From experience, active people who regularly walk or hike -not necessarily bike- will enjoy this tour.
Day 1 : Arrival in Avignon
Arrive in Avignon at the time of your choice. We however recommend you arrive early and explore Avignon, take a stroll through its lively streets, and visit some of its sites, including the famous Palace of the Popes, located steps from your hotel. Later in the afternoon, you’ll meet with Fabienne, our local representative in Avignon who will meticulously go over the next few days’ itinerary, give you all the necessary materials, and outfit you with bikes.
Day 2 : Avignon - Graveson (73 km or 46 miles)
Leaving Avignon behind, you will bike on small roads through the Gard, a wine-producing area. Picturesque Provencal villages will provide many snack-and-drink opportunities on the way to Pont du Gard, a well-preserved aqueduct listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. There you can even bike across the River Gardon that flows beneath the aqueduct, or take a swim before hopping back on your bikes and ride to Graveson where your hotel is located.
Day 3: Graveson - Arles (51 km or 32 miles)
Riding across the town of Tarascon, you will discover one of France's best preserved medieval fortresses, one of our recommended stops. There you can also visit the fascinating Provence Fabric Museum, a place devoted to this local craft and run by Souleiado, one of the oldest fabric maker of the area. Further on, you may visit Daudet’s Windmill. The “hero” of Daudet’s bestselling book “Letters from my Windmill” is now a museum worth a short stop. Finally, you will reach the town of Arles, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Day 4: Arles - Les Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer (59 km or 36 miles)
An early breakfast will allow for enough time to take a stroll through Arles’ lively streets and visit its sites including its do-not-miss Roman theatre. From there, you will ride through Camargue’s dramatically different landscape populated with flamingos, bulls, and wild horses! Unlike your previous days’ rides, villages are few and far between up to Les Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer and we recommend you take enough water and food along. You’ll then be crossing the Rhone River by boat and arrive in Les Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer where you will spend the next two nights.
Day 5: Rest day
Feel free to plot your day around your interests. You can play the sloth and relax by the pool or you can have a restless multi-activity day: horseback riding, canoeing, 4-wheel driving, and hiking are some of the activities you can do in Les Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer. Remember this is your vacation and you have the freedom to spend as much or as little time visiting our recommended sites or doing our suggested activities.
Day 6: Les Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer - Alpilles area (68 km or 42 miles)
Cycling on the bike-only road "Digue a la Mer," you'll reach the Alpilles--a low-rise mountain range and a source of inspiration for Van Gogh--and discover a dramatically different landscape! On your way, you’ll have many lunch ooportunities whether you want to lunch at one of the many open air cafes, or enjoy a 3-hour gastronomic meal at some of the starred restaurants along the way. Or if you prefer you can picnic roadside and acquire a firsthand understanding how this part of Provence has inspired so many artistic masterpieces.
Day 7: Alpilles area - Avignon (40 km or 24 miles)
You will finish your tour with the visually stunning Les Baux de Provence, a village deemed so beautiful that it has been awarded the coveted title of “Un des Plus Beaux Villages de France” (One of France’s Prettiest Villages). Make sure you stroll through its streets and enjoy the views from atop: on clear days, one can see all the way to the Mediterranean Sea. Further on, you will ride through Saint-Remy-de- Provence, where Van Gogh painted some of his best-known works. You will then head back to Avignon where you will overnight.
Day 8: Departure from Avignon
Depart Avignon at the time of your choice.
This trip comes in two different options:
Option A: 4 nights in 3-star hotels, 3 nights in 2-star hotels. All have a swimming pool (except in Avignon).
Option A+: 2 nights in 4-star hotels, 5 nights in 3-star hotels. All have a swimming pool (except in Avignon).
Also see tour packages in:
Europe France Outdoor: Land Rambler Bicycle Touring Cultural Journey