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Best Route From Calais To Valencia

Discussion in 'Touring' started by Neal, Oct 21, 2019.

  1. Morning ladies and gentlemen
    I’m planning to ride down to the last gp in Valencia next month
    I’ve looked at all the various route planners etc . But wondered if any of you fine people
    Which I’m sure you have ... done this trip in 2 days from Calais ?
    Just looking for timescales and best for overnight at kind of mid point
    Thanks in advance for any response
  2. I pretty much followed my twat nav. Which took me mainly on the piage’s (motorways)
    The roads are excellent through France and Spain.
    I overnight stayed in Clemont Ferrand (southernish France) and easily hit Valencia the next day. The Millau Viaduct is pretty spectacular as is the surrounding countryside.
    I was in a van btw, not on a bike. My bike was in the back, as I went to Valencia for track days.
    Watch your speed through France. I hear the cops are pretty shit hot on the subject.
    If you get chance, set up a piage dongle (google it). It’ll save you a lot of faff at the toll gates. Especially on a bike. Enjoy, it’s a lovely road trip :):upyeah:
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  3. Cheers Mary
    What time roughly did you hit clemont? Or how many hours from Calais
    And second leg took roughly ?
  4. Hit Clemont ~17.00. I got the 07.50 tunnel crossing and it was steady away for the day.
    The next leg to Valencia took ~10 hours. But that’s with a few breaks for lunch, toilet etc. Steady away, no drama. I’d say it’s easier in a van though. Wouldn’t have fancied it on my V4S :laughing:
  5. On a bike? In two days? I can think of nothing worse!
    You will HAVE to use the motorways in order to cover the distance.
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  6. It’s 1200 miles from my house (south Yorkshire) Not too bad...
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  7. I have ridden from the U.K. to/from near Malaga many times, usually in just two days. I have also done dozens of trips across France, both riding and driving. In fact I’ve only just got back from 2 months in France.

    Your exact route may depend a bit on whether you want to use toll roads or not, but most of the routes across France can be done with or without tolls. I’m comfortable riding a Monster or Streetfighter for over 600 miles in a day and my usual preference is to stay off the toll roads.

    My route would be Calais - Rouen - Le Mans - Poitiers - Bordeaux - Zaragoza - Valencia.

    The mid point is somewhere between Angouleme and Bordeaux and is about 10 hours from Calais. I always try to go a little bit beyond the exact mid point on my first day of a two day trip, so I’d aim for getting to Bordeaux. Psychologically it means I feel I have less to do the next day.
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  8. Thanks for the input peeps
    Just to add it would be from Calais on a Thursday morning early doors as I’m overnighting in Dover day before ...... I’m not that mad
    Not bothered too much about tolls as I’d prefer to get down near the border ASAP
    And give myself less time in the saddle for the second leg
    As I’d definitely be taking the eastern route towards the Pyrenees
    Quicker I’d assume ?
  9. There’s only a few miles and about 15 minutes difference between the east and west routes if you are using the toll motorways. The east route is slightly longer, but quicker. I think the amount of tolls on the east route is close to €100. On the west route it’s about €60.

    My non toll western route is about 30 miles shorter than the eastern toll route.
    #9 SunEye, Oct 21, 2019
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2019
  10. Good advice from Mary Hinge and SunEye.

    I've done UK to Southern Spain many times , usually by bike but most recently last summer , in a van .

    The toll roads in France are expensive but the services are great .
    There are also excellent rest areas ( called " Aires " ) , which always have toilets that are cleaned throughout the day , and even free showers at some of them !
    They are set back from the motorway , screened with trees and have picnic tables ..... super nice stopping places !

    The other option is taking the "A roads" which are good for the touristy bit , and less boring than grinding away on the motorway .... BUT ...
    there will be lots of driving through small towns , or around city ring-roads and you will spend way more time and use a lot more gas ( which is dearer than many other Euro countries ) .

    I used to be able to do five hundred plus miles a day on a bike , but I just can't take having my arse roasted and pounded all day any more .

    Also , as mentioned , watch your speed ..... to put it politely and diplomatically , if French cops see Brit plates , they are NOT going to be thinking " Oh , let them get away with it , they're on holiday "
    .... if you catch my drift ..... :)

    Whichever you choose , it's a really enjoyable journey , not least because you are heading to better and better weather all the time .
    Have a great trip !
    #10 oldtech, Oct 21, 2019
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2019
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  11. Thank you very much for all the input guys
    I’m sure pics will ensue, just hope my mrs (pillion) is sharing the same enthusiasm
  12. Petrol in France is currently about €1.40 per litre at supermarkets. It’s probably about €1.60 on a motorway. Close to U.K. prices.

    The French police do tend to hide when doing their speed traps so the only advanced warning might be drivers on the other side of the road flashing their lights. They also frequently set up speed traps on motorways that you won’t know about until you see them in your mirrors.

    In my experience if the French police have set up a speed trap and you are speeding expect a fine. If they are doing something else and see you speeding expect a gesticulation to slow down.
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  13. Portsmouth to Santander ferry, blast through the Pico's then over to Valencia , bosh!

    France is boring to ride through and the police dont like us anyway. Best avoided :p:p
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  14. Consider the autoroute that goes down through Limoges as most of that one is free, well as far as Toulouse anyway.
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  15. Yes
    I've been flagged down by motorbike cops a few times , for not having my headlight on ( which I normally do anyway , anywhere ) and also for not having yellow tint on the headlight .
    No fines , just warnings ..... I speak OK French and I'm always super-polite
    but it doesn't get you out of a speeding fine .... :)
  16. That must have been a long time ago as yellow headlights went about 40 years ago.
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  17. Ferry was full a month ago
    At least I’ll be alcohol free for the 20 hours I’m saving on the boat
    • Drama Queen Drama Queen x 1
  18. The sailings all changed and they added some

    might be worth checking again ?
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  19. Already booked the Chunnel
    Thanks char
    And why aren’t my smilies displaying
  20. I think there’s another thread for escaping willies
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