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ViaRhôna, roaming along the Rhône river

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All reviews [10: ViaRhôna from Lyon to Saint-Romain-en-Gal / Vienne]


Internet users review

  • Poor section Vernaison to Givors - Roy Smyth


    The official route from Vernaison to Givors now follows the East side of the Rhone. Unless you have a taste for dirt trails with rocky, sandy, and steep sections, this new route is not recommended—only suitable for experienced trail riders with mountain bikes. It looks like the work of a bureaucrat sitting at a desk with a topo map, rerouting Via Rhona onto old footpaths to keep it off the road. Said bureaucrat should be made to ride the route.

  • No problems on a sunday morning. - Janine


    We left Lyon on a sunday morning 10.45. It was very quiet and hardly no traffic. There were no signs a all, you have to use a GPS.

  • south of Lyon (Lyon to Givors) - Pierre Louis


    This part is quite dangerous. One should leave Lyon early at 6am or after 9 am or on WE to avoid the traffic nuisance. In Irigny (1 or 2 km after the A450 crossing), it is possible to join up with the Rhône: take left (to the east) at a roundabout (follow the "coved" enterprise sign, then cross the railway, turn right (to the south) along the parking and then left (to the east) along the parking again. You will ride along the river from there to Grigny. However, this path is not a cycle track and is better for walking, running and mountain biking. Don't expect to go through with a trailer. It's better to avoid it after rainfalls (muddy). It is also subject to flooding a couple of days every year (not in summer).

  • Not so easy - AFRF


    Using the GPS tracks from this web side combined with a specific map for cycling (plenty of them available on the internet) we did'nt had any problems to find the way out of Lyon. Only a few sign posts. Without GPS pretty tricky. Again it's the vicinity of Lyon and one of the roads leading from the suburbs to Lyon. So a lot of traffic between Lyon and Loire sur Rhone. No problems for experienced cyclist. Some bike paths every now and then. Good greenway from Loire sur Rhone to Saint-Romain-en-Gal. Don't miss to say hello to the old Romans

  • Worth buying the train ticket to Givors and then be prepared to find path! - Conniesvf


    I am living in Lyon for 4 months and decided to explore the area with a neighbors borrowed bike. Although the bike was more of a city style bike, I am a fairly experienced cyclist and thought it would interesting to go as far as Vienne from Lyon yesterday. I learned a lot about this route! First, I thought I was prepared with my iPhone as a GPS and a general understanding to follow the Rhone south on the western side. Getting to the confluence through Lyon on the Rhone side is a very satisfying start. Easy and beautiful. The traffic going over the bridge and through Oullins was tedious but manageable for experienced riders. It was here I had my first set back as my phone inexplicably ran out of power. Bring you map. and mark it well before you leave. This might be obvious to you but I didn't do that and it made my trip a lot more dangerous-- and longer-- than it needed to be. I did follow the bus lines all the way to Givors which is the exact route posted here. That worked out well although not incredibly interesting. There is moderate traffic, inkling buses,so just be careful. I was excited to get to Givors because I understood that I would be able to find a Rhone river path from there to Vienne. Sadly, since I didn't have this suggested route with me, I was unable to find the river path. In fact, this map suggests that riders take a road WEST and parallel to the VERY busy D386 until after the industrial park area along the Rhone before crossing back over the busy road to the river path. The river path is NOT marked until very near Vienne. This meant that I ended up taking the busy and dangerous D386 most of that distance. DO NOT do this. There are many large trucks and tour buses, lots of speedy traffic, many curves and areas of poor visibility around curves, and place were there the shoulder is no existent for long stretches. Yikes! It's a tense and unenjoyable ride, but it was clear that I wasn't the only one making this mistake as I saw at least a dozen other riders trying to navigate this awful road too. Warning: While I recommend taking the train to Givors and following the correct streets down to the river path, I can not stress enough that you should be prepared with your map. Since I did not have mine I asked a local who told me there was a path on the east side of the Rhone along the river going south. I wasted a decent amount of time and energy finding that dead end path on the east side. I also saw two other cyclists doing the same thing. Clearly some folks find this path on a daily basis and waste time. You have been warned--stay on the west side! That said, the east side path is a rickety ancient stone path that is centuries old used by horses to pull barges up the river for hundreds of years. So it would be kind of cool and interesting if VIA RHONE was able to fund fixing up that side of the river and creating a real path there that could then have a foot bridge linking it to the start of the west side river path. It would be expensive, but the land is unused there and the views are gorgeous and I think that would be the best way to have a fully safe passage the entire distance. Vienne was worth the trip! It's a fantastic town with a very helpful tourist agency. The Romain ruins are amazing, plentiful and unlike others I have seen in Lyon. The train ride back to Lyon Part duex was only 7euros and my bike was free. It took me a full 5 hours including a couple of stops, an hour detour down the east side path and back, all of the Lyon traffic, and my not ideal bike. I completely realize this was ridiculous. If I did it again I think I would allow 3 hours-- but smart riders should allow at least 2. Not the best ride to take in France profound! But if you are determined to ride from Geneva to Provence it can be done safely if you plan properly.

  • July 2014 - dmorgan


    Biked out of Lyon on the west side of the river, and it wasn't too bad, actually (2 experienced cyclists, accustomed to traffic. Issue - couldn't find the start of the path in one had heard of it, and there was no signage saying "you are close, don't despair". Maybe put a note on the Tourist Office door (they were closed).