After you arrive in Bordeaux (at the train station or airport) and settle in to your hotel, in the heart of the historic city, our Trip Manager will meet with you, check the fitting of your bikes, and go over your trip packages with you. You’ll want to take some time to explore Bordeaux itself. This port city, that has been the centre of the Bordeaux wine trade since the 8th century, and its historic centre is also a UNESCO heritage site, with its 18th century stunning architectural facades, and the fully restored Port des Lunes. We leave you to find dinner in one of the dozens of excellent restaurants.
Your ride today starts in the elegant Place de la Bourse in Bordeaux, and follows the easygoing and tranquil “Roger Lapebie” bike path, in the heart of the Entre Deux Mers vineyards, passing a multitude of pretty villages, with pretty Romanesque churches and chapels, fortified mills, abbeys… You will pass by the village of Créon, a bastided town typical of the region, where we encourage you to take some time for explorations. The end of the day has you leave the path, and cross over the Dordogne River in Branne, to make your way to St Emilion. This beautiful Medieval walled small town, and the countryside and vineyards which surround it, have been uniquely classified as a World Heritage ensemble by UNESCO. Your dinner this evening is included, in one of our favourite restaurants.
Your riding today is a loop that is purposely shorter, in order to give you time for St Emilion itself. Head out of the mediaval town and into the countryside and famous vineyards which surround it, starting into the area to the northwest in the Pomerol region. The Pomerol area is tiny, but the small production of essentially Merlot wines is renowned around the world today, and not only because of its star, the wines from Petrus, which of course you’ll ride by – as well as Chateaux Canon, Beausejour Becot, Angelus (with its iconic bells), and the vineyards of Cheval Blanc and Figeac… Even if you are not a wine connaisseur, you’ll love the truly beautiful riding, on tiny roads and interlaced with ancient stone walls and the lush vineyard greenery and chateaux themselves. Then back to St Emilion, with time for exploring, including the incredible underground church, entirely carved into the rock (its construction extracted over 15,000 cubic metres of rock!) and its catacombs, as well as the Romanesque church and the winding cobblestoned streets and houses.
Today’s ride leaves the vineyards of St Emilion, and rides parallel to the pretty and lush Dordogne River on its southern bank, most of the day. You cross the river at Castillon-la-Bataille, where we recommend you take a break from your ride. Wander the charming streets of this little town with its unusual Baroque Church, the 13th century town gate, and very pretty 18th century city hall, overlooking the river. We provide a self-guided walking tour to help in your explorations. Take time for a refreshing drink (or discover the quite enjoyable Cotes de Castillon wines!) before continuing on. The end of your ride brings you to the Bastide town of Ste Foy la Grande, with its rich heritage of 15th and 16th century houses and its beautiful central arcaded square. (please note the Deluxe itinerary stays in nearby Chateau de Vigiers)
Your route today starts again parallel to the Dordogne River for a stretch, but then after passing through the small town of Garonne, you turn inland, heading through pretty countryside, and a mix of vineyards and fields and forest. The vineyards start winning out as you approach the village of Monbazillac. The town is quite pretty, with its church and small local restaurants and cafés, but it’s renown comes from the delicious sweet wines that are made there. Stop for a visit and tasting at the Chateau Monbazillac, or any of the neighbouring local winemakers, before continuing on your last stretch to the lovely Chartreuse de Bignac, nestled in the countryside. (please note the Classic itinerary stays in the nearby town of Bergerac).
A truly pretty ride, in the slightly rolling countryside from Bignac, passing through the medieval village of Issigeac with its 2000-year old history and restored medieval houses. Gradually descend back to the Dordogne River, passing the fortified chateau-farmhouse of Lanquais and riding through lushly green forests. Then follow the river again all the way to the town of Lalinde. Cross the arched river there, and then stop for a refreshment before being picked up to transfer you to Sarlat-la-Caneda (skipping some significant hills and busier roads in between). Sarlat is worthy of your time; this incredible UNESCO heritage site, the largest Medieval ensemble in Europe, is best explored in the evening, when the beautiful “lauze” stone roofs and tiny cobblestoned streets are lit up beautifully by the municipality.
The loop ride for the day is one of the most picturesque, passing through some of the “prettiest villages of France” (this is an official national rating) like La Roque Gageac, built flat against the cliffside overlooking the Dordogne, and with original troglodyte dwellings. You’ll see medieval castles lining the river that warred across from each other… Take a short detour to Beynac, with its imposing castle built by the Barons of Beynac. Climb up to the war museum at Chateau Castelnaud. You may well decide to lunch in Domme. This village, an excellent example of the Bastide villages of Medieval France, was built in the 13th century by Philip the Bold; there are still examples of medieval graffiti by the templar knights, and a spectacular panorama to the valley below! Return to Sarlat for a second night.
Your route today takes you first westwards from Sarlat through the Dordogne’s rich countryside. Visit the Chateau de Puymartin, and the unusual Cabanes de Breuil along the way. Detour if you wish into Les Eyzies de Tayac to visit the National Prehistory Museum. Then turn northwards, meandering along the Vezere River, where truffles and cep mushrooms, walnut orchards, and grapes grow, passing the Roque St Christophe troglodyte site, and through St Leon sur Vezere, another “Prettiest Village”. Arrive in Montignac,a pretty town in its own, straddled across the river and with tiny cobblestoned streets, but made famous today as it is the home of the renowned prehistoric cave painting site of Lascaux.
You’ll of course want to visit the astounding Prehistory centre and the Lascaux IV reproduction, just on the outskirts of town while here of course. We have made your explorations easy, by booking your visit at the site ahead of time, to guarantee you’ll get one of the spots of the fascinating guided visits (they fill up fast). As well, we provide a easygoing half day ride, taking to – yes – yet another “Prettiest Village”, St Amand de Coly, with its ancient abbey church. The architecture seems disproportioned – the tall abbey buildings dwarf the tiny little village. You’ll love the relaxed nature of the day, and enjoy the little self-guided walking tour of Montignac filled with history as well.
After a final breakfast at the hotel you can catch train connections out of Brive-la-Gaillarde back to Paris. Bon Voyage !
- 9 nights’ accommodation of the comfort level of your choice * CLASSIC, CLASSIC+ or DELUXE
- Hotel taxes
- All breakfasts, 3 dinners (drinks not included with the dinners)
- Fully equipped quality touring bike **
- Orientation with our Trip Manager
- Detailed maps and step-by-step route notes
- Regional information and advice
- Uploadable GPS file of the route to use on a free APP in your smartphone ***
- Reservation and tickets for the visit of Lascaux IV
- Transfer to Brive-la-Gaillarde train station at the end of the trip
- Luggage transfers from hotel to hotel
- Transfer from Lalinde to Sarlat on Day 6
- Phone call support 7 days a week
* Price based on double room occupancy – please contact us for details on single room supplements
** Road bikes and e-bikes avaialbke with a supplement on request
*** Can be used without international internet plan (offline)
2430 € / pers.
Hotel de la Presse – Bordeaux
Auberge de la Commanderie – Saint Emilion
Grand Hotel de Sainte Foy – Sainte Foy la Grande
Hotel de Bordeaux – Bergerac
Hotel la Couleuvrine – Sarlat
Hotel le Lascaux – Montignac
Classic + Tour
3290 € / pers.
Hotel Majestic – Bordeaux
Logis des Remparts – Saint Emilion
Chateau des Vigiers – Classic Room – Monestier
La Chartreuse du Bignac – Classic room – Near Bergerac
Grand Hotel Pavillon Selves – Sarlat
Hotel la Roseraie – Montignac
4290 € / pers.
Le Palais Gallien – Bordeaux
Hotel de Pavie – Saint Emilion
Chateau des Vigiers – Prestige Room – Monestier
La Chartreuse du Bignac – Deluxe room – Near Bergerac
Hotel Plaza Madeleine – Sarlat
Hotel Bouilhac – Montignac
The high quality, light touring bike is the default bike included on the tour. It is perfectly suited to riding with lots of stops for explorations.
Upon request, and for a supplement, you can have a road bike or a pedal-assist electric bike – contact us for details.
All our touring bikes come equipped with removable handlebar bag with clear map case, flat tire kit (with extra inner tube), pump, lock, rear rack and back panniers, water bottle holder and new water bottle, bell and kickstand.
Ahead of the tour, we will ask you if you wish to use our helmets, and if you want toe cages on the pedals (both free of charge).
Each of our regions has its own bike fleet, often with a couple of different bike makes depending on sizing – if you want to know the specific bike details for your tour, just contact us, and we’ll be happy to send you the specs!
TOURING BIKE - men's frame (included in trip cost)
TOURING BIKE - women's Frame (included in trip cost)
E-bike - men's frame (supplement charge)
E-bike - women's frame (supplement charge)
Road (racing) bike (supplement charge)