The basic cost of the tour is £600 for a single rider in a shared room; £775 for a single rider in a single room and £1050 for a rider and pillion. For these prices you will get the following:-
Return euro-tunnel crossing (Folkestone - Calais). Alternative ferry crossings are available (supplement will apply).
Six nights accommodation in good quality hotels
Breakfast each morning.
Service throughout the trip of British Bike Tours guides.
Satnav maps (Garmin and Tom Tom format)
The following is not included:
Parking and Motorway tolls
Entrance fees for attractions
Repatriation back to the UK
Breakdown Cover Insurance
If you are new to motorcycling and are keen to develop your motorcycling skills on the fantastic French roads then this could be the ideal tour. Similarly, if you have been riding bikes for a number of years but have never ventured abroad then this is the ideal introduction to riding a motorcycle in Europe. It is also the ideal tour for riders with pillions.
We will ensure that you experience the best of what France has to offer. This area of France is home from home for us - our French house which we have owned and developed since 2002 is ideally located on the regional borders of Normandy and the Loire Valley. As such we know this beautiful, unspoilt and historic part of France extremely well.
The basic itinerary is as follows :-
Day 1: Calais to Honfleur (Approx 170 miles)
Arrival day in France. Our usual crossing (included in tour cost) is the Euro-tunnel crossing from Folkestone to Calais. Alternatively, for an additional supplement we can organise a Portsmouth - Caen, Newhaven - Le Havre crossing or if you travelling down from the North or Scotland we can help organise the Newcastle- Amsterdam or Hull - Zeebrugge crossing.
After a short spell on the motorway to get us out of Northern France, we head towards the coastal road. Our first overnight stop will be the lovely coastal town of Honfleur. This beautiful town is a superb place to stay. A really picturesque harbour and a favourite haunt of the artist, Monet.
Day 2: Honfleur to St Mere Eglise (Approx 125 miles)
After a traditional French breakfast and short safety briefing we will begin our journey along the beautiful Normandy coast.
The first days ride will take us at a gentle pace along twisty rural roads through delightful villages and beautiful scenery. There will be plenty of opportunities for photos, coffee and snacks.
The route to our hotel will take us past our first D-Day sites, including the famous Pegasus Bridge which was taken by the 6th British Airborne Division on the night of the 5th June and the Merville battery. These airborne troops were the first to land in Normandy.
Then its on to the coast road and past the beaches of Sword, Juno and Gold and up the cliffs overlooking Arromanches and the remains of the famous Mulberry harbour. Here we will stop for a short while for a snack, coffee and to visit the 360 degree cinema. The latter is highly recommended.
From Arromanches it is only a short distance to the infamous Omaha beach and the poignant American cemetery. Then onto Pointe Du Hoc where one of the most strenuous, dangerous, and demanding missions took place. Lt. Col. James Earl Rudder’s was ordered to take his Second Ranger Battalion of roughly 200 men and land on a shingled shelf, scale the imposing 100-foot-high cliff while under hostile fire, and then destroy the six enemy guns. Pointe Du Hoc is now a memorial to these men and has remained untouched since D-Day.
After a long but interesting day we will arrive at our hotel in the St Mere Eglise area for a well earned beer, glass of wine and evening meal.
Day 3: St Mere Eglise to Fougeres (Approx 140 miles)
Again up bright and early. After a traditional French breakfast, our first destination will be the airborne museum at St Mere Eglise. St Mere Eglise is famous for being the centre of US airborne operations on 6th June 1944. It was in this region that many of the 82nd and 101st US Airborne units (Band of Brothers) landed. Then it is off to the beaches of Utah before hitting the glorious and barely used Normandy roads.
We will overnight in the beautiful but little known town of Fougeres in Britanny. Fougeres is home to one of the largest medieval castles in Europe - it is a splendid sight and we will make sure you get time to visit the castle and the beautiful gardens that surround it. It is only a short walk from our hotel - we will then take you to one of our favourite restaurants for a lovely and very reasonably priced dinner, cooked from locally grown seasonal produce.
Day 4: Fougeres to Saumur (Approx 160 miles)
Today, is a pure biking day. We will take you on little used country roads through the beautiful countryside of Normandy and Pays De Loire. The Loire valley is a truly spectacular place. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the area is renowned for its fantastic chateaux, luxuriant landscape, magnificent food and wine. The area combines a leisurely pace of life with a mild climate, mellow wines and rich food. What could be better than travelling by motorcycle through the centre of this beautiful French region.
As we approach the banks of the Loire, we will follow the ‘Route Touristique du Vignoble’. This route will take us through some of the region’s prettiest wine country. The actual road we will use is known as the ‘Corniche Angevine’ and is one of the most scenic routes in the region. It curves along the cliffs above the South side of the Loire river, offering views of the Loire on one side and vineyards and manor houses on the other.
We will spend the evening in beautiful Saumur. Saumur is a delightful stop with a fairytale Chateau set on a hill high above the town and well defined old quarter which contains some excellent restaurants.
Day 5: Saumur to Tours (Approx 120 miles)
From Saumur we will take a small diversion to look at some of the Troglodyte Caves. These dwellings are very old (12th Century) and have hardly changed over the centuries. Of particular interest (especially to wine lovers) is the vast underground gallery at St-Cyr-en-Bourg; the caves here are owned by the St-Cyr wine co-operative which makes a full range of Saumur appellations.
We will now pass into the Touraine area which is known for its magnificent white chateaux. Traveling along the banks of the River Vienne we will enter the town of Chinon. Chinon’s old crooked streets resonate with history. It was here that Joan of Arc began her transformation from peasant girl to national heroine and Saint; Richard the Lionheart lay in state here and his father Henry Plantagenet ruled England and much of France from the chateau in Chinon. Our hotel for the evening is in the beautiful and historic university city of Tours.
Day 6: Tours to Bagnoles de L'Orne (Approx 160 miles)
In the morning we will visit the impressive chateau at Chenonceaux. It is in our opinion the most beautiful of the Loire Chateau and has a fascinatining history developing from simple mill building to splendid chateau.
We will then head north towards Le Mans; we will ride up the infamous Mulsanne straight which at almost 3.5 miles in length used to be one of the fastest straights in the world. From Le Mans we will head West over the Alpes Mancelles and visit St-Ceneri-le-Gerei; this pretty little village is widely thought of as being one of the prettiest villages in France.
From the Alpes Mancelles it is only a short ride to our hotel in the lovely spa town of Bagnoles de L'Ornes. This beautiful small town has a very alpine feel to it with lots of individually designed buildings, hotels and restaurants located around a lake.
Day 7: Bagnoles de L'Orne to UK (Approx 250 miles)
Departure day, back to Calais and our afternoon Euro-tunnel crossing.