Canal du Midi – France Cycling Holiday

Enjoy a eight or ten day cycling holiday along the Canal du Midi in France. Around 60,000 trees have been planted along the Canal du Midi to affix the banks of the river all the way along the waterway which leads from Toulouse to the Mediterranean Sea. The trees also provide shade to the tow paths and roads along this journey. On this tour there are many cultural monuments from cathedrals and palaces to Roman and Medieval buildings. Besides the rich and varied culture there are also plenty of delicacies to try such as great wine and wonderful cuisine.

Price from £795.00

2019 Dates Available

  • Grade:
  • Comfort: Cat A: 3* Deluxe & 4* hotels. Cat B: 2* & 3* hotels (Both French classification)
  • Start/Finish: Toulouse to Sete
  • Distance: 310km / 193 miles or 350Km / 217 miles
  • Duration: 8 or 10 Days
  • Availability: From March until October
  • Altitude:

This tour has a ten day, nine night or eight day, seven night itinerary option.

Day 1 Individual arrival in Toulouse 

Settle into your hotel and then take time to explore this attractive town with its pleasant mix of architectural styles, make sure you don't miss the basilica St Sernin de Toulouse, one of the most beautiful Romanesque buildings in southern France. In the evening there is a welcome briefing and distribution of rental bike if booked. 

Day 2 Toulouse to Castelnaudary

Set off from Toulouse towards Castelnudary, your destination for today. A former mill town, as the 17th century Molin de Cugarel will testify.  Beautiful 17th century manors and half timbered houses make this town an architetural jewel.  A popular culinary delicacy in Castelnaudary is the savoury bean stew Cassoulet. Pork or duck, bacon, garlic sausage and white beans are all possible ingredients. 

Distance approx. 60 km (37 miles)

Day 3 Castelnaudary to Carcarsonne

Famous for the Cité de Carcassonne, a medieval fortress, Carcassonne is one of the best preserved fortress towns in Europe and it was added to the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites in 1997. The fortress Cité Médiévale of Carcassonne with its 52 towers dominates the town. You can experience this lively town best downtown, with its lively streets and the bastion Saint Louis. Here you have the chance to taste Micheline, an herb liqueur of the region. Worth visiting is the Maison des Mémoires  (house of memories) which tells about the life and fate of the Cathari. Carcassonne was a centre of the Christian Faith Movement of the Carthari, which were banished from town in 1209. 

Distance approx. 40 km (25 miles)

Day 4 Roundtrip to Montolieu
Montolieu is a wonderful town on the edge of the Montagnes Noire.  Known as the "village of books", this otherwise sleepy place is home to several bookshops and book dealers, and a book market is held regularly.  The centre of Montolieu is dominated by the church tower.

Distance approx. 40 km (25 miles)

On the eight day tour the ride to Montolieu is not applicable with the ride Carcarsonne to Olonzac being substituted.

Day 5 Carcarsonne to Olonzac 

cycle to Olonzac and you will have the chance to taste some good wines and maybe visit Les Celliers d'Onairac. Olonzac is a pleasant town with several cafes and shops.  At the heart of the town, you can admire the town hall, the parish church or the facade of the old café Plana whose interior is classified as an historic monument.

Distance approx. 40 km (25 miles)

Day 6 Olonzac to Narbonne 

Flanked by vineyards, Narbonne, the former capital of the Romanesque antiquity was the first Roman colony outside of Italy.  Evidence of this period are the relics of the street Via Domitia and the bridge, Pont des Marchands (Merchants' Bridge).  This is an historic bridge which serves as a foundation for a row of houses and shops.  Underneath, the Canal de la Robine runs through the old town. Its segmental arch has a span of ca. 15 m. In Roman times the structure featured as many as six arches.  It is one of only a handful of bridges worldwide that are lined with shops.  Later centuries have also left there mark in the Archbishop's Palace and the Gothic Cathedral.

Distance approx. 45 km (28 miles)

Day 7 Narbonne to Béziers

Béziers is the birthblace of the father of the Canal du Midi, Pierre-Paul Riquet, an alley in the town being dedicated to him.  Cathédrale St-Nazaire is the main sight in Béziers. This grandiose Romanesque cathedral dates from the thirteenth century and occupies one of the best sites in town: from the concourse in front of the cathedral there are terrific views out over the surrounding vineyards and towards the foothills of the Massif Central to the north.

Distance approx. 45 km (28 miles)

Day 8 Béziers to Cap d'Agde

Cycling along the Canal du Midi take you past some engineering masterpieces, one of which is the lock at Adge.  It is the only round lock on the canal and is built from volcanic rock.  The lock is 29.9m in diameter and 5.2m deep.  Today you are heading for Cap d'Agde on the Mediteranean sea.  The biggest marina in Europe is part of the town of Adge and is a paradise for water sportsmen. Divers, surfers and sailors use the area, but those who just want to relax on the beach can get their money's worth to.

On the eight day tour there is no overnight in Cap d'Agde but you cycle direct to Séte

Day 9 Cap d'Agde to Séte

In Séte the Canal du Midi flows into the Mediteranea sea.  Surrounded by water and with the Canal du Midi and countless other waterways criss crossing the town it's nickname is "Venice des Languedoc" .

 

Day 10 

Individual departure after breakfast.

Key Details:

  • Seven day, six night or ten day, nine night itinerary to choose from (see Canal du Midi extended for longer tour).
  • This tour will start in Sete and end in Carcassonne (Toulouse for longer tour).
  • The total distance of this cycling tour is approximately 205km / 128 miles.

Essential Information:

  • This tour is not challenging. You cycle on asphalted paths, gravel roads and side roads with less traffic.
  • Train station Séte
  • Airports Toulouse, Montpellier or Béziers/Cap d´Agde
  • Train from Toulouse to Séte about € 40 
  • train from Carcarsonne to Séte € 30,- per person
  • Car park near the hotel for about € 10 per day (payable locally)
  • Return transfers on Monday from Toulouse to Séte for € 70 per person, on Friday from Carcassonne to Sète for € 40 per person, reservation at booking is necessary, payable locally (max. 6 persons can be transported).

There are lots of attractions and places to explore during your cycling holiday in France including:

  • French Harbour Towns and Fishing Villages
  • Birthplace of Paul Riquet, the builder of the Canal du Midi
  • Saint Just Cathedral
  • UNESCO World Heritage Site Carcassonne

Getting to France:

By Rail/Bus – There are a number of public transport operating in France.

By Car – France can be reached by car via ferry and well-maintained motorways.

By Air – There are a number of flights available to France to a number of airports including Charles De Gaulle, Nice and Lyon.

For more information on getting to France please visit the France Tourism website.

Included
  • Accomodation
  • Breakfast buffet or extended breakfast
  • Luggage Transfers
  • Fully comprehensive tour pack
  • 7-day-service-hotline
  • Personal welcome tour briefing
  • Rental bike insurance (if applicable)
  • GPS-Tracks on request
  • If half-board is booked: at least a three-course-dinner or buffet
Excluded
  • Dinner unless booked
  • Transport to and from France
  • Bike Hire (21 speed or electric available for hire)
  • Transport from or to the start/end of tour

This tour has a ten day, nine night or eight day, seven night itinerary option.

Day 1 Individual arrival in Toulouse 

Settle into your hotel and then take time to explore this attractive town with its pleasant mix of architectural styles, make sure you don't miss the basilica St Sernin de Toulouse, one of the most beautiful Romanesque buildings in southern France. In the evening there is a welcome briefing and distribution of rental bike if booked. 

Day 2 Toulouse to Castelnaudary

Set off from Toulouse towards Castelnudary, your destination for today. A former mill town, as the 17th century Molin de Cugarel will testify.  Beautiful 17th century manors and half timbered houses make this town an architetural jewel.  A popular culinary delicacy in Castelnaudary is the savoury bean stew Cassoulet. Pork or duck, bacon, garlic sausage and white beans are all possible ingredients. 

Distance approx. 60 km (37 miles)

Day 3 Castelnaudary to Carcarsonne

Famous for the Cité de Carcassonne, a medieval fortress, Carcassonne is one of the best preserved fortress towns in Europe and it was added to the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites in 1997. The fortress Cité Médiévale of Carcassonne with its 52 towers dominates the town. You can experience this lively town best downtown, with its lively streets and the bastion Saint Louis. Here you have the chance to taste Micheline, an herb liqueur of the region. Worth visiting is the Maison des Mémoires  (house of memories) which tells about the life and fate of the Cathari. Carcassonne was a centre of the Christian Faith Movement of the Carthari, which were banished from town in 1209. 

Distance approx. 40 km (25 miles)

Day 4 Roundtrip to Montolieu
Montolieu is a wonderful town on the edge of the Montagnes Noire.  Known as the "village of books", this otherwise sleepy place is home to several bookshops and book dealers, and a book market is held regularly.  The centre of Montolieu is dominated by the church tower.

Distance approx. 40 km (25 miles)

On the eight day tour the ride to Montolieu is not applicable with the ride Carcarsonne to Olonzac being substituted.

Day 5 Carcarsonne to Olonzac 

cycle to Olonzac and you will have the chance to taste some good wines and maybe visit Les Celliers d'Onairac. Olonzac is a pleasant town with several cafes and shops.  At the heart of the town, you can admire the town hall, the parish church or the facade of the old café Plana whose interior is classified as an historic monument.

Distance approx. 40 km (25 miles)

Day 6 Olonzac to Narbonne 

Flanked by vineyards, Narbonne, the former capital of the Romanesque antiquity was the first Roman colony outside of Italy.  Evidence of this period are the relics of the street Via Domitia and the bridge, Pont des Marchands (Merchants' Bridge).  This is an historic bridge which serves as a foundation for a row of houses and shops.  Underneath, the Canal de la Robine runs through the old town. Its segmental arch has a span of ca. 15 m. In Roman times the structure featured as many as six arches.  It is one of only a handful of bridges worldwide that are lined with shops.  Later centuries have also left there mark in the Archbishop's Palace and the Gothic Cathedral.

Distance approx. 45 km (28 miles)

Day 7 Narbonne to Béziers

Béziers is the birthblace of the father of the Canal du Midi, Pierre-Paul Riquet, an alley in the town being dedicated to him.  Cathédrale St-Nazaire is the main sight in Béziers. This grandiose Romanesque cathedral dates from the thirteenth century and occupies one of the best sites in town: from the concourse in front of the cathedral there are terrific views out over the surrounding vineyards and towards the foothills of the Massif Central to the north.

Distance approx. 45 km (28 miles)

Day 8 Béziers to Cap d'Agde

Cycling along the Canal du Midi take you past some engineering masterpieces, one of which is the lock at Adge.  It is the only round lock on the canal and is built from volcanic rock.  The lock is 29.9m in diameter and 5.2m deep.  Today you are heading for Cap d'Agde on the Mediteranean sea.  The biggest marina in Europe is part of the town of Adge and is a paradise for water sportsmen. Divers, surfers and sailors use the area, but those who just want to relax on the beach can get their money's worth to.

On the eight day tour there is no overnight in Cap d'Agde but you cycle direct to Séte

Day 9 Cap d'Agde to Séte

In Séte the Canal du Midi flows into the Mediteranea sea.  Surrounded by water and with the Canal du Midi and countless other waterways criss crossing the town it's nickname is "Venice des Languedoc" .

 

Day 10 

Individual departure after breakfast.

Key Details:

  • Seven day, six night or ten day, nine night itinerary to choose from (see Canal du Midi extended for longer tour).
  • This tour will start in Sete and end in Carcassonne (Toulouse for longer tour).
  • The total distance of this cycling tour is approximately 205km / 128 miles.

Essential Information:

  • This tour is not challenging. You cycle on asphalted paths, gravel roads and side roads with less traffic.
  • Train station Séte
  • Airports Toulouse, Montpellier or Béziers/Cap d´Agde
  • Train from Toulouse to Séte about € 40 
  • train from Carcarsonne to Séte € 30,- per person
  • Car park near the hotel for about € 10 per day (payable locally)
  • Return transfers on Monday from Toulouse to Séte for € 70 per person, on Friday from Carcassonne to Sète for € 40 per person, reservation at booking is necessary, payable locally (max. 6 persons can be transported).

There are lots of attractions and places to explore during your cycling holiday in France including:

  • French Harbour Towns and Fishing Villages
  • Birthplace of Paul Riquet, the builder of the Canal du Midi
  • Saint Just Cathedral
  • UNESCO World Heritage Site Carcassonne

Getting to France:

By Rail/Bus – There are a number of public transport operating in France.

By Car – France can be reached by car via ferry and well-maintained motorways.

By Air – There are a number of flights available to France to a number of airports including Charles De Gaulle, Nice and Lyon.

For more information on getting to France please visit the France Tourism website.

Included
  • Accomodation
  • Breakfast buffet or extended breakfast
  • Luggage Transfers
  • Fully comprehensive tour pack
  • 7-day-service-hotline
  • Personal welcome tour briefing
  • Rental bike insurance (if applicable)
  • GPS-Tracks on request
  • If half-board is booked: at least a three-course-dinner or buffet
Excluded
  • Dinner unless booked
  • Transport to and from France
  • Bike Hire (21 speed or electric available for hire)
  • Transport from or to the start/end of tour
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