Author Topic: Paris to the South of France (Mediterranean), and beyond  (Read 1669 times)

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Offline jamesfrank

Paris to the South of France (Mediterranean), and beyond
« on: November 24, 2012, 05:42:11 pm »
Hello All,

I am planning a solo bicycling adventure from Paris to Marseilles, and onto Switzerland. Can anyone recommend a route?

Thank you.

James
:)

Offline BobG

Re: Paris to the South of France (Mediterranean), and beyond
« Reply #1 on: November 25, 2012, 03:40:54 pm »
James,

Buy detailed Michelin maps of France and simply link together the smaller "D" (departmental) routes that are in white and yellow. The choices are seemingly limitless so there is no point in suggesting a specific route. Just put together the little winding roads and go! Camping locations are usually marked on them as well.

The regional maps are detailed enough but you may find them large and unwieldy for using on the bike-

http://www.michelintravel.com/maps-cat/france-regional-maps/

The more detailed local maps are more bike friendly in size-

http://www.michelintravel.com/maps-cat/france-local-maps/

You can mail order enough maps to get started then pick them up at bookstores and tobacco shops locally as you go.

Offline BobG

Re: Paris to the South of France (Mediterranean), and beyond
« Reply #2 on: November 26, 2012, 08:55:55 am »
For a more specific suggestion for a route that does not involve big mountains, I once started a trip from Charles de Gaulle airport and rode south to the Pyrenees to join friends on a supported tour. I headed generally southwest from Paris on country roads to Chartres. I crossed the Loire just west of Orleans. From there on south, a bit west of Chateauroux continuing through the Perigord region south of Limoge and crossing the Dordogne River at Domme just below Sarlat. Anywhere from there you could pick a gorgeous route more southeasterly to Marseille, hilly but avoiding the heart of the Central Massif. I continued south to the Pyrenees.

I chose my specific route by linking up the smaller "D" routes on the Michelin maps and avoiding the larger "N" routes in red. It was country roads the whole way with just an occasional connection on an "N" route. A large scale map of the country supplemental to the detailed maps is handy to see the big picture of your overall direction of travel.

Offline indyfabz

Re: Paris to the South of France (Mediterranean), and beyond
« Reply #3 on: November 26, 2012, 02:00:37 pm »
James,

Buy detailed Michelin maps of France and simply link together the smaller "D" (departmental) routes that are in white and yellow. The choices are seemingly limitless so there is no point in suggesting a specific route. Just put together the little winding roads and go! Camping locations are usually marked on them as well.

That's pretty much how I planed a tour in Spain. I bought a good travel guide (I recommend the "Rough Guide" series, figured out what I wanted to see, bought a Michelin map of the region and picked the smallest roads possible between the towns I wanted to visit. Worked out well nearly every time.

Also look for journals at crazyguyonabike.com. Finally, I got loads of camping information from the Spanish National Tourist Office in New York.

Offline newfydog

Re: Paris to the South of France (Mediterranean), and beyond
« Reply #4 on: November 26, 2012, 06:24:20 pm »
I'll second the "D" road or "white road" suggestion.  You just can't go wrong in France riding roads which are white on a Michelin 1:200000 scale.

Here's a good zoomable France map:

http://maps.peterrobins.co.uk/f.html?zoom=6&lat=43.55159&lon=6.15709&layers=B0T

Here's one to buy and tear out the sheets:

http://www.amazon.com/Atlas-France-Ref-20197XB-Michelin/dp/2067142852/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1353972091&sr=8-1&keywords=france+atlas


Myself, I'll be riding from the north coast of France to Switzerland this spring on a mountain bike, on the via Francigena, an old pilgrim trail

http://www.camminafrancigena.it/en/
« Last Edit: November 26, 2012, 06:32:35 pm by newfydog »

Offline tsteven4

Re: Paris to the South of France (Mediterranean), and beyond
« Reply #5 on: November 26, 2012, 06:44:47 pm »
Quote
I'll second the "D" road or "white road" suggestion.  You just can't go wrong in France riding roads which are white on a Michelin 1:200000 scale.

and white roads with a green line next to them are even better.   the green indicates a tourist route, i.e. scenic.  yellow are a bit bigger than white but can be fine cycling.  red is to be avoided.

    red = International and national road network
   yellow =Interregional and less congested road network
   white = Regional or local road network

        green parallel line to road = Tourist route



http://www.viamichelin.com/web/Maps