Walking and Cycling tours in Europe - Discover UNESCO World Heritage Sites

UNESCO World Heritage Sites


 

The Way of Saint James

The French Camino in Spain was declared Unesco World Heritage in 1993. According to Unesco this is a “linear cultural landscape spreading from the Pyrenean pass to Santiago de Compostela”. “This Route played a fundamental role in facilitating the two-way interchange of cultural developments between the Iberian Peninsula and the rest of Europe during the Middle Ages. There is no comparable Christian pilgrimage route of such extent and continuity anywhere in Europe

“In addition to its enormous historical and spiritual value, it also represents a remarkably complete cross-section of European artistic and architectural evolution over several centuries.

166 towns or villages and more than 1800 edifices as well as a 30 meters strip on either side of the Way.

 

In France along the different routes of the way of saint James 71 monuments are considered as Unesco World Heritage :

  • The Cathedrals of Le Puy, Auch, Cahors,
  • The Abbeys and cloisters of Conques or Moissac,
  • Numerous bridges in Espalion, Estaing, or famous Pont Valentré in Cahors,
  • the St James Gate in Saint Jean Pied de Port, t
  • the ancient hospitals in Le Puy or in Figeac,
  • a lot of churches of the Middle Age (Oloron Sainte Marie along the Piemont Route which winds its way on the foothills of the Pyrenean range, and many other churches).

 

See our tours on the Way of Saint James 


 

The historic centers of the following cities 

Bordeaux, Port of the Moon

The Historic center of Bordeaux is on the Unesco List :

“The Port of the Moon, port city of Bordeaux in south-west France, is inscribed as an inhabited historic city, an outstanding urban and architectural ensemble, created in the age of the Enlightenment, whose values continued up to the first half of the 20th century, with more protected buildings than any other French city except Paris”.

It is also recognized for its historic role as a place of exchange of cultural values over more than 2,000 years, particularly since the 12th century due to commercial links with Britain and the Low Lands.

Urban plans and architectural ensembles of the early 18th century onwards place the city as an outstanding example of innovative classical and neoclassical trends and give it an exceptional urban and architectural unity and coherence. Its urban form represents the success of philosophers who wanted to make towns into melting pots of humanism, universality and culture.

 

Our tours starting in Bordeaux

 

Carcassonne

The City of Carcassonne is listed on the Unesco Heritage since 1997. This is an outstanding example of a medieval fortified town, with its massive defenses encircling the castle and the surrounding buildings, its streets and its fine Gothic cathedral. 

 

Our tours passing through this place

 

Avignon Historic Centre and Papal Palace

Episcopal Ensemble and Avignon Bridge

In the 14th century, this city in the South of France was the seat of the papacy. The Palais des Papes, an austere-looking with surrounding ramparts and the remains of a 12th-century bridge over the Rhone. Beneath this outstanding example of Gothic architecture, the Petit Palais and the Romanesque Cathedral of Notre-Dame-des-Doms complete an exceptional group of monuments that testify to the leading role played by Avignon in 14th-century Christian Europe.

 

Our tour passing through this place

 

The Mount Saint Michel

Receiving more than 3.5 millions visits per year in Normandy.

 

Our cycling tours passing through this place

Our walking  tours passing through this place

 

The Vezere Valley in Perigord

“The Vézère valley contains 147 prehistoric sites dating from the Palaeolithic and 25 decorated caves. It is particularly interesting from an ethnological and anthropological, as well as an aesthetic point of view because of its cave paintings, especially those of the Lascaux Cave, whose discovery in 1940 was of great importance for the history of prehistoric art. The hunting scenes show some 100 animal figures, which are remarkable for their detail, rich colours and lifelike quality”.

 

Our cycling tours tour passing through this place

 

Corsica : Gulf of Porto: Calanche of Piana, Gulf of Girolata, Scandola Reserve

The nature reserve, which is part of the Regional Natural Park of Corsica, occupies the Scandola peninsula, an impressive, porphyritic rock mass. The vegetation is an outstanding example of scrubland. Seagulls, cormorants and sea eagles can be found there. The clear waters, with their islets and inaccessible caves, host a rich marine life.

 

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Canal du Midi

This 360-km network of navigable waterways linking the Mediterranean and the Atlantic through 328 structures (locks, aqueducts, bridges, tunnels, etc.) is one of the most remarkable feats of civil engineering in modern times. Built between 1667 and 1694, it paved the way for the Industrial Revolution. The care that its creator, Pierre-Paul Riquet, took in the design and the way it blends with its surroundings turned a technical achievement into a work of art.

 

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Jurisdiction of Saint-Emilion

Viticulture was introduced to this fertile region of Aquitaine by the Romans, and intensified in the Middle Ages. It is an exceptional landscape devoted entirely to wine-growing, with many fine historic monuments in its towns and villages.

 

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The Causses and the Cévennes, Mediterranean agro-pastoral Cultural Landscape

This 302,319 ha property, in the southern part of central France, is a mountain landscape interspersed by deep valleys that is representative of the relationship between agro-pastoral systems and their biophysical environment, notably through drailles or drove roads. Villages and substantial stone farmhouses on deep terraces of the Causses reflect the organization of large abbeys from the 11th century. Mont Lozère, inside the property, is one of the last places where summer transhumance is still practiced in the traditional way, using the drailles.

 

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The Loire Valley Castles : Chambord, Chenonceau, Blois, Chaumont, Amboise, Azay le Rideau

Our cycling tour passing through this place