Cycling London to Paris 'A Trail of Two Cities'

The Classic Dover/Calais Route and the Avenue Verte

This guidebook describes two long-distance cycle routes between London and Paris: the 'classic route' and the Avenue Verte. The continuing development of national cycle networks in both countries and an increased interest in cycling have further increased the popularity of this journey, both as a cycle tour and for sponsored challenges. Both routes are well within the capabilities of cyclists of moderate fitness and will generally take between five days and a week – meaning that a round trip, including a few days sightseeing in Paris, can easily be accomplished in a fortnight.

The classic route is presented in 11 stages; the Avenue Verte in 9. Primary route description for both routes is from London to Paris, but the reverse direction is also described. Each stage includes clear, step-by-step route description, mapping and information on local points of interest. An overview of facilities on route, a list of useful contacts (including tourist offices and hostels) and a bilingual glossary can be found in the appendices.

At 490km (excluding the Channel crossing), the traditional/classic route crosses the Channel either by ferry from Dover to Calais or via the Channel Tunnel. An alternative route, the Avenue Verte, was launched in 2012 to celebrate the London Olympics, offering a shorter journey of 387km but requiring a longer ferry crossing from Newhaven to Dieppe. Whereas the classic route includes quiet country roads, rural tracks and a few short stretches on main roads, the Avenue Verte makes maximum use of Sustrans off-road cycle tracks in England and voies vertes (rural cycle routes) in France, although there are still a few sections of road-cycling on quiet roads (the long-term aim is to make it traffic-free throughout). This is the first guidebook to include both the waymarked Avenue Verte and the non-waymarked classic route and provides all the information you need to enjoy a successful trip.

Mike Wells

Mike Wells has been walking long-distance footpaths for 25 years, and a keen cyclist for 20. He has walked the major British paths, the GR5 from Lake Geneva to the Mediterranean, and explored the Dolomites Alta Via routes in Italy. He has also walked in Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia, Norway and Chilean Patagonia. Starting with UK cycling routes, he soon moved on to long-distance routes in the rest of Europe and beyond, including a circumnavigation of Iceland and a ride across Cuba.

Marketing & Publicity
  • Huge popularity as a charity cycele ride, so we wil be promoting this guide widely, espeically as it features tow alternative route to Paris
  • Planned capaign including articles in cycling magazines and promitional items
  • Local and national cycle clubs on both sides of the English channel.