Cycling: 5 routes to follow in Center-Val de Loire

The Center-Val de Loire region is rich in cycle routes, whether they are routes going from one point to another or networks made up of several loops, not to mention the major European routes such as La Loire à Vélo and Saint -Jacques à Vélo, who cross this magnificent territory. You will find below the cycle routes particularly to follow in Touraine, Berry, Loire Valley or Perche… All in the saddle!

The Loire by bike

It is the undisputed star of French cycle routes! The Loire by bike is indeed acclaimed by the public with its hundreds of thousands of users from all over the world.

First reason for this success: landscapes along the Loire are magnificent and one can stop there in villages and towns of great character where we visit in particular castles of exceptional beauty.

Second major asset: the development of all 900 km de La Loire à Vélo is designed so that cyclists of all ages can pedal at their own pace, without encountering any difficulty insurmountable and that in complete safety. The route is signposted in both directions and you can walk it as you wish, from east to west or from west to east!

Following the course of the river, at the end of its steepest segment which recalls its mountain origins, the'route starts from Cuffy in the Cher, crosses the Center-Val de Loire and ends in the Pays de la Loire, in Saint-Brévin-les-Pins.

Le Centre-Val de Loire offers you some of its most beautiful treasures with the slopes covered with vineyards of Sancerre, the Briare canal bridge, the historic towns from Orleans, Beaugency, Blois, Amboise, Tours, Langeais, or Azay-le-Rideau. Many of them are equipped with castles remarkable. The views on the Wild Loire, with its sandbanks or islands, are also formidable.

You should also know that the Loire à Vélo route is connected to other routes and networks like Les Châteaux by bike, or L'Indre by bike.

The Loire à Vélo :

The Castles by bike

This network cumulates 400 km of marked routes divided into 14 loops 10 to 43 km long. These are cycle paths, low traffic roads, or country lanes that you will find around Blois, Chambord, Cheverny and Chaumont-sur-Loire. Most are from niveau easy and therefore suitable for all audiences.

You can therefore browse through the vineyards of controlled designation of origin Cheverny, the surroundings of ponds from Sologne, forests like that of Boulogne, the domain of Chambord CastleThe city of Blois where throne another royal castle, or the National Nature Reserve of Grande Pierre et Vitain on the edge of the Beauce, villages with crazy charm, other castles still, less known but which fully deserve to be ...

And of course the banks of the Loire. In this regard, note that the Les Châteaux à Vélo network is connected to the large Loire à Vélo route.

New in 2018, the Center-Val de Loire Region launched the castle shuttle, a coach dedicated to serving the Castles of Blois, Chambord, Villesavin, Bracieux, Cheverny and Beauregard, equipped with a trailer allowing the transport of 10 bikes. The shuttle connects at Blois station with Intercity trains to provide a daily return trip from Paris, from April to October.

The Castles by bike :

Saint-Jacques by bike

Yes, the Camino de Santiago is also done on two wheels! This is at least the case in Center-Val de Loire, thanks to the itinerary Saint-Jacques by bike which spans 380 km. It starts from Maintenon in the north of Chartres and goes to Châtellerault in New Aquitaine (in the south), but for the most part crosses the Center-Val de Loire region.

It helps to perpetuate the Via Turonenis, one of the paths which has been used for centuries by many pilgrims going to Santiago de Compostela in Spain.

This marked route is very popular with cycling enthusiasts who are not particularly sporty because its height difference is low. In addition, it offers an anthology of representative landscapes of the region. However, the stages being significantly longer than those of the Loire à Vélo, it is still necessary to be in shape.

Coming from the north, it rushes into the Beauce, passing through Chartres and its famous cathedral, then heads towards Touraine, as close as possible to the valleys of the Eure, Loir, Loire and Vienne. Along its route are Vendôme, the Loir and Brenne Valleys, the Vouvray vineyard, or Tours, important stages of a journey as spiritual as it is pleasant, punctuated by stops in castles, villages or cellars ...

Note that this road which takes some portions of greenways near Chartres, Vouvray and Tours, cross other cycle routes : The Véloscénie, The Loir Valley by bike, The Loire by bike, The Indre by bike.

More about us :

La Brenne by bike

Le Regional Natural Park of Brenne is rich in an absolutely remarkable flora and fauna. It is discovered in many ways, especially at the discretion of 12 courses, ranging from 11 to 47 km, which form the La Brenne à Vélo network, which totals 309 km.

You can wander through landscapes of meadows, woods, moors, orponds, one of the most famous of which is called Bellebouche. These ponds are numerous in Brenne. Some of them have observatories where we make stops to learn a lot about their ecosystems.

Routes take you through the country valleys Suin, Creuse, Angin or Abloux… In addition to the wonders of nature, these roads make you appreciate pretty villages, or even castles, such as that of Azay-le-Ferron ...

If you are particularly athletic, note that the Brenne Regional Natural Park also includes MTB circuits.

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Regional Natural Park of Brenne :

Le Perche by bike

Le pole is a former province which is now shared between the Center-Val de Loire and Normandy regions. But this territory has retained its characteristics, particularly in terms of its landscapes.

These are discovered by traveling the peaceful roads of Perche Regional Natural Park, following the routes of 14 loops of the Le Perche network by bike. Given the hilly character of this very green corner of France, the routes are mostly classified as “medium”, but electric bikes can be hired from tourist offices.

Like the others, it immerses you in the heart of sets made of groves, where you meet Percheron cows and horses, forests, ponds, bogs, character villages, many of which are crossed by charming rivers and contain half-timbered houses, beautiful little churches, abbeys, elegant manors, castles from various eras, or even wonderfully maintained gardens ...

Good to know : the Perche is crossed from east to west by Velosceny, road that goes from Paris to Mont-Saint-Michel.

Finally, note that the followers of Moutain Biking find circuits to their liking in this territory, which offers them a Tour of the Perche hills (220 km) to be done in four stages.

More about us :

Perche Regional Natural Park :

Center-Val de Loire tourism :

Everything about cycling in the Center-Val de Loire region :

Audio Video Cycling: 5 routes to follow in Center-Val de Loire
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