Bike along Lavender fields in the Provence! Photo via Flickr:nevalenx
Vineyards in Provence! Photo via Flickr:Jay Bergensen

Rousillon. Photo via Flickr:Andy Hawkins
4.5/5 (4 ratings)

Famous Villages of Provence

France Bike Tours

Cycle Provence and enjoy fine food and great wine!

This bike tour in France takes you through the premier attractions of the beautiful Luberon region as well as the magnificent Alpilles Mountains, and the great Côtes du Rhône vineyards. The small villages, age-old architecture and exquisite scenery have made this region one of the best cycling and sightseeing places in France.

From the comofortable saddle of your bicycle, you will come to personally experience the intricate culture of this rich region at your own pace. You’ll cycle off the beaten path - far from the main roads, from Gordes to Les Baux de Provence, from Fontaine de Vaucluse to Châteauneuf du Pape, from Venasque to Roussillon - all the while enjoying the intoxicatingly fresh air and mesmerizing rolling hills so filled with history and tradition and ripe with color - of which artists including Vincent van Gogh and Picasso have taken full advantage. (See also Provence-Luberon and Provence-van Gogh tours).

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Where You’ll Stay

Option A: (swimming pools for 3 nights)

  • 2 nights in 2 star hotels
  • 2 nights in 3 star hotels
  • 3 nights in 4 star hotels

Option B: (swimming pools for all nights)

  • 2 nights in 4 star hotels
  • 5 nights in 3 star hotels

What’s Included

  • Hotel accommodations for 7 nights in selected category
  • 7 x breakfasts (options A and B)
  • 24 gear hybrid bicycle equipped with luggage rack, pannier, bag, water bottle, odometer, repair kit with pump, lock, and bike helmet
  • Route descriptions & maps
  • Luggage transportation
  • Transfer Day 8 Isle sur la Sorgue to Avignon train station from 9 am to 6:30 pm
  • 5 x three course dinners (Option A only)

What’s Not Included

  • Individual arrival
  • Option A: Dinners on Day 1 and 8
  • Option B: Lunches and Dinners
  • Drinks with meals

Extra Stay

Extra nights in Avignon possible upon request.

TourBike
TypeSelf Guided
SkillEasy–Moderate
Length8 days
From959 Rates
Client Reviews

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Tour Dates

Starts any day from April 1 to October 25, 2016
Please note: Arrivals after 6 pm on Saturdays are not possible.

Skill Level

This self-guided hotel tour is easy to moderate considering some days can get a bit hilly. Daily distances range from 22 to 36 mi., but are variable. Day 4 may be used as a rest day.

Day-To-Day Itinerary

Famous Villages of Provence Map

Note:  This tour is also available as a road bike tour.

Day 1: Arrival in Avignon
Day 2: Avignon - Sorgues - Avignon, 30, 34, 35, or 39 mi. (48, 54, 57, or 63 km.) - depending on option chosen
Day 3: Avignon - Les Baux de Provence, 30 or 35 mi. (48 or 55 km)
Day 4: Les Baux - Arles - Les Baux, 32 mi. (51 km)
Day 5: Les Baux - Fontaine de Vaucluse/Isle sur la Sorgue, 33 mi. (53 km)
Day 6: Fontaine de Vaucluse/Isle sur la Sorgue, roundtrip to Gordes & Roussillon, 40 mi. (65 km)
Day 7: Fontaine de Vaucluse/Isle sur la Sorgue, roundtrip to Venasque, 29 mi. (47 km)
Day 8: Transfer Fontaine de Vaucluse/Isle sur la Sorgue - Avignon and departure

DAY 1: Avignon
Arrival in Avignon. Free afternoon to explore this great city - followed by a welcome meeting in the evening at the Provence Bike Shop for presentation of the tour, distribution of documents and bikes.

DAY 2: Avignon - Sorgues - Avignon, 30, 34, 35, or 39 mi. (48, 54, 57, or 63 km.) - depending on option chosen
This day is dedicated to wine discovery: the “Tavel”, first rosé in France, and the “Lirac”, with its rare elegant quality (optional). The “Châteauneuf du Pape”, a vintage wine, is specifically grown on a ground covered with pebbles. These pebbles accumulate heat during the day and give it back during the night. This wine is also unique because it is made from 13 different varieties of vine.

From the small village of Tavel, which is comfortably surrounded by lush vineyards, you will travel on to Châteauneuf du Pape. Here you will find the ruins of the Castle that served as a comfortable summer residence for the Popes. Via quiet country roads, you will next make your way back to Avignon.

DAY 3: Avignon - Les Baux de Provence, 30 or 35 mi. (48 or 55 km)
Heading south towards the very heart of Provence, you will ride into the foothills of the Apilles Mountain range (with low altitude fluctuation). The landscape is made up of small hills with chalky ridges that love to soak under the sun, and where you can easily see why painters such as Vincent van Gogh found their inspiration. In St. Rémy de Provence, where Nostradamus (the doctor and astrologist famous for his predictions) was born, you will come across 2 well-preserved Roman monuments: the Mausoleum and Municipal Arch. St. Rémy de Provence was once a rich Glanum city, abandoned at the end of the 3rd century and now only ruins remain.
As you bike on to Les Baux de Provence, stop to enjoy “l’elixir (liquor) du Révérand Pére Gaucher” in the Abbey of St Michel de Frigolet. It is situated on the “Montagnette”, a small mountain (highest point 170 m). Overnight in Les Baux de Provence.

DAY 4: Les Baux de Provence - Arles - Les Baux, 32 mi. (51 km)
Three options are given today: resting time at the hotel, visiting the village of Les Baux de Provence, or biking for about 32 miles on flat ground that includes a visit to the wonderful town of Arles.
The village of Les Baux de Provence, with its charming houses all strung together, sits cozily on a rock where the view is magnificent: groves of olive trees flow across the plains, cypress trees stretch toward the sky, fields overflow with beautiful flowers, small villages pepper the landscape, and of course, there's the endlessly blue waters of the sea to deal with.
Arles, a ancient Roman capital and large religious center during the Middle Ages, has brilliant houses surrounding its arenas, which are perhaps the city's most captivating feature. Every Saturday morning, the city streets transform into a bustling open market. In the heart of the old city, you may relax at numerous refreshing outdoor cafés. Overnight in the same hotel.

DAY 5: Les Baux - Fontaine de Vaucluse/Isle sur la Sorgue,  33 mi. (53 km)
Today, you'll start by crossing the small hills of Les Alpilles (highest point: 390 meters). En route, delightful villages will await your aquaintance. In Eygaliéres alongside a hill of donjon vestiges, you will be able to take a break at the foot of a 12th century Chapel, where it used to be a heathen temple dedicated to water. Next, you'll head east along quiet roads to the Monts de Vaucluse, reaching the heart of the regional park of the Luberon. Overnight either in Fontaine de Vaucluse or in Isle sur la Sorgue, on the riverside.

DAY 6: Fontaine de Vaucluse/Isle sur la Sorgue - Gordes - Roussillon - Fontaine de Vaucluse/Isle sur la Sorgue, 40 mi. (65 km)
At the foot of a golden cliff flows one of the most important springs in Europe: the Fontaine de Vaucluse. This site is famous for its breathtaking natural atmosphere, and is also known thanks to the Italian humanist and poet Pétrarque from the 14th century.
Further on, two villages are worth a visit: Gordes and Roussillon. Gordes has attractive stone houses and nicely paved, arched streets. It is hung up on a cliff at the start of the Luberon chain. Around the villages are numerous “Bories” (huts made out of dry stone) that will amaze you with their various shapes. Roussillon, a totally different village, sits on a small hill colored with red ocher. The house walls are stained with ocher, from red to yellow, contrasting nicely with the dark green of the pine trees. At the top of the village, a viewpoint offers a spectacular view over the plains, Gordes, and the small villages around. Overnight in the same hotel.

DAY 7: Fontaine de Vaucluse/Isle sur la Sorgue - Venasque - Fontaine de Vaucluse/Isle sur la Sorgue, 29 mi. (47 km)
The big village of Isle sur la Sorgue is surrounded by the arms of the river and becomes animated every Sunday morning when a famous antique market as well as a large Provencal market take place.
In every street of the village, there are booths with shimmering colors, stimulating odors, Provencal cloths, handicraft, clothes, pottery…. Vegetables, sweets, delicatessen, goat cheese, honey and jam… lavender, spices, Provencal herbs… exuberance, laughing, hustling… All meridian culture is here!
Escaping north, you'll next bike on quiet country roads to reach a pleasant village located on top of a hill that overlooks the plains of Carpentras; namely Venasque. The village presents magnificent views also over Mont Ventoux, the highest point in Provence (1910 m high). Night in the same hotel.

DAY 8: Transfer Fontaine de Vaucluse/Isle sur la Sorgue to Avignon. Departure.
A short transfer to Avignon, followed by some free time in the city; then departure.

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Customer Feedback

  • Y. Silverberg-Urian 5 months ago

    At the start there was mix-up with our believing we were in Option A (written on receipt) but placed in Option B. Small issue but a surprise. Otherwise, maps worked fine once more used to the + or - aspect figured in to almost all mileage. We had a wonderful time!

  • Kevin Romanowski 1 year ago

    Overall a great experience. The E bike introduction and explanation of use was rescheduled, then rushed so our group was at a disadvantage throughout the hill climbs. Some road sections were highways and quite honestly dangerous for short segments. This was our second trip and directions at one point or another usually are unclear periodically throughout the trip.

  • Edward Nyland 1 year ago

    Somewhat inadequate initial bike instruction due to bike shop rescheduling at their convenience. Bike maintenance was only average causing the bikes to not operate as described.

  • Edward Nyland 1 year ago

    First of all, let me be clear that we were very satisfied with the Tour. All in all, we would rate it a 9 out of 10. These are the reasons we couldn’t give it a perfect 10.
    1. Here is the quote from the tour operator after we asked for the directions in advance: “Tell to clients that they don’t worry, the welcome meeting will be on Saturday p.m. and they will have all the time to study the route before they leave, the day after in the morning.” We did have the welcome meeting but it was a bit rushed and we really didn’t have time to ask questions. We were warned not to be late and arrived on time. They indicated that there was not enough time that evening.
    2. We did not get our bikes at the welcome meeting. One Ebike had not yet returned on Saturday afternoon. We were told to return in the morning but not before 9:30 AM. When we arrived, we felt rushed and really didn’t have time to test the bikes. Mine (Ed) was a bit wobbly but I was told that there was nothing wrong. I did get used to it as we went along but my complaint was valid, further verified when I returned home to my own steady bike.
    3. All of the bikes had problems with how they shifted and how they meshed with the electric function. Maybe it was our lack of familiarity with the Ebike but we really didn’t have time Sunday morning to ask questions.
    4. We never got an explanation on how to engage all of the 27 gears, only could use nine. We were told that they shifted automatically and “don’t worry about it”. The automatic shift stopped working on two bikes after the second day.
    5. The directions were very confusing and hard to follow. Last year we had the “E’s” to follow but this year nothing but the somewhat confusing directions.

  • Neil and Reute 2 years ago

    This was our first biking trip so I can't make comprisons. All I can say is "absolutely fantastic". The detail and accuracy of the maps and directions is impressive. The scenery magnificent. The hotels and restaurants well chosen. There were a few hills on the way but the itinerary allows plenty of time to get from place to place. Having a couple of nights in each hotel is a benifit. Definitely recommended.

  • Andy and Lynn 4 years ago

    This was our second trip with Tripsite. We did this trip to Provence in early September and it really was magnificent. The local tour organizer had a well prepared and thought out package with easy to follow directions for the most part. The cycling with the accompanying scenery was beautiful. The accommodations and food were well selected. We can't recommend a trip more highly than this (except possibly the trip to the Netherlands we did last year) or this group.

  • Panteha & Tom 5 years ago

    This was a beautiful trip, with lots of nice surprises (changing sceneries, nice food, etc.) The local tour organizer was a sweet lady who treated us like old friends. We really had fun and suggest this tour to whoever is looking for simple adventure in pretty France.

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