Eiffel Tower - photo via Flickr:Daxis

Belgian pralines! Photo via Wikimedia Commons:phot_co
4.8/5 (10 ratings)

Bruges to Paris or Paris to Bruges

Belgium, France Bike + Barge Tours

Cycling in Belgium and France!

This incredible Bruges to Paris bike tour (or v.v.) goes along rural country roads, towpaths, and paved forest trails and occasionally, a short distance on a cobblestone road.

You will bike in Belgium and France and curiously, through Holland too, as Belgium and the French part above the Somme River once belonged to Holland. This can be seen in the flags of the Belgian and French provinces that still carry the Dutch national symbol (the lion).

Picardie, as the northern province of France is called, was once the cradle of the Gothic period which can be seen in the various places you will visit. Picardie and especially the area around the Somme River carry the scars of the great war. In almost every little town you pass, there are memorials erected that commemorate the soldiers and civilians that died in the war. If you love history, you will have the opportunity to visit the war museum in Peronne where you will spend a whole day. You can also take a tour around the area and pass the big memorials erected in honor of the soldiers of France, Great Britain, Australia, America and South Africa.

Biking in Paris, you will enter through the 'banlieues' as the suburban cities are called. This part of the suburban area around Paris is very green and inhabited mostly by Parisians that can afford to flee the city and live on the slopes outside Paris. Cycling in Paris has been made easier throughout the years thanks to the efforts of cycling enthusiasts and the development of the many bike paths.

Be sure to check out our full list of Bike and Barge tours in France.

Tour Dates

2016 Dates
Bruges to Paris

On the Comfort Plus boats: 
Elodie:   August 7, 2016
Zwaantje: September 3, 2016
FleurJuly 23, 2016
Elodie:  August 7*, 2016 - *Discounted price for bookings made after April 5, 2016.

On the Standard Plus boat:
Feniks:
15 day tour: June 4, and August 6, 2016
8 day tour: June 4, June 11, August 6, and August 13, 2016

Paris to Bruges
On the Comfort Plus boats: 
Elodie: May 29, 2016 - *Discounted price for bookings made after March 18, 2016.
Fleur: October 15, 2016
Zwaantje: July 30, 2016

On the Standard Plus boat:
Feniks:
15 day tour: October 1, 2016
8 day tour: May 28, October 1, and October 8, 2016

2017 Dates
Bruges to Paris

On the Comfort Plus boats:
Fleur: May 13, 2017
Zwaantje: September 2, 2017

Paris to Bruges
On the Comfort Plus boat:
Zwaantje: September 16, 2017
Fleur: September 30, 2017

Skill Level

This is an easy to moderate, guided bike and boat tour with average daily distances of 26 miles. The route is mostly flat with some rolling hills - some days being slightly hillier than others. You may always choose to stay on board ship for a day if you do not want to bike. Cycling experience and good physical condition is required. It is important that you have recent cycling experience on roads with traffic and with the distances mentioned in the tour. On all tours, guided or self-guided, you will participate at your own risk.

Where You’ll Stay

On the Comfort Plus boats: Fleur, Elodie, and Zwaantje

What’s Included

  • Accommodations for 14 nights on board
  • Breakfast buffets, packed lunches, and 3-course dinners (see What’s Not Included for excluded dinners)
  • Coffee and tea on board
  • Tour guide
  • 21 speed hybrid bicycle
  • Bike protection (Fleur)
  • Helmet (Fleur)
  • Route information
  • Ferry fares en route
  • Bicycle protection (Fleur only)
  • Air-conditioned cabins (Fleur, Elodie & Zwaantje only)

What’s Not Included

  • Beverages (incl. alcohol), available on board
  • 2 x dinner on the Elodie
  • 1 x dinner on the Fleur, Zwaantje, and Feniks
  • Train ride to/from Paris to Bruges, if needed
  • Museum entrance fees
  • Mandatory bike protection on the Elodie: €30
TourBike+Boat
TypeGuided
SkillEasy–Moderate
Length15 days
From2109 Rates
Client Reviews

Share This Tour

Tour Boats

Day-To-Day Itinerary

Bruges to Paris or Paris to Bruges Map

ON THE FLEUR:
See below for itineraries for different boats!

Paris to Bruges

Day 1: Arrival in Paris
On arrival day in Paris, the Fleur will be moored in Port d’Arsenal located in the middle of the city, next to the Place de la Bastille. On board, you can enjoy a welcome drink, crew introduction, and a lovely dinner. Following dinner, there will be plenty of time for a city walk.

Day 2: Paris - Auvers-sur-Oise, 22/29 mi. (36/48 km)
During breakfast, the boat cruises across the center of Paris past many famous points of interest like the Louvre, the Musée d’Orsay, and the Eiffel tower. The cycling tour begins shortly after breakfast to La Défense and St.Germain-en-Laye. There you climb to the palace and from the palace garden, you have a splendid view over Paris. Later you pass Conflans-Sainte-Honorine, where the Oise and the Seine merge. Since the 19th century, Conflans has been an important center of navigation in Northern France. Today's final destination is Auvers-sur-Oise, where Vincent van Gogh spent the last days of his life and where he is buried in the local cemetery. This region was loved by many Impressionist painters. After dinner on board, enjoy an evening walk to the Van Gogh cemetery.

Day 3: Auvers-sur-l'Oise - Creil, 22/34 mi. (35/55 km)
Starting at Auvers, you follow the Oise upstream. On today's bike tour, you'll pass the abbey of Royaumont and then Chantilly, with its famous castle. The castle is also well known for the horse-racing cirNormalcuit and royal stables. Today’s destination is Creil, a country town, which in the 19th century was famous for its fine pottery.

Day 4: Creil - Compiègne, 22/34 mi. (35/55 km)
During breakfast the barge cruises to Pont-st-Maxence, town of kings and merchants, where today's bike tour begins. Soon you pass the abbey of Moncel, which in 1309 was founded by King Philips de Schone. Before reaching Compiegne, today's destination, you cycle through the forest south of the city. This beautiful town owes its architectural wealth to the proximity of Paris and the enormous woods in which the French kings loved to wander. The Chateau de Compiè with its magnificent gardens is well worth a visit.

Day 5: Compiègne - Chauny, 24/37 mi. (38/60 km)
The river Oise is soon left behind to continue your trip by way of the canal system connecting France and Belgium. The cycling tour goes through the forest of Compiegne and the “Clairière de l’Armistice”, the place where the French and German generals signed the end of WWI. Here you can visit the small but interesting museum. Later you cross the river Aisne and cycle through the forest of Ourscamp. You will meet the Fleur once again in Chaunygne, with its magnificent gardens that are well worth a visit.

Day 6: Chauny - St. Quentin, 24/33 mi. (40/55 km)
Today you continue the cruise on the old canal of St.-Quentin. Built in the Napoleonic era, the canal still breathes peace and quiet and is a reminder of a rich shipping history. The cycling route leads through the Somme-region, a quiet countryside with small villages. Today's destination is the lively provincial capital of the Aisne,St. Quentin, which rose in the 2nd century on a junction of Roman roads. Highlights here are the Gothic basilica and the 16th century Town Hall with its flamboyant Gothic façade.

Day 7: St. Quentin, rest day
Today the Fleur stays in St.-Quentin. You can participate in a day excursion by bus to the battlefields of World War I in the Somme valley. It is also possible to use the day for exploring the city of St.Quentin.

Day 8: St. Quentin - tunnel of Riqueval - Honnecourt, 24/39 mi. (40/65 km)
The Canal de St.-Quentin was dug under the government of Napoleon. Because the differences in height were sometimes big, it was necessary to dig tunnels. The longest one is the tunnel of Riqueval, which is 5670 meters long. Today, the barge goes through this tunnel. Boats are still pulled through by an electrically driven towboat and it takes approximately two hours to pass through. Above the tunnel, there is the watershed between rivers Escaut (Schelde) and Somme. Either just before or right after this tunnel the cyclists disembark. At the tunnel is a little museum. From there the route is downhill and ends in a little village called Honnecourt.

Day 9: Honnecourt - Cambrai - Pont Malin, 21/36 mi. (35/60 km)
After breakfast, you begin cycling to the ancient abbey of Vaucelles (which can be visited) and later continue to the city of Cambrai, once a roman provincial capital and an important destination for pilgrims. First in 1677, Cambrai became French. Worth seeing are the impressive and restored buildings of the city fortress, built under Charles V. The old city gate dates from 1300. In the afternoon, you leave the old canal de St. Quentin and continue on the Canal du Grand Gabarit to Pont Malin, where you spend the night.

Day 10: Pont Malin - Doornik, 27 mi. (45 km)
Today the barge follows the canal du Grand Gabarit for a few hours passing through a former industrial area of France. Old mines and steel sites border the canal. The bike ride follows the route to Santiago de Compostela. The Fleur crosses the French frontier in Mortagne and a little later, in Bleharies, it crosses into Belgium. We sail through the so-called ‘white land’. The charming little fortress town Antoing lies at the heart of this region and since the Roman days limestone has been mined here. Today’s destination is Doornik (in French: Tournai), one of the oldest cities in Belgium. Here we are in Wallonia, where all towns and villages have both a French and a Flemish name. Up until the beginning of the 17th century, Doornik was ruled by the French. Here, tapestry weaving gained in importance, while the cloth industry became less important. In the various museums of the town, excellent examples can be seen. In 1940, the entire city center was destroyed after a German air-raid. However, the town has been renovated and rebuilt. The cathedral of Notre Dame (12th and 13th century) is worth seeing, as well as the Belfort, which was built around 1200.

Day 11: Doornik (Tournai) - Oudenaarde, 27 mi. (45 km)
The barge cruises downstream on the Scheldt River and enters the Flemish region. Today's destination is Oudenaarde. In former days, this little town was situated on the border of the French and German Empires and as a result, it was involved in wars frequently. In the first half of the 16th century, the city hall was built of sandstone in Brabantine late Gothic style and it is one of the most beautiful city halls in all of Flanders. Oudenaarde is also known as the town of the tapestry, whose weavers and their wares are known throughout the world. There may be time today to visit one of Belgium’s famous beer breweries called Liefmans.

Day 12: Oudenaarde - Ghent, 21 mi. (35 km)
The barge continues cruising on the Scheldt in the direction of Ghent, a lively university town with a rich history. The town developed on the spot where in Roman days, the rivers Leie and Schelde merged, a favorable location which meant prosperity in late 13th and early 14th century. The cloth industry was a source of great riches. In the city, many patrician residences have been preserved. In the Lakenhalle (1425) the cloth traders gathered. The most important church is St. Baafs cathedral, which was constructed in different centuries and in different styles. In the cathedral, several masterpieces of medieval painting are to be found. “The worship of the Lamb of God” by Jan van Eyck is the most famous of all. You might want to take a city tour by boat or visit the old castle

Day 13: Ghent - Bruges, 15/30 mi. (25/50 km)
Today your bike tour goes through the pleasant countryside of Western Flanders to Bruges.  Bruges, also called the Venice of the North, may be one of the most beautiful of all Flemish cities. Its old center, which dates from the Middle Ages, is almost completely preserved. 

Day 14: Bruges, rest day
The boat stays in Bruges giving you time to explore this lively city.

Day 15: Departure
Individual departure following breakfast.

Bruges to Paris

Day 1: Arrival in Bruges                      
Day 2: Bruges - Ghent, 15 or 24 mi. (25 to 40 km)    
Day 3: Ghent - Oudenaarde, 15 or 27 mi. (25 to 45 km)           
Day 4: Oudenaarde - Doornik (Tournai), 21 or 25 mi. (35 to 42 km)               
Day 5: Doornik (Tournai) - Pont Malin (Bouchain), 30 mi. (50 km)
Day 6: Pont Malin - Cambrai - Honnecourt, 17 or 36 mi. (28 to 60 km)
Day 7: Honnecourt - St. Quentin, 16 or 39 mi. (26 to 65 km)
Day 8: St. Quentin
Day 9: St. Quentin - Chauny, 19 or 29 mi. (32 to 48 km)
Day 10: Chauny- Compiègne, 21 or 30 mi. (35 to 50 km)
Day 11: Compiegne - Creil, 27 or 36 mi. (45 to 60 km)                 
Day 12: Creil - Auvers s Oise, 20 or 32 mi. (33 to 54 km)              
Day 13: Auvers - Conflans - Paris, 22 or 29 mi. (36 to 48 km)       
Day 14: Rest day, Paris                 
Day 15: Departure

ON THE ELODIE:

Paris to Bruges

Day 1: Paris, 3 to 6 miles (5 to 10 km)
Day 2: Paris - Versailles - Conflans, 25 miles (40 km)
Day 3: Conflans - Creil, 22 miles (35 km)
Day 4: Creil - Compiegne, 28 miles (45 km)
Day 5: Compiegne - Pont l'eveque (Noyon), 28 miles (45 km)
Day 6: Pont l'eveque ( Noyon ) - Peronne, 34 miles (55 km)
Day 7: Peronne (rest day)
Day 8: Peronne - Marquion 34 or 40 Miles (55 or 65 km)
Day 9: Marquion - Valenciennes, 28 miles (45 km)
Day 10: Valenciennes - Tournai, 30 miles, 48 km
Day 11: Tournai - Oudenaarde, 28 miles (45 km)
Day 12: Oudenaarde - Gent, 28 miles (45 km)
Day 13: Gent - Bruges, 28 or 34 miles (45 or 55 km)
Day 14: Bruges (rest day)
Day 15: Departure Bruges

Bruges to Paris

Day 1: Bruges, 10 miles (16 km)
Day 2: Bruges – Gent, 28 miles (45 km)
Day 3: Gent – Oudenaarde, 25 miles (40 km)
Day 4: Oudenaarde – Tournai, 13 or 29 miles (20 or 46 km)
Day 5: Tournai – Arleux, 34 miles (55 km)
Day 6: Arleux - Peronne, 22 miles (35 km)
Day 7: Peronne
Day 8: Peronne – Pont l'eveque, 19 or 35 miles, (30 to 55 km)
Day 9: Pont l'eveque – Compiegne, 23 miles (36 km)
Day 10: Compiegne – Creil, 10 – 33 miles (16 – 53 km)
Day 11: Creil – Auvers sur l’oise 34 miles (55 km)
Day 12: Auvers sur l’oise – Bougival, 23 miles (36 km)
Day 13: Bougival – Versailles – Paris, 13 miles (20 km)
Day 14: Paris 
Day 15: Departure Paris

ON THE ZWAANTJE

Paris to Bruges

Day 1: Paris
Day 2: Paris, city center
Day 3: Saint Germain and Laye, Conflens and Auvers sur Oise, 24 miles (40 km)
Day 4: Beaumont sur Oise, Royaumont, Chantilly, Creil, 31 miles (50 km)
Day 5: Pont St. Maxence, Pierrefonds, Compiegne, 34 miles (55 km)
Day 6: La Clairière, Tracy, Ourschamps or Blérancourt, Noyon, 24/34 miles (40/55 km)
Day 7: Noyon - Ham - Péronne, 40 miles (65 km)
Day 8: Day in Péronne
Day 9: Bapaume, Ruyaulcourt, 27 miles (45 km)
Day 10: Cambrai and Arleux, 27 miles (45 km)
Day 11: Lewarde, Montigny, Marchiennes, Saint Amand les Eaux, Tournai, 40 miles (65 km) 
Day 12: Kluisbergen, Ronse, Oudenaarde, 31 miles (50 km)
Day 13: through Nazareth, Ooidonk, Sint-Martens-Lathem, Afsnee, 31 miles (50 km) or directly to Ghent, 21 miles (35 km)
Day 14: Bellem, Hertsberge, Moerbrugge, Bruges, 25 miles (50 km)
Day 15: Disembarkation

Bruges to Paris:

Day 1: Bruges
Day 2: Bruges to Ghent, 31 - 37 mi. (50 - 60 km)
Day 3: Ghent - Oudenaarde, 22 mi. (35 km)
Day 4: Oudenaarde, 28 mi. (45 km)
Day 5: Tournai - Arleux, 34 mi. (55 km)
Day 6: Arleux, 28 mi. (45 km)
Day 7: Arleux - Peronne, 
Day 8: Peronne, day of rest
Day 9: Peronne - Noyon, 34 mi. (55 km)
Day 10: Noyon - Compiègne, 25 - 38 mi. (40 - 60 km)
Day 11: Compiègne - Creil, 25 mi. (40 km)
Day 12: Creil - Auvers-sur-l'Oise 34 mi. (55 km)
Day 13: Auvers - Conflans - Suresnes, 31 mi. (50 km)
Day 14: Paris
Day 15: Departure

ON THE FENIKS:

Paris to Bruges

Day 1: Paris
Day 2: Paris – Bougival/la Defense Paris
Day 3: Bougival/la Defense Paris - Conflans/Auvers sur l’Oise
Day 4: Conflans/Auvers sur l’Oise – Creil
Day 5: Creil – Compiegne
Day 6: Compiegne- Noyon
Day 7: Noyon- Peronne
Day 8: Péronne*
Day 9: Péronne – Bouchain/Arleux
Day 10: Bouchain/Arleux – Tournai
Day 11: Tournai – Oudenaarde
Day 12: Oudenaarde – Ghent
Day 13: Ghent – Bruges 
Day 14: Bruges 
Day 15: Departure Bruges

*End of week 1 and departure, beginning of week 2 and arrival

Bruges to Paris

Day 1: Bruges
Day 2: Bruges – Gent
Day 3: Gent – Oudenaarde
Day 4: Oudenaarde – Tournai
Day 5: Tournai – Bouchain/Arleux
Day 6: Bouchain/Arleux - Peronne
Day 7: Peronne*
Day 8: Peronne – Noyon
Day 9: Noyon – Compiegne
Day 10: Compiegne – Creil
Day 11: Creil – Auvers sur l’oise/Conflans
Day 12: Auvers sur l’oise/Conflans – Bougival/La Defense Paris
Day 13: Bougival/La Defense Paris – Paris
Day 14: Paris 
Day 15: Departure Paris

*End of week 1 and departure, beginning of week 2 and arrival

*All distances are approximate. The planned itinerary is subject to change due to changing wind and weather conditions and other unforeseen circumstances having to do with mooring requirements, etc. 

Looking for a different flavor?  Check out our entire list of bike and boat tours or view all our featured bike trips, news, and specials.

Email or Call 800-951-4384 +1 570-965-2064

Share This Tour


Customer Feedback

  • M. McDonnell 3 weeks ago

    Nearly everything excellent. The only downside was the cycling was promised to have the option of two different rides each day i.e. a long or a short ride with two different guides. There was only one guide so both options were compromised into one medium length ride each day. Many on the tour would have preferred a longer ride most days.

  • S. Mather 3 weeks ago

    It was well above our expectations in every way, cabins, staff, cleanliness and the gourmet meals all the time. Fantastic experience.

  • B. Milroy 3 weeks ago

    Everything exceeded expectations. I would definitely recommend the Fleur and trip

  • Paavo Kivisto 7 months ago

    Issues related to the boat: bad smell, cabin room was cozier than we would choose in the future. Laundry facilities were inadequate. We really enjoyed the trip, the guide and the experience!

  • Wendy Hallinan 7 months ago

    Outstanding cuisine, wonderful smiles and life long memories. We have already recommended our trip to many people. Fantastic Elodie!

  • Linda Harve 7 months ago

    Our second bike and barge trip with Tripsite. What a lovely way to spend a vacation!

  • Debra Hendry 7 months ago

    Our first bike barge holiday and we loved it. Good mix of nationalities as guests. The Magnifique truly was glorious.

  • Alica Kline 7 months ago

    Food was great, would have liked more flexibility on cycling.

  • Gayle Carter 7 months ago

    We had brand new bikes and the guides had to spend most of their early evening time adjusting the bikes (Brugge to Paris trip) but in the end got all the bikes adjusted so they all ran well. All the boat staff and guides were fantastic.
    Love your trips-must do more.

  • Gordon Maze 8 months ago

    We highly recommend the Paris to Bruges bike and barge on the Elodie but one must be a strong cyclist as there are hills. The food was really excellent. Comradery among the group was high, and that's one of the great aspects of the trip.

  • Raylee Flick 3 years ago

    We had an absolutely fabulous time in September this year on this trip. Cycling was fantastic-Francien an excellent guide, Inma a wonderful gourmet cook. The crew was always helpful and cheerful. The group of fellow cyclists were great fun - lots of laughs. Thank you, we will be back!!

  • Jim Elkan 3 years ago

    Our Kansas City biking group just got back from our annual European bike ride..This year it was a Bike and Barge trip: Paris to Bruges..It was a great trip..The Elodie was as pleasant as advertised, the food, prepared by Chef Sander, was excellent..Our guide, Ono was very good and patient with us..Michael, our Captain, couldn't have been better..

    The countryside was beautiful..It was a memorable trip and we'll see you again next year..

    Jim and Janet Elkan

  • Darcy 4 years ago

    I recently enjoyed the Paris to Bruges bike & barge tour and I loved it. The crew were fantastic, the service was excellent and the daily ride with a wonderful guide was great fun. It was one of the best travel experiences. Thanks to everyone on the Elodie for the ideal holiday. (I was on the 30th Sept 2012 trip)

  • Beth Ridenour 4 years ago

    This was the best way to enjoy Europe combining bicycling through painting-like landscapes on a well balanced tour of culture, history and fun with a fantastic caring crew and fabulous food! The addition of a dozen Australians made it even better; and barging into Paris on a sunny afternoon with a glass of wine was divine. We're booking again in 2013!

  • Robert Burns 4 years ago

    Fantastic-had a great time, food was great and bike tours were very good. Comraderie on the Fleur helped make the trip and the guides were fun with all the grief they received from us. Many sites were visited you would never see on a "packaged" tour

  • Barb Tiffany 5 years ago

    This was a fantastic tour. The guide, captain, and cook were all wonderful. Great way to see the country, on small roads and bike trails. We saw an amazing amount of varied things in 14 days.

Biked This Tour? Post Your Feedback

Bruges to Paris or Paris to Bruges Boats + Barges

Elodie Photo

Elodie Netherlands, Belgium, France Comfort Plus Class Boat The Elodie was built in 1931 and has been completely refurnished into a luxury holiday ship. The ship has a saloon and sundeck and all of its cabins come with air-conditioning. The saloon of the Elodie is furnished in ship-style by using various types of wood in the finishing.

Fleur Photo

Fleur France, Netherlands Comfort Plus Class Boat The Fleur was first put into service in 2002. The owner, Jossie, had the beautifully-lined barge converted into a comfortable passenger ship, according to her own design. Her female touch is definitely recognizable by the tasteful interior and her sharp eye for detail. The whole barge radiates a homelike atmosphere.

Zwaantje Photo

Zwaantje France Comfort Plus Class Boat The MPS Zwaantje, which means "Little Swaan", is a unique and cozy Dutch passenger barge. The boat has 10 cabins with twin beds and 2 cabins with double beds. These cabins also have a bunk bed but cannot be used as a triple. Each cabin has private facilities.

Feniks Photo

Feniks Belgium, Netherlands, France Standard Plus Class Boat Originally, the Feniks was built in 1928 as a freighter on the Dutch, Belgium and French inland waters. In 1992, the Feniks was converted to a hotel passenger ship and put in service for various sailing holidays. Since then, she has undergone several renovations to keep up-to-date with all modern facilities.

PWPC