'Back on a bike after many years away - your encouragement and simple cycling tips really boosted my confidence. Thank you so much. 'Moriah, Steyning,
'We just loved Le Lavandou and the easy cycling along the coast towards St Tropez was such a surprise.'Janet and Ron, Cheshire,
'What a fantastic ride to Paris. It's hard to put into words the euphoria I felt when we were cycling down the Champs-Élysées.'Ian, West Sussex,
'You were just wonderful guides on our first ever trip to Provence . . . we will definitely be back - in fact we’ve just booked!'The Crane Family, Warwickshire,
Renowned Coastal Wildlife
When a country like France has such a famous cycling heritage and, there are so many great cycling regions and routes to potentially explore, it is possibly easy to overlook the wonderful opportunities on our metaphorical doorstep. Just a short ferry ride over the English Channel there is some of the most surprising and accessible coastal and rural cycling that France has to offer. This makes it even easier for your journey to your cycling tour to become part of the adventure itself.
Our Baie de la Somme Tour includes great beaches and fishing harbours of the Côte d’Opale, quiet gentle valleys of pollarded willow and trees draped with mistletoe, dramatic gothic architecture and, one of the prestigious Grande Site de France. All these elements are drawn together by a delightful cycling circuit which we have returned to again and again.
An opportunity to leave the car behind, bring your own bicycle and, let the adventure start from home.
So near - so France.
A gentle easy going tour through the ‘Seven Valleys’ and around the Baie de la Somme. Short and moderate length riding days allow ample time to explore the landscape, its flora and fauna, and the small towns and villages along your route. As well as cycling, you could be swimming in the sea, taking a small boat trip or even a ride on a steam train. There are just a few gentle hills along the way but all give access to some surprising hidden places in the landscape.
Day 1 Arrive at Montreuil-sur-Mer
If you travel as a cyclist on the Dover to Calais ferry, we can advise on the train link between Calais and Étaples and then, an easy cycle ride to Montreuil-sur-Mer where you book into your first night’s accommodation. Alternatively, you could arrive by car with your bike and, we can advise on free parking for the duration of your cycle tour.
On your first cycling day, head to the Tourist Information Office for any additional local material and, begin your tour from there. Squeeze through the ancient town wall and roll out into the very gently undulating landscape. Quiet lanes and tracks will steer you towards the coast and to Le Touquet-Paris-Plage, a chic seaside resort established as much for English in-comers as it was for the Parisian escapees. Arrive with plenty of time to explore the town and play on the beach.
From the stretching sands of Le Touquet, dedicated cycle tracks will carry you passed dunes and into the town’s forest edge as you leave the valley of the Canche and cross into the Authie. Being close to the rivers’ ends means a gentle landscape crossing as you begin a snaking route which mixes the rural tranquillity of the countryside tucked just behind the coast with its peaceful sleepy villages.
Today you will be cycling into the mouth of the Somme. The ride takes you behind dunes, through forest and saltwater meadows on great cycling routes. Along the way you will pass the Parc du Marquenterre, a renowned national nature reserve and a great location for cycling break. The route skirts the heart of the bay from Le Crotoy to Saint-Valéry, both charming fishing villages and great holiday destinations in their own right. Get your timing right and, whether as a treat or for a little rest, you may even be able to hop onto the steam train around the bay.
Saint-Valéry is a jewel of the Somme, authentic fishing harbour with a plethora of small independent shops, cafés and restaurants. A great easy cycling day heads inland from here to Abbeville, once the capital of feudal Ponthieu, it is dominated by the gothic splendour of the Collegiate Church of Saint Wulfran. After a short route through the heart of the town, you will be taken beyond Abbeville along a secluded Voie Verte towards Saint Riquier where further gothic architecture awaits.
The beautiful Abbaye de Saint Riquier towers above the quiet town and every July plays host to France’s largest classical music festival. Though the longest ride of the tour, your easy cycling journey continues through an ever quieter landscape to Auxi-le-Chateau where you meet the River Authie once more. From here you will be roughly following the course of the Authie as it slowly flows to the sea. Linking beautiful countryside and sleepy hamlets along the valley will bring you to Argoules.
Home to the majestic Abbaye de Valloires and its picturesque gardens, Argoules is a very tranquil and serene spot from which to depart on the final cycling day of your tour. The ride today includes a little more climbing that on others, as you leave the valley of the Authie and cross back into the valley of the Canche. The climbs aren't too long nor too steep but provide some excellent views out over the ‘Seven Valleys’. The River Canche then becomes your guide to the end of the tour as you pass by the walls of Chartreuse en route to your Montreuil return.
Day 8 Depart Montreuil-sur-Mer
After your final night, leave Montreuil on your onward journey or homeward return. If you arrived as a cyclist on the ferry, you can retrace your ride to Étaples and return to Calais by train.
Eat Sleep Drink
Baie de la Somme (Independent) Recommended Tour Dates
We normally recommend that customers undertake this tour at Easter or in June, July, August or September but you could choose almost any time during our cycling season - just contact us to check on availability.
Baie de la Somme Independent Tour from £655.00/person
Fellow Velo Independent Tour recommended dates have been chosen on the basis of factors such as;
• Climate and Weather Norms
• Convenient Holiday Dates
• Maximising Landscape Beauty
• Local Facility Holiday Seasons
• Local Traffic Patterns
We can offer our Fellow Velo Independent Tours between Easter and October, with the flexibility to meet your needs. Just let us know which date you would like to start your tour on and, we will do all that we can to deliver the holiday package you are looking for.
Our standard prices for this tour are best achieved when we have as much advance booking time as possible (we would still try to match the price even on last minute bookings but, accommodation is normally the largest component in a tour price and, the one which can vary the most).
The tour price is based on 2 people sharing rooms but, we can also quote for single room occupancy if that is what a customer wants (there is nearly always a supplement to be paid with such a booking but we would advise on the details before you committed to your holiday).
Most holiday accommodation in France is charged on a room basis rather than a per person price and, there is often very limited or no discount on the price for children. However, for any booking where a group is happy to share family or multi-bed rooms, we may even be able to quote a lower price per person for the tour (if you advise us that you would be happy with such an accommodation arrangement).
We do not add margins to the accommodation we book for our tours so, if we can book accommodation at a lower price, we will pass these savings on to our customers.
Travel to and from joining your Tour
• Possibly the most interesting option for joining this tour is to start your adventure even closer to home; if you can travel to Dover as either a cyclist then, you can take advantage of a cheaper ferry crossing and make the link to Montreuil by train.
• A tour starting just over the Channel means that, if you are planning to join the tour by car, there are ample ferry crossings between Dover and Calais (and Dunkirk or Dieppe are not too far away either). Then it is just a short journey to the start of the tour in Montreuil-sur-Mer, where we can advise on a location to leave you vehicle for the duration.
• If travel over the water just isn’t your thing then, there is a short flight option from Kent to Le Touquet with Lydd Air -http://www.lyddair.com/ - we can help advise on the travel connection options from Le Touquet to Montreuil-sur-Mer.
Fancy a longer holiday
• For anyone who wants to extend their holiday with us, we can book additional hotels for you at the start or end of your Tour, just call us on 07811 285021.
Families, and/or non cycling companions
• We think Baie de la Somme is ideal for families, though you will be cycling on each of the tour days, none are overly long or difficult and, a significant proportion of this tour is made up of dedicated cycle routes and quiet country lanes.
• Your personally tailored travel pack will be with you approx 3 weeks prior to your Tour start date. There will be oodles of information for you in this pack.
Any queries at all before you book
• We don’t want to bombard you with masses of text to read, so anything at all that needs clarification please call us on 07811 285021 or 01788 568371 or, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org