The Canal des 2 mers, from Bordeaux to Sète

An enchanting crossing from the Atlantic Ocean to the Mediterranean Sea

A cycling trip from Bordeaux vineyards to Mediterranean beaches

The name Canal des 2 Mers refers to the association of 2 connected canals: the Canal de la Garonne and the Canal du Midi.

On this tour, you’ll cycle the entire length of the Canal des 2 Mers. From Bordeaux, pedal to Toulouse on the Canal de Garonne, then join Carcassonne and Sète on the Canal du Midi. A great cycling adventure through the South-West, with its perfumes, accents, wines and gastronomy, linking the Atlantic Ocean to the Mediterranean Sea.

The Garonne Canal by bike

The Canal de Garonne is one of France’s most beautiful cycle routes. For more than 190 km, you’ll travel to the rhythm of the water through bastides, locks and vineyards. Cross the emblematic canal bridges of Agen and Moissac, and visit the remarkable Abbeys of Sauve Majeure in Créon and Saint-Pierre in Moissac, both UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

From Gironde to Lot, via Tarn and Haute-Garonne, you can enjoy the gentle way of life, the friendly atmosphere and the bucolic charm of the landscapes. Let yourself be lulled by the accent of the South-West as you meet and visit.

O Toulouse

As Claude Nougaro once sang, Toulouse is like a coral flower watered by the sun. The pink city is bewitching. Located halfway along your cycling tour, at the crossroads of the South-West, it has much to offer its visitors in terms of architectural and cultural riches. Spend an evening in the city, enjoying its lively cobbled streets. Terraces spill out onto squares, under arcades and into secret courtyards, offering fresh, gourmet cuisine, a blend of modernity and ancestral culture.

The Canal du Midi by bike

Leaving Toulouse behind, you start cycling along the Canal du Midi through a landscape combining nature and history. Immersed in the heart of the work of Paul Pierre Riquet, you live to the rhythm of locks, ports and historic monuments.

Stroll through the historic cities of Carcassonne, Béziers and Agde. Your cycling trip along the Canal du Midi also includes a visit to the port of Castelnaudary, where you can sample a delicious cassoulet, the birthplace of this regional specialty. If you’re a wine-lover, take a moment to relax in one of Aude’s wine-growing villages, where you can sample some of the region’s finest and sometimes little-known vintages.

At the very end of the Canal, the Etang de Thau and the beaches of the Mediterranean are the reward for your pedal strokes. Your long escapade along the jewel of southern history ends in the town of Sète, where you can swim and relax.

 

 


Important information


The Canal de Garonne is easy to navigate and very accessible.

The Canal du Midi still has room for improvement in terms of cycling facilities, and we’d like to shed some light on this itinerary for you:

  • On this trip, you’re likely to come across a lot of undeveloped paths, not unlike those used by mountain bikers: ruts, roots, holes (due to roadworks), single-track paths (two bikes can’t pass each other or ride abreast).
  • At the start of the season, watch out for tall grasses that tickle your calves.
  • If the weather is bad, some undeveloped sections can also become difficult to cycle. In such circumstances, we take care to offer you a few alternative routes alongside the Canal. These may sometimes take you away from the Canal, with some car traffic.

Nevertheless, it’s important for us to be able to offer an organized service to all travelers who want to experience this adventure! For the reasons outlined above, we feel that the Canal du Midi à vélo is not currently a suitable itinerary for beginners and families. It should become more accessible to everyone in a few months’ time, as major development work is currently underway along its route. We’ll be sure to update this information regularly.

If you have any doubts about your cycling trip along the Canal du Midi, we invite you to contact our travel consultants. They’ll be happy to help you organize the most suitable trip for you.

Carte Le Canal des 2 mers, de Bordeaux à Sète
Niveau LeisureLeisure or Niveau FitFit
Day 1

BORDEAUX

Arrive to Bordeaux on your own.

Meeting with our local guide

Before your first ride, we invite you to meet one of our guides, at your place of departure. A time of exchange, a privileged moment to give you our last practical tips, must-see places and experiences, to answer all your questions, take care of your bike fitting to begin your trip.

Day 2

From BORDEAUX to SAUVETERRE-DE-GUYENNE 63km 285m Niveau Loisir

Leaving from Bordeaux, you peacefully follow the banks of the Garonne. The Roger Lapébie cycle path, whose name pays homage to the famous Tour de France 1937 champion, takes you to Créon and its old station which serves as a reminder that trains preceded bikes.
You continue your journey surrounded by a landscape that combines forest and vineyards to stop at the Sauve-Majeure Abbey, a true masterpiece of Romanesque art, it offers exceptional sculptures and remains.
Once through the doors of Sauveterre-de-Guyenne, let yourself be amazed by the arches and the remains of the medieval fortifications of this old bastide.

Day 3

FROM SAUVETERRE DE GUYENNE TO MAS D'AGENAIS 53km 234m Niveau Loisir

You leave Sauveterre de Guyenne to reach the south and the Garonne Canal. The road becomes more hilly in this region of Entre-deux-Mers. Your effort is however quickly rewarded by the beauty of the hills and the multitude of vines that surround you. You then reach the medieval village of La Réole, do not miss exploring its small narrow streets and contemplate the view of the Garonne valley from the top of the old Benedictine abbey.Through dikes and locks, you then ride along the Garonne Canal on its cycle path to conclude your day in the charming village of Mas d´Agenais and its must-see collegiate church.

Day 4

FROM LE MAS D'AGENAIS TO AGEN 53km 64m Niveau Loisir

You continue to pedal on the Canal des 2 Mers by Bike. The first highlight of your day awaits you in Damazan where the colorful facades and the central square, a characteristic element of the 13th century Bastides, will not leave you indifferent. Quickly, in a green and natural atmosphere, you will see the charming port of Buzet-sur-Baïse, ideal for a break. You continue your journey on the cycle path.
At the entrance of Agen, you cross the picturesque Pont-canal de la Garonne, one of the largest in France with its length of 600m, by bike. The capital of prunes contains many surprises and offers a remarkable concentration of the rich heritage and spirit of the Southwest.

Day 5

From AGEN to MOISSAC 46km 82m Niveau Loisir

You leave Agen heading south on the greenway that runs along the Garonne Canal. Valence d’Agen is your first stop, the 13th century bastide offers a warm and authentic atmosphere around its preserved monuments (covered markets, washhouses, dovecotes) and its port.
You continue on the canal, the landscape goes by to the rhythm of the lock keepers to reach Moissac. A veritable epicurean stage on the Saint-Jacques-de-Compostelle path, you can discover exceptional monuments listed as World Heritage by Unesco. A must!

  • For a few more km 53km 145m Niveau Forme

    For this variant, you move away from the Canal des 2 Mers. Further up, high up, the most beautiful village in France awaits you: the fortified village of Auvillar.
    You will then find the canal to continue your road towards Moissac.

Day 6

From MOISSAC to TOULOUSE 69km 93m Niveau Forme

Once the Cacor canal bridge over the Tarn crossed, you will enjoy the tranquility of the Canal des 2 Mers towards the “Pink City”. A first stage in Castelsarrasin invites you to discover its marina and its multiple heritage riches. You continue your path towards the vineyards of Frontonnais. Do not hesitate to taste (in moderation of course) the unique variety from the southwest: the Négrette!
Further away, the green of the countryside gives way to the emblematic pink of the city of Toulouse. You access the cycle paths of the Canal du Midi to reach the heart of the city and its emblematic Place du Capitole. Let yourself be charmed by the singing accent of its inhabitants and the captivating and unique colors of Toulouse …

Day 7

From TOULOUSE to CASTELNAUDARY 62km 177m Niveau Forme

You leave the pink city and enjoy a journey in the heart of the nature. You bike through the Lauragais countryside full of authentic small villages. You  continue to the Seuil de Naurouze, where watersheld are separated. You can make a stop at the Maison de la Haute Garonne located in the Lauragais’ port. There is an exposition about the Canal du Midi construct by Riquet. You then take the road again to Castelnaudary where you will have the opportunity to savour the culinary speciality: a Cassoulet.

Day 8

From CASTELNAUDARY to CARCASSONNE 45km 71m Niveau Loisir

Leaving Castelnaudary, you continue through the countryside to the charming abbey of Saint-Papoul, before rejoining the canal at Bram. Follow the canal towpath to Carcassonne. You pass through the new town and arrive on the banks of the Aude, where the impressive walls of the medieval city stand out. Take time to visit this fortress, admirably restored by Viollet-le-Duc. Evening in Carcassonne.

  • For a few more km 54km 575m Niveau Forme

    For this long and sporty version, you leave the Canal des 2 Mers. The relief is a bit steeper but you are rewarded by the discovery of the Abbey of Villelongue then of Montolieu, a charming village of Books and the Arts.

Day 9

From CARCASSONNE to LE SOMAIL 60km 124m Niveau Loisir

Between Carcassone and Le Somail you discover many small wine-villages.

Near Homps, you offer yourself a moment of relaxation at the lake of Jouarres, where you can enjoy several nautical activities. You will enjoy the dynamism of the city of Homps and especially its port, which was one of the most important in the Canal du Midi. You take the road again surrounded with authentical villages. The castles in the region give you the opportunity to make a stop and to discover architectural jewel.  Your journey finish in Le Somail where you stay overnight.

  • For a few more km 65km 307m Niveau Forme

    You leave Carcassonne, and the Canal du Midi for the vineyards and hills of the Corbières.

Day 10

From SOMAIL to BEZIERS 45km 143m Niveau Loisir

On the road to Béziers, you pass through the city of Capestang, where you have the chance to admire the wonderful Collegiate Church of the city.

You then pass under the Malpas tunnel and end with the 9 locks of Fonseranes at the entrance of Béziers.

  • For a few more km 39km 147m Niveau Facile

    In case of bad weather, trails could be very wet and mud, so you advise to avoid the Canal du Midi cycle route and take the roads through Salles d’Aude and Capestang

Day 11

From BEZIERS to SETE 54km 91m Niveau Loisir

Today’s route will take you as far as Adge.
After Adge, you follow the river Hérault. Then take a break at the Onglous lighthouse, which is a bit like the “end of the world” for you, as this is where the Canal du Midi ends in the salt water of the Etang de Thau. But the adventure isn’t quite over yet, as the very pleasant Lido greenway will take you all the way to Sète along the Mediterranean beaches. The perfect opportunity to take a well-deserved dip!

By taking this option you follow the canal between Béziers and Agde. You will appreciate the birdlife of the Estagnol marshes, the tranquility of the port of Cassafières, or the remarkable works of the Libron locks and the Saint-Joseph bridge.

Day 12

SETE

End of your stay after breakfast.

Essential Range

You want to enjoy your itinerary without anything fancy. Our ”essential” range offers a simple accommodation for a good night’s rest in a simple hotel, guesthouse, rest house or hostel.

Accommodation example
Façade de Hôtel des Voyageur BORDEAUX façade de la Chambre d'hôtes Les sequoias Sauveterre façade de Quand la ville AGEN Maison Lydia Façade de l'Hôtel Royal Wilson TOULOUSE façade chambre d'hôtes porto II - Sete

Starting from 1395€/participant in Self Guided option | See detailed prices

Comfort Range

Our quality standard at Abicyclette. This type of accommodation includes 2 and 3 stars hotels. Depending on the itinerary, you might spend some nights in approved guesthouses. You enjoy a double bedroom with private bathroom and toilet and adapted welcome for you and your bikes.

Accommodation example
Chambre d’hôtes B&B Cosy façade de la Chambre d'hôtes Les sequoias Sauveterre façade de Quand la ville AGEN Façade de l'hôtel Moulin de Moissac MOISSAC Hôtel de Brienne Comptoir de l'accueil de l'hôtel hotel le XIX béziers

Starting from 1555€/participant in Self Guided option | See detailed prices

Privilege Range

Opt for total comfort in charming 3 and 4 star hotels which offer all the services you need and a special welcome for you and your bikes.


Quote on request | Contact us

Price includes

  • Accommodation: 11 nights in a Double room
  • 11 breakfasts
  • Luggage transfer
  • Phone assistance 24/7
  • Access to our exclusive travel application to follow your route, inform you about places of interest, restaurants, facilitate your assistance in case of emergency, find all your travel documents and our practical advice.
  • Application fee
  • Taxes
  • The itinerary trackable on the following supports:
    • Loan of a Bicycle GPS uploaded with full itinerary of the trip
    • Cycling practical guide including topo maps, restaurant recommendations for lunch & dinner
  • Additional services included:
    • Day 1 : A personalized greeting with our team at the beginning of the trip to receive your travel documents
  • Price does not include

    • bike rental (see option)
    • Breakfast on day 1
    • Lunches
    • Dinners not included in "Price includes"
    • Drinks, visits & other personal expenses

    Homemade and fully tested itineraries
    • Routes selected for their cycling and touristic interest entirely tested and away from traffic
    • Accomodations selected for their hospitality, atmosphere, services and quality meals
    • A flexible organisation to suit you needs and wishes: You choose the date you want to you leave on! We check the availability of each accomodation to make sure it is possible.

    Close assistance
    • One of our guides greets you on your first day. He will hand out all the needed documents for the trip (hotel vouchers, maps of the area,GPS, practical guide), get you settled on your bikes (for rental bikes).
    • Phone assistance, you can reach the Abicyclette team whenever you need
    • A Luggage transfer service which respects your hours of rest (we pick them up after 10:00 and deliver them before 16:00)

    Follow your itinerary anyway you like – modern, practical, traditional

    appareil GPS TwoNav Cross

    • We loan you a GPS so that you can easily follow your itinerary without having to look for your way around (bike support included)
    • A practical cycling guide with all the useful information (addresses, highlights for the day, topo maps, and touristic information)

     


    You can also

     

    On our guided tours (for groups on demand), we accompany you every step of the way
    • One of our state qualified instructor and professional cycling guide accompanies you every step of the way
    • Full board (all meals covered unless asked otherwise)
    • A picnic buffet set up for lunch with a wide choice of fresh and local produce

    We offer a high-end bike rental service. Our bikes are suited for road and gravel road long-distance cycling. Fully equipped and highly reliable, they are faithful travel companions.


    Touring Bike (woman)

    Equipped with reliable and lightweight components to offer you a carefree stay.

    Supplied equipment per bike

    • 1 fabric-wrapped chain lock, key type
    • 2 x 20 litre waterproof removable rear bags
    • 1 removable handlebar bag
    • 1 adjustable helmet
    • 1 can holder

    Touring Bike (man)

    Equipped with reliable and lightweight components to offer you a carefree stay.

    Supplied equipment per bike

    • 1 fabric-wrapped chain lock, key type
    • 2 x 20 liter waterproof removable rear bags
    • 1 removable handlebar bag
    • 1 adjustable helmet
    • 1 can holder

    Ebike

    It will allow all terrain and distances to be considered serenely, thanks to their natural and progressive assistance as well as their generous autonomy.

    Supplied equipment per bike

    • 1 fabric-wrapped chain lock, key type
    • 2 x 20 liter waterproof removable rear bags
    • 1 removable handlebar bag
    • 1 adjustable helmet
    • 1 can holder

    Children's Bike

    Supplied equipment per bike

    • 1 fabric-wrapped chain lock, key type
    • 1 adjustable helmet
    • 1 can holder

    Child's trailer

    Getting here

    Departure city : BORDEAUX

    Coming by car

    • at 5h45 from PARIS
    • at 3h30 from NANTES
    • at 5h30 from LYON

    Parking*

    • Parking Paludate – BORDEAUX
    • Parking Gare Saint Jean – BORDEAUX
    • Parking Grands Hommes – BORDEAUX
    • Parking Gambetta – BORDEAUX
    • Q-Park Clémenceau Auditorium – BORDEAUX

    Coming by train

    • Bordeaux train station - 2h15 from Paris

    Coming by plane

    • Bordeaux airport

    Arrival city : SETE

    Coming by car

    • at 7h from PARIS
    • at 4h30 from BORDEAUX
    • at 3h15 from LYON

    Coming by train

    • Sete train station - 3h45 from Paris
    • Montpellier train station - 3h30 from Paris

    Coming by plane

    • Montpellier airport

    *Parking: Since many of our clients travel by train or plane, we do not include parking in our packages. In addition, many accommodations don’t have the capacity to park a vehicle for the duration of your cycling vacation. So if you’re planning to arrive by car, we suggest you check parking options when you make your reservation. If you reserve a parking space at the first or last accommodation of your stay, you must pay the accommodation provider on site.

    * Abicyclette Voyages accompanies you on demand, including transportation solutions.

    How to get back to the starting point

    • By train from Sete to Bordeaux in 4h15
    • Return by car in 4h30 to your starting point
    • Private shuttle: see detailed fares or contact us

    Recommended equipment

    Bike

    • All-Terrain Bike (ATB) or Touring Bike or Gravel Bike
    • 18 to 30-speed transmission
    • 26- to 29-inch wheels
    • Tires: 35 to 42 section, reinforced against punctures
    • Disc brakes recommended
    • 2 bottle cages
    • Bell
    • Front and rear lighting

    Clothing and equipment

    • Helmet (supplied with bike rental unless otherwise specified locally)
    • 1 bike mount for smartphone to use the mobile route planner application
    • Suitable cycling clothing:
      • bib, shorts or tights: elastic and breathable, to facilitate movement and wick away perspiration
      • Breathable T-shirts, synthetic or merino wool
      • Breathable windbreaker
    • Thermal or fleece jacket
    • Waterproof jacket
    • 1 pair of sunglasses
    • 1 pair of cycling shoes
    • 1 backpack or 1 or 2 carrier bags
    • 1 or 2 water bottles (supplied with bike rental in France)
    • 1 lock (supplied with bike rental)
    • Technical details, recommended by the team for optimum comfort:
      • 1 pair of gloves or mittens, depending on season and destination
      • Padded bib (chamois)
      • High-visibility vest or fluorescent belt
      • Neck warmer and cap

    Bike maintenance

    • Emergency repair kit: 2 or 3 inner tubes, patches, pump, tire levers, multi-tools
    • Maintenance kit: rag, oil, brake pads

    Other

    • A suitcase for your belongings carried in the vehicle (limited to one per person)
    • Street clothes
    • 1 pair of evening shoes
    • Fleece jacket for the evening
    • Toiletry bag
    • Telephone and charger

    You migh also be interested in