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france cycling holidays, The French Riviera on Wheels 1

The French Riviera on Wheels

Overview

Côte d’Azur is known as one of the world’s greatest seaside destinations, packed with gorgeous beaches, luxury hotels, designer bars, belle époque villas, coastal trails, red-rock headlands and beautiful offshore islands. However, beyond the coast, the region is also home to some spectacular hilltop villages and mountain scenery, along with vineyards, flower farms that feed the French perfume industry and great art museums.

Based in two great locations, Nice and Hyères-Plages, this easy cycling tour is going to reveal you the hidden gems of the French Riviera on wheels, taking you through medieval towns, romantic small fishing villages and dreamy bays surrounded by the turquoise blue sea.

Highlights

  • The city of Nice
  • The island of Porquerolles with its Caribbean feeling
  • Old salt-works and flamingos
  • White sandy beaches and turquoise blue sea

Itinerary

Day 1: Hyères-Plages

Individual arrival (airport Nice or Marseille, good train connection with the TGV to Toulon/Hyères). Your hotel is located in Hyères-Plage, close to the beach.

Day 2: Roundtrip to Hyères town or Pierrefeu

The medieval old town with its narrow alleys and colourful houses is small, charming and typically French. A special highlight is the Villa Noailles (Bauhaus), from the castle ruins you can enjoy a fantastic view. Alternatively, for the more advanced cyclists, there is another route option through the secluded and hilly hinterland on tiny roads to the small village of Pierrefeu in the middle of the Côte de Provence and through endless vineyards back to Hyères.

Cycling for the day: between 15 and 62 km

Day 3: Island of Porquerolles

Today you cycle to the ferry station and transfer to the dream island of Porquerolles. The island is car-free and full of olive plantations, vineyards and romantic bays with white sandy beaches. Worth seeing are the Plage de Notre Dame, the fort and the Lighthouse.

Cycling for the day: approx. 30 km

Day 4: Roundtrip Le Lavandou

On well-developed cycle paths, you cycle over the old saltworks, past vineyards and olive groves – the sea within a few meters – to the fishing village of Le Lavandou, at the foot of the Moorish massif. With a little more effort (or by e-bike), you can detour to Bormes-Les-Mimosas, famous for its panorama and old town.

Cycling for the day: approx. 50 km

Day 5: Train ride Hyères – Nice (day of rest)

Today you will change your hotel, and find yourself in a very different place. From the unspoiled coast you will travel by train (included) to the capital of the Côte d’Azur. Nice awaits you with its old town, fashionable buildings and numerous museums.

Day 6: Nice –  city sightseeing tour by bike

In the morning you have the opportunity to take part in an interesting city tour by bike (optional) or you can take the time to enjoy the city by bike. Explore Nice and its museums on your own. The Principality of Monaco is only 25 minutes away by train.

Cycling for the day: approx. 10 km (optional)

Day 7: Roundtrip to Antibes

The famous Promenade des Anglais takes you along the Mediterranean coast to Antibes. The small town of Greek origin is not only well known for its marina, but also for the old town and the Picasso Museum.

Cycling for the day: approx. 40-50 km

Day 8: Departure

At the end of your cycle trip, you can enjoy the Provençal specialities at the famous market Cours Saleya and drink a café au lait before you start your return journey. It is also a good idea to extend the trip – Nice and the surrounding area still have a lot to offer. The car rental prices on the Côte d’Azur are really low. Individual departure or extension.

Hotels

In Hyères Plages, a family-run, typical Provençal hotel near the marina, just a few steps to the beach. In Nice, centrally located hotel, just a few minutes’ walking distance from the beach and the Promenade des Anglais. We have carefully hand-picked all places and regularly monitor their quality. We have tried to choose accommodations that offer friendly service, clean and comfortable rooms and local flavour.

Meals

All breakfasts are included. Lunch packs for the next day can be pre-ordered at each accommodation, or you can buy bread, cheeses and meats as well as fresh fruit and vegetables from the villages you pass through or at local markets. For dinner, you have plenty of options at the places you are staying in.

Travel

Our recommended arrival airport for this holiday is Nice.

Please note that flight information can change rapidly, and not all flights run daily. Please do check directly with the airlines’ websites or Skyscanner before finalising any booking with us. Please do not book your flights before we have confirmed your booking.

Transfers to/from Airports

There is a regular bus line to Hyères.

Private Transfers

Airport transfers by public transport are recommended for this trip.

Baggage Transfers

All luggage transfers when changing hotels are included (maximum one piece of 20 kg per person).

Travel Insurance

A comprehensive and reputable travel insurance policy is essential to your enjoyment and peace of mind while on an active holiday. It is highly recommended when booking with us that all group members have valid travel insurance which includes cover for all activities included in your trip. We have teamed up with World Nomads Logo to offer you adequate cover at a great value from a reputable insurer, and it takes only a few minutes to buy online.

Buy travel insurance online

Country Info

Up-to-date travel advice on France is available here. Detailed travel information and hints will be provided in your holiday information pack.

Trip Info

Difficulty Grade: Easy

The cycling stages are easy and short, all on dedicated asphalted cycle paths or side roads with very limited traffic. The daily cycle routes can be extended upon request.

Route Navigation

The routes are really easy to follow. We will also provide you with detailed road notes and maps, and you can call our 24/7 local assistance phone number anytime. More detailed info on route navigation will be included in your holiday information pack.

When to Go

This trip is available on any date from March till the end of June and September till the end of October. No departures in July and August as the Riviera becomes too crowded and also it may become too hot for cycling.

Late autumn, because of the beautiful colours, or early spring, because of the abundant flowers are without a doubt the most pleasant times of the year for a walking holiday.

The flexibility of self-guided holidays means that there are no fixed dates and you can start your trip on any date in the season – so please indicate desired beginning date when booking.

See climate and weather info here

Included

  • Four nights in welcoming hotels on the peninsula of Giens and three nights in Nice in rooms with private facilities and breakfast included
  • One train ride Hyères – Nice
  • One return boat ride La Tour Fondue – Porquerolles
  • One transfer hotel Hyères Plage – Hyères train station
  • Maps and information material (one set) per room
  • 24/7 phone assistance by our local office/representative

Supplements

  • Single room supplement for members of a group
  • Solo traveller supplement for individual travellers

Please click the CHECK AVAILABILITY button above to see the price of the holiday and the different options, extras and supplements for your desired dates

Excluded

  • Flights and airport transfers
  • Local tourist tax, if due
  • Travel insurance
  • Personal expenses such as snacks, drinks, phone calls, extra transfers, tips, etc.
  • Entrance fees for attractions and museums
  • Any items not specifically mentioned as ‘included’ in the programme

Extensions and Upgrades

  • Extra nights before or after the holiday

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