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Cycle Carcassonne & The Best of the Canal du Midi

6 Days & 5 Nights 5 Read 2 reviews
  • Easy cycling along canalside paths and locks of the Canal du Midi and Robine
  • Explore the UNESCO Cathar Castle of Carcassonne
  • Enjoy waterside picnics of Provençal goats cheese and crusty bread
  • Sample Minervois wine in the ‘Beaux Village’ of Minerve
  • Discover the medieval centre and Mediterranean beaches of Narbonne
Pedal along the UNESCO listed Canal du Midi and Canal du Robine on this relaxed cycling tour from Carcassonne to Narbonne. Deep in Languedoc-Roussillon, southern France, your tour begins in the exquisitely preserved town of Carcassonne. Explore the 11th century Cathar Castle in the heart of the ‘Old Cite’ before cycling east along the Canal du Midi to the former wine port of Homps. Spending two nights here, ride up to the dramatic village of Minerve, nestled amongst the vineyards of Gorge du Cesse. From Homps, head along countryside lanes to join the Canal du Robine as it winds its way into the heart of Narbonne. From here you can choose to take a day trip to the ancient Roman town of Beziers or round off your journey with a day exploring the lagoons and beaches of Narbonne Plage and a fresh seafood lunch!

What To Expect

Graded easy to moderate, this tour is perfect for leisure cyclists that are looking to discover the villages, sights and typical French foods along one of Europe’s famous waterways. Each ride is between 30-45km and follows cycle paths and country roads into the heart of towns and villages where centrally located friendly, family run 3* hotels and B&B’s await your arrival.

Trip Style:

Self Guided | Go at your own pace on an independent active holiday.

Activity:

Inn to Inn Cycling, E-Biking | A classic point to point cycling holiday, staying in a different location each night, E-Bikes with electronic motors to assist available to hire on this holiday (subject to availability), to make things easier

This trip is suitable for:

Solo Travellers, Multi-Generational, Mixed Abilities

Ideal if you have an interest in:

  • Wine, Whisky & More...
  • Historical Journeys

Inspiration:

  • Classic

Grade & Terrain

This cycling route follows a combination of canal cycle paths, quiet country roads, stretches of rolling coastal terrain and busier urban roads when approaching and departing towns and cities.

The condition of the canal paths varies between compacted dirt, paved paths and fine to rougher gravel. Ususally the going is easy but after prolonged wet weather sections of the route on compacted dirt can be a little churned up. We recommend being being comfortable cycling on gravel to fully enjoy this trip.

Navigation

You will be supplied with route notes, maps and our Macs Adventure Smartphone App enabling you to follow the route using your phone's GPS so you will have no problems finding the way.

Should you require assistance, local 24/7 telephone support will also be available throughout your trip.

Accommodation Information

Stay 3 nights in 3* hotels, and 2 nights in a boutique B&B. Below are examples of the accommodations we use on this trip. These accommodations are subject to availability and therefore alternatives of an equal standard may be offered.

Single Rooms & Solo Cyclists

If you require single rooms we would be happy to accommodate you although there is a single room supplement payable.We also welcome solo cyclists on this tour, again a supplement is payable.

Meals

Breakfasts are included each day, packed lunch items can be bought locally from supermarkets or the local boulangerie. In France simplicity is tasty. Fresh bread from the bakery and a local cheese make for an incredibly delicious lunch! Dinners are not included and there is always a delicious restaurant serving locally sourced dishes.

Included
  • 3 Nights 3* hotels and 2 nights boutique B&B's
  • 5 Breakfasts
  • Baggage transfer
  • Access to route notes, detailed maps, and GPS tracks in the Macs Adventure smartphone navigation app
  • 24/7 Emergency telephone support from our office
Excluded
  • Travel to Carcassonne / from Narbonne
  • Bike hire (or upgrade to e-bike hire)
  • Lunches, dinners, drinks & snacks
  • Personal equipment
  • Travel insurance (required)
Extras
  • Additional nights along the route
  • Bike hire
  • Upgrade to e-bike hire

When To Go

This trip is available to start on any day from April to October and is subject to availability. Peak months on this trip are June to September so we would suggest contacting us as soon as your plans are finalised.

Getting to the Start

For general travel planning, we recommend the helpful site www.rome2rio.com

By Air

Only a 20 minute bus journey from central Carcassonne, Carcassonne Airport has a number of services connecting through to UK and other European cities.

Toulouse Airport has an extensive number of international connections across Europe and beyond. The airport shuttle bus is a short journey to Toulouse train station. From here, Carcassonne is only a 1 hour train journey.

By Train

Eurostar services from London St Pancras to Carcassonne take around 8-9hrs, changing at either Paris or Avignon.

Getting from the End

By Air

Narbonne train station connects through to Carcassonne (30mins), Toulouse (1hr) and Montpellier (1hr) where airport shuttles services link to the respective airports.

Please check www.sncf.com for full details of times and prices.

By Train

From Narbonne train station a high speed services reaches Paris in around 4hrs 30mins. In Paris, change here for connections through to London (2hrs 30mins-3hrs) and other European cities.

Please check www.eurostar.com for full details.

Baggage Transfer

Baggage transfers are included in the price of your trip. We ask you to keep your baggage to a maximum of 1 bag per person (maximum weight 20 kg). If you require excess baggage allowance do contact us prior to travel.

General Information

The distances and ascents/descents are approximations of the recommended routes. Please be prepared by packing all necessary items, for example, sunscreen, water and snacks. Your information pack has a detailed equipment list which includes standard cycling gear such as padded shorts/tights and suggested clothing for the warmer seasons.

Equipment

Giant Contedn SL1 road bike is available for hire (aluminium with carbon forks). All bikes are equipped with a spare inner tube, tyre levers, pump, small lock and a helmet, though we would suggest bringing your own for comfort and hygiene purposes.

If you’d like to hire a bike, please let us know your height and frame size you currently ride. Alternatively, we’re happy to answer any questions you have about the hire bike.

All bikes come equipped with panniers, mileometer, bicycle lock and puncture repair kit. If you would prefer to bring your own bicycle please ensure it is thoroughly serviced and is an appropriate road bike for this trip.

Travel Insurance

It is a requirement of booking this tour with Macs Bike that you have suitable travel insurance which covers you for the activity, emergency evacuation and hospital care. 

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Itinerary

Day 1 Arrive Carcassonne Day 2 Cycle to Homps 28 miles / 45 km Day 3 Loop Cycle to Minerve 25 miles / 40 km Day 4 Cycle to Narbonne 25 miles / 40 km Day 5 Discover Narbonne & Beziers / Cycle to the Coast 25 miles / 40 km Day 6 Onward Travel

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