Bike and Barge Tour France: Montargis - Paris
This boat and bike tour starts on Paris, where you find the Fleur in the port d’Arsenal, not far from the Notre Dame. We follow the Seine in southern direction. This region has a rich, royal history and the castle of Fontainebleau is a magnificent example of this past. Just as impressive are the royal gardens, which the French kings had their royal architects lay out for them. The perfectly symmetrical gardens are a fine example. We cruise the woods of Fontainebleau heading for the artists village Barbizon.
We follow the Seine up to Moret-sur-Loing, a cosy village on the banks of the Loing. From there we follow the canal du centre to the beautiful medieval towns Ferrieres and Chateau-Landon. Our final destination is Montargis, a pictoresque town with beautiful little canals.
Itinerary: Paris – Melun – Moret-sur-Loing – Chateau-Landon – Montargis or the other way around
NB: From 18 guests there will be two guides and you can decide each day if you want to join the longer or the shorter ride.
Day 1 (Sat): Montargis
Embarkation and check-in at 2 p.m. in Montargis. After a welcome by the captain, crew and tour leader there is time for bicycle fitting and a short test ride.
After dinner your tour leader will take you for a walk through Montargis, the second-largest town of the Loiret region, after Orléans. Unfortunately this former royal residence was destroyed by a big fire in the 16th century. But the canals are still there. They are decorated with many flowers and give the town a lot of charm.
Day 2 (Sun): Montargis, (45 km/28 mi.)
After breakfast you will cycle from Montargis to Château-Renard, where you can visit the ruins of a castle from the 10th century. You will also visit an Apiculture’s Living Museum. There you can see beekeepers and their bees at work, and you’ll be able to sample their delicious honey. Along the river Ouanne you will return to Montargis. Today there is no dinner on board. You can select one of the local restaurants in town.
Day 3 (Mon): Montargis – lock of Cepoy | lock of Cepoy – Néronville (43 km/27 mi.)
Breakfast while sailing to the lock of Cepoy. Your bicycle tour goes along the river Loing. First stop is the medieval town of Ferrières with its old town center, which has been preserved beautifully. And in the middle of the narrow streets you find a splendid monastery. After this you cycle to Egréville. This village has been an important commercial crossroads for hundreds of years. Its markets and fairs enjoyed great renown. You will also visit the sculpture garden “Jardin Bourdelle”. In this garden you can admire some 57 bronze monumental sculptures by the artist Antoine Bourdelle. Final destination of today is rural Néronville.
Day 4 (Tue): Néronville – Nemours, (30 km/19 mi. or 40 km/25 mi.)
Our route today is through an area that was already cultivated in the Gallo-Roman era. First stop is the old Gallic stronghold Château-Landon, a beautifully situated fortified town on a rock. Its Abbey of St.-Séverin dates from the 13th century. Later on you find the rocks of Nemours on your way and you meet the Fleur again in Nemours. Nemours is supposed to derive its name from the woods (“nemora”) in the midst of which it formerly stood and discoveries of Gallo-Roman remains indicate its early origin. The castle, erected around 1120, now is a prehistoric museum of the Ile-de-France region.
Day 5 (Wed):Nemours – Moret-sur-Loing, (21 km/13 mi. or 43 km/27 mi.)
Today you stay in the valley of the Loing river. First you will visit Grez-sur-Loing where many artist used to live in the early years of the 20th century. Then you will continue to Bourron-Marlotte. In the town hall you can admire a few magnificent impressionist paintings. You will stay overnight in Moret-sur-Loing. This is a charming medieval fortified town, strategically situated on the banks of the Loing, where painter Sisley found inspiration for his beautiful impressionist paintings.
Day 6 (Thu): Moret-sur-Loing – Melun, (40 km/25 mi.)
Today you will cycle through the wonderful forests of Fontainebleau. First destination is the city of Fontainebleau, with its magnificent palace, much in favor among the French kings, because of the extensive possibilities to hunt in the surrounding forests. The castle houses a museum dedicated to Napoleon. Fontainebleau is also a pleasant town to walk around or to shop. After this, you will continue to the artistic village of Barbizon, where since the first half of the 19th century many painters have found inspiration. A group of landscape painters founded the “Barbizon School”. You can visit the local museum. Final destination of your bicycle tour is Melun, a town which is known as “le domaine des reines blanches”, because in former years it used to be the domain of the widows of the French kings.
Day 7 (Fri): Melun – lock of Evry | lock of Evry – Paris (31 km/19 mi.)
You are getting near to Paris, which means you have to deal with a bit more traffic. In the morning you can enjoy short bicycle ride, following the river banks of the Seine river to the lock of Evry, from where you will join the Fleur, to sail into Paris. Lunch on board. The mooring place of the Fleur is in the center of Paris, not far from the Notre Dame. After dinner you can join the tour leader for a city walk.
Day 8 (Sat): Paris
End of your tour: Disembarkation after breakfast until 9.30 a.m.
Details: In italics printed parts will be covered by the ship.
All distances are “approximate distances” of recommended bike tours.
The planned itinerary is subject to change due to changing wind and weather conditions and other unforeseen circumstances having to do with mooring requirements, etc.
Daily guided bike tours.
Included in the price
- 8 days/7 nights
- 7 x breakfast
- Packed lunches
- 6 x 3-course dinner
- Coffee and tea on board
- Welcome drink
- Use of bed linen and towels
- Daily cleaning of the cabin
- Climate-controlled cabin
- Daily briefings
- Fully guided cycling tours (from 18 guests: 2 tour leaders, 2 groups)
- Some short walking tours
- GPS tracks
- Use of a helmet
- Use of a waterproof pannier bag
- Water bottle
- Fees for ferries
- Entrance garden Bourdelle
- Entrance Apiculture’s Living Museum
- Visit town hall Bourron-Marlotte
- 2019: Guided visit Chateau-Landon
- 1x dinner in Montargis
- Bicycle rental or E-bike rental
- Personal insurances
- Gratuities (at your discretion)
- Entrance fees and excursions (not mentioned under included)
- Transfers to/from the docking place
- Parking fees
Rental bicycle (incl. helmet and water bottle): €85 per period Rental E-Bike (incl. helmet and water bottle): €175 per period (only on request, limited number of e-bikes available, early bookings strongly recommended. You can find a description of the bicycles when you click on ship.
Transfer between Paris and Montargis: There is a continuous train service between Paris (Gare de Lyon) and Montargis. Trains depart regularly and the trip takes approx. 1.5 hours and costs approx. 20 euros. If you wish we can reserve a taxi for you to take you from the station in Montargis to the barge or from the barge to the station in Montargis. For arrivals, please notify us by e-mail; for departures, please inform the skipper of the Fleur. From the Gare de Lyon in Paris, a bus service is available every 30 minutes, Le Bus Direct nr. 4 (shuttle) to the airport Charles de Gaulle, which will bring you there in approx. 50 minutes. € 17,– (2017).