Home > Provence with Youngsters
For children, it is possible to rent an "extension bike" or a trailer
Almost every corner of Provence is scenic and safe for cyclists, but the everchanging hilly landscape can pose a challenge for even the most seasoned riders. Don’t despair — whether your tots are too small to manage small climbs or you simply wish to avoid them for your own comfort, we have the perfect itinerary to realize your dream of pedaling through the countryside of Provence.
“Provence with Youngsters” has been designed specifically for families with young children, but we’ve welcomed riders of all ages on a route consisting of mainly flat, quiet roads. The short distances allow you plenty of time to stop at your leisure, whether to grab a snack, visit a local artisan’s workshop, or enjoy a bit of history. The loop days can be spent relaxing off-bike if you choose!
Accommodations have been carefully selected for their family-friendliness, and we offer a wide assortment of rental equipment to meet your needs: trailers, kid's bikes, and extension bikes for up to two children.
For travel and cycling tips to Provence, visit our "Travel and cycling tips" section.
Arrive in Avignon and check in to your centrally located hotel. If you have time, we recommend getting acquainted with this gem of a city, whether you explore the expansive Popes’ Palace or stop by the merry-go-round in the Place de l’Horloge.
After breakfast, we will transfer you to Barbentane (a 15-minute drive) for your bike outfitting and briefing. From Barbentane, your route for the day will follow very quiet roads along the Rhône River and irrigation canals. At times, you will bike along the Montagnette, a miniature mountain topping out a 170 m (510 ft). On top is Frigolet Abbey, founded in the 10th century.
On your way to Graveson where you'll overnight, you'll bike through small and quaint villages, each calling for a stop!
Today's loop takes you through farmland between La Montagnette and the Alpilles. This is the heart of Provence, where ancestral traditions are kept alive through festivals featuring the carreto ramado, a cart drawn by forty decorated horses.
Artisans still craft traditional wares, and you can visit a perfume-maker, a santon-maker (a santon is a handcrafted figurine modeled after real-life characters), and a candlemaker. A water garden and museum are also worth visiting.
Your destination is Tarascon, where you can visit one of France's best-kept medieval castles. It’s also home to the Souleiado Museum (where colorful Provençal fabric has been made since 1806) or the house of Alphonse Daudet’s fictional Tartarin de Tarascon. If today is a Tuesday, make sure to take a stroll through Tarascon's market to discover local specialties such as dried ox-sausages, tapenade (olive-based sauce), pogne, or fougasse (different types of bread).
Your itinerary will skirt around the Alpilles mountain range en route to Fontvieille, a village founded by stone carvers. There, you'll be able to see the inside of one of the four windmills that overlook the village. Daudet's windmill has been remarkably restored, and the inner workings are truly fascinating!
Further along the road, you may want to stop by the village des santons, a small-scale recreation of Provençal daily scenes using 400 carefully posed santons.
Follow a path through olive groves and typical vistas on a Roman road once used to transport salt inland from the Camargue. This "Via Aurelia" linking Arles to Aix-en-Provence features a few gems along the flat-terrain route, like Les Baux de Provence, an optional side journey. Getting to this hilltop village requires some extra climbing, but if you can manage, you’ll find the quiet medieval streets worth your while! We also recommend taking a tour of its castle simply for the unobstructed view over Provence and the Mediterranean Sea — on some days, you can see all the way to Corsica!
You may also enjoy the unusual "Cathedrale d'Images" (we would not do justice to this site by trying to describe the indescribable). An olive oil mill and a santon museum can also be found on today’s ride.
This 20 km itinerary takes you to Arles, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The gateway to the Camargue is known for its Roman gems, like the massive theatre-arena. Small streets and shaded squares are sure to entice you to discover this remarkable city on foot unless you want to ride the "little train" for a guided tour! On Saturdays, the big open-air colorful market should not be missed.
From Arles, you will head back to Avignon via the train and a 20-minute bike ride.
After breakfast, you may visit Avignon at your leisure before departing.
5 nights in 3-star hotels and 2 nights in a guesthouse of character. All have a swimming pool, except in Avignon.
Kids' rate is based on age and will vary depending on available rooms (limited inventory of family rooms).