Cycling France Cycling France
Trip Report
Burgundy: Savigny
Burgundy: Avallon
Burgundy: Dijon
Burgundy: Beaune
Alsace: Kaysersberg
Alsace: Strasbourg
Provence: Avignon
Provence: Lourmarin
Provence: Forcalquier
Provence: Menerbes
Provence: Marseille


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FRANCE 2008: Trip Report

  Next Strasbourg

We took the TGV (Train à Grande Vitesse) from Dijon to Belfort. A very comfortable journey with the bikes hanging securely in the bicycle carriage. We took the TER (regional) train from Belfort to Mulhouse. The entrance was large enough to take our bikes with the panniers fitted and the step from platform to entrance was only a couple of inches high. We just wheeled the bikes in and secured them together with a couple of elastic straps to stop them moving around.

We had a coffee in the main square at Mulhouse and then cycled to our B&B at Sausheim.

The couple who owned the B&B in Mulhouse also owned the house we were renting in Kaysersberg. They were going to Kaysersberg to prepare it for us and agreed to take our panniers in their car. We cycled to Ensisheim and then enjoyed the ride along the back roads to Westhalten. There we decided to take the longer road through the vineyards to Rouffach a couple of kilometers away. It started with a long steep hill and we were glad to get to the top. On the descent the road turned into a rough stony track and then into an extremely steep concrete track through a vineyard. We realized that we had taken a wrong turn somewhere when we found ourselves back in Westhalten!

In Westhalten we went to a ‘cave’ for the degustation. The server enthusiastically described the local wines, their features and differences, and encouraged us to taste as many as we wanted. We bought two bottles for ourselves and a bottle of more expensive sweet dessert wine as a present for our hosts who had invited us to dine with them on the previous evening.

See the video of cycling in Alsace (use left arrow to return to this page)

We continued to wind through the tertiary roads along the hillside. The main road goes along the valley bottom and is fairly flat, but our route involved many hills and so we were grateful for the unloaded bikes.

We stopped for lunch at Rouffach. The first restaurant refused to let us put our bikes on the terrace, despite it being deserted so we moved on. The second restaurant obligingly let us put the bikes just outside the door where we could see them from our table. We enjoyed a pleasant lunch.

The village of Eguisheim is regarded as particularly beautiful and so it is, but it was full of tourists.

The house in Kaysersberg was pleasant and comfortable. We arrived at 5pm and settled in. We intended to have a cold meal but didn’t rush to buy the ingredients because we assumed that the closing time for the Boulangeries and Charcuteries was 7.30pm as in Dijon but they shut at 6pm so we had to eat at a restaurant. The portions were generous but the quality was indifferent.

The next day it rained more or less continuously so we had a lazy day, catching up with work and had a long lunch with a bottle of the local champagne equivalent and a selection of cold meats, pies, cheese and cakes. We were starting to noticeably gain weight. Alsace is as much German and French and the locals speak a mixture of the two.

  Next Strasbourg

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