Cycling Provence and Camargue

Provence France: (ZZ-BK-GL08)
URL: https://www.hiddentrails.com/tour/Outdoor_France_Cycling_Provence_and_Camargue.aspx

Introduction
Provence France
In this tour you have the possibility to explore by bike the southern part of France. Historically, Provence was important to the Celts, Greeks and Romans, which added to the layers of Provencal life, while in more modern times the Provence landscape inspired artists like Van Gogh and Cézanne. You’ll cycle along quiet roads with breathtaking scenery and discover many delightful hilltop villages, among vineyards and orchards. Then you’ll enter the Camargue region, a dramatic river delta, home to flamingos, wild horses and countless bird species. You’ll find it difficult not to fall in love with these landscapes!

This ride is suitable for all cyclists with some cycling experience and fitness. This is a great way to experience the country and a breathtaking adventure!

Accomodation

Accommodations
We choose all the hotels mindful of your comfort as well as the proximity to cycling paths and any relevant local sites.
No matter the hotel category, all rooms have en suite facilities. Most of the hotels are equipped with air conditioning.

When you book the tour please specify the type of room requested:
•double room is a room with one double bed
•twin room is a room with two single beds
•triple room is usually a room with one double bed and a single bed or a rollaway.


Meals
Only breakfast is included in this tour.

Breakfast is taken at the hotels and is usually a varied buffet. However, in some 2/3* hotels you may find the typical French breakfast, consisting of a hot beverage, like tea or coffee, with something sweet to eat such as cake, cookies, pastries, brioche, croissants, or toast and jam.

Dietary Restrictions
If you are vegetarian, gluten-intolerant, allergic to some specific ingredients/substances or if you suffer from any other kind of allergies please indicate it at the moment of booking. We will pass the information to the hotels, but we cannot guarantee that all dietary requests will be met. Sometimes it is difficult to find particular food, for example gluten-free food, so we suggest you to bring some own snacks as a small supply.

Riding

Easy to Moderate: some days flat, others with some hills. Suitable for everyone with some cycling experience and a few physical condition.

Rental bikes
Our Citybikes are available in various sizes in unisex/women’s or men’s models. At the moment of booking, you can choose from the following bikes:
- Touring bike 27-gear Shimano Deore
- E-bike 9-gear Shimano

If you want to do the tour with your own bike, before you depart we suggest to check that all parts of the bike are functioning properly. A cycle computer is necessary to follow the road book. We also highly recommend you to bring a repair kit because the emergency number in case of breakdown cannot be used if you are using your own bike. Don’t forget to bring a padlock and always lock your bike.

Features:
•aluminium frame
•mudguard
•rack
•comfort gel saddle
•anti-puncture Schwalbe tyres
•ergonomic bicycle grips
•Speed Lifter system (only for city bikes)

Accessories:
•1 cycle computer
•1 Ortlieb one-sided saddlebag
•1 front bar bag or 1 map holder
•1 water bottle (0.75 l)
•1 repair kit per room (which includes one spare inner tube, glue, patch and a pump)
•1 combination bike lock

At the moment of booking you can also rent helmets suitable for head circumferences from 54 to 61. All our helmets have a certification mark according to the DIN EN 1078 (CE) European norm.

We supply you with some useful material to help you follow the itinerary as well as some tourist information about places and cities you will meet in your holiday.

Accompanying material
The Information Pack (one per room) includes:
- final hotel list: due to overbooking or organizational needs your hotel list may be changed just before your arrival
- luggage labels to be fixed at each piece of baggage, which has to be carried
- hotel vouchers to be given to the reception of each hotel on your arrival
- restaurant vouchers (if you have booked half-board)

Green booklets:
1) Travel guide with valuable information about the history, artistic heritage, landscapes and natural treasures of the areas visited on the tour. Plus: local events, some great anecdotes, suggestions on how to make the best of an extended break along the route, and tips on local wining and dining.
2) Detailed Maps of the itinerary: in colour and scaled 1:75.000/50.000, an altitude profile chart and maps of any historic city centres you would visit.
3) Roadbook describing the cycling route, stage by stage. Great on its own or in conjunction with the maps.

Mechanical problems
During the tour, if the bicycles should have any type of technical problem that prevents you from continuing, please contact us at the emergency numbers and try to describe the occurred issue. We’ll try to solve as soon as possible the problem. As you are riding unaccompanied, it is wise to know at least how to repair or change an inner tube before setting off on your bike. We remind you that we offer no assistance in case of flat tire.
In case of mechanical problems please:
1. Call the emergency phone number
2. Communicate your name and which tour you are on
3. Let us know your position (total distance of the stage) based on the description of the roadbook
4. Give us your mobile phone number

In relation to your location and to the damage of the bike we can:
- ask you to wait there in order to provide a change of the bike
- Send you to a mechanical shop nearby. We will estimate the damage with the mechanic. The charge will be refunded only after our authorization and on presentation of the receipt. In case of puncture no intervention or assistance is foreseen. Customers will be given a proper puncture reparation kit, which will enable them to intervene directly and solve the problem.

Itinerary

Sample Itinerary - subject to changes

Total length: 305 km
Total vertical up: 980 m
Terrain: 91% tarmac, 9% unpaved
Train connection among the overnight stays: day 3 and 7
Possibility to shorten the itinerary by taking the train: day 3

Route mostly on low traffic roads in rural and city areas. Short stretches are on unpaved roads. A couple of days present some short uphill sections with the only relevant ascent to Les-Baux-de-Provence (4 km of gentle ascent).

Note: Due to organizational reasons, weather conditions or provisions issued by local authorities, the itinerary may be subject to some changes before and/or during the holiday.  Along the way you may find temporary deviations (for example road works) which cannot be foreseen; in this case each rider can decide autonomously how to deal with these stretches.

Day 1. Arrival
Individual arrival in Arles, the city of diabolical “ferias”, muse of artists and poets, known for its rich ancient and Romanesque heritage.
Meals included: Dinner
Overnight in Arles

Day 2.  Arles to Aigues-Mortes
Leave the city and go into the delta of the Rhône, better known as “Camargue”, where nature still prevails over civilization. You will cycle among cane fields, salt lakes, flamingos, horses and bulls. You will stop in Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer, and then continue towards the medieval fortress of Aigues-Mortes.
The itinerary includes 12 km of unpaved road. Pay particular attention along the road D85 with a large but very busy side quay.
Cycling 65 km (elevation gain: 20 m)
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight in Aigues-Mortes

Day 3. Aigues-Mortes to Nîmes
Back to civilization. Following streets with low traffic you reach the populated centre of Nîmes; rich in art and history, it is also called the “Rome of France”, but it also reminds Spain with its arenas and bullfighting.
An easy itinerary traversing the southern part of the Petite Camargue, following the Petit Rhône. Along quiet country roads you finally reach the beautiful village of Vauvert and after a break on the lovely square you continue to Nîmes, the wonderful principal town of the Gard department.
Cycling 40 km (elevation gain: 80 m)
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight in Nîmes

Day 4. Nîmes to Uzès
After a tour of the city, surrounded by its Roman past, you will cycle up to the best preserved Roman aqueduct in Europe: Pont du Gard, a truly spectacular work. Refresh yourself with a bath on the banks of the river Gard before reaching Uzès.
After leaving Nîmes you will cycle among low and twisted vineyards and small villages of stone houses. Once in the village of Remoulins you will go back briefly the Rive Droit of the river Gardon on bike path and after going through a fragrant pine forest unexpectedly the Pont du Gard will stand out in front of you in all its magnificence. The tour will continue through the hills of the Eure Valley until you reach the impressive Gorges du Gardon and finally the town of Uzès.
Cycling 45 km (elevation gain: 260 m)
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight in Uzès

Day 5. Uzès to Avignon
Riding through gentle hills, today you will reach the capital of Provence, a real open air museum. Avignon was a papal city for nearly a century and here seven popes decided, in 1300, the destiny of the Christian Church. Before the arrival, stop at the beautiful ancient village of Villeneuve-lès-Avignon.
From Uzès continue towards south: St. Hilaire d’Ozilan, Fournes and Thezièrs, are some of the towns you will go through, where the main economic activity is viticulture... Arrived at the village of Aramon, the Rhone will lead you towards Villeneuve- Les-Avignon, from whose hills you can catch with a single glance the beautiful Avignon.
Cycling 50 km (elevation gain: 220 m)
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight in Avignon

Day 6. Cycle to Châteauneuf-du-Pape
You will cycle towards Châteauneuf-du-Pape, following low-traffic roads surrounded by vineyards. You cross the river Rhône at the height of Roquemaure and come back in Villeneuve along the Rhône banks.
The route will take you in the north of Avignon, touching the towns of Le Pontet -Avignon’s outskirts and of Sorgues, located along the banks of the river Ouvèze. The route has only few difficulties, especially because of the heavy traffic along some of the sections. Pay extra attention when you leave Avignon. To reach Châteauneuf-du-Pape you will have to face a 800m slope uphill and the road that leads from this village to the Rhone river is often busy.
Cycling 45 km (elevation gain: 100 m)
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight in Avignon

Day 7. Avignon to Arles
After leaving the Palace of the Popes, you will cycle again to close the tour returning to Arles. Along the way, you cannot miss a stop at the famous Saint-Rémi-de-Provence and Les-Baux-de-Provence, well-known places throughout the world thanks to Van Gogh.
When you have left Avignon, you will have to pay attention to the traffic, especially from the bridge over the Durance river. Today is the only day of the tour with a rather difficult slope uphill: from Saint-Remy to Les Baux de Provence (4 km long) and from the Roman aqueduct to Fontvieille (1km long).
Cycling 60 km (elevation gain: 300 m)
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight in Arles

Day 8. Departure
After breakfast, end of services.
Meals included: Breakfast


How to shorten the stages
Part of the tour has few train connections offering bicycle transport. This low-cost option will allow you to reach the next city in the case of rain or bad weather, or if you prefer to visit a city at your own pace instead of cycling. Trains with bicycle compartments are all regional trains and are indicated with a bicycle symbol on the carriage and also on the timetables on display in the station.
For further information on timetables and prices you can consult www.sncf.com.

In this tour you can skip the stage only on day 3 and on day 7.
If you want to shorten the itinerary by taking the train, you can do it only on day 3.

Day 3: Aigues-Mortes – Nimes
You can shorten the stage by train at the station of Vauvert. Please be informed that there are very few trains (1-2) with bike transportation, therefore please check always the timetables of the French railways (www.sncf.com).


Rates and Dates for Cycling Provence and Camargue

Rates include:

Accommodations, Welcome briefing in English, Breakfasts, Travel guide (book), Maps, Roadbook, Luggage transportation, Hotline service & Hotel taxes

Packages and Options



  • SeasonYearDescriptionEUR ~US$
    A
    20208-day self-guided trip in 2/3* hotels (High)€805$910
    • Single supplement€225$255
      Discount for 3rd person staying in room, pp(€105)($110)
  • B
    20208-day self-guided trip in 3/4* hotels (High)€955$1080
    • Single supplement€325$370
      Discount for 3rd person staying in room, pp(€135)($145)
  • C
    20208-day self-guided trip in 2/3* hotels (Mid)€765$865
    • Single supplement€225$255
      Discount for 3rd person staying in room, pp(€105)($110)
  • D
    20208-day self-guided trip in 3/4* hotels (Mid)€900$1020
    • Single supplement€325$370
      Discount for 3rd person staying in room, pp(€135)($145)
  • E
    20208-day self-guided trip in 2/3* hotels (Low)€695$785
    • Single supplement€225$255
      Discount for 3rd person staying in room, pp(€105)($110)
  • F
    20208-day self-guided trip in 3/4* hotels (Low)€815$925
    • Single supplement€325$370
      Discount for 3rd person staying in room, pp(€135)($145)
The US Dollar Rate is Based on Exchange Rate of 1.13

* prices are per person based on double/twin occupancy

Transfer and Other Charges:



 DescriptionEUR~US$
2020 Meet in Arles on Day 1 0 $0
2020 Bike rental 85 $100
2020 Electro-bike rental 195 $220
2020 Helmet rental 15 $20
2020 Extra nights- please inquire 0 $0

Season Tour Dates  Min / MaxReserve
F 2020 05/09 - 05/16 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 3/... 1 /15 Expired
E 2020 05/09 - 05/16 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 2/... 1 /15 Expired
E 2020 05/16 - 05/23 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 2/... 1 /15 Expired
F 2020 05/16 - 05/23 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 3/... 1 /15 Expired
D 2020 05/23 - 05/30 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 3/... 1 /15 Expired
C 2020 05/23 - 05/30 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 2/... 1 /15 Expired
C 2020 05/30 - 06/06 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 2/... 1 /15 Expired
D 2020 05/30 - 06/06 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 3/... 1 /15 Expired
D 2020 06/06 - 06/13 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 3/... 1 /15 Expired
C 2020 06/06 - 06/13 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 2/... 1 /15 Expired
C 2020 06/13 - 06/20 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 2/... 1 /15 Expired
D 2020 06/13 - 06/20 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 3/... 1 /15 Expired
D 2020 06/20 - 06/27 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 3/... 1 /15 Expired
C 2020 06/20 - 06/27 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 2/... 1 /15 Expired
B 2020 06/27 - 07/04 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 3/... 1 /15 Expired
A 2020 06/27 - 07/04 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 2/... 1 /15 Expired
A 2020 07/04 - 07/11 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 2/... 1 /15 Expired
B 2020 07/04 - 07/11 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 3/... 1 /15 Expired
B 2020 07/11 - 07/18 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 3/... 1 /15 Expired
A 2020 07/11 - 07/18 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 2/... 1 /15 Expired
A 2020 07/18 - 07/25 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 2/... 1 /15 Reserve
B 2020 07/18 - 07/25 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 3/... 1 /15 Reserve
C 2020 07/25 - 08/01 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 2/... 1 /15 Reserve
D 2020 07/25 - 08/01 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 3/... 1 /15 Reserve
D 2020 08/01 - 08/08 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 3/... 1 /15 Reserve
C 2020 08/01 - 08/08 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 2/... 1 /15 Reserve
C 2020 08/08 - 08/15 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 2/... 1 /15 Reserve
D 2020 08/08 - 08/15 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 3/... 1 /15 Reserve
D 2020 08/15 - 08/22 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 3/... 1 /15 Reserve
C 2020 08/15 - 08/22 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 2/... 1 /15 Reserve
C 2020 08/22 - 08/29 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 2/... 1 /15 Reserve
D 2020 08/22 - 08/29 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 3/... 1 /15 Reserve
D 2020 08/29 - 09/05 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 3/... 1 /15 Reserve
C 2020 08/29 - 09/05 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 2/... 1 /15 Reserve
C 2020 09/05 - 09/12 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 2/... 1 /15 Reserve
D 2020 09/05 - 09/12 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 3/... 1 /15 Reserve
D 2020 09/12 - 09/19 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 3/... 1 /15 Reserve
C 2020 09/12 - 09/19 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 2/... 1 /15 Reserve
C 2020 09/19 - 09/26 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 2/... 1 /15 Reserve
D 2020 09/19 - 09/26 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 3/... 1 /15 Reserve
F 2020 09/26 - 10/03 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 3/... 1 /15 Reserve
E 2020 09/26 - 10/03 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 2/... 1 /15 Reserve
E 2020 10/03 - 10/10 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 2/... 1 /15 Reserve
F 2020 10/03 - 10/10 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 3/... 1 /15 Reserve
F 2020 10/10 - 10/17 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 3/... 1 /15 Reserve
E 2020 10/10 - 10/17 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 2/... 1 /15 Reserve
E 2020 10/17 - 10/24 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 2/... 1 /15 Reserve
F 2020 10/17 - 10/24 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 3/... 1 /15 Reserve
F 2020 10/24 - 10/31 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 3/... 1 /15 Reserve
E 2020 10/24 - 10/31 8d / 7n 8-day self-guided trip in 2/... 1 /15 Reserve

Dates Note: Custom departures for min. 5 people

Rates do not include:

Lunches, Dinners & Transfers from/to Arles

Other Info
Meeting: Arles
Airport: Avignon
Transfer: --

Climate:
                                            Aigues-Mortes area


Month

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

Average High Temperature (°F)

53

55

61

65

72

80

85

84

77

69

60

54

Average Low Temperature (°F)

37

38

42

47

54

61

65

65

59

52

44

38

Average High Temperature (°C)

12

13

16

18

22

26

29

29

25

20

15

12

Average Low Temperature (°C)

3

3

6

8

12

16

19

18

15

11

7

4

Average Precipitation (days of rain)

5

4

4

5

4

3

2

2

3

5

5

4

Source: NOAA


Seasons
This journey will cover two French regions: Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur and Languedoc-Roussillon.

Summer (June to August)
The climate is definitely hot and dry with high temperature range between day and night.

Autumn (September to November)
Some storms can be expected from time to time. However, temperatures are usually mild and probability of rain is quite low.

Winter (December to February)
Winter’s frequent fine days are often marred by a strong, cold north wind called the mistral.

Spring (March to May)
Generally you will find fresh and mild temperatures in spring with low probability of rain.

Late spring and early summer is usually ideal with clear skies and warm days, lightly tempered by a pleasant breeze.

What To Bring:
Luggage transportation
Luggage transportation is never included in case of extra nights before or after the standard tour.
We do not guarantee luggage transportation if:
- Labels are not attached to the bags
- luggage is deposited late at reception (dropped off after 9:00 a.m.)
- luggage exceeds the weight allowance.
In the above mentioned cases a special transportation service can be organized which will have to be paid in cash by you on the spot.

Timetable
- 9:00 a.m.: you have to deliver your luggage to the hotel reception every morning by 9:00.am., grouped according to the receptionist’s instructions
- 5:30 p.m.: we deliver your luggage to the next hotel by 5:30 pm. If you think you will arrive early at the hotel because the stage is rather short or you prefer to cycle in the morning and visit the city in the afternoon, please bring a change of clothes with you.

Forbidden goods
It is strictly forbidden to put the following items inside the luggage to be transported:
- medicines and lifesaver devices
- glass bottles and liquids in general
- fragile objects
We will not be held responsible for damages caused by non-compliance with these rules.

Luggage allowance
For the luggage transportation we accept only 2 pieces of luggage per person: a suitcase and a hand luggage. The max. weight of the suitcase is 20 kg, while the weight of the hand luggage can be of 10 kg max.
At the first hotel you will receive 2 labels per person which have to be attached to each piece of luggage. You should put 1 label on each piece of luggage. If you have only 1 piece of luggage, write 1 on the label; if you have 2 pieces of luggage, write 2 on both labels.
You cannot change the number of pieces of luggage during the tour.

Recommended packing list
The following personal equipment is recommended:
- basic first aid kit which includes adhesive bandages, gauze and low grade disinfectant
- sun glasses for eye protection
- protective suntan cream
- repellent spray for insects

The following recommended clothes are advisable:
- padded cycling shorts
- comfortable shoes with stiff soles
- light weight waterproof/windproof top
- leggings and long sleeved tops for cooler mornings or evenings
- small close-fitting daysack to carry certain items during the day while cycling
- swimsuit

We recommend to keep always with you (and not to forget in the transported luggage):
- passport/identity card
- hotel vouchers
- any medicines you could need during the day
- personal belongings (for example car keys).

During the tour you will have the chance to visit various religious institutions, such as churches and convents, where you must be appropriately dressed (covered shoulders, shoes or sandals, etc...).