Biking along the river Loire, France

Who would have thought that one could make 80 km with the bike with the anterior cruciate ligament broken. The physio said biking was good to get my leg muscles back, so there I went!

This weekend, July 27th, Saturday, I biked along the river Loire for 80 km and quickly visited the towns: Sully-sur-Loire, Saint Gondon, Gien, Saint Brisson-sur-Loire, Briare, Châtillon-su r-Loire, Ouzouer and Beaulieu-sur-Loire. However, I will remember this trip not for the towns visited but for the freedom of biking in such a peaceful place with different landscapes and for the French kindness towards a Spanish guy who wanted to discover new places in France while biking 🙂

There is a pathway to do this, and it is called “La Loire à Velo”. This pathway is flat and away from cars, it goes basically along the river and you can greet from runners to skaters and from families with children to other individual bikers. I started in Sully-sur-Loire whose castle is definitely worth visiting if you have the chance. See below:

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Château Sully-sur-Loire
Now, if you are to do this trip I really recommend sunglasses: there is an amazingly disturbing amount of flying insects. The sunglasses will act as a shield to protect you from these flying guys! And if you can, keep your mouth closed as long as you can (from experience 😉 )

On my way I encountered Stéphane and Luna. See below. I was asking for directions and we got on well, so Stéphane treated me for a drink and made me a sandwich which I really appreciated. They showed me the beautiful house they live in and we ate and drank in the garden. Who needs a compass when you can ask people, it is thousand times more rewarding! just fantastic to meet people this way.

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Stéphane, Luna and me!
I also met Elise, a German woman who organised Lamas and Alpagas tours (Les Alpagas & Lamas de Mme Dupont) who explained to me a bit of these beautiful animals whose wool is really soft and expensive.

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Elise with the Lamas and the Alpagas
On my way along the Loire I crossed different landscapes, from the river views to its different canals and canal locks, and from forests to cultural places. It is so diverse that you could spend hours enjoying and the time would just fly.

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Crossing the country side near the Loire
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Going through the forest
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L’église St Etienne, Briare
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Le pont-canal, le canal de Briare just above the Loire
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L’écluse des Mantelots
I was travelling with a basic guide, enough actually to get by because the Loire à Velo pathway it is so well indicated that it is difficult to get lost. However, if you want to enjoy the nice places around the Loire like vineyards or flower fields you really would need a detailed map to see the nice little pathways in between the towns that are really worth discovering (you will find many splendid castles too)

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Biking along the Loire with Gien in the background
Just like that the day went by very quickly and 6 hours biking are not enough to see and visit everything. But it was more than enough to come back with a big smile and with some sport done 🙂 Looking forward for more Loire à Velo! and for more encounters with nice and interesting people on the way!

3 Comments Add yours

  1. andrea says:

    This made me want to do a French bike tour so much! What gorgeous photos! Looks like flowers are in full bloom.

    PS not surprised at all you made new friends 😉

    1. Miguel says:

      😀 France and me would welcome you for a bike tour with open arms! but I am soon coming back to Switzerland, maybe some other time hehe :p I need gipferlis

  2. jorgin says:

    so nice article!!!! 🙂

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