Before Boarding Loire Princesse: Getting To Know Nantes, By Bike

Less than 30 minutes from the city center in gorgeous countryside. © 2015 Ralph Grizzle
Less than 30 minutes from the city center by bike, I found myself in gorgeous countryside. © 2015 Ralph Grizzle

Tomorrow, I board CroisiEurope’s Loire Princesse — again. I was on the new vessel this past weekend for inaugural events, which I wrote about here. Loire Princesse is the first of its kind, a paddle-wheeler plying the Loire. She’s a beauty and a technological success, not only for Strasbourg-based CroisiEurope but also for the region of Nantes and for travelers, like you and me.

I’ll be reporting from the new ship beginning on Thursday, April 9. For now, I wanted to share with you how I’ve come to know and appreciate Nantes — on the seat of a bicycle.

Nantes is as bike-friendly as Copenhagen or Amsterdam, with dedicated bike roads and bike-aware drivers. I’ve spent a few hours each day exploring the city and riding out into the countryside along the rivers. The weather gods could not have been kinder during my stay here. I’ve pedaled under sunshine and blue skies on a bike that I rented for 31 euros for three days (actually the nice folks at Detours de Loire threw in an extra afternoon on the day when I picked up the bike.)

Read more about exploring Nantes on a bike.

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