Touring in France

Lovebadger

New Member
Location
Pontypool
Hi all, I am going to France for 2 weeks with my wife and 20 month old son at the start of August. I am looking for touring ideas that are family friendly and am considering the more mountainous parts of France.

Rather than a long circular route, I was considering finding a base and having day trips. I'd appreciate any recommendations of places to stay and ideas for day trips.

Thanks in advance!!
 

Arch

Married to Night Train
Location
Salford, UK
I was in Annecy, near the Swiss border. We only cycled for one day on hire bikes - but we took a great off road path alongside the lake - lovely scenery. The town is quite touristy, in a good way - lots of restaurants etc. I imagine there could be lots of nice cycling around - along the lake valley is flatish, but there are mountains as well.

Long drive though. Accessible from Geneva airport, or is on the mainline TGV route.

I'm just back from a tour, we cycled a big loop, but had two days near Confolens, in the Charente (between Poitiers and Limoges). Very pretty area, good cycling. Well, most of France is good cycling...
 
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Lovebadger

New Member
Location
Pontypool
Thanks Arch, I have heard Annecy is good. I forgot to mention that we would be camping but I don't suppose that's an issue anywhere in France.
 

rich p

ridiculous old lush
Location
Brighton
You can't really go wrong in France. There are so many good places. I'd avoid the busy south coast though.

The Cevennes, the Espinouse, the Jura......
 

dragon72

Guru
Location
Mexico City
Here's my 2p:
The vastly-underrated Vosges mountains of Alsace are big enough for a challenge and there are plenty of more family-friendly rolling routes through beautiful vineyard country.

The Jura (just west of Geneva) is a stunning region and relatively unheard-of.

I'm off to the Massif Central later this month - I imagine it's going to be pretty good riding. lovely scenery and fairly off-the-beaten-track too.
 

Arch

Married to Night Train
Location
Salford, UK
The Loire is lovely, if a bit more touristy. Lots of chateaux, and cycling along the river. We passed through Saumur this time, very pretty, great chateau on the hill. Amboise, we had a day stop at 4 years ago - includes the house Leonardo da Vinci once lived in. There are some interesting troglodyte houses in the area - we stayed in a cave one night on this trip.

Have a look at my holiday journal (see my sig) for some of the places we visited this year - not mountainous though, I must admit.
 

Dave Davenport

Legendary Member
Location
Hampshire
I'm not sure 'family friendly' and 'mountainous' would work (unless you're the Schelck family). As arch said, the Loire is lovely and would definetely be my first choice for a family cycling holiday.
 

yoyo

Senior Member
I second the Vosges and Jura. Both have beautiful scenery and great cycling not to mention the wine. The Alsace wine route is especially good.
 
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Lovebadger

New Member
Location
Pontypool
Cheers everyone for the replies, it's time to get the Michelin atlas out and start making plans!! The Loire sounds a good place to start, I think 'flat' makes sense when carrying a little one so I think i'll give the mountains a miss for a year or two.

I'll post again when we return to let you know how we got on!!
 
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