Arrival in Lyon
Since 1998 Lyon’s old part of town is part of the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage. Mighty churches, about 30 museums and an excellent food serving industry guarantee a delightful stay.
Already after just a few kilometres the futuristic museum ‚des Confluences’ appears with its spectacular location on an island at the confluence of the rivers Rhône and Saône. On either side of the river, vineyards of the Cotes du Rhône rise up steeply. You however stay on flat terrain and soon cycle through a nature reserve with numerous observation points for you to marvel at flora and fauna. Onwards through alluvial forests with lots of shade until Serrières, a charming village located directly on the river Rhône.
The beautifully designed cycle path takes you South again, directly along the Rhône riverbank. World renowned grapes are grown in the surroundings of Tournon sur Rhône. We recommend you have your lunch break in one of the charming villages with their medieval village centres and sample at least one glass of the famous ‚Hermitage’. After that you will soon reach the main town of the Drôme-region called Valence. Also called the ‚Northern Gate to Provence’, it will amaze you with its vibrant town centre full of cafés and restaurants.
Effortlessly you cycle through the fertile Rhône-valley. The temptation for ‚petty larceny of food’ is especially high today, since there are peaches, apples and kiwis growing directly along the route. Nevertheless, make sure you also look up and do not miss high up a once proud castle which has sadly crumbled and turned into a ruin, but still keeps a watchful eye over the valley. In today’s Day Finish Montélimar it is all about ‚nougat’, which is produced here in special quality. Temptations from dawn to dusk...
Discover the Drôme provencal today. Discover dreamy "Villages perchés" (rock villages built on mountain slopes) and ancient romanesque churches that blend in with the landscape in the backdrop of the Drôme mountains. Obviously also the lavender fields.
Today’s stage is very short and hence leaves you with lots of time to just enjoy! Several times you switch from one side of the river Rhône to the other side via impressive suspension bridges. Then onwards along the cycle path to the former diocesan town of Viviers. Behind the cathedral dating back to the 12th century you have an amazing view across the Rhône valley. Then it becomes very quiet in the alluvial forests except for the buzzing noise of your spokes. Vibrancy is back after that in Bourg St. Andéol. The old part of town is characterised by picturesque houses dating back to the 16th, 17th and 18th century, situated directly on the river Rhône.
On your final stage you casually cycle through glowing yellow sunflower fields, apple orchards and peach plantations, past tomato- and basil fields. En route, you come across the little town of Pont St. Esprit, known for its 600-year old bridge, whose 25 arches stretch impressively across the river Rhône. You will be staying in the town of Orange with its well-known Roman theatre and the city founding arch, both part of the UNESCO-World Cultural Heritage.
Departure or extension
The terrain is mostly flat and easy to cycle on. The Rhône cycle path is overall well-constructed and a perfect example for signposting and routing.
Category: 2**- and 3***-Hotels (French classification)
- Accommodation as already mentioned
- Breakfast buffet or extensive breakfast
- Welcome briefing (German, English)
- Luggage transfer between the hotels
- Well developed route
- Detailed travel documents 1x per room (German, English, French – with route maps, route description, local attractions, important telephone numbers)
- GPS-tracks available
- Bike rental, including rental bike insurance
- Return transfer by minibus to Lyon every Saturday morning, costs CHF 109.- per person incl. your bike, reservation is necessary
Arrival / Parking / Departure:
- Lyon train station
- Lyon or Marseille airport
- Multy-storey car park close to the hotel approx. CHF 25.- per week, to be paid for at the time, no reservation possible/necessary
- Good train connections from Orange to Lyon
Things to note:
- Tourist tax, if due, is not included in the price!