Cycling in Saumur & the surrounding area

This tour centres on Saumur and may extend to Gennes, Montreuil-Bellay and Doue-la-Fontaine.

Saumur is located between the Loire and Thouet rivers in the Loire Valley, France.

Most significant properties in the area were built using local Tuffeau stone – a cream/yellow limestone that is easier to shape than other stone products.   This makes the town very distinct.  The consequences of the mining of the Tuffeau, the caves, are today used for mushroom production and as commercial wine cellars as well as domestic accommodation.

Today, the wine industry is an important industry in and around Saumur – the abundance of Tuffeau caves facilitate the of production of white, red, rosé and sparkling wines – with several hundred winemaking families offering thousands of different bottles.

The Château of Saumur has dominated the skyline of the town for hundreds of years.  It was first constructed nearly a thousand years ago and has been destroyed and rebuilt several times since.

The training of horses and their riders has been a huge part of life of the town since 1783 when the cavalry school was established.  These skills live on at the Cadre Noir and amongst a number of smaller equestrian centres in the region.

Getting to Saumur

Saumur has principal rail connections to Tours & Angers and through these to Paris and Nantes.

Tour Airport has international connections with Dublin and London (Stansted).

Nantes Airport has connections from Algeria, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Egypt, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Malta, Martinique, Morocco, Netherlands, Portugal, Senegal, Spain, Switzerland, Tunisia, Turkey and United Kingdom.

All other arrivals would need to be via Paris, then taking the train to either Angers or Tours for the connection to Saumur.

Things to Do


  • Saumur Forest Adventures
  • Thouet Kayaks
  • Hot Air Ballooning



  • Dolmen de Bagneux
  • Musée des Blindés
  • Cadre Noir
  • Château de Saumur
  • Château de Brézé
  • Fontevraud Abbey
  • Mushroom Museum



  • Military Carousel
  • Anjou Vélo Vintage
  • Les Grandes Tablées
  • Festivini Wine Festival
  • Les Foulées du Champigny


Cycling around the Saumur area

This part of the Loire Valley is flat!  From Tours in the east to Angers in the West the river drops about 27m – which isn’t much of a gradient!  That doesn’t mean there are no inclines but most can be avoided!

North of the river land rises slowly and is protected from flooding for hundreds of kilometres by levees or dikes.  These very flat man-made constructions make for very easy cycling.  Traffic is rarely an issue.

South of the river – between the Vienne and the Maine (Angers) there is a modest escarpment carved into by the river over thousands/millions of years.  This means if you deviate from the riverside roads you will need to climb – for most adults and youngsters its not a big deal but you might want to check out your route if you struggle going uphill.

Along both sides of the river there are several small towns offering some commercial activity but it would be prudent not to rely entirely on these without some planning.  Tourists can be caught out by businesses being closed during the height of the summer and even those that are open may operate hours that might be unexpected.

Bizarrely finding bread and croissants in August can be a challenge as most bakeries seem to go on holiday at the same time!

Accommodation Options