Taking in more than twenty major natural sites, the Velodyssey cycle route (or La Vélodyssée in French) is a 1,200km Atlantic Coast cycle route stretching from Roscoff on the north coast of Brittany, through the Pays de la Loire, Poitou-Charentes and Aquitaine before reaching Hendaye and the Spanish border. Over 80% of the route is along dedicated cycle ways, all clearly signposted and linked to the Eurovelo 1 route.
From the north, La Vélodyssée enters the Poitou-Charentes region along the Vendée coastline at Marans from where it is a short ride to the historic port of La Rochelle, a popular tourist destination. Travel onwards through Rochefort, the home of the frigate Hermione and the Corderie Royale, past the oyster beds at Marennes and into the pine forests that hug the coast around Royan to meet the Gironde Estuary. Here a short ferry crossing takes you to Le Verdon-sur-Mer. The beautiful islands of Ré, Oléron and Aix are only a short detour and ideal locations for cyclists to rest their weary legs.
Find full details and route maps for La Velodyssee on their English-language website. Suggested tours, recommended accommodation and practical info on hiring bicycles as well as travelling to and from the route are also available.