With a theme of wars and rivers, this Collection takes you on a journey which traces the French section of EuroVelo 19.
Also known as "La Meuse à vélo", the full route follows the river from its source at Pouilly-en Bassigny, near Langres in Haute-Marne, to its mouth at the North Sea in the Netherlands.
The French section of this European cycle route is 475 kilometres (300 mi) long. It accounts for just under half of the total 1,050-kilometre (650 mi) journey.
This eight-day adventure is accessible to all. The terrain is relatively flat, with daily distances ranging from 50 to 75 kilometres (30 to 45 mi). Cycling along French rivers and canals is a great way to introduce yourself to multi-day cycling.
EuroVelo 19 is a good alternative to La Loire à Vélo, a popular 900-kilometre (550 mi) river route along the Loire Valley. While you’ll discover renaissance architecture along the Loire, here you'll pass historic sites from the First World War. As you travel through the bucolic countryside, it's easy to forget that it was the scene of one of the greatest human tragedies.
Sadly, comparisons can be made with pollution of the Dnieper river in Ukraine to that of the Meuse river in France - both a consequence of war. It shows that humans make the same mistakes over and over again, and as Homer said back in his day: "War is our mother", so familiar is it to us.
Some parts of the route retell the story of "la der des ders" with memorial sites located between the towns of Verdun and Charleville-Mézières. There are many other historically significant sites along the route, and the incredible towns of Langres, Sedan, Charleville-Mézières and Givet will be highlights of your journey.
The second stage of the route is a day devoted to Joan of Arc, with a visit to the village where she was born. You’ll see how much the local population still regard her as a saint and important historical figure.
Nature is not forgotten, either. The second part of the route takes you through the magnificent Ardennes Regional Nature Park. You’ll discover some beautiful geological sites, such as the rocks of Saint Mihiel. You’ll also find numerous castles, abbeys and beautiful villages, giving this route a distinctive French charm.
The food is rich and served in generous portions, inspired by both Belgian and French cuisine. Accommodation is plentiful and of a high standard.
Summer is the best season to undertake this journey, but consider autumn and spring if you’d prefer a quieter season.
To ensure the route is accessible by train, I’ve tailored the Tour to start at Langres SNCF station and end at Givet SNCF station.
Happy discovering and riding!
Ready to get going? Create and customize your own version of this adventure using the full Tour below as a template.
Last updated: October 12, 2023
Plan your own version of this adventure in the multi-day planner based on the stages suggested in this Collection.
Try to spend the night in Langres if possible before embarking on this cycling adventure. It is a city that deserves to linger. It has been voted among the most pleasant in France.
Starting from the SNCF station, you may have to push your bike to get to the city center. The slope is 16% in places. Who…
This second stage takes an unexpected historical and spiritual turn. Its guiding thread is one of the most illustrious characters in the history of France: Joan of Arc.
You follow the Mouzon for more than 12 kilometers to reach its confluence with the Meuse at the level of the pleasant town of Neufch…
Get recommendations on the best single tracks, peaks, & plenty of other exciting outdoor places.
For this 3rd stage, an easy day along the Meuse canal awaits you. Linking the Meuse and the Moselle to the Saône, this structure is also called the Eastern Canal. When crossing Lorraine, it merges for 20 kilometers with the Marne-Rhine canal.
South of Commercy (which you reach at kilometer 27), the Canal…
Departing from Saint-Mihiel, you will get off the beaten track. After the first five kilometers, at the level of the village of Dompcevrin, turn left on rue du Chenot to take a secondary road which leads you to Lahaymeix. Keep your eyes open during this prank, because the chances of seeing artistic works…
For this fifth stage, after taking a slight detour through the pedestrian streets of Verdun, leave the city heading northwest. About 15 kilometers further, many testimonies of the First World War are visible. Around Chattancourt, I recommend three sites: the necropolis of Chattancourt, the stele in the…
Lovers of heritage from all eras, this sixth stage is designed especially for you.
First of all, on your way, you come across testimonies from the First World War.
At kilometer 31, a slight detour takes you to the superb abbey church of Mouzon. Located on an island in the middle of the river, this building…
For this seventh stage, you ride on the part of EuroVelo 19 called Trans-Ardennes. It is indeed the Ardennes part of the Meuse that reveals itself to you. You are close to the Belgian border. The landscapes are splendid. You thus take a road with more meanders than usual, punctuated by beautiful cliffs…
This day is relatively easy to cover. Following the river, the route has little elevation. The landscapes are particularly attractive because you cross a large part of the Ardennes regional natural park. Along the way, take advantage of the Trans-Ardennes greenway, which is still just as pleasant for…
Bike Touring Collection by Vincent Reboul
Bike Touring Collection by Adélaïde de Valence
Road Cycling Collection by komoot
Mountain Biking Collection by Leukerbad