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La Vélo Francette from Niort to La Rochelle

[ Cycle route La Vélo Francette - From Normandy to the Atlantic by bike ]
  • 90 km

On this section, thread your way through a magnificent network of green and blue canals to reach the Atlantic. First come the wonderfully shaded canals that crisscross the stunning wetlands of the Marais Poitevin, nicknamed ‘la Venise Verte’ (‘Green Venice’) in France. Then comes ‘la Belle d’Aunis’, where you cycle beside broader, more exposed canals. This section to La Rochelle and the ocean provides a fittingly sparkling end to the véloroute.

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Stages of « La Vélo Francette from Niort to La Rochelle »

  • La Vélo Francette from Niort to Coulon

    La Vélo Francette from Niort to Coulon [18.3 km]

    You stick close to the water’s edge, following the meanders of the Sèvre Niortaise River, alternating between the towpath and quiet riverside roads. The sites of Roussille or La Garette offer ideal spots for a pause in these winding parts. Or consider a longer halt at the little capital of the Marais Poitevin, the gorgeous, watery village of Coulon.

    Difficulty: family View details
  • La Vélo Francette, Coulon Damvix Bazoin

    La Vélo Francette, Coulon Damvix Bazoin [18.1 km]

    Coulon, located at the heart of the wet marshes of the Marais Poitevin and set so prettily beside the Sèvre Niortaise River, can offer cyclists on La Vélo Francette all the amenities they need. After crossing through the marshes, you rejoin the Sèvre Niortaise after Irleau. Approaching Damvix, the canalised river takes a straighter line, as though in a rush to join the ocean.

    Difficulty: family View details
  • La Vélo Francette, Damvix Bazoin Marans

    La Vélo Francette, Damvix Bazoin Marans [27.4 km]

    The Sèvre Niortaise remains your guide on this stage, except on two stretches, one where you follow the Canal du Nouveau Béjou, the other the Canal du Pomère. Enjoy the ballet of little boats exploring the wetlands around these parts. You arrive at Marans via its quaysides, allowing you to appreciate how this little town lives via its waterways. Marans traditionally stood guard over the canal, marshes and river estuary; today it stands out because of its futuristic bell tower.

    Difficulty: family View details
  • La Vélo Francette from Marans to La Rochelle

    La Vélo Francette from Marans to La Rochelle [26.3 km]

    This final stage of La Vélo Francette shares the way with the longer La Vélodyssée cycle route. You follow the Canal de Marans towards the sea before branching off for the great city of La Rochelle via the Canal de Rompsay. Although this stage is easy, it allows you to end La Vélo Francette with a flourish – plus there’s the possibility of a dip in the Atlantic! Islands beckon just off the coast, if you wish to prolong your experience of douce France!

    Difficulty: family View details