WHAT HAPPENS AT THE START OF THE TOUR?
The tour starts in Avignon, where you will be collected with your luggage for the transfer to our base in the Provence countryside at a defined time. There are a number of travel options to Avignon; by air to Marseille from all major airports, less frequently directly to Avignon; by TGV to Avignon or Marseille or by road.
We have a group meal on Saturday night with full briefing on what to expect for the week ahead and sort out bicycles.
WHAT HAPPENS AT THE END?
The final days riding tour is on Friday and final group meal. Saturday morning you will be transferred back to Avignon for your onward journey.
CAN I BRING MY OWN BIKE?
Your easiest option is to drop your bike off with us beforehand and we will take it over for you and bring it back at the end of the tour – there is no charge for this option. We are based near Reading, Berkshire so this may not be a convenient option for you. Another option is to take your bike with you at the start of the tour and at the end of the tour you can either take your bike with you on the plane. Alternatively we can take your bike back to the UK for you and box your bike and post it too you – there is a charge of £70 for this option. Another option is to rent a bike from us. Whatever arrangements you make we will be happy to help.
HOW DIFFICULT IS THE TOUR?
The tour is easier than most of our tours, as it is centred based with no nearby steep climbs; you can choose what level of distance and difficulty you wish to cycle or stay around the pool and relax. If you need any advice about fitness please contact us and we will be happy to discuss any questions and concerns that you may have.
WHAT MECHANICAL KNOWLEDGE DO I NEED?
We don’t expect you to be an expert bike mechanic but there are a few simple skills that will be a great benefit to you. The most important skill you need to know is how to fix a puncture. It is possible that at some point you will have a puncture or two so it is essential that you carry a puncture repair kit & a spare tube or two with you. It is also helpful if you know how to change your brake pads and adjust your brakes and gears however this isn’t essential. Our guides will help you with any repairs and adjustments en-route.
WHAT ARE THE LUNCHES LIKE?
Lunches will be a mixture of picnic lunches and lunches in cafes or restaurants situated in some picturesque places.
WILL I BE LEFT BEHIND?
No, a tour leader cycles at the back of the scheduled daily riding group so that you won’t be left behind if you are worried about cycling too slowly. Throughout the group there will be a mix of abilities and cycling speeds so you will usually be able to cycle with others that cycle at a similar pace. Some people like to cycle fast whilst others prefer to take their time, stop for coffee & cake or stop to take photos etc so whether you are a ‘speed demon’ or more of a ‘tourer’ there usually will be someone to cycle with each day.
WHAT ARE THE GROUPS LIKE?
Obviously each group is different but generally they are a fun, friendly, helpful & adventurous bunch. There will be people of all ages and from all walks of life. We tend to get quite a few older riders although there will always be a few younger riders as well. So far our youngest rider was 18 & the oldest was 82. This is a fixed size group of 8-12 and is ideal as there will be plenty of people with similar interests & character without being such a big group that it becomes too much. Generally the group will be split 50/50 between people travelling alone and people that travel as a pair such as two friends or partners. There will be plenty of people to socialise with throughout the day and in the evening. Many of the people on this tour will have cycled on a tour with us previously so you may even bump into someone you know!
WHAT HAPPENS IN THE EVENINGS?
Once you have arrived back at the accommodation you should have chance for some time to relax, have a shower etc before the evening meal cooked by our resident Chef.
DOES THE SUPPORT VEHICLE FOLLOW THE GROUP?
No, the back up vehicle doesn’t drive behind the group on a centre based trip, it will on call in the event of an emergency.
HOW MUCH LUGGAGE CAN I TAKE?
We request that you try to keep your luggage size to a minimum and try not to bring too much with you. Washing clothes can be done en-route so you shouldn’t need to bring a clean set of clothes for every day. The ideal size for luggage is 70 x 50 x 30 cm and a weight of 15-18kg (or less).
WHAT BIKE SHOULD I USE?
The most suitable bike for this trip is a road bike or hybrid, however it is entirely up to you what type of bike you use. Please ensure that your bike is fully serviced and in good working order before the start of the trip.
CAN I HIRE A BIKE FROM YOU?
We have arranged for a local shop to supply hybrid bikes. It may be possible to arrange a electric pedal assisted (eBike) to be hired at an additional charge. We recommend that you bring your own helmet to ensure a good fit for safety and comfort, however you can hire these too.
WHAT GEAR SHOULD I TAKE?
We provide a suggested kit list so please contact us if you would like a copy sending to you.