Nantes - Cavaillon area route/ Insurance??

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nat
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Nantes - Cavaillon area route/ Insurance??

Postby nat » 4 Feb 2020, 3:27pm

Hello all, if I may, a question on route from Nantes to Avignon/ Cavaillon area. I've done (little of) France last year, but Se this time, rather than SW.
Up until Nantes I know but, I see that I can if dropping south a touch, hook a left and go through 3-4 national park areas. Google maps gives me A11/ E62/A7 as the usual (fastest) route. However,( I'm sure as practically all of us think) why would I do that !?

So, seems I can again drop into Cognac/Limoge region, head toward Aurillac/ Mende/Ales -ish sorta way. These are my thoughts however and, I'm of the hope that some of you indeed know this area of France far better than I ever could, hence the question.
Myself, I enjoy staying off tarmac as much as possible or, at least the heavy traffic areas. I understand sometimes it's unavoidable, but minimal is my preference. It would seem from last trip, that we're well catered for . I rarely used road, at least until further South, an awful lot of Camino routes seemed involved too :)
I digress, architecture/water/forests/and mostly quiet is the goal. If any major areas/ towns/buildings etc etc I shall miss, please bleat about. I only have three weeks from Roscoff to Avignon area so, the more mountainous the route- the less I get to explore.
It'll be wild camping all the way too, so again- reccomendations based on this if possible please. It'll be March throughout.
Insurance, who does it, who's reasonably priced and.....who dallies least??? If uber serious, then repatriation (UK) would be useful.
I thank you immensely in advance, for any help given.

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mjr
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Re: Nantes - Cavaillon area route/ Insurance??

Postby mjr » 4 Feb 2020, 4:18pm

See viewtopic.php?f=16&t=64734 for the best/latest travel insurance discussion.
MJR, mostly pedalling 3-speed roadsters. KL+West Norfolk BUG incl social easy rides http://www.klwnbug.co.uk
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richardfm
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Re: Nantes - Cavaillon area route/ Insurance??

Postby richardfm » 4 Feb 2020, 5:53pm


tatanab
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Re: Nantes - Cavaillon area route/ Insurance??

Postby tatanab » 4 Feb 2020, 6:05pm

richardfm wrote:Here's an idea for a route https://cycle.travel/map?from=Nantes&to ... ,5.0383522
Riding home from Beziers 3 years ago, that is pretty much the route I took except I did not pass through Toulouse, avoiding it by passing just to the north. To finish off I crossed the Loire on the ferry just west of Nantes and rode up to St Malo. The southern end, Causse de Quercy is pretty lumpy, and of course the route crosses the major rivers (Tarn, Lot, etc) so drop into and climb out of the valleys. I was travelling in July and 40C across the Dordogne area was pretty unpleasant. I was using campsites, small municipals being my preference - probably not open in March.

Jdsk
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Re: Nantes - Cavaillon area route/ Insurance??

Postby Jdsk » 4 Feb 2020, 6:26pm

nat wrote:... head toward Aurillac/ Mende/Ales -ish sorta way.

The France en Velo route goes nearby. It might be worth having a look.
http://franceenvelo.cc/route/

Jonathan

Angstrom
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Re: Nantes - Cavaillon area route/ Insurance??

Postby Angstrom » 5 Feb 2020, 5:05am

I plotted the areas I know and if you agree to climb, this is definitely a great route. Much more interesting than the route plotted by CT thoruhg Toulouse, which is, obviouly flatter.
Route Nantes - Avignon through the Cévennes.

I have added waypoints that matter at:
- Figeac (nice town)
- Conques (one of France's most beautiful villages. Very famous abbey on the pilgrim's way to Compostella.
- Gorges du Tarn : fantastic Canyon.
- Cévennes down to Anduze (end of RL Stevenson's journey with a Donkey)
- Uzès
- Pont du Gard.

Before Figeac, you would travel through the Dordogne area. Not bad (and you find lots of English speaking folks there :wink: ).

Time of the year matters of course. Going through the higher Cévennes provides for cooler nights.

A radically different option is to follow the Loire to Tours (Loire à vélo) and then Bourges, and back to Loire all the way up to near St Etienne, then up to Ardèche (fantastic view of the Alps in good weather) and down to the Rhone using Dolce Via cycle route to the Via Rhôna Cycle Route to Avignon. Less climb but still beautiful. Some long stretches through flat land with BIG fields near Bourges (but beautiful town).

Nantes - Avignon up the Loire

nat
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Re: Nantes - Cavaillon area route/ Insurance??

Postby nat » 5 Feb 2020, 8:04am

Well I never. You make assumptions on the state of the modern world, (aided by incessant rain methinks). Then you get a whole bunch of useful info from total strangers. Now, there's a sunny sky indeed.
Thank you very much for all replies, I'll be having a look at the links provided.

Angstrom
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Re: Nantes - Cavaillon area route/ Insurance??

Postby Angstrom » 5 Feb 2020, 9:26am

nat wrote:Well I never. You make assumptions on the state of the modern world, (aided by incessant rain methinks). Then you get a whole bunch of
Thank you very much for all replies, I'll be having a look at the links provided.

If you don't mind feeding us back here with what you'll end up choosing and why; it would be useful for fine tuning advice we might give in the future.

Richard Fairhurst
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Re: Nantes - Cavaillon area route/ Insurance??

Postby Richard Fairhurst » 5 Feb 2020, 10:07am

Angstrom wrote:I plotted the areas I know and if you agree to climb, this is definitely a great route. Much more interesting than the route plotted by CT thoruhg Toulouse, which is, obviouly flatter.
Route Nantes - Avignon through the Cévennes.


Wow! Just opened a few places along there using Street View and it looks astonishing. I might have to plan a holiday to the Gorges du Tarn...
cycle.travel - maps, journey-planner, route guides and city guides

Angstrom
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Re: Nantes - Cavaillon area route/ Insurance??

Postby Angstrom » 5 Feb 2020, 10:36am

Richard Fairhurst wrote:
Angstrom wrote:I plotted the areas I know and if you agree to climb, this is definitely a great route. Much more interesting than the route plotted by CT thoruhg Toulouse, which is, obviouly flatter.
Route Nantes - Avignon through the Cévennes.


Wow! Just opened a few places along there using Street View and it looks astonishing. I might have to plan a holiday to the Gorges du Tarn...

I have an old guide book (text version here on the Bibliothèque Nationale de France site; OCRed version) for cyclo tourists published around 1900 which describes the Tarn Canyon as the highlight of this 35 day journey across the Auvergne and Cévennes. Back in those days, there was no road between la Malène and Le Rozier. Bikes had to be loaded onto barges.
Today, it is worth doing on a canoe (leaving the bikes in La Malène :wink: ). A fun day.

Highly recommended for touring. It is busy during peak holiday season.
The whole area is UNESCO world heritage area. There are plenty of magnificent areas to ride through and places to visit (fabulous caves where speleology was invented in France in the 19th century). This is the area with least population density in France. Kind of our Costwolds ... :wink: but a bit higher.

bg
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Re: Nantes - Cavaillon area route/ Insurance??

Postby bg » 5 Feb 2020, 11:04am

Hi,

I am off to the Tarn on the way to the Med in May when hopefully it is a bit warmer.
Any suggestions of places to visit would be much appreciated.

Angstrom
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Re: Nantes - Cavaillon area route/ Insurance??

Postby Angstrom » 5 Feb 2020, 11:50am

bg wrote:Hi,

I am off to the Tarn on the way to the Med in May when hopefully it is a bit warmer.
Any suggestions of places to visit would be much appreciated.

I would gladly recommend places to visit but would need a few more details of your riding style (accept climbs or prefer to minimize them) and time allocated to the area. Also if you could tell me approximately where you'll be arriving from and where you'd like to hit the Mediterranean coast. This would allow me to narrow down my advice and make them more relevant to you.

What I could say is that there are stretches of land where it is the experience that matters more than places stricto sensu. Then there are within those areas fantastic spots. Then the sites to visit. They could be meaningful for their history, their picturesque aspect or because of how they "tell the story" of the place.
Examples are the Cévennes area where the Huguenots fought against the royal army after the revocation of the edict of Nantes. Villages bear some of this history, but the landscape also speaks.
Another example is of how the Templar knights colonized the Larzac Plateau. Many local villages can be visited but riding on the Larzac puts you on stage to this historic sites.
I know some folks don't care so much about all that. They like to see nice places and take pictures but not really anything more.
That's all fine with me but I wouldn't recommend the same places to one or the other.

bretonbikes
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Re: Nantes - Cavaillon area route/ Insurance??

Postby bretonbikes » 6 Feb 2020, 4:14pm

Just one thing - you say you'll rough camp the whole way - but just as an aside you might like to try some of the smaller Municipal sites and the like - ours is only 6€ and we're not an exception. You'll get a hot shower and company in most stops even if you just do it every so often;-)
35 years of cycletouring, 30 years of running cycling holidays, 5 years of running a campsite for cyclists - there's a pattern here...

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Morzedec
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Re: Nantes - Cavaillon area route/ Insurance??

Postby Morzedec » 6 Feb 2020, 5:14pm

I wondered just when Geoff would appear with a 'plug' for his site at Gouarec.

And why not? he does help an awful lot of cyclists.

Happy days,
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Camping at Gouarec.png

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Re: Nantes - Cavaillon area route/ Insurance??

Postby bretonbikes » 6 Feb 2020, 7:06pm

Morzedec wrote:I wondered just when Geoff would appear with a 'plug' for his site at Gouarec.

And why not? he does help an awful lot of cyclists.

Happy days,


Ah be fair - I didn't say where it was ;-)

Currently looking in disbelief at the site as at the beginning of February the grass is growing fast but it's too wet to get the mower on it. By the time it's dry enough it'll be three feet tall...
35 years of cycletouring, 30 years of running cycling holidays, 5 years of running a campsite for cyclists - there's a pattern here...