Home > Normandy Discovery for Avid Riders: From Bayeux to Rouen via Honfleur
This popular bicycle tour allows you to explore Normandy in all its glory — at a more challenging level! You’ll bicycle through the countryside that gave rise to Impressionist painting and inspired the brushstrokes of Monet and Boudin.
You’ll wheel along Normandy’s coast and visit some of D-Day’s most prominent battle sites, including Omaha Beach, Pegasus Bridge, and Longues-sur-Mer, site of one of Germany’s most formidable defense placements.
You may also visit ancient cathedrals and stand before the place where Joan of Arc met her death… or you can keep your speed up and race to your final destination. At night, you’ll lodge in charming cities and villages, enjoying Normandy’s best culinary offerings.
If you're not an elite rider, please consider our of this bicycle tour, which consists of shorter daily stages. The itinerary is the same, but the rides are shorter.
For travel and cycling tips to Normandy, visit our "travel and cycling tips" section.
This historic city is home to many attractions including the Bayeux Tapestry and the Bayeux Cathedral, a national monument that’s 100% Gothic wow. Don’t feel rushed; Bayeux is a two-night stay.
First up is the seaside village of Arromanches-les-Bains where Allied troops pulled off one of the War’s greatest engineering feats, creating a temporary harbor in just a matter of days. You’ll also have the chance to tour German battery placements at Longues-sur-Mer. From here you’ll follow the Aure Valley to Omaha Beach, perhaps the most famous of D-Day’s five landing sites, and then on to Colleville-sur-Mer, site of the Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial. Continue to Pointe du Hoc, a favorite among D-Day visitors. Atop this towering point you can tour German bunkers and climb into bomb craters that still pock the land.
You’ll wheel as far west as Grandcamp-Maisy before your return ride to Bayeux, during which you’ll pass Le Cambe, the final resting place of more than 21,000 German soldiers.
Ride through the Seulles Valley out to the English Channel, where you’ll first visit Arromanches-les-Bains, site of the famous D-Day Mulberry Harbor, and Longues-sur-Mer, the site of Germany’s big guns. Then it’s on to Juno Beach, where the 3rd Canadian Infantry Division stormed the beach and helped establish strategic footholds on Normandy soil. The Juno Beach Centre documents the landing in meticulous detail with exhibits and films.
Nearby Courseulles-sur-Mer abounds with seafood options, making for a perfect lunch stop. Stop at Sword Beach, where members of Britain’s 3rd Division waded to shore, before you cycle on to Benouville.
Benouville is where the first D-Day shot was fired as part of Operation Deadstick. Stop at the Pegasus Memorial, a sprawling memorial/museum that features the actual Pegasus Bridge, bullet holes and all. Continue through lower Normandy, following quiet country roads through tiny Old World villages with populations lower than the total number of days in a year.
The rural nature of this ride makes for a great speed day, and the quiet surroundings are perfect for nature-lovers. You'll lodge in Beuvron-en-Auge, one of "Les Plus Beaux Villages de France" (one of the most beautiful villages of France).
The magnificent scenery of rural Normandy is yours to drink in; you’ll also have many tasting opportunities for cider and Calvados, Normandy’s most championed beverages. First on your route is Cambremer, one of the focal points of Normandy’s famous Cider Route. Along the way, you’ll pass many cider producers, open for tours and tastings. Then you’ll turn north to Beaumont-en-Auge, yet another one of Normandy’s impossibly beautiful medieval villages. Wheel along quiet back roads through apple orchards toward the coastline called the “Parisian Riviera.” Finally, you’ll arrive in Honfleur, a picturesque port city with colorful buildings and cobblestone streets.
Bid adieu to the waterfront and head inland to the hills of the Pays d’Auge once more. From Honfleur, you’ll pedal into the heart of Normandy’s picturesque countryside — Le Marais Vernier, a region famous for thatched roof cottages, castles, and a prominent bird sanctuary. In addition, you’ll wheel through Quillebeuf-sur-Seine, a scenic village along the Seine River noted for its 12th-century church. Eventually, you’ll pedal into Pont-Audemer, Normandy’s answer to Venice, Italy. Half-timbered homes hug the village’s canals, making Pont-Audemer as unique as it is beautiful.
Watch for fly-fishermen reeling in the Risle River, a popular spot for this sport. At night you’ll lodge in the charming historical town of Brionne.
We purposely planned today’s ride short to give you more time to explore Rouen, the grand finale of your tour. But first, take a detour to Le Bec-Hellouin, one of the most beautiful villages of France. Its Bec Abbey, founded in 1034, is definitely worth seeing!
Continue your ride through rural landscape toward the Seine River and follow it to La Bouille, a tiny riverside village out of a painter’s imagination. Here, you’ll cross the river via barge and pedal onward to Rouen, Normandy’s historic capital city.
After breakfast, depart Rouen at the time of your choice.
2 nights in 3-star properties, 4 nights in 2-star properties and 1 night in a guesthouse "of character"
1 night in a 4-star property, 5 nights in 3-star properties and 1 night in a guesthouse "of character"