Touring - French and Italian riviera
Bikeforums.net is a forum about nothing but bikes. Our community can help you find information about hard-to-find and localized information like bicycle tours, specialties like where in your area to have your recumbent bike serviced, or what are the best bicycle tires and seats for the activities you use your bike for.
Has anyone cycled along the French riviera past Nice and on through Italy as far as Pisa? I would like to know whether it is possible to cycle the route, or is there too much traffic.
01-23-05, 02:29 PM
I did it in reverse many years ago and would strongly advise against it. It's OK between Pisa & Genoa (and also hilly, because it's not along the coastline). But between Genoa & Nice, it's pretty much nonstop development & traffic. I don't recall any portion of the Italian Riviera which was not developed.
there are much nicer places in both countries to ride. The Rivieras have alot of traffic, and rude traffic at that (even for France and Italy!)
01-23-05, 06:58 PM
Go inland to Provence...Not Cote de Azur...I rode about Apt to Orange..Stayed in the Luberon Valley..Great cycling.
01-24-05, 01:12 PM
My wife and I rode from St Maxime to Vingtimilia last September. Lots of traffic. It was the least favorite part of our tour because of the traffic and endless development. We preferred the Alps, Vercors, La Drome, Provence, Luberon, and Verdon to the Cote d'Azur. Of course it's possible.
I had planned flying into Nice. If I don't do the Riviera, what is the best route out of Nice.
www.eurovelo.org/route/ ........ maybe that will help?
01-24-05, 10:51 PM
Should you want to cycle about the Mediterranean..I suggest not Cote De Azur..Much too busy...Head west towards Roussillon...Much less crowed..Mediterranean is just as blue and the coast offers beautiful scenery..
01-25-05, 07:27 AM
It would help if you said where you ultimately wish to go, how much time you have, do you like or hate mountains, etc. I think I could give you some helpful suggestions if I had more information.
01-25-05, 08:10 AM
Like axolotl said, if you give more info, you'll get better info. I'll tell you what we did:
Headed north out of Nice over Col de La Bonnette and continued through the Alps to Annecy via Col de Vars, Lautaret, Alpe d'Huez, Col du Glandon, and Col de la Madeliene. We skipped a couple good passes (Galibier, Izoard). Don't do this route if you don't like mountains...
From Annecy we took easier routes to Chambery, Grenoble, Vercors (very nice cycling), La Drome (fantastic), Avignon, Luberon (beautiful but hot when we were there in September), and Verdon (all like I said in my last post). You can return to Nice via Grasse and have barely pedalled along the coast at all.
I'd have to agree with cyclezealot (again!?). You could go west toward Perpignan, Coulioure, even down to the Spanish Catalan coast--there might be good cycling roads down there. Worth checking out at least.
01-25-05, 09:59 PM
Velogirl...Twice have stayed in the Collioure area..Love the area..Peaceful , beautiful...A part of France iadjacent to the northern secton of Spain called the Costa Brava... My daily ride was from Collioure to Spain..Traffic not too bad, roads good...Scenery on the coast great...Should you be a diver try out the national Marine park off of Banylus..They call it the 'undiscovered coast' ..Sort of hate to report its splendors for that very reason.
Collioure with it's chateau on the harbor..A real gem.. Harbor a quite place for a little snorkling.
When you cross over into Spain, the road quickly resembles the area about California's Big Sur..Roads a little twisty and narrow.
01-26-05, 06:51 AM
From Nice, there are both ferries and short 15 minutes flights to Corsica, which is one of the best places I've ever toured. However, my absolute favorite region in the entire world for touring is the Dordogne & Lot valleys in SW France (north of Toulouse & east of Bordeaux). Gorgeous landscape, outstanding network of secondary roads with little traffic, wonderful medieval villages, river gorges, a wealth of castles and caves to visit, and some of the best cooking in France.
Thanks for all the great advice. I have ten to twelve days and would like to do something like a thousand kilometres.
01-27-05, 07:20 PM
With the amount of time you have, I would suggest either Corsica, inland Provence, or Provence/Alps. I would also suggest that you take a train AT LEAST one direction to or from Nice if you tour in Provence. A high percentage of regional trains in France allow you to easily bring your bike. I imagine if you ride along the coast west of Nice, you'll quickly see what we all have said about traffic along the Riviera and you'll want to take a train back to Nice for your flight home.
If you don't have to fly into Nice, I would suggest you fly into Bordeaux, and preferably fly home from Toulouse, or the reverse. My very favorite touring area. I'd be happy to give you route suggestions in the Dordogne & Lot valleys.
I agree with most comments on bad traffic on the Rivieras although I have only cycled the Cote d'Azur part. Sure enough go along the coast in Summer, holiday season and maybe weekends and it won't be much fun. The crucial choice is when to go. I went last October from the 1st to the 10th and rode from Nice along the coast to St Tropez ( mid week ) and it was a wonderful ride for the entire 2 days with little traffic and many bikers enjoying the sun and great views. Also the weather is at its best then still nice and warm but not extreme. If you go in high season move inland as soon as you can and enjoy the beautiful landscape of Provence. You can find a good article here http://www.cyclingtheworld.org/tours/provence.php
01-28-05, 07:41 AM
In 1987 I toured the Italian/French Riviera. The trip started (and ended) in Munich and proceeded down through Austria, northern Italy to Venice, Florence and over to Pisa. I rode the coast all the way to MarseilleÖ then went up the Rhone river sampling wine all the way. It was an extremely wonderful trip. The only really bad traffic I remember was in Genoa and around Florence. You have to remember, cycling is part of the fabric of life there and they are more aware of cyclist. Also, the Italians do drive kind of crazy, but they are alert drivers and when they honk at you itís to let you know they are there. Lots of great beaches, food, coffee, wine, beer. I was hassled by the cops a couple of times but nothing serious. (Once in Monaco a cop made me put on my shirt! Maybe itís because Iím so uglyÖ three blocks away there were hundreds of topless women!)
01-28-05, 09:29 AM
In 1987 I toured the Italian/French Riviera. The nd they are more aware of cyclist. Also, the Italians do drive kind of crazy, but they are alert drivers and when they honk at you itís to let you know they are there. Lots of great beaches, food, coffee, wine, beer. I was hassled by the cops a couple of times but nothing serious. (Once in Monaco a cop made me put on my shirt! Maybe itís because Iím so uglyÖ three blocks away there were hundreds of topless women!)
Can't help but notice your Monaco entry.. Might as well be in Switzerland... Prudes...Well, must have good relations as the billionaires come out of the casinos and go into their billion $ yachts. Where they covort about the Mediterranean often nekid..
02-02-05, 01:52 PM
I agree with most comments, specially with axolotl and his comment on CORSICA, one of the finest places I've ever been (I was there 6 times). If you have enough time for a special ride, then you can fly into GENEVE (Geneva, Genf) and travel all the cols and villages of the ROUTE DES GRANDES ALPES, pass the frontier to italy (my favorite: col agnel) and the PO plain. It takes about 1 week to 10 days (depending on your luggage and your evening meal)
Powered by vBulletin® Version 4.1.12 Copyright © 2013 vBulletin Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved.