely worth a visit
Copenhagen-Rome
by Louis Tousignant, tour started 1998

My name is Louis Tousignant, a Canadian in his mid-fifties, living in Nova Scotia, on the Atlantic shore. I am always on the look out for riding partners, as I plan one major trip every year, up till now in Europe, but New Zealand and South East Asia are in the wings. All my recent trips have included the following parameters: 100 km/day (give or take 20%) on average; hotels, B&B's or pensions, no camping; most meals in restaurants; start in one country, exit in another, to maximize coverage; 5 to 6 week duration (participation in one leg of the trip is of course possible for those who can't spare the time). [...]

This was my first major trip without time constraints. My last touring experience dated back to the mid-80's. In this context, I did not plan properly, beyond defining the broad outline of the itinerary: Denmark, shortest possible time in Germany therefore Netherlands, Belgium, France, and Northern Italy to Rome. I had no maps for long stretches of the trip, except for France and Italy (Michelin 1:200,000 or 400,000), and no computer on my bike. For a variety of business reasons, I had not trained to any significant degree before the trip, in fact I was green. Finally, I wrote sketchy notes as I went along and here I am, writing a trip report 4 years after the fact...

See all 4 reports by Louis Tousignant

Europe by bike II: Budapest to Gibraltar
by Glenn and Sheila Ord, tour started 1998

Theft Incidents:

  • Muesli and milk (fox suspected); Germany
  • Dog chewing Glenn's dinner plate; France
  • Cat burgler..feline attempt at food in tent vestibule; Spain

See all 5 reports by Glenn and Sheila Ord

Ord's Bike Guide to Europe
by Glenn and Sheila Ord, tour started 1998

From Glenn and Sheila Ord's Home Page: On the Road to Nowhere - Nowhere is the Place. With an emphasis on budget travelling - Our experiences and advice for cycling in Europe. This guide is entirely based on our 7 1/2 months (12,000 km) in 1998 across (and back) Europe: staying almost entirely in campgrounds (185 tent nights). This was supplemented by our time in Italy (April-May 1999).

See all 5 reports by Glenn and Sheila Ord

Tour of the Alps 1998
by Jobst Brandt, tour started 1998

We took the old road that hangs in a notch carved high above the Aar in the slot below. As we climbed above the upper Grimsel reservoir of the Haslital Power Company, the Finsteraarhorn (4275m), the source of the Unteraar and Oberaar rivers, came into view to the west.

After a light breakfast under a partial overcast, we headed up the wide concrete Gotthard highway that starts climbing in town. Here, above tree line, only scrub brush, grass, wildflowers, and alpenrosen, an azalea prevalent throughout the Alps, decorate the landscape. The alpenrose, among the many wildflowers, adds a lovely bouquet of pink and red with its dark green leaves, as do the striking deep blue gentians, pale blue forget-me-nots, and many varieties of daisies and dandelions.

See all 20 reports by Jobst Brandt

Provence 1998
by Jim and Donna Felder, tour started 1998
Europe: France

Includes some photos and more photos in an attached Photo Album.

Donna and I have become pretty avid cyclists over the last two years, these few more months until our 50th birthdays being the second time in my life for a great interest in cycling and the first for Donna. [...] On our way through our research, we discovered Provence, the sunny southeast quadrant of [France]. We didn't know much about it at first, but over months of preparation and study, a tantalizing picture emerged of a regional culture that is to Paris as the Alabama we live in is to the bustling northeastern United States.

What we discovered about Provence made it our destination. The area is a land where shimmering olive groves and orderly vineyards stretch as far as the eye can see, where food is one of the most important elements of life, and where the disposition of people and plants is infused with the temperate weather and the colors that have attracted artists and poets for centuries.

Europe by bike: London to Budapest
by Glenn and Sheila Ord, tour started 1998

Travel Notes:

  • Thumbs up to: French friendliness, secondary road system, campsites, the bread, wine cheese, pate, supermarkets.
  • Thumbs down to: the April weather, birds that chirp all night long.
  • Most bizarre sight: we spotted 3 English train spotters on holiday watching the trains go by.
  • The gift for the person who has everything: a waterproof baguette holder

See all 5 reports by Glenn and Sheila Ord

On Yer Bike! Northern Summer 1998
by Garry Budin, tour started 1998
Europe: UK, France, Spain, Portugal

The idea of cycling in Europe had hit me in England in June: I was cycling from my home in Oxford up to Yorkshire and persistently got lashed by wind and near freezing rain, a thought quickly formed in my mind: time to head south and do a proper cycle trip - to the sun.

From Santiago I headed west to Cabo Finisterre, and Galician equivalent of Englands Lands End, jutting out into the Atlantic, pointing to the American continent. One local I asked directions from said to me; 'Finisterre really is the end of the civilized world', and looked out west towards America. It was a longish days cycling, 140km, and into a head wind, but nice and warm, about 27 degrees.

La Marmotte
by Francis Cooke, tour started 1998
Europe: France

La Marmotte is one of the toughest and most spectacular one-day events in Europe, only 175km but with well over 5000m of climbing, finishing on that most famous of Tour de France battling grounds, the Alpe d'Huez.

See all 5 reports by Francis Cooke

Free-Wheeling along the Dordogne or Recycling Cyrano de Bergerac
by Arthur J. Weitzman, tour started November 1997
Europe: France

The bicycles skidded to a halt. There he stood with his unmistakably immense nose in the afternoon sun in the Place Myrpe of Bergerac, the arrogant guardsman, poet, lover and lately matine idol of the silver screen-- Cyrano de Bergerac! Later at the Café Cyrano over some dry white wine from this picturesque region of France, the truth emerged.

See all 2 reports by Arthur J. Weitzman

Limousin, Périgord, Dordogne, Quercy
by Totton Heffelfinger, tour started September 1997
Europe: France

An extensive and informative report, very well organized.

Geneva - Barcelona
by Regula Baumberger and Alois Renn, tour started 1997
language: en, de

Nice layout, good pictures, altitude diagrams, maps, useful information - well, the works. The route follows the rim of the Alps, crosses the Rhone valley close to Montelimar and enters the Massif Central to follow the gorges of the Tarn river. With an excursion to the Lacaune Mountains and Pic Noire we cross the Garonne valley and head the Pyrenees to climb the Mountains to Puerta Envalira and Andorra. After this excursion to big tourism we enjoy the quietness of the Sierra Cadi from where we visit the Monastry of Montserrat and finally ride down to Barcelona.

See all 3 reports by Regula Baumberger and Alois Renn

French and Swiss Alps
by Trevor and Thea Warwick, tour started 1997

Complete with beatiful pictures: thumbnails on-line, with links to bigger off-line. This year, my wife Thea and I had planned a summer Alpine cycle tour, two weeks riding in the Northern French and Western Swiss Alps. Our proposed distances were less ambitious than some of the other tours described on this web site, with an average of around 80km per day, with no more than 2000 metres of climbing. We were planning to travel with one pannier each, and ended up with about 4.5 kilos of luggage per person.

See all 5 reports by Trevor and Thea Warwick

Tour of the Alps 1997
by Jobst Brandt, tour started 1997

3400km, 55337m, and 22 days on the road in rain, sun, and snow.

We set out toward Luzern and the central Alps in a cold rain, riding south across the Reuss valley to Merenschwand, in canton Aargau, with its slender church steeple and red tile roofed houses with window boxes of geraniums.

I looked out the window at first light and thought I was wearing red filters. After some more sleep and better daylight I checked again and it was true, it had snowed more than 15cm during the night. We got a good breakfast before heading up the hill on the freshly plowed road.

Only intermittent drops fell as my max speed record also fell, recording a speed that newscasters would have you believe occurs regularly in the TdF and on far gentler slopes. This is a 13% descent, perfectly straight into Ciapela (1450m) and smooth enough to reach terminal velocity. It was a gas.

See all 20 reports by Jobst Brandt

French and Swiss Alps
by Trevor and Thea Warwick, tour started 1997

This year, my wife Thea and I had planned a summer Alpine cycle tour, two weeks riding in the Northern French and Western Swiss Alps. [...] Our proposed distances were less ambitious than some of the other tours described on this web site, with an average of around 80km per day, with no more than 2000 metres of climbing. We were planning to travel with one pannier each, and [...] ended up with about 4.5 kilos of luggage per person [...]

See all 5 reports by Trevor and Thea Warwick

Col St Roch on a hot day
Back to the Loire
by Jean-Pierre Jacquot, tour started 1997
Europe: France

These pages are a recollection of our 1997 summer holidays where we crossed France from East (our home) to West (the family holiday house), following the Loire valley for most of the trip. Actually, this was the second time we took this route. First time was in 92 on our tandem with Nicolas in his seat on the rear rack. This year, the company is the same, but Nicolas rode his bike for the 1000 km of the trip; not too bad for a nine year old:-) [...] Once the choice of going along the Loire had been made, choosing the route was quite easy. The only question was ``Where to reach it?'' Langres, Alésia, Vézelay were places we wanted to discover, or rediscover for some, and that settled it. I have reproduced our route sheets for each day. They were established every evening, while waiting for our dinner. Reading those ``feuilles de route'' with a map at hand may help readers to understand how to plan reasonable routes for traveling in this country.

See all 5 reports by Jean-Pierre Jacquot

A Cycle Tour of South Central France - Rhône Valley, Burgundy, Berry and Limousin
by Mike Bedard, tour started 1997
Europe: France

This is a log of a month long cycle tour in France that I took with my wife Carol and (for the first ten days) two friends in the summer of 1997. [...] This was my 11th cycling tour in France (9th for Carol) and my 13th in Europe. We are what many cycle tourists disparagingly refer to as credit card tourists.

We headed north over the rolling hills of the Beaujolais, vineyards everywhere, stopping at Salles-Arbuissonas-en-Beaujolais. [...] We passed Côte de Brouilly and Brouilly vineyards - we had planned to pass through all ten Beaujolais cru's on that day. (Quick trivia question for you oenophiles out there: Can you name the ten? Bonus question: Which one is the most recently included? Answers at the bottom of this trip log.)

See all 16 reports by Mike Bedard

Britain and Brittany by Bike
by Terje Melheim, tour started 1997
Europe: UK, France

A family cycle tour in north-western part of France in 1997. We started the tour at Gatwick airport, and southern areas of England are included in our description.

See all 10 reports by Terje Melheim

Europe Tour
by Erik Carlsson & Eric Salomonsson, tour started 1997

Europe Tour 1997 started in Nyköping (100 km south of Stockholm) and continued to Copenhagen, Amsterdam, Paris, the Normandy coast, Jersey and London, before returning to Sweden via Denmark totalling just over 4000 kilometres.

See all 7 reports by Erik Carlsson & Eric Salomonsson

French Alps and Jura
by Trevor and Thea Warwick, tour started 1997
Europe: France

An excellent report, with nice pictures, useful information, and a good story.

See all 5 reports by Trevor and Thea Warwick

The Vercors Region
by Trevor Warwick, tour started July 1996
Europe: France

Most years, Reading Cycling Club organises a week-long trip to see the Tour de France. We hire a minibus, drive down to an approriate part of France, where we camp for a week, go cycling, and see the Tour when it comes past. [...] The Vercors is a great area to cycle in. The terrain is varied, and the scenery is lovely. The climbs are not as steep or as difficult as those in the high Alps, but provide enough of a challenge. I'd definitely recommend it as a place for a holiday.

See all 4 reports by Trevor Warwick

Tour du Mont-Blanc
by Francis Cooke, tour started July 1996
Europe: France

The Tour du Mont-Blanc is a circuit of 322km based in the northern French Alps, but visiting Italy and Switzerland as well. Run as a permanent route by the Cycle Touring Club of Chambery, it carries a maximum time limit of 4 days, as it crosses five fairly high passes. Sheila and I considered our options carefully. We decided to join the circuit at Beaufort, at the foot of the Cormet de Roselend, deposit some of our touring luggage at a hotel and ride round in two days.

See all 5 reports by Francis Cooke

Raid Pyreneen
by Andrew Powers, tour started June 1996
Europe: France

The aim of the raid is to cover the 710 kms (440) miles from Hendaye on the Atlantic coast of France to Cerbere on the Mediterranean coast within one hundred hours. Eighteen cols are classified on the route issued by the organising club, the Cyclo Club Bearnais of Pau, and include some of the most famous cols tackled by the Tour de France each year such as the Tourmalet, the Aspin and the Aubisque.

See all 2 reports by Andrew Powers

Tour of the Alps 1996
by Jobst Brandt, tour started 1996

This is the great report of a tour in the Alps that Jobst Brandt did in the summer of '96.

See all 20 reports by Jobst Brandt

Susa-Susa Tour
by Marco Buffa, tour started August 1995
Europe: France

Susa - Montgeneve - Briancon - Col du Lautaret - Col du Galibier - Col du Telegraph - St Michel de Maurienne - Lanslebourg - Mont Cenis - Susa. Km 205.

See all 14 reports by Marco Buffa

A Long Weekend in Normandy
by Duncan Snelling, tour started May 1995
Europe: France

The part of this region known as the ``Suisse Normande'' is particularly suited to cycle touring (at least by us) - the area is picturesque, (the river, the forests for example), has a number of interesting villages and towns, is quiet at this time of year, has enough ups and downs to be interesting and still easily managable. The food is pretty good, and affordable.

See all 2 reports by Duncan Snelling

Raid Alpine: Thonon-Trieste
by Francis Cooke, tour started 1995

From Arrivèe On-Line, Audax UK's quarterly magazine.

A certain Frenchman, Georges Rossini of Thonon on Lake Geneva, has set up four testing Alpine routes, or 'Raids':

  • Randonnee Alpine - Thonon to Antibes, 740km and 43 cols through the French Alps.
  • Randonnee Alpine - Thonon to Trieste, 1180km and 41 cols through the Swiss and Italian Alps and Dolomites.
  • Randonnee Prealpine - Thonon to Antibes, 894km and 47 cols through the French Alps.
  • Randonnee Prealpine - Thonon to Venice, 1209km and 69 cols through the Italian Alps and Lakes.

See all 5 reports by Francis Cooke

Tour of the Alps 1995
by Jobst Brandt, tour started 1995

This is the great report of a tour in the Alps that Jobst Brandt did in the summer of '95.

See all 20 reports by Jobst Brandt

French Alps
by Trevor Warwick, tour started 1995
Europe: France

In the summer of 1995, my girlfriend Thea and I spent a fortnight on a motoring, camping and cycling holiday in France. Our longest stay was a week camping in Bourg d'Oisans, with the joint aims of seeing the Tour go up Alpe d'Huez, and also cycling up a few mountains ourselves. I was also considering attempting the Marmotte randonee, which coincided with the weekend of our stay.

See all 4 reports by Trevor Warwick

Eastern Brittany/Western Normandy
by Mike Bedard, tour started 1995
Europe: France

This was our 10th cycling trip to France but our first north of the Loire river. We were very apprehensive about the weather but our worries were unfounded as Normandy had a sunny and dry summer that year. We travelled with another couple who have joined us for four European trips (and a fifth this year - 1997). We are all middle-aged (actually getting to be late middle-aged). We travel unsupported but we stay in hotels or chambres d'hote (B&B's). We average about 60km per day. We dine well. It's an elegant life we lead!!

See all 16 reports by Mike Bedard

Touring France
by Fredric A. Diegel, tour started 1995
Europe: France

Although there are many areas that I have not toured yet, trips to Lorraine, Alsace, Vosges, Doubs, Alps, Pyrenees, and Provence have all been great.

Touring France
by Jonathan Summers, tour started 1995
Europe: France

Very brief: Auvergne, Dordogne, upper Loire region, Languedoc-Roussilion, Ballon d'Alsace.

Riding Paris-Brest-Paris 1995 -- A personal memoir
by Matthew Chachere, tour started 1995
Europe: France

Paris-Brest-Paris is the oldest traditional cycling event, started in 1891 by a Frenchman named Giffard who thought it would be a great way to promote cycling, as a test ``not primarily of speed but brains, skill and endurance.'' It was held thereafter every ten years, and since the middle of the century, every four years. Attracting more than 4,000 or so riders from a number of countries, it is a ride of over 1,200 kilometers (about 750 miles) that must be completed within 90 hours.

See all 2 reports by Matthew Chachere

London to Rome
by Wayne Wakeman, tour started 1995
Europe: Italy, France, UK

Wayne rides through France, and has a look at the Tour on the way.

See all 2 reports by Wayne Wakeman

London to Rome
by Wayne Wakeman, tour started 1995
Europe: UK, France, Italy

Wayne rides through France, and has a look at the Tour on the way.

See all 2 reports by Wayne Wakeman

French Alps
by Trevor Warwick, tour started 1995
Europe: France

In the summer of 1995, my girlfriend Thea and I spent a fortnight on a motoring, camping and cycling holiday in France. Our longest stay was a week camping in Bourg d'Oisans, with the joint aims of seeing the Tour go up Alpe d'Huez, and also cycling up a few mountains ourselves. I was also considering attempting the Marmotte randonee, which coincided with the weekend of our stay.

We'd managed just one ride before getting to Bourg d'Oisans. This, around Annecy, included the Col de la Forclaz, claimed by a local friend to feature ``the best view in the Alps'' from the top. We were sadly unable to confirm this, as it was pouring with rain and visibility was down to 20 yards when we got there. A bunch of people in the cafe seemed very amused by us taking photographs of each other in front of a fog bank.

See all 4 reports by Trevor Warwick

Mont Blanc Tour
by Marco Buffa, tour started August 1994
Europe: France

  • 9 August 1994 from 8:30 to 17:50: La Salle-Chamonix by car via Tunnel, then Chamonix - Col des Montets - Col de la Forclaz - Martigny - Col du Grand St. Bernard - Aosta - La Salle; Km 153.
  • 12 August 1994 from 7:30 to 20:00: La Salle - Col du Petit St. Bernard - Bourg St. Maurice - Albertville - Beaufort - Col de Saises - Megeve - Chamonix Chamonix-La Salle by car via Tunnel; Km 207.

See all 14 reports by Marco Buffa

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