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Cycling the Heart of Burgundy 38

Cycling through the Heart of Burgundy

Overview

The heart of one of the most beautiful areas in France hides a myriad of quiet country lanes and pleasant cycle tracks that weave their way through vineyards and rolling hills. A great area for discovery, relaxation and laid back cycling. Beginning in Beaune, you will discover the best portions of the Canal du Centre (which connects the Saone to the Loire), the prestigious vineyards of the Nuits-Saint-Georges (Vosne Romanée, Vougeot, Gevrey Chambertin, Chambolle Musigny…), and the “Voie des Vignes” that leads to Santenay (the home of great wines such as Pommard, Volnay, Meursault, Chassagne Montrachet). Our Burgundy cycling tour offers numerous opportunities to visit vineyards and wine cellars, as well as selected restaurants.

  • Riding through vineyards and quiet, rolling hills in the heart of Burgundy
  • Combining cycling and wine tasting
  • Quiet back roads and beautiful countryside
  • Discovering some of the most prestigious wines and vineyards in the world

Click to view map

Itinerary

Day 1: Dijon – Beaune | 40 – 45 km

Our services begin on day 1 at 10 am at Dijon SNCF railway station. On request, we can book the previous night’s accommodation for you in Dijon.

Rendezvous in Dijon, the start and endpoint of this Burgundy bicycle tour. Today’s route is a full day of riding, but the last day of the tour is much shorter, offering plenty of time to discover the capital of Burgundy. The route leaves town and heads south in the direction of some very prestigious vineyards. You ride through the heart of vineyards that make wines regarded by many as priceless, discovering two major players in the world of wine: Vougeot and Vosne Romanée. Tonight’s accommodation is a comfortable 3* hotel in one of the most beautiful towns in Burgundy, Beaune. The local gastronomy and the many great restaurants offer a perfect opportunity to sample the region’s culinary delights.

  • Cycling for the day (option 1): approx. 40 km / altitude gain: approx. 200 m
  • Cycling for the day (option 2): approx. 45 km / altitude gain: approx. 450 m
  • Accommodation: Hostellerie de Bretonnière*** or similar

Day 2: Beaune – Rully | 35 km

After a hearty breakfast at the hotel, the day’s stage is short, leaving plenty of time to discover Beaune. The town’s historical cellars, dating back several centuries and those of the many private mansions, stretch for dozens of kilometres under the streets and alleys. You can take the time to admire the many beautiful multi-coloured polychrome terracotta roofs, characteristic of traditional Burgundy architecture. Heading off on the bikes once again, you continue south through the extension of the Côte d’Or). As soon as you leave Beaune you start crossing a succession of “grand cru” vineyards and charming villages: Pommard, Volnay, Meursault, Puligny Montrachet, Chassagne Montrachet, then Santenay. You then join the Canal du Centre banks, which you follow all the way to Chagny. You will discover some prestigious vineyards, such as Mercurey or Rully, before stopping for your second night in Burgundy.

  • Cycling for the day: approx. 35 km / altitude gain: approx. 200 m
  • Accommodation: local guesthouse / family hotel

Day 3: Rully – Nolay | 25 – 30 km

After two days riding through vineyards, you head into a more discrete but no less charming part of Burgundy. On a superb network of back roads that wind their way between the vineyards, then between the fields and pastures, you set your course due west to the valley of the Dheune, tributary of the Saone. You descend the Dheune, crossing numerous pretty villages, with the beautiful Burgundy countryside in the background. The route circumnavigates the Côte de Beaune limestone ridge, leaving the vineyards behind you and replacing them with limestone cliffs, forests and farmland. You approach Nolay, your overnight stop. The town has a rich medieval past, highlighted by its 14th century covered market with an intricate timber-framed roof covered with limestone flagstones.

  • Cycling for the day (option 1): distance covered: approx. 25 km / altitude gain: approx. 350 m
  • Cycling for the day (option 2): distance covered: approx. 30 km / altitude gain: approx. 450 m
  • Accommodation: Hotel de la Halle or similar

Day 4: Nolay – Bligny sur Ouche | 25 – 45 km

Depending on the option chosen, today’s stage is more or less a short one, still with several climbs that will take some time. You head north to join the River Ouche, a typical Burgundy river that meanders gently through the countryside. Limestone cliffs surround the village of Saint Romain, and your route offers a bird’s eye view of the village from the top. The scenery gradually changes, mixing wooded sections and open fields. You turn and head north, along the west side of the Côte d’Or, before reaching the River Ouche source, near Lusigny sur Ouche. You follow the river for a short time before heading to Bligny, and your charming guesthouse for the night.

  • Cycling for the day (option 1): approx. 25 km / altitude gain: approx. 400 m
  • Cycling for the day (option 2): approx. 30 to 45 km / altitude gain: between 500 and 650 m depending on the exact route
  • Accommodation: Villa Les pieds dans l’Ouche or similar

Day 5: Bligny sur Ouche – Pont de Pany | 30 km

Today’s stage is a little longer, but with plenty of descending. The route descends to the Ouche Valley, a favourite destination for the residents of the Dijon area. You pass through several delightful small villages dotted along this charming valley. Thorey, La Bussière, Saint Victor, Barbirey, Gissey, Sainte Marie, Fleurey and Velars, each with its particular charm. 200 metres of altitude loss separate the source of the Ouche from the Kir Lake, allowing you to cycle gently along, with a few pedal strokes from time to time.

  • Level 1: distance covered: approx. 30 km / altitude gain: negligible
  • Level 2 (Châteauneuf option): + 15 km, + 250 m altitude gain
  • Accommodation: local guesthouse / family hotel

Day 6: Pont de Pany – Dijon | 20 km

You are now only a few kilometres away from the capital of the Dukes of Burgundy. Today’s stage offers a well-earned breather after a full week of riding, as well as plenty of time to visit the many interesting natural and architectural sites of the city of Dijon: the gardens of the town centre (Arquebuse, Colombière Park, the gardens of Darcy), Lake Kir, the cathedrals of Sainte Bégnine, Notre Dame, Saint Etienne, Saint Philibert. A wide variety of different styles, from gothic through to renaissance. The Palais des Ducs and public square, the tombs… and for those who appreciate fine cuisine, the opportunity to indulge in some local gastronomy. A small city just waiting to be discovered, on or off the bike.

Our services end at Dijon SNCF railway station at around 4 pm.
On request, we can book the night’s accommodation for you in Dijon.

  • Cycling for the day: distance covered: approx. 20 km / altitude gain: negligible

What to Expect

Accommodation

On this cycling holiday, you will be staying in comfortable 2 and 3-star hotels and guesthouses. 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.

Click to view default hotels

Hotel Wilson***, Hostellerie de Bretonnière***, Hotel de la Halle, Villa Les pieds dans l’Ouche

Hotels and guesthouses are subject to availability. In case a particular hotel is fully booked for your desired dates it will be replaced with a hotel of equal value and quality level

Meals

Five breakfasts are included. When no restaurant location is available en route, lunches and snacks should either be bought from local shops or you can pre-order a packed lunch at your hotel. Dinner is available either from the restaurant in your accommodation or restaurants in the village near your hotel. A half-board supplement (5 dinners) is bookable upon request.

Difficulty & terrain

This holiday is appropriate for both beginner and intermediate cyclists in good physical shape. The daily distances vary between 25 km and 50 km, with a minimum altitude gain; you can optionally extend most rides. The route goes mostly on secondary country roads, with limited traffic and scenic surroundings (read more about difficulty grades). It is also possible to rent an electric bike, thus the tour would become accessible to everybody.

When to go

This trip is available from mid-April until the early October. The flexibility of self guided holidays means that there are no fixed dates and you can start your trip on any date within the season.

Route Navigation

You will receive an email 2 weeks before departure, containing all the information necessary for your upcoming tour, including the following navigation tools:

  • Dedicated smartphone app on which you can download the full tour itinerary, view tour maps and route profiles, access the list of booked accommodation and services, useful contacts, etc.
  • Detailed Road Book (in digital version only) containing full colour maps with highlighted routes, step-by-step route description, and route profiles
  • GPS tracks compatible with all GPS devices/apps

Getting there

FCO up-to-date travel advice

Click to view travel options

By plane

Besides Paris Airport you can also fly into and out of Lyon Airport.

By train or bus

Train connections from the UK
Take the Eurostar from London St-Pancras International to Paris (Gard du Nord). Please check the SNCF website for more details on schedules and prices. Total journey time is about 5.5 hours.

Inclusions

Included

  • 5 nights in guesthouses and 2* and 3* hotels in double rooms with en-suite facilities
  • 5 breakfasts
  • Daily baggage transfers
  • Tour materials: detailed roadbook including maps (digital format), a navigation app for smartphones, and GPS tracks
  • 24/7 phone assistance by our local office/representative

Excluded

  • International flights
  • Lunches and dinners not mentioned as ‘included’
  • Arrival transportation to the meeting place
  • Travel insurance (required – get a quote online)
  • Drinks at the accommodations
  • Additional travel-related changes in the programme due to bad weather
  • Entrance fees for attractions and museums
  • All personal expenses
  • Everything not explicitly mentioned as ‘Included’

Options, extras & supplements

  • A supplement applies to members of a group who require a single room
  • This holiday is not available for solo travellers
  • Extra nights before the tour, along the way and at the end of the tour can be booked on request
  • Bike rental (standard or e-bike)
  • Half-board supplement (5 dinners)

Bike Rental

In case you would like to rent a bike from us, we can offer you good quality hybrid or e-bikes in excellent condition with appropriate gearing and equipment for the trip. All bicycles (whatever the model) are equipped with a bike lock, a helmet, a puncture repair kit, and a pump. In many cases, at least one rear pannier, as well as a bar bag, are included. Sample pictures attached below, note that the exact models might be different depending on the availability, but the standard will be the same.

Gallery

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