Tours: Midi-Pyrénées

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Aveyron Gorge - Self-Guided Cycling Breaks

Explore one of France's 'forgotten' corners

Offered by:
Saint Antonin Noble Velo

Phone number:
+33 (0)5 63 02 23 88 or +33 (0)6 65 97 61 81

Tour length:
2 nights minimum

Price:
Varies - you can take a set package or have one tailored for you (please enquire)

A custom fixed base holiday tailored to your ability and budget in the medieval village of St Antonin Noble Val, deep in the Aveyron gorge in south-west France. Visit for as long as you like and at any time of year (subject to availability). Peter will put a package of rides together based around your fitness levels and interests. Groups welcome – there is space for up to 10 people in Peter and Natalie's 16th century auberge. Discover the fantastic cycling terrain in this forgotten corner of France with its dramatic gorges, oak forests, vineyards and limestone plateaux, all on very quiet roads. Often overlooked in favour of the Dordogne to the north or the Pyrenees proper to the south, this region is also home to some of the best preserved medieval villages in France.

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Aveyron Gorge – Gravel Cycling Holidays

Get off the beaten track to explore gorges and river valleys with locals

Offered by:
St Antonin Noble Velo

Phone number:
+33 (0)6 65 97 61 81

Tour length:
4 days / 5 nights, or bespoke packages can be put together

Price:
Varies depending on your package - please ask

These gravel cycling holidays in the Aveyron Gorge area of SW France are ideal for adventurous groups wanting to ride trails usually only experienced by locals. Following routes designed by local cyclist Peter, the riding here does not follow sanitised, graded biking trails. Peter has struggled along trails that are blocked or non-existant so that you don’t have to. Expect forest trails, river rides and trails that follow gorges and cliffs. This really is an exceptional area for gravel riding – the sheer volume of good trails is staggering, as well as wild and largely little-ridden. Rides can be challenging at times but they will be designed for you and your ability, and no one will be left behind. B&B accommodation is in an award-winning 16th century auberge in historic St-Antonin-Noble-Val, with vegetarian or vegan evening meals on request. Choose a set-date gravel holidays or ask for a trip to be designed for you. Ask Peter also about his 100-mile/160-km gravel challenges.

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Canal du Midi

Experience one of France's most famous routes

Offered by:
Inntravel

Phone number:
+44 (0)1653 617001

Tour length:
7 nights

Price:
From £885

Linked to the Canal de Garonne, the Canal du Midi made the transport of goods between Bordeaux on the Atlantic Ocean and Marseilles on the Mediterranean Sea far quicker and safer - by avoiding the possibility of attack from the pirates and slave traders of North Africa’s Barbary Coast. There are no such worries today and the shady canal towpath makes for idyllic cycling through picturesque landscapes. Ebikes are also available.

Canal du Midi tour Inntravel

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Canal du Midi - From Toulouse to Sète

Follow the course of the Canal du Midi, visiting local gems along the way

Offered by:
Le Vélo Voyageur

Phone number:
+33 (0)1 80 91 98 18

Tour length:
8 days

Price:
From €799

This cycling tour takes you from Toulouse to the Mediterranean sea along the Canal du Midi. You ride on the hauling path or further to discover here and there an abbey, nice vineyards or a lake. You start your cycling holiday in Toulouse, where you already feel the way of life of the South of France, discover its gastronomy and wonder at its soft colors. You then ride through the Lauragais, a vast fertile plain dotted with nice churches and ride through Castelnaudary, the home town of cassoulet before reaching the cute port of Bram. You head then to Carcassonne and its famous medieval fortress before riding into Minervois, where you will pass many peaceful wine villages along the canal. You stop in one of them before going to your next stop in Béziers. Afterwards, the sea is only a few kilometers away. You reach first Agde and the Thau Lagoon. You ride the last stretch along the sea and arrive in the town of Sète and its port, the destination of your adventure. The price of this tour includes bike hire, accommodation, luggage transfers and all the maps and information you need to get the most out of your trip.

Canal du Midi from Toulouse to Sete cycle tour

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Canal du Midi - Toulouse to Carcassonne in 4 days

Ride one of France's most famous canals in a leisurely 4 days

Offered by:
Le Vélo Voyageur

Phone number:
+33 (0)1 80 91 98 18

Tour length:
4 days

Price:
€355

This short break links two of the Canal du Midi strongholds: the starting point of the canal – the pink city of Toulouse – and the medieval fortress of Carcassonne. The route follows the canal towpath as well as low-traffic country backroads, leading you across the Lauragais, a large fertile plain surrounded by hills where the pastel trade prospered in the 15th and 16th centuries and brought wealth to Toulouse. Ride through Castelnaudary, the capital of cassoulet, and past the abbey of Saint-Papoul before arriving in Carcassonne to explore the city in all its medieval glory. This is a self-guided ride, with bike hire, accommodation included, as well as maps, route notes and lots of local biking advice. Daily distances: 24-49km.

Canal du Midi cycling holidays

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Canal du Midi Cycling Holiday: From Toulouse to Sète

A leisurely ride along France's most famous canal to the Med

Offered by:
France Bike Trips

Phone number:
+33 (0)4 58 14 04 35

Tour length:
7 days

Price:
From €470

The Canal du Midi is an ideal route for anyone wanting to take a leisurely ride and relax for a week of cycling with friends or family. From lock to lock and bridge to bridge, the canal will carry you from the  heart of Toulouse to Marseillan, on the Mediterranean Coast. Enjoy some time exploring the narrow labyrinthine streets of the 'pink city' of Toulouse before heading off along the canal to the Plaines du Lauragais, Castelnaudary and on to the towering fortified town of Carcassonne. You'll also pass by the seven locks of Fonséranne and the Etang de Thau (complete with oyster beds), before arriving at the Med. Price includes 6 nights' B&B accommodation, 4 evening meals, baggage transfers, detailed road book, maps and GPS tracks. Available guided or unguided. 

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Compostela – The Way of Saint James: Le-Puy-en-Velay to Conques

A backroad cycling tour along the Saint Jacques de Compostelle route

Offered by:
France Bike Trips

Phone number:
+33 (0)4 58 14 04 35

Tour length:
7 days

Price:
From €795

Cycle from Le Puy en Velay to Conques along this ancient route. For centuries, the historically important routes of Saint James have been used by pilgrims and hikers on their way to Santiago de Compostela in Spain. Probably the oldest hiking trail of all time, since the Via Agrippa, which went from Lyon to Toulouse, was built by the Romans. Partly on the hiking trail, partly on parallel trails, this bike route crosses the Margeride Plateau, with its traditional villages, sleepy hamlets, religious crosses and pastures surrounded by stone walls. Then make your way across the Plateau de l’Aubrac, with its wide open spaces, its "burons" (stone mountain huts used for cheese-making), and its dry stone walls. The route then takes you down through beech, oak and chestnut forests to the beautiful Lot Valley. The journey ends with a tour of the village of Conques. The price of this tour includes 7 nights in guesthouses and 2* hotels in double rooms with en-suite facilities, 7 breakfasts, 7 dinners (3- to 4-course menu), daily baggage transfers, a carefully designed itinerary, navigation app for smartphones, a detailed roadbook including maps (digital format) and GPS track.

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Cycle the Mediterranean Sea, the Pyrenees and the Canal du Midi

A unique blend of cycling from the sea to canyons and canals

Offered by:
France Bike

Phone number:
+33 (0)4 67 50 79 11

Tour length:
8 days / 7 nights

Price:
From €920

This self-guided tour provides a unique perspective on many of the south of France's highlights. It's unusual to combine the Med, the Midi and the Pyrenees into one trip but that's exactly what this one does. While the trip heads into the Pyrenees, it's an all-abilities ride designed so that any cyclist can enjoy it. Start in Narbonne and follow the Mediterranean coast to Perpignan before getting into the heart of the Pyrenees on one of the most beautiful mountain railways in Europe. The next day, cycle through the Capcir and the wild high valley of the Aude River, which guides you down and out of the mountains. Untouched landscapes and deep canyons await you as well as small villages and wonderful towns en route to Carcassonne. From here, follow the Canal du Midi back to Narbonne. The price includes charming hotels and B&B accommodation, all breakfasts, bus or train ticket from Perpignan to Villefranche le Conflent, luggage transfers, carefully planned routes and maps, GPS tracks on request, and support hotline.

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Cycling Holidays for Vegetarians and Vegans

Eating need not be a trauma on your French cycling holiday

Offered by:
St Antonin Noble Velo

Phone number:
+33 (0)6 65 97 61 81

Tour length:
Minimum of two nights

Price:
Varies - you can take a package on a set tour weekend or have a tour tailored for you

Cycling in France can sometimes be tough for vegetarians and vegans. The solution? Local knowledge. Peter and Natalie are local vegetarian experts and know all the best (and friendliest) places to eat. They offer guided and self-guided rides that are based around pre-arranged restaurant stops that ensure the chef is aware of your dietary requirements. All restaurants have been tested anonymously to help guarantee you won't just be served an omelette or a plate of vegetables. You’ll be based at their award-winning 16th century auberge in the medieval heart of St Antonin Noble Val, nestled in the spectacular Aveyron gorge. Fabulous vegetarian and vegan evening meals can be prepared inhouse, or use the guest kitchen to self-cater. The riding in this part of France is fabulous – quiet roads and stunning, varied scenery. The routes are not for beginners, but the climbing is rarely steep and there are plenty of routes to keep things manageable. Prices include B&B accommodation, rides, a rescue service and unlimited local knowledge. Just an hour from Toulouse airport, this is an excellent option for vegetarians and vegans wanting to explore SW France. Group discounts available.

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Need planning help? Use our bespoke service

Let Freewheeling France help you plan your French cycling adventures

Offered by:
Freewheeling France

Tour length:
Tailored for you

Price:
Tailored for you

If you want to cycle in France but you're not sure where to go or how to sort it – maybe you're strugglng to find accommodation or the right self-guided or guided ride for you – then this service is for you. It's my own bespoke service that matches your holiday wishlist to the right tour operator or accommodation option for you. This is for riders who need a little support on the road – anything and everything from accommodation advice and route planning to hiring bikes and luggage transfers. I'm working with a network of cycling specialists across France to offer you the best cycling holidays possible – and tailored just for you, your dates and your cycling ability. Hit the brown button below or see this link for details.

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All accommodation has been checked to ensure it meets our cycle-friendly criteria. We also deal with tour operators personally before adding them to the site. To recommend a great French cycling holiday or a nice bike-friendly place to stay, please email lyn@freewheelingfrance.com

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Renting a bike in France

Nantes Brest Canal guide

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