Paris Montparnasse to Tours via train - From Munich to Spain to France - CycleBlaze

June 7, 2024

Paris Montparnasse to Tours via train

Smooth sailing

We had a train scheduled for 12:30 pm from Montparnasse station to Tours. Our friends were picking up rental bikes in Tours so they were taking their gear to the train via public transportation. We were riding.  As we packed up our host Julian came down and said good bye and it was interesting hearing what was going on during the Olympics. He said that the market on flats is flooded - all the expats plan to leave Paris during the Olympics and rent their flats out, consequently many flats, including Julian's, have not been booked and the prices are about the same as for a normal summer season. Paris regulations only allow rentals for 120 days per year. The flat we stayed in is actually the flat he lives in. His folks own a flat upstairs and they live most of the time in London so when he rents his flat out he just decamps to the upstairs flat.

The ride to Montparnasse station was fun. We took a longer route to stay on bike paths, most of which were grade-separated. It’s really a pleasure to ride in big cities if they have cycling infrastructure and we thoroughly enjoyed riding in Paris.

The ride alng the Seine was wonderful with great views of the Eiffel Tower.
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Montparnasse is a huge station. There was a lift up to the track level and  although there was a very long line of people using it, we had arrived in plenty of time. Our bikes went in the lift one at a time. When the track for our train was announced on the annunciator there was a huge crowd that moved towards the track. They check tickets by requiring passengers to go through a turnstile. This was difficult on a large e-bike loaded with panniers and the attendant squawked at me but I managed to get through okay. Dave actually had to take one his pnniers off in order to get through the turnstile. The bike loading was great, with two easy steps up, and Dave easily got the bikes on board.  The car we rode in only has room for two bikes so we didn't have to fight others for space and we could lean our bikes up against each other rather than hang them.  The train was full.

Arriving in Tours.
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In Tours we veered off from our friends. They went to pick up rental bikes and panniers at a nearby bike store and we went to check in at the Novotel. There was the usual messing around finding the bike cage down in the parking level.  As it turned out, this Novotel is not one of our favorites. The French Open was on and trying to find a tv to watch it on was an undertaking. Dave found an upstairs conference area with three tvs but only one was working- and even then a bulb was burned out.  The hotel had no snacks or lunch so Dave went on a hunt to a nearby grocery for a very forgettable sandwich- a rare French food failure.

By this time Eric and Melinda had returned with their bikes. They had a very positive experience renting their e-bikes and panniers at Detours, just around the corner from the Tours Centre Train station. Detours will also store your extra luggage  for the duration of your ride so the logistics were very easy. 

That evening we dined on very good Thai food at Moom Thai - it was great for a change of pace from French food. We’re off tomorrow on our portion of the trip in the Loire Valley.

Today's ride: 10 km (6 miles)
Total: 1,307 km (812 miles)

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