Cycling as a family


La Loire à Vélo is a great itinerary for cycling as a family. Why? Because it is flat and perfectly safe! And as there is more to life than just cycling, you will also find everything you need to relax and have fun, be awestruck, spend a great cycling holiday with the family and come home with plenty of happy memories.

An easy itinerary for families

En famille Ancenis © A. Lamoureux

As children know only too well, cycling is suitable for all ages (or almost!). It all depends on the route. You can cycle as a family along La Loire à Vélo thanks to its safe, easy, signposted itinerary. Freedom comes first here! Whether you are following a set itinerary or doing circuits from your accommodation, you can choose your starting point and destination as well as the length of the ride. There are nearly 300 cycle-friendly rest areas all along the way to keep young and old in fighting form.

Activities for all ages

Every stage reveals the wonders of the Loire Valley, with nature sites, wildlife, châteaux, parks and gardens, monuments and much more. After such adventure-packed days you’ll have no problem getting the kids to sleep at night in your “Accueil Vélo”-certified accommodation!

After a good night’s sleep, set out to discover the Goupillières troglodyte valley in Azay-le-Rideau or the Maison de la Magie in Blois… There’s plenty of opportunity to enjoy unforgettable experiences all along the way, such as the maze in Beaugency, the birds of prey and horse show at Chambord, Luluparc in Rochecorbon (near Tours), the iPad visit of Fontevraud Abbey, Terra Botanica park in Angers, visiting the medieval château in Oudon, the machines on Île de Nantes with the 12-metre tall elephant, Espadon submarine in Saint-Nazaire…. without forgetting all the swimming spots along the way, boat outings and nautical activities such as canoeing etc.

En famille Ancenis © A. Lamoureux

Advice for a family holiday

  • If it’s your first time, adapt the distance to your children’s age and the group’s level of fitness. Stages of 20 to 30 km/day are enough to enjoy cycling and still have plenty of time for visiting and getting the most out of all the activities to discover along La Loire à Vélo.
  • Part of La Loire à Vélo follows small quiet roads that are shared with motor vehicles, but you can avoid them by choosing “traffic free” sections.
  • Make sure your bikes are the right size. For infants, opt for a trailer or “third wheel” rather than a baby seat. You can hire suitable equipment through the network of cycle hire companies all along the itinerary.
  • Children under 12 years must wear a helmet.
  • Explain the safety rules to your children before you set off.
  • Carry water and a few energy bars, just in case!
  • Consider returning by train or sending your bikes back with a private transport company.

If you need help planning your first cycle-tour holiday as a family, take a look at our route suggestions or, to make things even easier, opt for a “turnkey” holiday.