For a motorcycle itinerary that is not difficult, that reveals multiple landscapes as well as architectural wonders, the region of Royan is a territory to privilege. You will go from rural landscapes to marine panoramas in only a few kilometers, then you will stop in historical cities with ancestral monuments. The mild climate makes this region ideal for long walks in the open air, but also for moments of idleness on some of the most beautiful beaches on the Atlantic coast. And then there are the good places to drink a good liqueur wine, the sea products to be savoured and the accommodation facilities with a family atmosphere where it is good to rest. It will be possible to rent a motorbike at the Yamaha Rent Royan agency, which does not hesitate to advise bikers on the model to choose. Here is an example of a motorbike itinerary in the Royan region, between land and sea.
The motorcycle road trip can start from the charming town of Royan. Before leaving, we take the opportunity to see the beautiful houses of the Pontaillac district and to take pictures of the Notre-Dame church, with its modern and surprising architecture. A visit to the central market is an opportunity to stock up on good local produce, to be enjoyed from the Grande Conche beach, two kilometres of sand in the centre of town where you can enjoy the sea air. To spend the night, it is advisable to go to the hotel Les Bleuets, which is ideally located in the town centre, with a warm welcome and decoration that evokes the sea. There is also a large car park near the hotel.
The next day, it is to leave for 40 km of road between Royan and Saintes. This next stopover is a pure delight for history lovers. Saintes is indeed a City of Art and History with an important heritage. Founded in the 1st century, you can visit its Gallo-Roman amphitheatre, the Abbaye-aux-Dames, the Roman arch of Germanicus as well as its superb Saint-Pierre cathedral. How can you also miss the Saint-Saline thermal baths? Another opportunity to admire the remains left by the ancient populations. Between two visits, a break at the Clos des Cours allows you to sit on the terrace in the sun to enjoy a copious cuisine. Meat, fish, the chef cooks only with fresh and seasonal products. There is so much to do in Saintes that one cannot miss a few nights at the guest house La Rotonde. In the heart of Old Saintes, in a beautiful bourgeois house, the rooms are in soft and soothing colours. And it is also possible to rent an elegant studio
After Saintes, it is time to take the road to the neighbouring department of Charente, and the beautiful city of Cognac. But before that, a stopover is necessary in the village of Saint-Sauvant. Situated in the valley of the Coran stream, a tributary of the Charente, this "Petite Cité de Caractère" since 2018, also belongs to the "Villages et pierres d'eau" network, a label that indicates exceptional buildings and sites located by the water. The village offers a picturesque walk and for those who wish to stay overnight, the Design Hôtel des Francs Garçons is a peaceful place. Located in an old building, it has modern rooms, a swimming pool and a restaurant that serves good food from the Saintes market
After having taken the country roads leading to Cognac, it is time to enjoy the riches of the city. Another witness of French history, the city of Charente also reveals an exceptional heritage, like its castle, an ancient fortress from the 10th century that dominates the river. Amongst the other century-old architecture, let's mention the Maison de la Lieutenance, built according to the architecture of the Middle Ages, and half-timbered. Cognac is also an opportunity for motorbike travellers to discover the great Cognac houses and to taste this eau-de-vie which rhymes with art de vivre and tradition, and which can be drunk dry, with ice, or in daring cocktails. In Cognac, secure car parks are available to park motorbikes. You can then go to the Hotel François Ier to spend one or two nights. The rooms have all the comforts you could wish for, plus there's a spa to soothe sore muscles from time spent on the road. The next day, after having done the Wonderwall street art trail or a ride on the Charente river, you will enjoy mussels with curry and cognac in the Globe brasserie, before getting back in the saddle for the next part of the adventure.
How about a 2-hour ride through the beautiful Charente-Maritime countryside to get back on the coast? We then reach the commune of Mornac-sur-Seudre to stop in one of the most beautiful villages in France. Medieval market halls, traditional white houses, a Romanesque church and a multitude of multicoloured huts along the Seudre, the place is perfect for a stroll in the sunshine to take some nice photos. For a meal, the Planche à Sel is a practical place, as it is close to a large car park for parking the motorbike. Moreover, the menu is interesting with good seafood: scallops, scampi grilled a la plancha or even sea bass grilled with beurre blanc. To regain strength on the road to La Palmyre, and remembering to book in advance, we stop at the Residence Lagrange Classique Le Clos des Chênes, at the edge of a forest that leads to the ocean. The small villas arranged around the swimming pool have a crazy charm.
Still getting closer to the coast, we stop at La Palmyre to see the famous zoo that we could see on the huge posters placed here and there. It is one of the most famous zoological parks in Europe, and there are many species, including wild ones, including an incredible variety of monkeys. The Great Apes Area is exceptional! Before returning the motorcycle to the Yamaha Rent agency, we obviously take the time to enjoy Royan once again, and especially its beaches, for some swimming. The beach of Chay, very intimate, and the beach of Pontaillac are two very pleasant stretches of sand to benefit from the beautiful days. A final detour to the old English bastide of Talmont-sur-Gironde is necessary in the evening for a bucolic stroll followed by a gourmet moment at La Brise. A glass of Pineau des Charentes as an aperitif, an entrecote à la fleur de l'île de Ré with chips or cuttlefish à la charentaise for the rest, and the stay is about to end in the sweetest way. La Pastourelle, in the centre of Royan, is perfect for the last few nights. Not far from the port and the Grande Conche beach, the house is also typical
For more information on visiting Charente-Maritime, go to the tourist office of Royan Atlantique and La Palmyre-Les Mathes. In Charente, go to the tourist office of Cognac.
For more information on motorcycle rental in Royan, visit the Yamaha Rent website.