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Provence Bike & Boat

Basilica of Sacre CoeurTomme cheese displayed at a french marketGroup of cyclists on the Provence Bike and Barge tripDining room on Soleo BargeL'Estello Barge, Provence Bike & Boat

Provence Bike & Boat

Trip Highlights

  • Cycling through stunning countryside past olive groves and vineyards, and through the wild Camargue
  • Exploring the great towns of Arles, Avignon and St Remy de Provence
  • Experiencing the timelessness of the landscapes made famous by Van Gogh
  • Enjoying a tasting of the renowned Chateauneuf-du-Pape wine
  • Seeing the famous Roman aqueduct Pont du Gard

Trip Summary

Cycle through a revolving landscape from the wilderness of the Camargue where wild horses roam, to scenes of picturesque Provençal villages and vineyards that inspired Van Gogh and the sandy beaches of the Mediterranean. The Camargue is rich in wildlife including flamingos and endemic plants, while its flat plains provide easy cycling, before giving way to the spectacular limestone foothills of the Alpilles. Explore the villages of Provence brimming with tasty treats, art studios and cultural relics. Enjoy a wine tasting in Chateauneuf-du-Pape and marvel at the well preserved Pont du Gard. Relax on board the barge after each day's cycle and enjoy the views on the bank of the Rhone as you soak up the hospitality of the crew.

Suitability

This trip involves 6 days cycling with daily distances between 45 and 65km usually along cycle paths and low traffic roads. There are some short stretches on some busier roads. The cycling is the lowlands during the two stages in the Camargue, while the stages north of Arles include some ups and downs, which are however quite easy to overcome. There is just one demanding slope towards Les Baux de Provence. *For safety reasons, we insist that cycle helmets be included as a compulsory item on your equipment list.

Primary Itinerary - Avignon to Aigues Mortes

Individual arrival in Avignon. You will find the boat at the Quai de la Ligne next to the famous Pont St. Bénezet. Boarding begins at 6pm.

Meals:  D

Today's cycle follows roads with low levels of traffic, surrounded by vineyards. In Chateauneuf-du-Pape you can enjoy a tasting of this very famous Provençal wine. After crossing the Rhone through Roquemaure, return to Avignon following the course of the river. Elevation +100m

Meals:  B,L,D

We cruise for two hours this morning to the new harbour on the Rhone at Aramon. Back on the bikes we cycle to the best preserved Roman aqueduct in Europe: Pont du Gard. This UNESCO listed aqueduct bridge is a truly spectacular work of architecture. Later we return to our mooring in Aramon, a typical village on the banks of the Rhone. Elevation +300m

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning the boat cruises to Vallabrègues, another pretty Provençal village on the banks of the Rhône. The cycle takes you along country roads to the town of Barbentane with its castle at the confluence of the Rhone and Durance rivers. From here you continue to the magnificent Abbey of Saint Michel de Frigulet whose grounds are perfect for a picnic. Later you continue to the medieval village of Boulbon before returning to the boat at Vallabrègues.

Meals:  B,L,D

Today's cycle brings you to Saint Remy de Provence, the birthplace of Nostradamus. This village is one of the "must-sees" in Provence. Vincent Van Gogh was treated here at Monastery Saint-Paul de Mausole and was so inspired by the light and landscape that he created 143 oil paintings and more than 100 drawings. Cycle to the Alpilles hills, with an ascent to the fortified town of Les Baux de Provence. This picturesque village is lodged in the rock itself. A landscape of limestone cliffs, lavender and olive trees accompanies your journey. Elevation +300m

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning is dedicated to visiting and exploring Arles, the ancient capital of Gaul. This World Heritage listed site has many important and beautiful Roman ruins. Getting lost among its small alleys will be like entering a picture by Van Gogh. You will arrive by bike at the wooden bridge, which was portrayed by the great painter. Continue on to Saint Gilles, where you will meet the boat for a 2 hour cruise to Aigues Mortes. The striking walled town of Aigues-Mortes is set on the Petite Camargue, a flat marsh. The town has changed little in outward appearance since the Middle Ages with its watch towers and fortified portes or gates. It was established as a port town with access to the sea via a canal through the marshlands. We recommend you try a "Fougasse" which is a traditional pastry made with Brioche dough, sugar and orange blossom. Elevation +0m Note: option for Self guided cyclists to cycle via the coast at Saintes Maries de la Mer to Aigues Mortes (65km)

Meals:  B,L,D

Discover the spectacular Camargue on today's round cycle. Through small country lanes between canals and lagoons, you'll reach the charming village of Le Grau-du-Roi - and maybe take a refreshing swim at the beach. Return to Aigues Mortes for your last night on board the boat. Elevation +0m

Meals:  B,L,D

After breakfast the trip concludes in Aigues Mortes.

Meals:  B

Aigues Mortes to Avignon

Individual arrival to Aigues Mortes. Boarding begins at 6pm. The striking walled town of Aigues-Mortes is set on the Petite Camargue, a flat marsh. The town has changed little in outward appearance since the Middle Ages with its watch towers and fortified portes or gates. It was established as a port town with access to the sea via a canal through the marshlands. We recommend you try a "Fougasse" which is a traditional pastry made with Brioche dough, sugar and orange blossom.

Meals:  D

The first stage is a round cycle discovery of the spectacular Camargue. Through small country lanes between canals and lagoons, you’ll reach the charming village of Le Grau-du-Roi - and maybe take a refreshing swim at the beach. Elevation +0m

Meals:  B,L,D

You will sail for a couple of hours up to Saint Gilles and then cycle to today's destination: Arles. Arles is known for the richness of its antique and Roman patrimony. The city will fascinate you with its hidden treasures. Getting lost among its small alleys will be like entering a painting by Vincent Van Gogh. In the afternoon there will be a guided visit of the town to discover the history and interesting sights. Elevation +0m

Meals:  B,L,D

Today's cycle follows a breathtaking route and brings you to the Alpilles Hills. You begin by cycling to the hilltop town of Le Baux de Provence with its striking position amonst the rocky cliffs. Next you descend to Saint Remy de Provence, a "must see" village. Vincent Van Gogh was treated here at Monastery Saint-Paul de Mausole and was so inspired by the light and landscape that he created 143 oil paintings and more than 100 drawings. A landscape of limestone cliffs, lavender and olive trees will accompany you as you pedal through this sublime countryside. In the evening you will moor in Vallabregues, a pretty Provencal village on the banks of the Rhone. Elevation +300m

Meals:  B,L,D

The cycle takes you along country roads to the town of Barbentane with its castle at the confluence of the Rhone and Durance rivers. From here you continue to the magnificent Abbey of Saint Michel de Frigulet whose grounds are perfect for a picnic. Later you continue to the medieval village of Boulbon before returning to the boat at Vallabrègues. Later the boat cruises to Aramon, another pretty Provençal village on the banks of the Rhône.

Meals:  B,L,D

The cycle today will bring you to the best preserved Roman aqueduct in Europe: Pont du Gard, a spectacular architectural work. In the afternoon you will be arrive in Avignon, the city of the Popes. The boat is moored in Quai de la Ligne next to the famous Pont St. Bénezet. Elevation +300m

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning you'll cycle to Chateauneuf-du-Pape, following low traffic roads surrounded by vineyards. In Chateauneuf-du-Pape you can enjoy a tasting of the very famous Provencal wine. After that you will cross the Rhone at the height of the Roquemaure and return to Avignon following the course of the river. Elevation +100m

Meals:  B,L,D

After breakfast the trip concludes in Avignon.

Meals:  B

What's Included

  • 7 breakfast, 6 lunches, 7 dinners (does not include drinks). Breakfast is buffet style and will usually consist of bread, ham/salami, cheese, butter, marmalade/jams, yoghurt, cereals, milk, tea and coffee. At breakfast you will prepare your packed lunch which will be sandwiches, juice or 1/2L of water. At dinner you can enjoy typical dishes of the simple traditional Provençal cuisine. Dinner consists of a starter, a main course and dessert. On the table there will always be water and bread.
  • 7 nights accommodation aboard a boat with private facilities on a twin share basis
  • Bike rental with gel saddles, puncture resistant tyres, pannier, padlock, water bottle, helmet and repair kit (self guided only). Electric bikes are available on request and an additional supplement applies.
  • Tour leader
  • Detailed route description, maps and information pack per room booked
  • Sheets and towels
  • Harbour charges
  • Tea and coffee on board
  • Wine tasting at Chateauneuf-du-Pape
  • Entrance to Pont du Gard
  • Guided visit of Arles
  • Support van in the area for alternate excursions and emergencies
  • Emergency hotline

What's Not Included

  • Drinks on board
  • Entry to museums
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Tips
  • Travel insurance
  • Travel to/from Avignon and Aigues Mortes

Upcoming Travel Dates

AT A GLANCE

Duration:8 Days
Countries:France
Starting Point:Avignon or Aigues Mortes
Activities:GUIDED CYCLE
Grade:Moderate  Click for more information
Trip Code:PBB
Prices From:GBP£1035 Per Person
Single Cabin Supplement:GBP£260  Click for more information