Sunday 7th July 2019 to Saturday 13th July 2019
Day 1 Caen to Evreux
Distance 89 miles and approximately 5,000 feet of climbing.
Same route as 2018.
Day 2 Evreux to Chartres
A short uphill section out of Evreux to start the day then over a plain and down to a river valley. We followed the river Eure for most of the day which included approximately 6 miles of tarmac cycle-way based on a disused railway. The route went through lots of small villages and the large town of Nogent-le-Roi. We also saw the beautiful Chateau Maintenon, a turreted castle.
Day 3 Chartres to Lisieux
Distance 85 miles and approximately 2,500 feet of climbing.
A slightly longer day but with only an elevation gain of 2,500 feet this wasn’t too difficult. First an easy ride out of Chartres and across country to Senonches. Then turning North through Verneuil-sur-Avre and Brogile, both are good places for a coffee stop or more. A day with many Chateaux and a mixture of forests and farm land. We had to save something for the last few miles though….
Day 4 Lisieux to Bayeux
A short climb out of Lisieux and straight into the French countryside. Tree lined roads then as we got closer to Caen the ground flattened out and we wound our way through to Bavant and back to Pegasus Bridge and then on to Ouistreham. The sandy beach is just over the sand dunes. We cycled along the coast road past Sword, Juno and Gold D-Day beaches and through Arromanches and on to Port-en-Bessin before turning inland to Bayeux.
Day 5 Bayeux to Cherbourg
Distance 67 miles and approximately 2,500 feet of climbing.
The day started almost straight away on country roads, the small town of Trévières and Isigny-sur-Mer were both good places for morning coffee stops. Then through Carentan and turn sharp right and head to Utah, the D-Day beach. Ten miles of cycling alongside the sandy beach. Then a ‘gentle’ climb up and over and down into Cherbourg. We had to save some energy to enjoy the party at the Mercure hotel where we received a 4 course meal followed by music and dancing. No early morning alarms this year.
Day 6 Leaving day
Brittany Ferries changed their timetables after we made our booking so now the only crossing left Cherbourg at 17:00. This got us into Portsmouth at 19:00.
With a few hours spare on the Saturday we organised a short ride to Barfleur for a lunch stop. Some riders chose to spend a leisurely day looking around Cherbourg.
Some of the sights on the way…