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Family Cycling Vacation: Exploring the Charm of Provence

By We Love Cycling

With its picturesque landscapes and charming towns, Provence offers an exceptional backdrop for a memorable family cycling vacation. Regardless of your cycling prowess, this southeastern region of France has something to offer everyone. With its varied terrain and well-developed cycling paths, Provence ensures a safe and enjoyable experience for families with children. Let’s delve into the details.

Avignon to Villeneuve-lès-Avignon (4 km)

Explore the old streets of Avignon. © Profimedia

Suitable for: Children aged 6 and above

This delightful route takes you along the scenic Rhone riverbanks, providing splendid views of medieval structures and Provencal scenery. Starting in the historic city of Avignon, famous for the Palais des Papes, the path winds through scenic landscapes before reaching the enchanting town of Villeneuve-lès-Avignon. At a comfortable length of 4 km, this route is suitable for children aged 6 and above, with plenty of opportunities for picnic breaks and exploring local French delicacies along the way.

Cavaillon to Robion (11.3 km)

Cavaillon Cathedral, a former Roman Catholic church in the town of Cavaillon. © Profimedia

Suitable for: Children aged 8 and above

Embark on a voyage through Provencal history as you cycle from the vibrant city of Cavaillon to the charming village of Robion. This 11.3 km route takes you past several historical landmarks, including the beautiful Cavaillon Cathedral and the quaint old town of Robion. With its moderate length and historical sites, this route is ideal for children aged 8 and above, offering an educational excursion for the whole family.

Marseille to Calanques National Park (24.1 km)

The Calanques National Park and its stunning views will take your breath away. © Profimedia

Suitable for: Children aged 10 and above

For families seeking a longer cycling experience, this route offers an exciting journey through Provence’s diverse landscapes. Starting in the bustling city of Marseille, renowned for its vibrant port and lively markets, the path takes you through magnificent coastal views and rugged landscapes. The ride concludes in the breathtaking Calanques National Park, known for its towering limestone cliffs and crystal-clear waters. With a longer distance, this route is suitable for children aged 10 and above, comfortable with extended rides.

Fontaine-de-Vaucluse to Isle-sur-la-Sorgue (9.7 km)

The charming town of Isle-sur-la-Sorgue. © Profimedia

Suitable for: Children aged 6 and above

Ideal for younger children, this route is a delightful 9.7 km adventure that explores the natural beauty of Provence. Starting in the scenic town of Fontaine-de-Vaucluse, known for its impressive spring, this route takes you along the serene Sorgue river, offering splendid views of the lush landscapes and its diverse flora. The ride ends in the charming town of Isle-sur-la-Sorgue, known for its antique shops and water wheels. With its shorter distance and level terrain, this route is appropriate for children aged 6 and above, ensuring a fun and family-friendly outing.

Cassis to Bandol (27.4 km)

Bandol vineyards
The vineyards of Bandol region. © Profimedia

Suitable for: Children aged 12 and above

Embark on an exciting cycling journey to the delightful coastal town of Bandol. Starting in the picturesque town of Cassis, known for its cliffside paths, this 27.4 km route takes you through picturesque countryside and along peaceful roads, offering glimpses of the Mediterranean sea along the way. As you approach Bandol, you’ll be rewarded with magnificent panoramic views of the Côte d’Azur. With its moderate distance and thrilling ascent, this route is suitable for children aged 12 and above, providing an awe-inspiring experience for the entire family.

Bonus Adventure: The ViaRhona (724 km)

The ViaRhona truly captures the essence of the region. © Profimedia

Suitable for: Families with teens

For families seeking the ultimate cycling adventure, the ViaRhona offers an epic multi-day expedition stretching from Lake Geneva to the Mediterranean sea. This 724 km route offers cyclists a journey through the diverse landscapes of Provence, from the towering Alps to the sprawling lavender fields, and finally to the sparkling Mediterranean coast.

Along the route, there are plenty of notable stops such as the bustling city of Lyon, the serene town of Valence, and the historic city of Avignon. It’s recommended to take several days to truly enjoy this ride, staying overnight in towns along the route. Each stop offers a unique charm, whether it’s the lively atmosphere of Lyon, the rich history of Avignon, or the serene beauty of the Rhone river.

This route is challenging due to its length and varying terrain, so it’s recommended for families with teenagers who are comfortable with longer rides. However, the sense of accomplishment when you reach the end is absolutely worth the effort.

The ViaRhona truly captures the essence of the region, combining natural beauty, local culture, and the exhilarating freedom of cycling. This route is sure to provide a unique and unforgettable cycling adventure for your family, filled with amazing sights, enriching experiences, and a bonding journey like no other. Just remember to take it at your own pace, enjoy the stops along the way, and most importantly – have fun!