Reader Q&A: Bike rental in Bordeaux for a Canal du Midi ride

Published by Lyn on 4 September 2013

Margaret emailed from Australia to ask about renting a bike in Bordeaux to ride to the Canal du Midi.

The beautiful plane trees lining the Canal du Midi. Photo: Le nerd du CDI

The beautiful plane trees lining the Canal du Midi. Photo: Le nerd du CDI



My husband and I are interested in a ride along the Canal du Midi. We live in Australia and are wondering if there is anywhere in Bordeaux for hiring bikes for, say, 10 days, or are there places where you can buy, and then sell at the end of the trip? We think it would be too hard to bring our own bikes by plane for the ride.

Thank you,


Hi Margaret

Your trip sounds very exciting.

The Canal du Midi doesn't actually start until Toulouse. It's about 250km from Bordeaux (mainly along the Canal de Garonne) to Toulouse.

So some things to consider:
* Do you want to ride to Toulouse from Bordeaux on the Canal de Garonne, or would you prefer to start in Toulouse and ride the Canal du Midi itself?
* Will you be coming back to your starting point at the end or would you need your bikes picking up by the hire company?

I suggest you email me via my bespoke bike hire service and we can weigh up hire options.

To weigh up buying options, see our bike buying guide here.

If you decide to bring your own bikes, see this article about taking bikes on planes.

For the Canal de Garonne Bordeaux-Toulouse, see this guidebook.

For the Canal du Midi Toulouse to Sete, see this link.

From Bordeaux, Cycling Southern France, written by one of our contributors, Richard Peace, is a good guide and covers the Bordeaux-Toulouse route and, if you're continuing further, the route east of Toulouse.

If you need a little help organising your trip, you could always consider a self-guided tour – there are a number of companies offering support along the Canal de Garonne (search 'Aquitaine' in our tour listings) and the Canal du Midi (search 'Midi-Pyrenees' or 'Languedoc'). They'll arrange bike hire for you, and also provide maps, luggage support and a hotel booking service.

For accommodation options you can zoom into the map below of browse our Where to stay section.

I hope that helps - let me know how you get on.

Lyn @ FF

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