Would you like to make a day trip, or a stopover during your journey along the Canal du Midi, from Nantes to Brest, the two seas or the Vélodyssée? Paulette offers you its selection of lakes located along the routes and towns where you can rent bikes. Pedal your way to the lake, ride around it or trade in your bike for a swimming costume, a canoe, a windsurfer or hiking boots for a day... The possibilities are numerous!
In the heart of Brittany, straddling the Morbihan and Côtes-d'Armor departments, on the way to the Nantes-Brest canal, lies the Lac de Guerlédan. The largest lake in Brittany offers many activities around the lake, such as hiking, horse riding, cycling, canoeing, paddling, water skiing and many others. There is a 43 kilometre trail around the lake, with plenty of food and drink on site! Come and breathe deeply on the shores of this artificial lake, surrounded by forests as far as the eye can see!
Located 20 kilometres from Nantes, the Grand-Lieu lake is very famous in the Loire-Atlantique region. As well as being one of the largest natural lakes in France, with the presence of 270 species of birds, it is the 2nd largest bird reserve in France! As this site is a protected nature reserve, swimming, fishing and water sports are prohibited. However, you can enjoy water sports activities in the area, and on foot or by bike, you can take one of the many walks on offer (a 73 kilometre walk is available here, although it does not run directly along the banks of the lake)
These two lakes near Biscarosse are renowned for their tranquillity and change of scenery. Between the two lakes and the coastline leading to the beaches of Biscarosse, this place offers an environment conducive to relaxation. Come and enjoy the water activities on offer: boat trips, windsurfing and hire paddles and pedalos. You can also walk around the lake of Cazaux and Sanguinet and follow part of the lake shore but also the Atlantic beaches. A 68-kilometre loop with differences in altitude of up to 433 metres.
Above Lacanau, the lake of Carcans-Hourtin is the largest freshwater lake in France! With 6,000 hectares bordered by both dune and forest, the lake, which is protected by Natura 2000, has a superb 2 kilometre-long beach. Cycle around the lake through the pine forest on the banks of the lake! On your way you will discover the Nature Reserve of the Dunes and Marshes of Hourtin (which can be visited freely or with a guide) with the lagoon of Contaut where you will see many animal species (free access but guided tours are offered). You can also visit Piqueyrot, an old fishing village on the shady banks of the lake. If you don't plan to stop for a picnic on the tables provided, you can eat at the bars, terraces and children's activities at the port of Hourtin. You can even sleep on site if you need to! Finally, there is the children's island with games and the Bombannes domain with its beach and outdoor activities: tennis, beach volleyball, accrobranche, archery, surfing, wakeboarding, paddle, canoeing. What a good time!
Between Bordeaux and Agen, in Damazan, the Lac du Moulineau is visited daily by families. Indeed, the swimming in summer is supervised, there is an area to picnic but also a refreshment bar and a snack bar to eat on the spot. The lake also offers many activities in the summer: tennis, mini-golf, petanque, fishing, volleyball, water ski lift... If you wish to stay a few days near the lake to enjoy it and visit the surroundings, the campsite of the Lac du Moulineau welcomes you until September 30th 2021.
In Marmande, between Bordeaux and Agen, the Beaupuy lake offers a space of relaxation and leisure, favourable to the practice of activities such as hiking or mountain biking, rowing, kayaking, jet-skiing, water-skiing, fishing, petanque, sports course and others. A playground has also been designed for children (slides, swing and other games). The lake is located 5 kilometres from the town, but there is a car park so if you come by car you can easily access the lake. The site is open all year round, is suitable for people with reduced mobility and pets are allowed. By bike, you can get there thanks to the Canal des 2 mers linking Bordeaux to Toulouse via Agen.
Friends of Toulouse, or holidaymakers, come and recharge your batteries at the Lac du Bocage north of Toulouse! A pleasant place whatever the season, you can go walking or cycling (no hire on site) but also rowing, water-skiing and paddling! There is also a children's area with football, basketball and other fields. It is a place for good walks (it is also the starting point for hiking trails) where animals are welcome. Note however that the lake is 4.3 kilometres long, so it is quite easy and quick to go around, especially by bike!
In the Aude department this time, the Ganguise dam lake, located 16 kilometres from Castelnaudary and 53 kilometres from Toulouse, is the ideal place for water sports activities! Windsurfing, catamaran, canoe, paddle, pedal boat... Thanks to the sailing club of Castelnaudary, you have the choice! The beach of the lake facilitates swimming, which is allowed but is not supervised! You can easily get to the lake via the Canal du Midi from Toulouse or Carcassonne. The complete tour of the lake can be done by bike with a 21 kilometre route (starting from Port Lauragais) with a positive difference in altitude of 249 metres in the sumptuous natural setting of the Lauragais. The route is available on our website.
Along the Canal du Midi from Toulouse, take a break at Lac de la Cavayère near Carcassonne! Just a ten-minute drive from the town (free parking is available), you can enjoy a variety of activities on the dammed lake: water games, pedal boats, mini-golf, tree climbing. In addition, leisure activities such as archery, kayaking, mountain biking, beach tennis soccer, pétanque and Nordic walking are available free of charge from 7 July to 27 August, upon registration at the lake chalet. You can also simply relax on one of the lake's beaches and eat on site or enjoy a picnic area. The tour of the lake can be done on foot or by bike, although it is only 5 kilometres long, but there are many walks starting from the lake. Please note, however, that renovation work is underway until February 2022. Access to the Cavayère dam will be closed to pedestrians and cyclists until then.
In Sète, with no less than 400 plant species and 100 animal species present, the Thau lagoon is a real reservoir of biodiversity! It is also a place where oysters, mussels and other shellfish have been farmed since ancient times. During your walks along the lagoon, you can observe some of the 750 tables dedicated to shellfish farming. Indeed, the town's greenway allows you to walk around the lagoon (54 kilometres). At the same time, you will pass through Marseillan, Mèze, Balaruc-le-Vieux and Balaruc-les-Bains, which you can discover. (map here) Part of the tour of the lagoon is done on the coastline with the lagoon on one side and the Mediterranean Sea on the other! However, you can also swim in the lagoon, thanks to the various beaches and water sports activities offered by the various leisure centres nearby.
At the edge of the Mediterranean Sea, 2 steps from Narbonne, come and enjoy the Bages-Sigean pond. A mooring place in ancient times, it is now a place where you can relax! Indeed, let yourself be seduced by the multitude of activities on offer: pétanque, boating, windsurfing, paddling, fishing, hiking, cycling, mountain biking, etc. During your hikes, you will be able to discover numerous species of birds in this magnificent site, specifically the pink flamingos and their always impressive flight! Play areas for children and a car park nearby are also available. A total change of scenery guaranteed!
Finally, in the Hérault, 45 kilometres from Montpellier on the Salagou river, the reservoir of a dam has created the Salagou lake which is very famous in the region! It is one of the great emblematic landscapes of France and is the ideal setting for a swim or water activities. There is a free car park, a restaurant, and a first aid post dedicated to supervised swimming in summer. Bordered by the Salagou Valley, made up of red earth and various reliefs, the lake offers a landscape of remarkable beauty, which has earned the entire Salagou site its protection under the 1930 law and made it a listed site. The site is home to many species of birds, some of which are threatened in Europe. The site is also THE place in the Hérault for hiking and mountain biking, which can be found here.
Stay tuned for more adventures with Paulette!
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