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Fitness
Bicycle Ride

Gordes Loop Ride

Bicycle Ride
Responsible for this content
Macs Adventure Verified partner  Explorers Choice 
  • /
    Photo: Iain Douglas, Macs Adventure
  • /
    Photo: Iain Douglas, Macs Adventure
  • /
    Photo: Iain Douglas, Macs Adventure
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A beautiful loop ride passing two picturesque villages and a classic Luberon Valley scenery - a real leg burner in places but the rewards are worth it if you have the legs. 
moderate
26.6 km
3:30 h
441 m
441 m
Today’s loop ride from hilltop Gordes will take you to the small hilltop village of Goult and Rousillon, renowned for its ochre-mining and red stone buildings. You will be cycling mostly on fast main roads with a fair amount of steep upwards climbing. The climb back into Gordes is a tough one, so don’t worry about having to hop off your bike to make it all the way to the top! 

Author’s recommendation

Try some lavender ice cream from the one of the ice cream parlours in the centre of Gordes. 
Profile picture of Catherine Allan
Author
Catherine Allan 
Updated: July 28, 2020

Difficulty
moderate
Stamina
Experience
Landscape
Highest point
354 m
Lowest point
153 m
Best time of year
Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec

Safety information

Take care on today's slightly busier roads, especially on the descents and on some rougher sections of road, making sure to stay in control. 

Before starting your ride it’s always worth inspecting your bike for any damage. Check for any damage to the frame, components or wheels. Ensure there are no loose cables and that the tyres are inflated and the brakes are working. Always wear a helmet when cycling. If you are doubtful of the condition of your rental bike please call the office or the local bike hire on the number provided in your information pack.

Beware of traffic especially when entering and leaving towns where the traffic flow tends to be highest. Take care on the day’s descents; make the most of the downhill but don’t speed around corners where you can’t see what’s coming ahead of you on narrow single-track roads.  Always treat descents with respect!

Remember to ride on the right-hand side of the road and whilst drivers in France are respectful of the 'velo', please do be mindful of other road users at all times, obeying local road signs and any change in road conditions.

Tips, hints and links

Points of interest 

Gordes

Classified as a Beaux Villages, Gordes is truly deserving of this accolade which you’ll see as you round the corner bringing the village into view.  The stone buildings seem draped over their hilltop home and reach down to touch the valley floor below.  The surrounding greenery is a welcome reprieve from the scorched landscape, particularly in the height of the summer.  The village is very popular with tourists so unless you plan on shopping we recommend strolling the streets in the evening when it’s quieter and the day trippers have left. 

The village centre is dominated by the castle and Saint Fermin church but there are plenty of other things to do also.  If you’re unsure what to prioritise head to the Tourist Information office near the castle or check out the below web link.

https://www.gordes-village.com/en/ 

Goult 

Small, picturesque villages may seem like a dime a dozen in this part of the world, but Goult really is beautiful. Park up your bike and take a walk through the restored streets of stone and ochre and have a spot of lunch or a bite to eat from the bakery before you cycle onto Rousillon.

Roussillon

In Roussillon you can make your way slightly uphill to one of the main viewpoints of this beautiful town. Although impressive, with its huge sundial and expansive sights, there is a higher viewpoint at the very north of the town overlooking Mont Ventoux which offers perhaps an even better view to the more crowded one in the centre.

The village is situated in one of the world's largest ochre deposits, and as you wander through the village you'll pass houses of varying warm shades of red - sometimes painted in beautiful colours. Pause here to soak up the atmosphere of this iconic Luberon village, enjoy a long lunch or picnic before returning to Gordes. 

 

Food & Drink

In Gordes you'll find some small shops and cafes along with a few restaurants where you can enjoy an evening meal. We recommend bringing a picnic lunch or snacks for the jounrey in case you miss lunchtime opening hours. There are also cafes, restaurants and small shops in Rousillon. 

Start

Gordes (353 m)
Coordinates:
DD
43.911326, 5.200005
DMS
43°54'40.8"N 5°12'00.0"E
UTM
31T 676647 4864376
w3w 
///sighing.recruit.yell

Destination

Gordes

Turn-by-turn directions

0.00 km – Begin at roundabout in the centre of Gordes at the castle. Facing the castle entrance cross the roundabout and continue down the steep road on the left-hand side of the castle taking care to control your speed. When the road splits BEAR RIGHT and join the D102/Rue Baptistin Pica.

0.27 km – TURN RIGHT onto Chemin De’ Pouleh, then TURN RIGHT again onto Chemin De’ Lourdanaud.

0.30 km – At the junction with the lamppost ahead TURN RIGHT onto Chemin De La Chalade and continue descending, taking care on the rougher road surface. In 500m TURN LEFT and continue descending.

1.10 km – Stop at the junction with the busier D2 road and taking care TURN LEFT to follow the road for 100m before you TURN RIGHT off it onto the D104 signposted for St Pantaleon (5km). Continue to follow the GPX tracks and signs for Goult.

7.30 km – From this roundabout you can take a 2 km return detour to the charming village of Goult. To take the detour TURN RIGHT at the roundabout following the D105 signposted for Goult (1 km). Follow the road into the village and then return to this point.

9.30 km – When you have returned to the roundabout take the D104 signposted for Rousillon (6 km). The next ~6 km into Rousillon are a gradual undulating ascent so do pace yourself. 

15.70 km – After following the D104, and finally the D105, all the way to Rousillon take some time to wander around this iconic Provencal village. To return to Gordes pass through the village and at the cobbled roundabout TURN LEFT onto the D169 signposted for Gordes.  Follow the Rue de Gordes and D169 for ~5 km.

20.60 km – At the T-junction TURN RIGHT onto the D60 following the signpost for Gordes.

21.40 km – At the junction TURN LEFT off the D60 and follow the narrower road (not the road marked “Prive”) and follow it for 1.5 km.

22.90 km – Where the road splits BEAR RIGHT then TURN RIGHT to join the D156 and continue STRAIGHT ON for 500m.

23.40 km – At the junction (with the walled house garden on your right) TURN LEFT off the D156, following the sign for the accommodation.

24.30 km – TURN RIGHT at the junction with fields on either side and cycle towards Gordes – you can see the village on the hill ahead of you.

25.10 km – At the junction with the D2, take care as you TURN LEFT onto this busier single carriageway road with the wall on your right-hand side. In 400m as the D2 curves BEAR RIGHT onto a quieter road that ascends into Gordes and continue uphill on zig-zag roads until reaching the roundabout at the castle.

26.00 km – To finish the day’s ride arrive at the point where you began.  Why not enjoy a refreshing sorbet, or drink, before returning to your accommodation?

Note


all notes on protected areas

Coordinates

DD
43.911326, 5.200005
DMS
43°54'40.8"N 5°12'00.0"E
UTM
31T 676647 4864376
w3w 
///sighing.recruit.yell
Arrival by train, car, foot or bike

Equipment

Always wear a helmet when cycling. Most (but not all) hire bikes come with a helmet, but taking your own can be more hygienic and is likely to be a better fit.

Always be prepared to cycle through a change of weather conditions and do check for any local weather warnings before cycling. Make sure to bring a waterproof jacket and a warm layer, as well as a small set of bike lights in case of poor visibility.  Most cyclists wear [fingerless] cycle gloves for some padding on the handlebars. Don't forget a spare battery pack for an emergency charge of any navigation unit you may decide to use, and pack your suncream!


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Difficulty
moderate
Distance
26.6 km
Duration
3:30h
Ascent
441 m
Descent
441 m

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