Routes for every kind of cyclist 

Whatever your idea of a two-wheeled adventure, Ardeche will deliver.  Children in tow? Try a family-friendly excursion along safe green lanes by electric bike with younger members secure in a bike seat or cart.  Or do you fancy a sporting challenge along the route of the famous Ardechoise cycle race with its winding lanes and mountain passes?  You can even turn your back on the tarmac altogether and cross the department from north to south on an off-road bike along the ‘Grande Traversée de l’Ardèche’.   Whether you have a day, a weekend or a touring itinerary in mind, it is easy to enjoy Ardeche on two wheels at a pace to suit you. But leave time to enjoy a regular break from pedalling for picnics, photos or a spot of wild swimming.

Three essential cycle holiday experiences in Ardeche

Whatever your idea of a two-wheeled adventure, Ardeche will deliver.  Children in tow? Try a family-friendly excursion along safe green lanes by electric bike with younger members secure in a bike seat or cart.  Or do you fancy a sporting challenge along the route of the famous Ardechoise cycle race with its winding lanes and mountain passes?  You can even turn your back on the tarmac altogether and cross the department from north to south on an off-road bike along the ‘Grande Traversée de l’Ardèche’.

©M.Dupont-ADT07-CD07

Did you know?

In 2020, the Dolce Via was voted the most beautiful easy cycle trail in EuropeA tranquil journey comprising 90 km of safe trails at the heart of protected countryside in the wide open spaces of Ardeche.

©M.Dupont-ADT07-CD07

The gentle cycle trails of Ardeche

Transformed into safe, gentle cycle trails, the routes of former railways lines are the perfect way to discover the delightful valleys of Ardeche by bike.  La Dolce Via is a must-do for anyone who wants to enjoy the Ardeche countryside with minimal effort! 

‘La Grande Traversée de l’Ardèche VTT’ off road cycle trail 

With 5569 metres of uphill climb and 4000 metres descent, the ‘Grande Traversée de l’Ardèche VTT’ is definitely for fit sporting types.  Or for riders with electric bikes! 

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The Ardeche Great Mountain Bike Route - Two men on mountain bikes above the Chassezac Gorges, in summer
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Family on the ViaRhôna in summer

La ViaRhôna 

Pedal through Ardeche beside the Rhône on a 93-kilometre stretch of the ViaRhôna that is split into four sections. 

Ardéchoise cycling race passing in front of Mont Gerbier de Jonc, in summer
©M.Dupont-ADT07

The Ardechoise cycle event – 12-15 June 2024

The Ardechoise is a mass cycling event for all ages and skill levels from competitive cyclists to cycle tourists, leisure cyclists to cyclists with disabilities.  The event is also now open to riders of electric bikes, with options ranging from one to four days, all starting from the departure point at Saint-Félicien.   

 

Preparing your bike itinerary

How do you transport a bike to Ardeche?

Far more than just a mode of transport, a cycle is the passport to a great holiday in Ardeche – simply the best way to travel at your own pace in harmony with the environment.  Ardeche is accessible by bike from north to south, and east to west: 

 

  • by the ViaRhôna, a long distance cycle trail from Lake Geneva to the Mediterranean that runs down the eastern border of the Ardeche department and links to other gentle cycle trails leading to the interior.  These include the Dolce Via which leads through the Eyrieux valley before climbing into the foothills of the Ardeche Mountains. 
  • by the ViaFluvia, a cycle trail between the Rhône and the Loire which passes through Annonay. 

 

Live too far away to cycle to Ardeche?  Then take the train:  all TER trains and buses in Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes will carry your bike free of charge.  Discover all the Ardeche cycle trails on our interactive map. 

Why choose the ‘Accueil Vélo’ label?

Look out for a wide range of specialist professionals in cycle tourism who are accredited under the ‘Accueil Vélo’ – Bikes Welcome – label.  This national symbol enables you to quickly find businesses all over Ardeche who will be only too happy to welcome you and attend to your cycling needs.   

 

Criteria for certification include: 

  • Situated less than 5km from a cycle route 
  • Special equipment and facilities such as repair kits and safe storage 
  • A warm and knowledgeable welcome with advice on routes, things to do and places to see 
  • Services especially tailored to cyclists such as baggage transfer, bike hire, and bike washing facilities 

Can you do the Ardechoise cycle route all year round?

Thirteen marked routes from north to south together make up the ‘Routes de l’Ardechoise’ cycle trail, offering a choice of itinerary between 85 and 620 km to suit each cyclist’s individual pace and goals. Travelling independently, you will be able to find good addresses close to the trail all along the route. 

 

Or maybe consider a cycle holiday with ‘L’Ardechoise Autrement’ who create cycle touring itineraries ranging from three to seven days.  Choose from a semi-touring route or out-and-back from base, on a variety of dates between April and September that enable cylists to enjoy their sport in a small group without any worries over routes or logistics.  All you have to do is relax.  Everything is taken care of including accommodation, half-board, a light lunch, and luggage transfer, plus route notes and local activities or visits to help you discover the area.   

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