Tag Archives: voies vertes

New greenways on the Vélo Francette

The other day I wrote about how we’d spotted a new voie verte (greenway) under construction. It was clear that this was a part of the award-winning Vélo Francette cycle route that runs 617km  from the Normandy beaches at Ouistreham (Caen) to La Rochelle. Although we walked only a small section of the new voie verte, I speculated that it might go as… Read more »

A greenway in the making

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Travelling home from the garage the other day (don’t ask – bloody cars) we were passing through Laubrière when something caught my eye. You don’t expect to find anything significant in Laubrière; it’s just a wide spot on the road. You couldn’t even call it a village. But clearly it was once rather more important. I knew immediately what I’d… Read more »

Greenways everywhere

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This year we plan to ride more of the greenways (voies vertes) in the Grand Ouest – an area that covers Normandy, Brittany and the Pays de la Loire. It’s easy to get lazy and keep travelling the same stretches – especially as they’re so beautiful. But we need to explore more, so I grabbed our map of France’s voies vertes… Read more »

Vélo Francette – Europe’s best cycle route

It seems that the V43 Vélo Francette is not our little secret any longer. It has just been voted the best cycle route in Europe. Fiets et Wandelbeurs – a Belgian cycling and rambling organisation – has recognised the beauty and convenience of the route. According to Google Translate and a judicious bit of editing, the jury said something like:  “The… Read more »

Room for everyone

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Over on Google+, I recently got into a ‘debate’ with another cyclist who took exception to us walking our dogs on the voies vertes. He was ill-mannered and aggressive, and his arguments, if you can call them that, not worth repeating here. But it did get me thinking about cycling spaces and infrastructure. The ‘rules’ about whether dogs should be on… Read more »

Green tunnels

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There are certain sections of the local voies vertes (greenways) that we ride frequently, but they never get boring. Every time is slightly different, depending on weather, light and – above all – season. In Summer, many sections of the voies vertes turn into green tunnels as the overhanging branches of trees fill up and bow down with the weight of their… Read more »

Back on the tracks

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It’s been a while since we hit the voie verte, other than a stroll some weeks back without (gasp!) the bikes.  So it was great to be out on the trail again, on such a fantastic spring day and also on a stretch of voie verte we’ve not ridden before. There’s a Eurovélo route (marked EV4 provisoire on my map) that runs… Read more »

Very slow cycling

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We’d meant to go cycling on Christmas Day. Or Boxing Day. But the weather gods had other ideas. And so the New Year came and I was itching to try out my new GoPro (thanks, Santa). Finally, half-way into January, we headed off to ride the Vélo Francette from Domfront. We’ve ridden this route before, although I was on my… Read more »

Making the effort

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Sometimes you look out at the sky and think, ‘nah, I’ll skip it today, it’s too grey’. As someone who has dedicated his life to the pursuit of idleness, I find this kind of argument highly persuasive. Today was an example of why I shouldn’t. We decided to ride one of our favourite sections of the Veloscénie voie verte – one… Read more »

In the wake of Le Tour

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It seems that the Tour de France is coming our way again next year. No doubt we’ll make the same effort to avoid it as we did this year. But if you do fancy getting a taste of the countryside through which the members of the peloton will be flogging themselves stupid, there’s a gentler, more enjoyable way of doing… Read more »

The greenway to happiness

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We’re very lucky. Not only do we live close to two of France’s major cycle routes – the Vélo Francette and the Véloscénie – but those routes also spend much of their time near us on voies vertes, or greenways. Technically, a voie verte is a route from which motorised traffic is banned. It’s reserved for walkers, cyclists (including people like us… Read more »

Out with the boys

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I love riding down the voies vertes with the dogs. In fact, any outing is made more pleasurable by their company as you watch them discover things you hadn’t seen. But it does make for some complicated cycling. We made a short, 6km (each way) jaunt down a section of the Véloscénie today. We’d previously walked a small section of… Read more »